June 1, 2005

Why I Don't Blog Abour Ritual Much

I've had a few people ask me why I don't blog about what's going on at Ritual very often. There are two answers to that question.

First off, game development, especially on unannounced products, is a very secretive business. I can't just come out and say that we're working on this really cool *bleep* with over *bleep* new *bleep*s spread out over *bleep* new *bleeps* with *bleep bleep bleep bleep* and a sheep without stepping on some toes. All I can say is that the "Question of the Week" that I've been doing over at Ritualistic every Tuesday to solicit community feedback has contained some clues as to what we're working on, albeit minor ones.

Second, a lot of it is just plain boring. Do you really care that on Friday, I spent 90 minutes setting up and beginning to customize Issue Tracker so we can track our bugs on *bleep*, *bleep* and *bleep*?

How about how I spent 15 hours revising my test plan on *bleep*? Or 30 minutes revising my smoke test for *bleep*? Or 45 minutes examining a texture trying to decide if a corporate logo was discernable enough to warrant editing?

Fact of the matter is that a lot of the stuff I'm doing at Ritual right now is either under heavy NDA (meaning that if I even hint at it wrong, I'm in deep *bleep*), or so monotonously mundane that nobody in their right minds would care to read it. That's why I try to keep the focus of this blog on what I've learned, what I've experienced, who I am, and what I'm doing outside of Ritual.

That being said, I have learned one thing at Ritual...how to write a useful test plan. At Microsoft, test plans were these monstrous 60+ page affairs that were based off of a template, and to be quite honest, these templated pieces of shit were pretty useless. You had so much boilerplate in the way of the useful information that you really had to dig to find any information you were looking for, and because of the template, keeping it up to date and relevant got to be a bit...difficult.

So I'm going to lay out how to create a basic test plan for a video game this week. My test plan for *bleep* is only 12 pages. That includes a title/version page, one page for the table of contents, and one page for definitions.

Anyway, off to bed. I have to get up for work in seven hours.

1 comment:

Okie said...

Huzzah! Hey, I learned the same test plan lesson this past year...my new & revised test plan for *bleep* is only about a dozen pages as well...

And you know what...members of other disciplines actually read it. :-0