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Old 04-24-2009, 06:40 AM   #1
Ownaholic
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Question Remote QA/Testing

So for my entire life, I've been itching to do something in the video game industry, and testing is obviously the easiest way to get my foot in the door.

After singing up with a certain membership which has a dedicated and constantly updated job listings page, and reading many, many, many online resources and eBooks, I've come to the realization that obtaining the type of job I want will be nearly impossible.

I'm overly qualified in my personal opinion, because I've been playing every type of game since I was a child, I've participated in an Open-Beta for a popular game (Rakion), I've found a ton of game glitches and bugs even after their release (in games like Halo 3, COD4), I've taken two Journalism classes with straight A's, I've taken a Physics class with an A (for 3D environment understanding), I've got experience with all of the office programs, all of the FTP/SQL transferring programs, Video Capturing/Editing Experience, and have even put together a nice portfolio of my personal experiences.(http://ownaholic.blogspot.com/)

Yet, I still can't find any remote QA/Testing/Reviewing jobs. I've found over 300 job listings, all for jobs that I'd kill for, however all of them say "no remote testing available", "in-home" testing only (which ironically means on-site rather than at-home for the tester), etc.
Even with reviewing, the jobs seem virtually non-existent, but that one was expected.

It's near-impossible for me to land an on-site job, because of the fact that I'm an upcoming College student who will never be able to relocate.

Can anybody provide me with any advice or small-time producing and/or developing companies, which would hire on-site?
I really don't want to have devoted all of this effort and time, even money, for nothing. I could have spent all this time searching for a different type of jobs.
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Old 04-24-2009, 07:07 AM   #2
yaustar
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Quote:
I'm overly qualified in my personal opinion,
You are not. You do not have an industry testing experience or certifications.

Quote:
Yet, I still can't find any remote QA/Testing/Reviewing jobs.
Honestly, they don't exist for plenty of reasons. Security and data protection being the main one. Stop looking for them. Reviewing games is the one I am not 100% sure on but you either have an established review of a well known site (such as DCEmu) for publishers to approach you or visa versa.

Quote:
It's near-impossible for me to land an on-site job, because of the fact that I'm an upcoming College student who will never be able to relocate.
Look for jobs near where you are currently. If none exist, then you need to relocate. If you can't relocate then you are out of luck.

Companies in Pennsylvania: http://gamedevmap.com/index.php?quer...&Submit=Search

Why not wait till you have finished College? Or start your own site? Is money a factor at the moment? Are any of the Writing volunteer roles from this board suitable for you?

Quote:
I will be able to work around 4-6 hours on average during the weekdays, and anywhere from 5-10+ on the weekends.
After May 22nd, 2009, I will be able to work 5-10+ hours daily, every day of the week.
Not going to fly. They will want you in at least the same hours as the developers, 9-5 weekdays or ones they dictate). You can't simply choose your own hours.

Quote:
Ever since I was a child (around the age of 7; That puts me at nearly 12 years of experience)
This does not count as experience. On a resume, experience is industry experience. Read: http://www.igda.org/columns/gamesgam...game_Oct06.php

Your case examples is by far your best section but they need reproducible steps to recreate the bug. Without it, the bug report is relatively pointless.

Quote:
and have even put together a nice portfolio of my personal experiences.(http://ownaholic.blogspot.com/)
No, you haven't. You have a blog post with a poorly laid out and poorly formatted resume that cannot be downloaded in PDF or .DOC format or even be printed in suitable layout.

Read: http://www.spreetree.net/blog/?cat=9

The resume is far to long and wordy and filled with unnecessary information. Your resume should only cover one side of A4. The two parts that are interesting are your case examples (which should be part of the portfolio and not the resume and also include reproducible steps) and the fact you run your own T-shirt company which wasn't even part of the resume.

You don't list any of your education either which is vitally important.

Last edited by yaustar : 04-24-2009 at 07:50 AM.
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Old 04-24-2009, 11:51 AM   #3
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I honestly do appreciate the constructive criticism; it's what I need most.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yaustar
Honestly, they don't exist for plenty of reasons.
If remote QA/Testing jobs are on the frequency level of little-nothing, then why has every other place I've come across so far been feeding me false hope?

Quote:
Originally Posted by yaustar
Look for jobs near where you are currently.
I checked out that site for PA listings, as well as tried some google searches, but I just can't find anything within a decent range; the nearest to me is about 2 hours away.


