The 5th step towards becoming a great video game tester and getting hired for video game tester jobs involves learning a bit about the video game industry. Potential employers will be impressed upon hearing a potential video game tester demonstrate a basic understanding of the game development lifecycle, as well as a good general understanding of the industry as a whole, and what it takes to design, build, test, market and ship a quality video game.

The primary distinction between the video game industry, and the software industry as a whole, are simply the unique design elements inherent to video games – characters, game play, game balance, and so on. Excluding that, the video game product lifecycle adheres to standard software industry practice and development.

The major phases in any software development project are inception and brainstorming, to architecting and design, to coding, integration, testing, and shipping (RTM, or Release to Manufacturer). Running parallel to this process are the sales and marketing efforts, and the impact on deadlines that marketing has (“It has to be released in time for the Christmas rush!”).

Having a basic understanding of the big picture in the video game industry is essential for long-term success. In particular, understanding the role testing and qa play in the video game development life-cycle will be invaluable. To that end, Only4Gamers can help immensely. Additionally, picking up a book or two on the software product lifecycle will help give you a great foundation to get started in your new career as a video game tester.

By Jonathon Halston
Video Game Tester Jobs Advisor

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