Every working day this month, as part of our New Year, New Job 2014 special, Develop brings you a game industry professional to explain what their job involves and key advice to help you follow in their footsteps.
Today we’re looking at quality assurance or QA as it’s commonly known in the industry.
QA is the process of ironing out bugs, defects and other mistakes to ensure that players get the best game experience possible. QA managers are responsible for testing gameplay segments on a variety of hardware and software versions.
Patience and strong communication skills are important for careers in this field, which still goes overlooked by some, despite the ongoing importance for software that works as consumers expect.
Stuart Warren, QA manager at Sports Interactive, explains what it takes to become part of, and eventually lead, a QA team.
“Contrary to popular belief, people who work in QA don’t just play games all day. Well, we do, but not in the same way as when we’re playing for fun.
“If you fancy getting into the QA side of game development you’ll need a genuine passion for games, strong communication skills and an eye for detail.
“There’s no set route into management, but you’ll be involved in every aspect of testing; from bug reporting to budgeting and human resources, so you need to be organised and have good people skills.
“Our new recruits usually apply for testing roles through our forums and work their way up from there, but every studio and publisher will have its own approach. I’d suggest that you make initial contact through the studio’s website and then, if you make it to the interview stage, make sure that you know every game that they’ve ever produced inside and out.”
This feature is part of New Year, New Job 2014, Develop’s month-long guide to games recruitment. You can read more at www.develop-online.net/jobs2014.