Being the whiney-ass jerks we are, we love to complain about our jobs. “X publisher is being a dick! Every game I play sucks! I hate doing a job that thousands of people would kill baby seals to do!”
In our defense, it isn’t easy sorting this hurricane of press releases, PR bullshit, speculation, trailers, screens, and boob jokes into something intelligible and interesting. Nevertheless, we are far from the most crapped on people in this industry.
Apologies if we offend anyone who does these jobs – remember, we’re not hating, we’re just saying.
7. Game Tester
Sounds brilliant, doesn’t it? Get paid to play games all day – oh, and it’s totally a stepping stone into the games industry. At least, that’s what they tell you - our quality assurance veteran thinks differently. Here's the gist of her experience:
You aren’t paid to play games, you are paid to break them. Even that sounds a bit fun, but it’s different when you need to document and prove how you broke the game, work overtime all the time, live on coffee and Red Bull, and can expect to be fired at a moment’s notice – not fired because you did a bad job, fired because that’s just how the job works.
You work long hours shoulder to greasy face with a bunch of unhygienic recent high school grads, get yelled at by incompetent managers, accused of lying when bugs are difficult to reproduce, spit on by arrogant developers when you point out gaping flaws in their code, and are then fired simply because they’re done with you. You weren’t making much money to begin with, either.
Sound fun now?
In defense of QA, not all testers hate it. An anonymous poster at Gamewatch.org describes his experience at EA:
“Quality of life here, as best as I can tell, is great. I absolutely love the work environment, I love the team I'm on and all of my immediate supervisors are amazing. We're constantly rewarded and thanked for doing our jobs well, although the opposite is also true: When we're not performing up to our potential, we do get the lectures. Standards for improvement when we're not doing our best are very fair and reasonable, and any improvement at all is definitely recognized positively, even if we're still not up to where we should be ideally. Overall, positive reinforcement outweighs the negative.”
You seem to be the exception, Lemon Drop Disaster, and props to EA if this account is accurate. As you'll see later in this article, not everyone is as satisfied with the quality of life at the publishing giant.
6. The person who has to wade through Xbox Live abuse reports
Yeah, this one is a bit specific, but we’re really referring to all of the brain-meltingly dull and repetitive jobs in the games industry. Our own CheatPlanet editor is an expert in tedium - his soul turned hard and crusty by the constant influx of ridiculous and mostly indecipherable user submissions (don’t worry, we let him vent now and again).
Above: Hopefully CheatPlanet overlord Paul Ryan never reads this far into this article
If you’ve ever administrated forums, you understand how much fun dealing with whiney kids and their whiney parents and all of their whiney shit all day is. To whomever has to deal with XBL or PSN’s shenanigans, or manage any community of irate gamers - we understand.