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September 09, 2007



Since I worked on an online game, I know that the TTF of the server is greater than the TTU (Time To Update), so when the server is down, it's not because of a failure, but because of a game update :)


In one of the projects I worked on a couple of years ago, one day we received 4 QA guys (all experienced types) in order to prepare for a coming demo and soon alpha. It took them 1.5 days to crash the game. Made me very proud of the team.

We didn't have a dedicated build machine, we didn't use TDD, and our iterations were more a result of wanting designers to always have an up to date version of the game to work on, than adherence to a process. Up until that point, we didn't have any QA staff, not even part-time.

The key was that anytime a bug showed up, it became THE focus of that area's programmer. If it was a crash, then it anyone who might possibly be related to it joined in the search. I put on my manager hat and kept buzzing around until someone (a) found the cause, (b) was able to explain it aloud, along with its origins and its plan for fix, (c) fixed it and (d) tested it.

I think all the other stuff are tools to help achieve this goal, but the only true requirement is to build and nurture that kind of culture: bugs die NOW.

Another aspect of our culture was that bugs were talked about in the open, no (or little) blame was present unless it was a clear case of laziness or carelessness. If there was someone clearly to blame, there could be general mockery and fun at the expense of the bug's originator, but never a bad word.

Mat Noguchi

Ours has always been never, at least since Halo 1.


gaming mouse

Never? What does that even mean? You've never had a bug that needs to be fixed that could stop your going gold? I don't buy it...

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Jamie's Bragging Rights

  • Spider-Man 2
    The best superhero games of all time Game Informer
    Top five games of all time Yahtzee Croshaw
    Top five superhero games of all time MSNBC
    Top 100 PS2 games of all time Official Playstation 2 Magazine
    1001 Games You Must Play Before You Die Nomination for Excellence in Gameplay Engineering Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences
  • Schizoid
    Penny Arcade PAX 10 Award
    Nominated for XBLA Best Original Game
    Nominated for XBLA Best Co-Op Game