Quote:
Originally Posted by yaustar
Why not wait till you have finished College? Or start your own site? Is money a factor at the moment? Are any of the Writing volunteer roles from this board suitable for you?
Waiting until after college would make a lot of sense for both education and location reasoning, however it somewhat defeats the purpose of what I wanted to do: Gain applicable experience with testing while still in college, then move up a rank as soon as I come out with a degree. I figured it would be a nice head-start.
If I started my own site I'd probably get butchered by the competition.
Money is indeed a big factor right now.
I could probably handle all of the writing volunteer roles with ease, however I was hoping I'd be ready to jump into the work-force by now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yaustar
You can't simply choose your own hours.
I figured, I just thought it might be smart to put up an availability listing.
Is there a such thing as Part-Time testing? I figured it went hand-in-hand with remote testing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yaustar
Your case examples is by far your best section but they need reproducible steps to recreate the bug. Without it, the bug report is relatively pointless.
Thanks, I'll jot that down. I'm not even sure why I didn't think of this on my own.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yauster
The resume is far to long and wordy and filled with unnecessary information.
I was hoping that in doing so, it would show them my writing capabilities, however you're right, they don't have the time to sit there and read a book.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yauster
You don't list any of your education either which is vitally important.
Well I thought I should only give relevant education, which is why I only stated that I have taken two Journalism classes and a Physics class. I completely forgot about my previous Graphics Design class as well. And now that I'm thinking about Graphics, I even held a volunteer "Graphics Designer" at the infamous InvisionFree Skin Zone for about 4 months.
Would it be better to just broadly list my current education situation, or list individual examples?


Also, what would you recommend doing instead of a "blogger" page; I figured it would just serve as a good page.
(And I need to make a new template)

-------
Are there any other suggestions you or anybody can give me? I'm still adamant about finding a way to pull this off, I'm just not sure how...and assaulting producing and developing companies with my to-be-refined resume will grow very old quite fast.
Again, I really appreciate the help!

Last edited by Ownaholic : 04-24-2009 at 11:57 AM. Reason: regular revising/editing
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Old 04-24-2009, 12:42 PM   #4
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What do you eventually want to do in the game industry?
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Old 04-24-2009, 12:55 PM   #5
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The dreamer in me wants to be a Designer (I've got a million ideas and always find flaws in already produced games, and I love writing), then eventually a Producer.

However, the reality hits me and I figure the best thing to do is to just try Programming; it's the dirty work that the majority of the gaming population don't want to do.
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Old 04-24-2009, 02:01 PM   #6
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If you want to be a designer then start designing! Design games. If you love writing then show us some examples - it doesn't hurt to start that portfolio early and get it up on a personal website. Why would you want to be a producer if your dream is to become a designer? I would be gunning for lead designer or creative director if you want a leadership role.

If you don't love programming then I wouldn't suggest gunning for a programming position. By all means try it out and see if you enjoy it if you havn't already. However, contrary to the impression I got from your post, a lot of us enjoy programming. It will show in your portfolio and interview. Furthermore, you will need a technical degree.
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Old 04-24-2009, 06:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
If remote QA/Testing jobs are on the frequency level of little-nothing, then why has every other place I've come across so far been feeding me false hope?
Where are these places? Personally, I have never seen anything of the sort except for scam sites.

Quote:
I checked out that site for PA listings, as well as tried some google searches, but I just can't find anything within a decent range; the nearest to me is about 2 hours away.
Not much you can do about that unfortunately.

Quote:
Waiting until after college would make a lot of sense for both education and location reasoning, however it somewhat defeats the purpose of what I wanted to do: Gain applicable experience with testing while still in college, then move up a rank as soon as I come out with a degree. I figured it would be a nice head-start.
If I started my own site I'd probably get butchered by the competition.
Money is indeed a big factor right now.
I could probably handle all of the writing volunteer roles with ease, however I was hoping I'd be ready to jump into the work-force by now.
It be worth looking for an Internship of some sort. Since location is a problem, do you have any relatives/friends where you can crash for a summer/year near companies that you can apply for?

Quote:
I figured, I just thought it might be smart to put up an availability listing.
Is there a such thing as Part-Time testing? I figured it went hand-in-hand with remote testing.
If remote testing did exist, then the hours are generally more flexible. Since they don't, expect regular working hours for every job that is listed. Quite frankly, your resume would most likely be in the bin just because you are unavailable for work during office hours.

Quote:
I was hoping that in doing so, it would show them my writing capabilities, however you're right, they don't have the time to sit there and read a book.
You have done the opposite and shown them you don't understand how a resume should be laid out. The standard rule of thumb is that you only have 20 secs to impress the person reading it else it is in the bin. Bullet points are key. Read: http://www.obscure.co.uk/blog/2009/03/23/your-resume/

Quote:
Also, what would you recommend doing instead of a "blogger" page; I figured it would just serve as a good page.
(And I need to make a new template)
An actual site such as the ones in the article that I linked. Google Pages would be a better host with some default templates that you can use.

