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Overcoming Critical Challenges in Mobile Game Testing

Unlike typical apps, mobile game testing is less repeatable and regimented. Unscripted user actions, born out of individual player habits, introduce an element of unpredictability. Development teams must dive deep into game elements, including character movement, interactions, game mechanics, and level progression, to ensure flawless gameplay. As a result, mobile game testing has several unique and critical challenges that teams must overcome.

4 Mobile Game Testing Challenges

In this blog, we’ll cover some key challenges mobile game testing teams face and how to overcome them.

Failed Payment Transactions 

Payment flows for mobile games can be particularly challenging because a single game may have multiple monetization models. As a result, quality assurance (QA) teams must evaluate numerous possible scenarios to ensure seamless gameplay across in-app purchases, subscriptions, and freemium options.

Moreover, mobile games accept payments through various payment methods, gateways, and third-party integrations. Testing all possible combinations of payment options is a daunting task, especially when considering device types, regional currencies, app store policies, and local regulations. For in-house development teams, executing comprehensive payment testing across these variables can be challenging without the help of crowdsourced partners. 

The solution:
To avoid payment failures, test the entire payment process thoroughly. This includes purchasing virtual items, subscriptions, and in-app purchases. We recommend testing with real transactions across different payment methods, third-party processors, and gateways. Lastly, verify that payments are processed correctly in different currencies and comply with payment regulations in different regions.

Ineffective Localization

In addition, incorrect localization can result in errors in currency formats, symbols, or numeric representations, which can impact financial transactions. This makes proper localization of mobile games a strategic necessity. 

The solution:

Verifying the accuracy of language translations is essential to achieve successful localization. This includes ensuring text and audio elements are adequately localized for the target audience. It is also necessary to check if the game has region-specific gameplay elements that align with local preferences and regulations. Additionally, conducting location testing with real users and devices in the intended regions can help ensure optimal results. 

Unintended Consequences of New Features

Mobile game development and continuous improvements must go hand-in-hand as customers expect new features and functionalities at lightning speeds. However, each update or feature release can bring new bugs or break existing functionalities. This is challenging for agile QA teams, who balance thorough testing with timely releases while ensuring a bug-free user experience. 

It’s worth noting that some users may not update to the latest version immediately, resulting in multiple versions of the game being in use simultaneously. If updates include changes in device compatibility or support for new operating system versions, not enabling backward compatibility can frustrate users with older devices, primarily if they’ve invested hours progressing through the game. 

The solution: 

Data-related issues

Data-related issues can pose significant challenges in mobile game testing because of the dynamic nature of games and the diverse ways users interact with them. Since players generate a wide range of inputs, such as several usernames, scores, and types of content, validating the accuracy of user inputs and data can be difficult. Mobile games’ real-time and interactive nature further complicates data handling, particularly in multiplayer or online games where scores and in-app purchases must sync seamlessly across diverse network conditions.

It is crucial to test all gameplay elements of a game on various devices with different specifications, screen sizes, and operating systems to ensure that the game’s database functions reliably. However, with thousands of device makes, models, and OS combinations to consider, accurate in-house data testing is almost impossible. 

Additionally, since mobile games often rely on server communication for various features, testing these interactions for performance and scalability becomes challenging as the user base grows.

Effectively Overcome Mobile Game Testing Challenges