Over at bit-tech, Simon Hill has up a column on his experiences as a beta tester. It’s an interesting read, although I wasn’t surprised by the article.

Essentially, it comes down to the QA people (like Simon was) being treated as third-class, and something of a liability in the eyes of game producers and designers. After all, the game is “finished” as far as they’re concerned.

Heaven forbid the testers should find any bugs in this divinely-wrought code – even though that’s their job, and code is always buggy. And don’t even think about making suggestions that might improve the game. Hey, you’re just a lowly tester. How dare you question the mighty developers?

After all, the game has to be out the door by a certain date. Patches can always come later. That’s all that matters these days. And we’ve seen plenty examples of this over the years.

The job of QA testing is no fun, either, as Simon ably demonstrates. It’s certainly not a great way to get into the game industry, either. In fact, the situation is a sorry mess, and I doubt it will become better any time soon, if ever. Certainly not so long as unreasonable deadlines are set and testers are treated not much better than monkeys at the keyboard.

Bughunting And The Value OF QA on bit-tech