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Preparing the test system

First you need to set up and check the test system. Keep the following steps in mind:

  • Hardware
    • Is your system powerful enough for the game to be tested?
    • Does it have enough CPU power for both running the game and compressing the video (dual-core CPU or more cores)?
    • Do you have a second HDD (internal or eSATA) for saving the video recordings?
  • Software
    • The game to be tested
      • Installation on system hard disk drive
      • Check the game's internal settings
      • Create a test account if necessary
      • Customize the test environment if necessary
    • Capturing Software
      • Test which capturing software works best with the game in question
      • Set up the capturing software, so you can start and end recordings at the press of a button.
      • Customize the video codec if necessary
    • Check the recordings
      • Can you start the recording by pressing a single button?
      • Are both sound and video captured on disk?
        • Laptops may require a patched audio driver
      • Does the video recording affect the game's performance?
      • Is the video going to be split up for longer recordings?
        • Should you reduce the capturing resolution?
        • Should you reduce the game's resolution?
        • Should you reduce the frames per second?
        • Should you re-adjust the codec?
        • Should you skip video compression?
    • Game Flow Analysis Tool
      • Installation
      • Does rating the videos work?
  • Environment
    • Is the test player undisturbed?
    • Observer
      • has to start and stop video recordings (according to the schedule)
      • has to open the videos with the GFAT and start the rating
      • then has to store the data for analysis
      • assists the test person in case of questions

Once the test system has been set up and you have successfully made a test measurement, you can start with the actual work. The following example will cover the entire measurement procedure.