Game Development Reference
A test case describes an individual test that is to be performed by a tester or testers.
Each test case has a distinct objective, which is part of the test case description. A test
case also describes what operations to perform in order to meet its objective. Each
individual operation within a test case is a test step . The level of detail in the test case
can vary based on the standards of a particular test organization. Test cases are con-
ceived and documented by each tester who is assigned a set of responsibilities in the
test plan. The total set of test cases produced by a tester should fully cover his or her
A test suite is a collection of related test cases that are described in further detail. The
test suite gives step-by-step instructions about what operations to perform on the
game and what details to check for as a result of each step. These instructions should
be sufficient for manual execution of the test or for writing code to automate the test.
Depending on how the detailed tests are written, they may or may not depend on the
steps that were taken in a previous test. Ideally, each test in the suite can be individu-
ally identified and executed independently of the other tests in the suite. Think of the
test cases as individual chapters in a table of contents, while the test suite is a book that
puts the test cases together into a detailed, cohesive story.
Testing Before Testing Begins
You may soon begin to get proto-builds in bits and pieces, with requests from the
development team to do very directed testing of certain narrow features in order to
help them build the code. This sub-phase is sometimes called modular testing , because
you're testing individual “modules�? of code, not a complete build.
At this stage of development, it is entirely likely that as code becomes functional and
modules are tested, the design of the game may be revised significantly “on the fly.�?
Patience is required as you make several iterative revisions to your test documents.
During modular testing, it is premature to begin writing bugs beyond the narrow
scope of the module's test case. True defect testing won't begin until the game is
accepted for Alpha testing.
Finally, the lead tester should begin to recruit or hire additional team members as nec-
essary according to his or her resource plan. Once the team is in place, test kickoffs can