Game Development Reference
If your team's release notes don't include some of this information, ask your build
engineer to add the missing parts. Even if you still have to run most or all of your tests,
the ones you choose to run first should be based on the build information.
The test team can be very dynamic during the course of the game project. In many
instances, there is little or no testing at the beginning of the project, and a massive
army of testers plugging away at the very end.
“Test�? is often used interchangeably with “Quality Assurance�? (QA). This is especially
true on the publishing side, where testing is the main tool publishers use to make cer-
tain their investment is being protected. To some people this gives the misleading
notion that testing is responsible for the quality of the game. Testing can identify how
good (or bad) the game is, but it's up to the programmers, artists, and sound engineers
to make a quality product.
The test lead will sometimes be identified by other titles such as QA lead or lead game
tester. Her functions are in many ways parallel to those of the development lead. The
difference is that the test lead plans and orchestrates testing activities performed over
the course of the game development project.
The test lead is responsible for the on-time delivery of test development and test exe-
cution results. Test activities and individual assignments are identified, planned, and
adjusted as necessary during the course of the project.
The test lead also establishes test procedures and standards. This includes selecting the
right test tools and technologies to use for testing the game code. In many cases, test
tools need to be supported or otherwise compatible with certain details of the game
code. The test lead defines these “testability�? requirements for the game and works
with the programmers to see that they get properly implemented.
During the project, the test lead provides technical direction and assistance to testers
when needed, and represents the test team in planning and status meetings, including
participation on the project's Change Control Board.
On smaller game development teams, the test lead is also responsible for doing some
of the game testing.