Last week there was an article on Darth Hater about the Electronic Arts 2Q FY 2012 Earnings Call. During the call there was this quote about the beta testing program for TOR.
The Old Republic is in Beta right now and players are blown away by the immersive story, dynamic combat and authentic Star Wars feel. In the coming weeks we’ll invite hundreds of thousands of players into our biggest Beta test to date.”
So based on this we might see one or two more major rounds of invites before the program is shutdown and the team readies the game for launch.
Like many of you I remain hopeful that the Force will be with me and I’ll get the opportunity to test the game and provide feedback before it goes live. That’s right I said test the game, not play the game.
Recently I was snooping around the internet and ran across a leaked beta video of some PvP action. The video showed what appeared to be Sith Inquisitor griefing players by using a knock-back ability to send them flying off of ledge to their doom.
Now you might think this seems silly and a waste of a perfectly good beta invite, and anyone who lives to grief other players should be banned. I agree that when it comes to the live game, we don’t want these dopes ruining our fun. This isn’t the live game, it’s testing and these are exactly the kinds of people we need testing the game.
We need people doing wacky things and using their characters and abilities in ways the development team never intended. By identifying these problems before the game goes live, the developers can go in and fix them before they become issues in the live game. Beta is all about identifying what’s wrong with the game and getting it reported and thus fixed.
So if you’re lucky to get a beta invite be sure to report everything. Don’t assume that the developers are aware of every single bug that exists. Last September I was fortunate to get into the Cataclysm beta, and found no shortage of things to report.
If you see and un-textured cube where an npc should be? Report it.
Did you die doing something that should most definitely not have killed you? Report it.
See some dialog that seems incomplete? Report it.
If you complete a quest and are asked to complete a survey, do it.
Beta testing isn’t about getting a head start over everybody else. It’s an opportunity to identify issues, provide feedback, and make the game better for all of us. Remember what happens in beta stays in beta. This includes the characters you create, the progress you make, and all the items and credits you earned.
Even though it can be a lot of work, you should still find time to have a little fun. Pandas may be dopey, but bowling for Gnomes never gets old.
Okay, I’m ready for my beta invite now.