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Feature: Building In Better Testing From Day One

In Gamasutra's latest feature, tools programming veteran Cyril Marlin describes the process his studio used to build automated testing into its Wii game -- which resu
In Gamasutra's latest feature, 10-year tools programming veteran Cyril Marlin describes the process his studio used to build automated testing into its Wii game -- which resulted in "far less bugs" at the end of development. "Testing is a highly repetitive task, and many use cases should be checked. Each modification has a risk of breaking the game: engine, high level logic, or resources are each a potential source of problems. Furthermore, the diversity of situations adds an additional problem, since each change should be tested in every situation. This can add up to a lot of time," Marlin writes. The solution he came up with? A solver which could play the game through repeatedly and report bugs. "The objective was to save time during development by removing the costs of creating and maintaining test scripts. Additionally, because testing has been performed throughout development, more potential bugs will have been found prior to entering QA," he writes. In the feature, he describes in detail the design of the solver, sharing the code and design examples that powered it. "We tested continuously from early in the development phase to final test phase. The final test phase has far less bugs from this method, and reduced the time to polish," he writes. To find out more, read Marlin's feature -- live now on Gamasutra.

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