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October 30, 2020
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5 Different Types of Game Testing Techniques

by Antonio Torres on 05/22/19 10:31:00 am

The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.


As far as software expressions are concerned, modern games are some of the most complex. The complexity of these games and the amount of money involved in making them, calls for different testing scenarios. There is normally a lot riding on these games, so it’s important that developers/company gets it right and minimize mistakes. All this allows us to see why game testing is so important in the gaming industry. There are many game testing techniques that companies use, here are just a few of them.

  1. Functionality testing

Probably one of the more difficult type of game testing to perform. This technique requires that the developers play the game while also trying to notice any bugs and errors within the game or in the user interface. It’s because of this that functionality testing tends to take quite some time. In this method, the key aim is to find bugs and errors within the game. It’s also used to assess whether the game is performing within/according to specifications.

  1. Compatibility testing

This is done for both PC and mobile games. In simple terms, you test whether the game will function within the hardware requirements set. For example, in mobile games, this would be used to test whether the game will work properly on the different sets of Android devices. It can also be used to check on whether the User Interface of the app will fit within the screen sizes of different handsets. Many developers recently have had to use this on mobile devices considering the changing screen sizes and layouts. It’s best to keep the mobile game players happy after all.

  1. Regression testing

The use cases of regression testing are twofold. Firstly, this testing is used when a bug has been found and fixed. Developers use regression testing to see if the bug has been fixed. Secondly, this type of testing is used to find out whether new bugs have been popped up with the introduction of new features. With this game testing technique, a developer could re-run the previously conducted tests and compare the current vs. old results to see if there are any errors.

  1. Ad-hoc testing

In normal scenarios, test cases are documented as development progresses. This is good as it helps locate the errors quickly and allows for the reproduction of the errors when needed. The problem with structured testing techniques is that it won’t find all errors. Some bugs can be found when a random combination of actions happen. Search bugs in (insert game title here) on YouTube to see an example of this.  Ad-hoc testing allows developers to find these errors at times. This testing technique is unplanned and is just made to break down the system. The problem- no documentation. So, it’s hard to reproduce the bug when required.

  1. Play testing

In this method of game testing, non-functional factors such as difficulty levels and arbitrary things like fun factor are analyzed. In this phase, a select group of players is selected to play the unfinished version of the game. This test is to gain a better understanding of what the public’s perception of the game might be.

  1. Load testing

Load testing allows developers to analyze the performance of the app when under a lot of load. It shows how the app will behave when multiple users use the app at the same time. This is one of the most important methods of game testing, especially for app developers. There are plenty of phone users in the market currently (especially Android users). It’d be bad for the app to fail (as it gets popular) when under load.

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