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14 Sep 2022

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Xbox's Matt Booty Wants to Use Artificial Intelligence as QA Testers

The video game industry has been growing by leaps and bounds recently, with the number of games released growing every year and their complexity. However,  no matter how many developers are working on a game, some bugs will always make it past them, which means that to have games that are free of problems at launch, QA testers need to be able to do work more quickly and efficiently than ever before.

In a live panel discussion at PAX, Xbox Game Studios Head Matt Booty expressed the need for Quality Assurance testers to be replaced by artificial intelligence.

Most times, QA testers receive complaints as bug-riddled games are sold to gamers who become frustrated by bugs. However, the frustrations gamers feel are often misdirected.

Managers are often aware that games contain a lot of bugs but still release unfinished games to recoup development costs.

Unfortunately, thorough quality assurance testing can be time and resource-consuming. At PAX, Booty illustrated how the game must be retested from the start when new features are added.

Booty said, "Some of the processes we haven't kept up with how quickly we can make content. One of those is testing."

"A lot is going on with AI and ML right now, and people are using AI to generate all these images. What I always say when I bump into the AI folks is: 'Help me figure out how to use an AI bot to go test a game.'"

If bugs are caught early in the game-making process, they have a greater chance of being fixed before presenting too much of a problem.

Booty also commented, "I would love to be able to start up ten thousand instances of a game in the cloud – so there are ten thousand copies of the game running – deploy an AI bot to spend all night testing that game, and in the morning, we get a report. That would be transformational."

Booty's concept of improving quality assurance testing using AI will revolutionize the gaming industry; however, it's aimed to replace human testers. Unfortunately, everyone might not embrace the idea. Due to this mistreatment of QA testers in the gaming industry, more and more QA members are calling for them to unionize.

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