Dev. diary 7


Matt Alford
QA tester @bossastudios


Hi I’m Malford, you may remember me from such YouTube videos as The Bread Diaries. I’m the sole QA here at Bossa Studios,over the last couple of weeks I’ve been trying my best to break the new update in awful ways so that the team have loads more work to do. I’m the most popular guy in the office.


There are a couple of issues we had this week which I’m, going to talk about. You know when you play a game and it has a really obvious bug, but it kind of makes the game more awesome so the devs keep it in? These aren’t those kinds of bugs. For example, we changed the save game format for the next release. It’s not something you’ll notice, but it paves the way for fixing some other stuff we’ve got.

So the changes to the save game goes in. I launch the game and have no saves.


I complete the first level.

I still have no save.


Turns out this new save game system breaks saves to the point where you can’t even make new saves. OK that needs fixing, so Murillo goes back and works on that for a few more hours, fixes it, I check and I can now make new saves! Hooray! So the next thing to do is make a fresh save on the live build just to make sure that the new system works with the old saves, so I boot up one of my 5 computers (our AMD machine in this case) and update to the beta build.


And my save is gone.

It turns out that the new save system isn’t compatible with the old save games, so I’ve lost all my progress. At this point Murillo is on holiday so Mo has to figure out how everything works and sort the problem out.


Imagine you are in a garden. Imagine you see a bug, and that bug is eating up all the vegetables, so you want to squash that bug. You pick up a nearby rock and you squash it. Now you look back at where you picked the rock up from and there are thousands more bugs that were just hiding underneath that rock, and now you’ve disturbed them and they are swarming around, eating all the veg, flying in your eyeballs, getting up your nose. That’s what bug fixing is like. You fix one bug, then thousands appear because of that change you have made.

A lot of what being a QA is about is checking every single thing for every change, because you never know. A lot of the time a coder will say something along the lines of “I’m just making this small change, it shouldn’t affect anything”, but the number one rule of being a QA is to assume that they are wrong, something will have broken, you just have to find out what.

Now if you’ll excuse me I’ve got to get back to breaking all the work that Mohammad has been doing for the last 3 days.