The market of mobile gaming has been facing steep growth in the last 10 years thanks to the growing demand. One of the main reasons for the rise of mobile gaming is that it is equally wanted among various age groups. Meaning, young, middle-aged as well as old people equally enjoy playing mobile games.
Apparently, it is not an easy task to design mobile game testing as it is a complex process. It requires a wide range of tests which makes it stand apart from other apps. This article is going to help gain knowledge on testing mobile games in an in-depth manner.
Automated and Manual Testing
The developers of game designers focus on amazing and unique gestures to gain the maximum advantages of manual testing. Automation can help in saving a lot of time and budget. But, the automated process significantly depends on a wide range of simulated devices. Furthermore, the development of a touch-screen phone has evolved as a whole new experience for users.
Differences between Testing Mobile Apps and Mobile Games
A software tester with several years of experience can think that they can easily do the task of game testing. Although, it is not true! Yes, mobile game and app testing have a significant difference. Let’s know some of the prominent differences between the mobile game and mobile game testing.
1. Simulation Testing
A technique of image matching for testing mobile games shows how one can use it to identify an object or a location in that mobile game. It may seem complicated, but it happens by mapping the graphical elements and user actions. Therefore, these analyses are really great for simulation as they provide accurate data.
2. Testing the Post Production
Testing the games is a tricky and tough process. The reason behind this is that it will be exposed to several billion and millions of users across the world. Hence, any minor mistake can hamper the reputation in no time. Apparently, for other apps, the release cycle is short with the availability of automated techniques and tools.
3. Importance of Teamwork
The process of testing mobile games requires one tester for several fragments. It can also happen that it will need many testers at the same place. Hence, both require efficient teamwork because it requires involvement in several modules. Along with that, people have different perspectives, approaches, and thought processes.
4. Involvement of Multi-Players
When it comes to gaming, operating style is the main thing. In the beginning, mobile games used to be only single players. But now, multiplayer games have changed the whole scenario. The inclusion of multi-players is rising due to high participation and better engagement.
As a result, it makes things challenging for the testers. Here, the main thing is maintaining accuracy across different devices. Otherwise, it will only lead to getting a lot of negative feedback. Hence, this is another factor that makes mobile game testing different from other testing processes.
Hence, you can understand from the above points that game testing techniques for mobile apps and games apps require significant skills and knowledge. If someone wants to become a professional in this field, then continuous learning and effort are the keys.
What You Should Check for Mobile Game Testing?
Another thing that makes mobile game testing different from mobile app testing is that it has so many more components. Did you know that mobile games spawned a significant revenue of around $90 billion? These are the following things that a tester must know.
1. User Interface
For many testers, the User Interface or UI of mobile games is the main priority. But, it is not completely true. Gamers tend to ignore the UI if the game has something special to offer. This identifies that mobile games consist of several elements that need to work together to perform a particular action.
Besides, these actions are challenging and complex. Along with that, it requires precise positioning to offer a real feel. So, UI testing helps take care of these things and deliver a smooth experience.
Secondly, graphics is one of the primary components that differentiate the quality of mobile graphics. Thus, the better the graphics, the better the experience as no game can reach new heights. Apart from graphics, other factors such as the capacity to drain the battery, heat, etc. are responsible for developing a great game.
Significantly, GPU is highly essential for different applications. As they run on clock rates which can degrade their performance. To avoid this, ensure that the game doesn’t steal much information from the phone.
3. External Device
The evolution of mobile games since their launch has been incredible. Now, one can easily use a separate controller and play a game on a mobile phone. Previously, games majorly had two controls, but now it requires four fingers to play.
The integration of external devices enhances the overall experience and achieves perfection. Lastly, when doing the testing of mobile games, it is important that it should support external devices as well.
4. User Experience
People generally confuse user interface with user experience for a mobile game. Mobile games are not just an app, as users spend a lot of time using them. So, any minor inconvenience or bad experience can have a negative impact. Eventually, it can cause the app to crash.
Apart from the game, experience regarding navigation and other experiences can boost the demand for a mobile game. Hence, testing the important elements of mobile games will result in achieving great stability.
Finally, the next most important segment to keep care of is the security of the gaming app. To maintain the security level, most of the testers prefer to opt for third-party codes. These third-party codes developed by another expert are reusable. Furthermore, using these codes by third parties doesn’t require developing a module and also supports the usage of open-source codes.
Being a mobile game testing expert, it is crucial to be aware of security loopholes and vulnerabilities when using any third-party codes. Hence, penetration testing is one of the best measures which keep data safe and secure.
Which are the common bugs found in games?
These are some of the bugs which always arise while developing and testing any mobile game.
