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SuperTest Program: General Information + FAQ

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Ahoy Fleet!

There are quite a few myths and misconceptions floating around with regards to Supertest and Supertesters, so let's have a look at some of the most frequently asked questions!

 

What is the Supertest program?

Spoiler

Supertest program is an initiative for volunteers, who are willing to help our game development team by assisting the Quality Assurance and other departments. Simulations and test environments gets us only so far, and it is always good to run new features past an external audience capable of breaking the builds in new, exciting and creative ways.

Who are Supertesters?

Spoiler

Supertesters are players who voluntarily give up their own time to help test early builds of the latest patch which includes new ships, new maps, new modes etc. Supertesters are expected to be capable of filing out detailed reports of bugs and issues they find within the game as well as completing surveys on new ships and maps. They must be able to give clear evidence for the issue, and offer their best judgement towards a solution.
Supertesters are expected to be knowledgeable about game mechanics, in-game balance, and have some idea about the state and preferences of the larger game community. From this knowledge they give balanced and reasoned opinions.

How does Supertest help with the updates?

Spoiler

 

For each new update, Supertesters run typically several sessions with various tasks, depending on the content:

  • Basic check on the new / modified ships (Don’t think balance in this case, think clipping, model and basic function. Before we move to balance tuning, we need to know the ship can sail at all ;))

  • Basic check on the maps (Are the islands solid? Are there any invisible rocks?)

  • Basic check of functions (Can you actually select the new campaign? Can you collect the collection?)

  • And a ton of other important things which may sound boring but are crucial!

For each update we get both feedback and bug reports - and while it's possible a bug sneaks past (be it because it is tied to a specific hardware, or simply because we did not manage to trigger it during Supertest phase), most major bugs get caught already in this stage.

 

How does Supertest help with ship balance?

Spoiler

 

Mostly by driving the test ships around to the best of their abilities and thus gathering gameplay stats for us. This is usually one of the biggest time investments, and it can be also pretty frustrating as the testers often have to struggle with ships in early stages of the balancing process (The veterans of Royal Navy cruisers test still scream a bit if you refer to this test).

The Supertesters also provide written feedback (often varied), however the gameplay stats are the most important thing. Dealing with them is not necessarily easy though, as first they often do not match the text feedback and second we need to adjust for the skill (see below).

In any case, however, the Supertesters, Contributors etc. do not directly deal with ship balance. That is the task for our Game Design team.

 

What does a Supertester do?

Spoiler

Typically? Berate us for yet another last minute change in test tasks or ship tests (wink) Apart from that, typically Supertesters talk to other STers worldwide, poke us about things and most of all… Play the game!

What can Supertesters tell me?

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Not much about the things being tested.  While ship stats are usually on the Dev Blog and ship history is out in the open, the Supertesters will not tell you whether they think a test ship is good or bad.  They tell us instead ;) Also note that in battle they usually have their hands full dealing with the “new ship syndrome” (ie the entire enemy team going “Mine!” the moment they see them). So… If you see them testing new ship and want to know more, the best place to go is the Dev Blog!

Are Supertesters potatoes or pros?

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Varied :) But try as we may, we seem to have trouble getting below average active players in the supertest, typically we start in the high end of average band and pass smoothly into above average. Of course, especially in first few battles in an unknown ship, everyone can have a “potato” moment. Still, even the biggest lemons we tested had consistently highly above average win rate :)

How do we select Supertesters?

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The main selection criterion for this program is motivation and willingness to sacrifice the time and effort to make the game better! Another point is of course ability to stick to the NDA and work well with other Supertesters, including the common language.

Do the Supertesters have to agree with WG?

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Definitely not! We expect the Supertesters to be open in their feedback and tell us if they do not like some decisions.  As long as the feedback is constructive and civil, we of course welcome their thoughts. We also provide platforms for the Supertesters to voice their objections, and the only limit is they should not post feedback related to things on Public Test (as the ST forums anyway offer a more direct route). Once things are out in the open, Supertesters are free to comment (again, not using the “protected” knowledge).

How many Supertesters are there?

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This depends on the region, for example our ST program in Russia is the most numerous, but in other regions it is around 100 testers (replenished when needed).

What do the Supertesters get out of it?

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Our eternal gratitude! Apart from that, we are trying to compensate them for the time spent testing, both on ST server and on Live server.

How do I Join?

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Supertest recruitment is open whenever needed! For North America, a recruitment wave happened recently and for EU, one is close at hand so stay tuned and follow our portal, social media and forums!

 

#anchorsaweigh

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