Testology: Testing still a viable career path

Andy Robson on the merits of the QA stepping stone
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In a feature written especially for Develop, Testology's Andy Robson has been discussing the merits of a QA position as a first step on the game development career ladder.

"Testing is still, irrefutably, a way to break into the industry, with obvious progressions being design and production," said Robson, adding: "although it's certainly not limited to those two professions alone".

While the tester's role has long been seen as a way into game development, at the same time it is often considered to offer a future career in games to only a tiny minority of those who secure a junior role with a QA company.

However, according to Robson, who describes testers as "the consumer's eyes in the studio', for the increasing numbers considering the video game industry as a potential career path, a QA position can provide a wealth of opportunity, even lending employees the skills needed by a producer.

"We don’t consider our testers as insignificant ‘numbers’, but instead nurture their skills so they can become well-rounded, capable workers in multiple development roles," revealed Robson. "When setting up QA departments at Bullfrog Productions and Lionhead Studios both Peter Molyneux and I both agreed on this point and considered QA staff as potential talent."


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QA & Localisation: Quality Careers

It has been seen as a career entry point and, by some, even a late-stage afterthought of development, but QA and localisation are vital parts of the development process. Sean Cleaver speaks to those in the industry to find out how perceptions have changed about this area of the business