So Sony’s got their own reality show going live on PSN sometime soon. While Sony doing a reality show is a rather terrifying prospect all on its own (KAZ HIRAI GONE WILD!), the premise is much, much worse. In The Tester, gullible nerds will battle other gullible nerds for the very dubitable honour of being a game tester over at Sony’s San Diego office. Yes, Sony is actually making a television event of giving someone a horrible, minimum wage job in QA.
Now, I know what some of you are thinking. You’re thinking, “But lol wtf game testing is like the most awesomest job in the history of like forever and stuff and it’s my dream lol.” Well, it’s not and it shouldn’t be. Being a game tester is the industry equivalent of being the little bunny rabbit in a corporate cosmetics laboratory. You know, the one that gets cheap shampoo rubbed in its gleaming little bunny rabbit eyes day after day, until its little bunny rabbit eyes gleam no more.
Here’s how it works. Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A arrives for work. Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A is seated in a cubicle, and handed the pre-beta code for Ponies Ponies Ponies IV: Ponies Ride Again. Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A is then tasked with playing the tutorial level for the entire day, making sure to attempt pretty much anything and everything a player could possibly conceive of trying. When Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A breaks the game – which Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A will, because Ponies Ponies Ponies IV: Ponies Ride Again is in pre-beta, and it’s about as buggy as a hypothetical B-grade film called Attack of the 50-Foot Bugs – then Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A must repeat breaking the game until Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A has determined what exactly is breaking it, and draft a comprehensive report (with numbers) about that for the development department.
The next day, Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A moves on to the game’s second level.
I’ve repeated the designation “Hypothetical Game Tester Subject A” here because if you read the preceding paragraph over and substitute your name every time you see it, you may finally begin to envision the slowly unfurling, leathery Lovecraftian horror your life could become.
Next time you think you want to be a game tester, don’t.
Discuss game testing in the forums