Hey, what’s up? Can you tell us what you are doing at MADFINGER right now?
- Hey, I’m Marek (also known as Tomato among some colleagues), and I’ve been a QA tester at MFG for two years and a few months. Right now, I’m on a trial period, and if everything goes well, I’ll join the design team full-time.
Right, recently you’ve changed positions and went from being a game tester to working on the designs for our new project. Would you say your experiences in Quality Assurance prepared you for the new challenges ahead? If so, how exactly?
- Definitely. As a game tester, you get to work with all game dev departments, and you can see the complete process of how an idea becomes a part of a game. Then comes the time for testing, testing and more testing. During that, you can see how some ideas that looked great on paper can break or unintentionally affect other parts of the game. I hope that since I saw this from the tester's point of view, I will be able to avoid these issues, at least a little bit.
Speaking of your time as a game tester, do you remember some bugs or issues that stick out, either for being funny or just downright terrible?
- Yeah, I remember some from both categories. For example, in Shadowgun Legends there was an issue that caused players' body parts to start disappearing when someone logged into the Hub or went into the Bar. After a few trips to the bar and back, we had a Hub full of floating heads, gloves, weapons or running boots. Wargames had some funny bugs too. If you tried hard enough, you could equip emotes to the wrong heroes. I think the sight of Revenant performing the ballet emote will stay in my memory for a very long time. Heroes also sometimes turned 90 degrees after they respawned, so it looked like they were swimming through the floor instead of running. On the other hand, I think the worst bugs are those that simply refuse to die even after a whole week of fixing or bugs that are inconsistent. It’s not very pleasant when you have to test something 50 times, and the bug appears only once.
Working as a game tester is an entry point into game development for many people. Do you have any advice that you’d like to give them?
- I think the most important thing for the tester is to stay passionate about games. Some people say that the fastest way to lose your passion is to make a job out of it. You have to prevail and keep the passion that got you into gaming in the first place. Being a tester doesn’t mean that you will just play games all day and get paid for it. It’s still a job, but it’s a great starting position that shows you how game development works. It reveals your strengths, and it can point you in the direction you might want to go next, be it programming, art, design or marketing, just to name a few.
What would you say is the biggest difference between your old position and now?
- I think the biggest difference is that as a tester, the main part of your work is at the end of the feature development process. The feature should be ready and should work. You have to make sure that the feature is ready and works as intended. As a designer, you are at the beginning. You have to think of a feature, you have to think of all of its parts, and it should interact with other features in the game.
Let’s talk about games. Do you play, and if so, what are your absolute favorites, both old and new?
- Yup, lately I mainly play Rocket League after work and Sea of Thieves over the weekends. If I had to choose an all-time favorite game, it would have to be the first Witcher. Every time I play it, I have huge rose-tinted glasses on my eyes, and I just ignore all the flaws that the game has. Plus, the Czech dub of the game is just perfect.
And besides gaming and work? Any other hobbies or interests?
- Lately, I got sucked into the Warhammer 40K universe, so when I have the time, I assemble and paint miniatures. If I don’t have anything to paint, I mostly mess around in Blender, and then I 3D print the abominations I created.
Thank you very much for the interview!