Go ahead, call yourself a software engineer.

Ian Bogost writes for The Atlantic that programmers should stop calling themselves engineers. It's a good article, and he's right about software devs cheapening the word "engineer" with their Wild West practices. This is a sentiment that's been echoed for years. At the same time, though, there's a worthwhile distinction to be drawn between "I … Continue reading Go ahead, call yourself a software engineer.

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No Size Fits All

The most recent episode of CppCast featuring David Sankel ends with a good reminder: There is no One Software Methodology to Rule Them All, because we work in different contexts. Your environment matters. If you're a startup whose principle threat is obscurity, "move fast and break things" is good advice. If you're an avionics developer, … Continue reading No Size Fits All

Automated Testing Process Roundtable

Notes from a roundtable discussion moderated by Andrew Fray at GDC 2019 For more, see autotestingroundtable.comFirst steps getting started with testingFirst decide what you want out of testing; if you want a rock-solid engine, need unit tests (despite it being hard on a legacy engine)Unit testingAnalyze how long it takes you to go through a … Continue reading Automated Testing Process Roundtable

Preventing Bugs: The Dark Matter of QA

Notes on a roundtable discussion at GDC 2019 Run by Chris Rando (@Rodneysquint)IGDA QA communityQA Mixer first floor of Marriot MarquisHow do we articulate how QA prevents bugsBug preventionDoing acceptance testing—QA sets the criteria to decide when something's done (rather than just doing some testing when the devs say it's done)QA involved in game design … Continue reading Preventing Bugs: The Dark Matter of QA

Decorticating “Dead Cells”: A business & marketing deep dive

Notes on a talk by Steve Filby of Evil Empire & IndieCatapult, formerly Motion Twin at GDC 2019 BackgroundMotion Twin did F2P browser games, tried to move to mobile F2P/premiumThrew out everything to make Dead Cells for PCLeft in 2016 to start marketing agency Indie CatapultStarted Evil Empire recentlyHow we made Dead Cells a hit … Continue reading Decorticating “Dead Cells”: A business & marketing deep dive

Automated Testing of Gameplay Features in “Sea of Thieves”

Notes on a talk by Robert Masella (@ZipLockBagMan) of Rare/Microsoft Studios Wanted automated testing on all parts of the code, incl. (notoriously difficult to test) gameplay featuresChallengesComplexity from open world designConstantly evolving game-as-a-serviceWanted to cut releases in a week... can't spend weeks on testingWhy use automated testingManual testing slow, unreliableSubtle bug in AI behavior gets … Continue reading Automated Testing of Gameplay Features in “Sea of Thieves”