The views expressed in this blog entry reflect my own opinion and no one else’s.
So since last September I have been working as a video game tester, first focusing on Level Design , Gameplay and Multiplayer testing and later a combination of several areas with a focus on artificial intelligence.
The experience has proven invaluable and I’ve had enjoyed contributing and working with some amazingly talented people in the video game industry, but at the same time I feel like I can no longer enjoy games as I did before. Now whenever I do play games on console or handhelds (like the Vita) I will always notice some of those same issues I would come across in my work as a tester, but the funny thing is how often I will come across one specific bug, the dreaded LOD pop (or level of detail pop).
For those unfamiliar with the term LOD pop it refers to the level of detail on some textures of objects (in a game) appearing to change as you move towards and away from the object, giving the effect as though it is popping, thus the name. I’ve come across this issue in all sorts of games ranging from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 on the X-Box 360 to Valkyria Chronciles on the PS3 to even its sequel Valkyria Chronicles 2 on the PSP.
It sort of gets annoying after a while since I can’t help noticing the issue and thinking to myself how could the developers have not fixed this, how could they ship a game with such bugs present? Then I remind myself that at the end of the day they at least got the important bugs fixed.