- Compatibility bugs: The compatibility bugs indicate the problems or the errors when the game doesn’t function accordingly. These errors hamper compatibility across different devices and operating systems.
- Logic and balance bugs: Secondly, this particular bug doesn’t allow or prevent the games to fulfill the tasks.
- Interface bugs: The interface bugs occur as the game graphics. They are often misinterpreted when the elements are not in the right place. Also, the particular space provided for the text won’t fit right.
- Technical bugs: Furthermore, technical bugs refer to those issues when the games don't work properly due to poor network or internet connections.
- Performance bugs: Several incidents like the FPS of the game decrease the performance on high-end devices during any character attack. Thus, these things happen due to the presence of performance bugs.
- Localization bugs: Lastly, the bugs which are mainly found in those untranslated texts or strings are localization bugs.
Different Types of Mobile Game Testing
Just like for any other app, opting for any one approach is not enough. There are different types of mobile game testing that a tester applies.
1. Compatibility Testing
Compatibility testing is the technique to check if the game is compatible with several OS and devices. Along with that, the game’s compatibility with different configurations of hardware and software.
2. Localization Testing
Secondly, localization testing is essential when the company is focused to target the global market. Several elements such as texts, game titles, etc. require to be tested with various devices in different languages.
3. Functional Testing
The testers for functionality testing analyze those generic problems in the game. These issues can be related to the user graphics, interface, stability, game mechanic, etc. Ultimately, having an excellent user interface enhances the friendliness of the game.
4. Performance Testing
Performance testing is done to check the overall effect of the game. These are the certain parameters that are used for performance testing of mobile games.
5. Graphics and Battery Consumption
- Network Connectivity: Here, the testers check the response time of different networks such as 3G, 2G, and 4G, as well as Wi-Fi. This process offers a clear insight that the game will be able to perform on those unreliable networks.
- Restrictions of Memory and Processor: This task is to measure how the game will consume the battery of the mobile device. If it is not up to the optimum range, then it requires reevaluation. Otherwise, the whole experience will be lower.
- Response Time: The response time of the game with the server and client is very crucial. Other factors such as time required for downloading the application, low battery, network coverage, memory leakage, scalability, reliability, etc. are tested.
6. Security Testing
Subsequently, as the name suggests, security testing is done to verify if the mobile game app is safe. Any major or minor external threat to the app is not a good sign. Thus, it is the result of an uncontrolled system, poor communication, data breach, weak algorithm, etc. That’s why security testing is one of those processes which cannot be ignored.
7. Recovery Testing
Furthermore, recovery testing helps identify the strength of the application against crashes, hardware, or other failures. However, to know this, the gaming application is forced which fails to observe how it recovers quickly.
8. Soak Testing
It is an automation test that requires you to leave a game for a long time in different modes. This actually helps in determining any memory leak in the games.
Important Metrics for Mobile Game Testing
These are the following metrics that are used for mobile game testing.
- Download Rank: the ranking of the mobile gaming app from the app stores such as Android Play, iOS, etc.
- Retention: It is an essential metric to know how much time a person keeps the app on the phone. For calculating this, the game testers need to divide users into segments on the basis of the days when they download the app.
- Session: Thirdly, the term session refers to the situation whenever the user opens the app. For mobile gaming apps, the testers focus on the average session on DAU.
- Performance Metrics: This metric is useful in tracking how online games perform. A game executes its performance on the client hardware, game server, stability, etc. are used for monitoring the updates and features.
- MAU and DAU: Lastly, the MAU stands for Monthly Active Users and DAU stands for Daily Active Users. These metrics help in finding the ratio of the active users who play the game each day to the monthly active ones.
Challenges Occur While Doing Mobile Game Testing
These are the following challenges that occur for mobile game testing.
1. Security Issues
Integrating any social media platform can lead to data theft. Hence, keeping these data secure can be a real challenge. Besides, every user is now aware of the security of an app. So, failing to meet security standards can hamper its growth.
2. Integrating Social Media
The rising popularity of social media in gaming platforms creates challenges when integrating it into mobile games. These include platform compatibility, user authentication, network connectivity, privacy, functionality, cross-platform compatibility, and adapting to updates. Ensuring smooth integration, secure authentication, and seamless user experience are vital testing tasks.
3. Working with Various Models of Mobile Phones
The android platforms comprise 80% of the market while the iOs is only 20%. Apart from that, various mobile companies now offer their separate operating systems. So, testing mobile games across several versions can be a daunting task.
Just like any other app, mobile game testing also comes with a lot of challenges. Optimizing the apps with the latest tools and evaluating the performance resolves the issues that gamers face. Significantly, it improves its reliability and scalability.