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Experiences of an Early Tester

My experience testing a game in development.

Author: Doppio

Entry 2: In Search of Clothing

Posted by Doppio Thursday April 30 2009 at 3:30PM
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Right-clicking has brought ruin and destruction to my enemies in other games, no reason why it can’t work here.


Disappointed as I was with my attire, my immediate goal is to find out how to obtain better looking clothes. Being inside of a strange cave in a game I know nothing about is not going to deter me from that goal.

I took a closer look around, still see no other players, most likely an instanced introductory area of some sort. The walls of the cave felt strangely smooth, and it emitted a faint glow that lit up the surroundings. Lit up as it was, there was nothing in this cave, it was as bare as my feet. A small passageway was the only clear exit out of my immediate room.

I ventured forward while checking my inventory; I had nothing that resembled a weapon, in fact I had nothing at all. I didn’t have much time to pity my poor self, as I ran headlong into a creature whose name tag is so red it could have been painted in blood.

It looked like some sort of a miniature ogre, pudgy and short on stubby legs, with an enthusiastic bounce towards his latest prey as he took notice of me. I wouldn’t exactly call it a goblin, neither did the game. He looked more animalistic in appearance than a goblin and did not have green skin, it was blue and glowing, mirrirong the walls of the cave.

The joyful bounce that was his battle charge was strangely adorable and erased any sense of danger that his little axe presented. I right-clicked him out of habit, I had an action bar but it was as empty as my inventory. Right-clicking has brought ruin and destruction to my enemies in other games, no reason why it can’t work here.

To my surprise, my camera shifted higher up and perpendicular to the direction of this incoming battle, much like most action-adventure titles on consoles. I took a combat stance, but did nothing while the pudgy little creature landed blow after blow on my stupid, unarmored, illinformed little head. This didn’t last longer than a few seconds until I came to a conclusion.

Auto-attack is out.
 

Entry 1: Inglorious Birth

Posted by Doppio Wednesday April 29 2009 at 4:30PM
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Damp, muddy and inglorious was my entry, into a world that was supposed to inspire and captivate me.

 

As with other games in development, the testing begins abruptly and without much fanfare. Though I suppose non-disclosure agreements play a major part in this. There is something adorable, genuine maybe, some strange force that attracted me to it. I can’t quite put my finger on it…nevermind.

I jumped straight into character creation, one can tell a lot about a game’s general direction and quality from this immediate and mandatory procedure. The character creation was… interesting. The facial and bodily features have great manipulability. The hair styles are not presented with a standard list, instead I choose the starting length of hair, and then pick the available styles for that corresponding length. Something tells me that there is a purpose to this categorization, immediately my head overflows with guesses and predictions but I dimissed them quickly as none seemed very probable.

There is also a section in the creation related to traits of character. I’m not too sure about this and not much explanation is given, I will return to this as my understanding expands.

I chose my character’s gender: female. No option of races, classes, or jobs. The game did not attempt to explain its systems to me, and I purposely avoided reading documentations available as I truly enjoy the exhilaration of a new, mysterious experience. I have seen other games that did away with classes, I just wasn’t under the impression that this was one of them. It is also possible that at this stage, they simply haven’t been made yet. I somehow doubt that line of thought is correct since the overall creation mechanism was quite complete.

Upon entering the game world, I was expecting to be surrounded by other privileged people that were eagerly awaiting to see what this game is capable of. I was wrong, I was in a cave, alone. Damp, muddy and inglorious was my entry into a world that was supposed to inspire and captivate me. I wasn’t pleased.

The torn and ripped rags on my back did not help the case. I didn’t have shoes on. Pants are unnecessary, but shoes? Shoes are fundamental.