Quote:
Are there any other suggestions you or anybody can give me? I'm still adamant about finding a way to pull this off, I'm just not sure how...and assaulting producing and developing companies with my to-be-refined resume will grow very old quite fast.
Sort out the resume first as that is going to be your first impression to the company. Portfolio comes next.

Just to make sure, paid freelance remote testing does not exist* so if you are applying to companies for remote QA, you are wasting your time.

*Now time for the spanner. I actually did do some remote testing for a company in Australia during my third year of my BSc but that was the only time I have ever seen a job advertised for remote testing since then and that was in 2002.
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Old 04-24-2009, 08:52 PM   #8
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Well as an upcoming college student, I figured I could "easily land a spot" with remote video game testing; and yes, it was the multitude of "scam sites" that led me to believe such a thing existed. Normally I wouldn't have been so swayed, but I suppose I rushed into the meat of it too fast due to my prior beliefs that such a position existed.

It just so happens that I've taken a Creative Writing course.
I've even written a 12-page "fan story" for WoW, which I personally think turned out really well for having written it in one sitting. (I'd even like to expand on it) I've also written various other "storylines".
I just never thought I could cut it as a Designer, but maybe I've been underestimating myself.

I might take your advice, yaustar, and do some volunteer writing/reviewing projects
However, since it is volunteer work, does it count as industrial experience that is resume-applicable (towards a Junior Designer position, 4 years from now), or is it just nothing more than a bunch of writing exercises?

And Adrir, when I wrote that I wanted to be a Producer ultimately, that was just human-error. I had gotten the job descriptions confused. (However after reading "Types of Game Designers", that has been cleared up.)
But yes, Lead Designer or Creative Director are most definitely the right titles.
Regardless of title, I've always longed to see my name in the credits as one of the minds who helped conjure up the whole thing.
I work extremely well with people, especially when it's a creative branch, and have a tendency to "play off" on my peers' ideas, often resulting in a back-and-forth group brainstorm like a tennis match.

Now on to the Designer questions:
Where should I start? Volunteer work like previously described? Try and land a Reviewing spot somewhere?
Or should I go with a more direct approach and re-download some updated "RPG Makers" and dish out the cash for some 3D Modeling Programs in order to get some design experience on my own time?
Should I start with teaching myself C++? (It just so happens that my father is a Programmer; but not for Video Games. But he has all the books for all the Languages.)
I've read the "Types of Game Designers" article, and they all sound appealing to me.
How exactly should I go about getting at-home experience into proper formation of a "Design"?


Now for college:
I intend on double-majoring in order to get the most out of my money ($30,000 a year isn't easy), in Computer Science, and English.
However, I'm starting to re-think my college due to this experience. This fall I will be starting out at Moravian College, however wouldn't it benefit me to attend a college of the Arts & Design?
There are many colleges like that around here, and it would essentially be the same classes, but oriented more towards gaming, right?
The only problem is, I'm 20 days away from finishing High School, I've got the summer, and then I'd be going to college. It's probably impossible at this point in time to switch over to a new college.
(Not to mention, the move would probably piss off my dad who put down a $400 deposit at Moravian)
Maybe I could take some night classes or online classes in my spare time while still attending Moravian?
What do you guys think would be the wisest move?



I REALLY appreciate all the help you guys have given me.
I'll more than definitely stick around this place.

Last edited by Ownaholic : 04-24-2009 at 10:15 PM.
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Old 04-25-2009, 06:29 AM   #9
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I may have repeated this in another topic but: If you feel you need extra time (whether it be for learning [getting more credits/higher marks], financial issues [not enough money for college/residence/etc.] take another year of High School! Its nothing out of the ordinary, in-fact, it may be a smart choice in some cases. I know I will be taking a 5th year because I'm saving up money to get into TriOS college, and perhaps even move in closer to it so it doesn't take me 3 hours to get there by bus. Most call it a "Victory Lap", well.. that may be self-explanatory.

Again, think about what you do, where you're going to go, and how you're going to get there. If it seems troublesome, take your time to find a solution. Its not awkward or abnormal to start college late (1 year doesn't make a difference!), so be sure to think hard, and practice your skills!
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Old 04-25-2009, 07:08 AM   #10
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For how to start being a designer, start making levels, get a game with a tool set and make levels. Examples: Unreal Tournament, Never Winter Nights (Probably your two best options), Little Big Planet, Warcraft 3, Far Cry 2, The Elder Scrolls Oblivion and Half Life 2. All of these come with robust tool sets that allow you to craft your own levels and eventually even mod. Modding is another one, look around online maybe you can find a mod team to join.

For schooling I think that the degree at Moravian sounds fine, if you really do want to learn to program.
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