Sony introduces 13 new schmucks for the second season of The Tester

We all await more drama and giant hamster balls

Boo, Gaymer, and 8bit-mickey are just some of the ridiculous names you'll see on the second season of 'The Tester.' Wait, we'll back up - we don't blame you if your initial reaction is, "There was a first season?" The Tester is a reality show aired exclusively through free downloads on the PS3/PSP video store. In it, a pool of contestants is whittled down week-by-week until one "lucky" winner scores a job as an entry-level QA tester at Sony. More importantly, though, mid-level Sony managers get to dress up sharply and act like the most important thing since sliced bread.

Above: In the first season, PlayStation pretty boy Brent Gocke's smilegot more air time than the show's forgettable host

The first season of The Tester was lambasted and joked about by every Tom, Dick, and Harry, but it did actually generate a lot of views, as these things often do. Sony called it a runaway success and promised there would be a second season. And here we are.

The full list of people to make fun of is as follows:

Micky Paradis ("8bit-mickey"), a 22-year-old from Denton, TX
Greg D'Agostino ("Big Fazeek"), a 34-year-old from New York City
Raychelle Keeling ("Boo"), a 23-year-old from Springfield, MO
Francesca Bologna ("Ches-ka"), a 21-year-old from Brentwood, CA
Britney Whiten ("FantasyGirl"), a 24-year-old from Washington, DC
Matthew Brown ("Gaymer"), a 23-year-old from San Diego, CA
Jason Maxim ("Max1m"), a 28-year-old from Augusta, ME
Mohamed Obsieyeh ("Mo Chocolate"), a 23-year-old from Columbus, OH
Terrence Watson ("Samurai"), a 27-year-old Temple Hills, MD
Leo Kovalik ("Scooter"), a 26-year-old from Springfield, VA
Amanda Schwem ("Tripplethreat"), a 21-year-old from Conroe, TX
Danielle Mackey ("War Princess"), a 22-year-old from Oneida, NY

Above: This ain't no Jersey Shore, folks

It's a similar makeup to last season's group: a bunch of twenty-somethings and one slightly older guy. The older guy was the first to be eliminated last time. That's sort of the formula.

All of these saps are competing to become a game tester at Sony Computer Entertainment America hub San Diego. It's a job that naive, wide-eyed gamers might lust over, but that most realize is more soul-sapping than serving up slop at McDonald's.

But what's even more mind-numbing are the challenges. Last season featured competitions like live-action role-playing, performing Kung Fu moves, and untying knots while blindfolded. A panel of Sony employees hilariously acted somber as they attempted to explain how the contests represented skills needed to be a game tester, and then axed whichever contestant failed the most.

Above: Sony likes to know its game testers can move around in giant bubbles

So what happened to the guy who won the first season? Joystiq happened to catch up with Will "Cyrus" Powers three months ago, where he said he was happy as a tester and had ambitions to stay at SCEA for a while. Well, hey, in this economy, at least it's a job.

Powers also won a $5,000 "signing bonus" and assumedly received moving expenses to go out to San Diego. This season, the pot is sweetened a bit more: the winner gets the same cash prize as well as a 42" 3D Sony Bravia TV and a one-of-a-kind "The Tester" edition PS3. Still probably isn't worth giving up a job you already have, if any of these contestants indeed do.

Sep 14, 2010

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