04 Nov Aphondo: Secret 6’s Commitment to Quality
In a crowded and competitive game market, being able to deliver a high quality player experience is crucial.
It’s an important differentiating factor that can affect the community’s initial impressions, player retention, and the title’s overall longevity—especially when there is always a lot of new content to choose from. Clunky interfaces, gameplay bugs, and performance issues can all negatively impact a title, especially during the critical first few weeks after launch.
More than ever, quality assurance (QA) is vital for success in game development.
Aphondo represents Secret 6’s commitment to quality, providing Game Quality Assurance (Game QA) and Art Quality Assurance (Art QA) to our clients. Grown in-house from a diverse group of experts, it has evolved into its own separate entity. More than just games, the group also does quality assurance for websites and apps: testing functionality, analyzing the user interface, and reviewing content. Its services cover the PC, consoles, and mobile platforms.
From game software testing and bug testing, to content testing and mobile game testing, the team takes on a wide scope—diving in with their passion for games and quality work, as well as a critical eye and helpful recommendations. Quality is the name of the game, and Aphondo is ready to play, no matter the platform.
A Brief History of Aphondo
Aphondo was established in 2017 as the Game Quality Assurance services subsidiary of The Studio of Secret6, Inc. Derived from the Spanish term “a fondo” which means thoroughly, it reflects our commitment to quality work and rigorous testing.
In the beginning, standalone QA projects with one of our clients, Pocket Gems, led us to create a separate 4- person team. This team would eventually evolve into the bug fixing battalion that is now Aphondo. The core team is comprised of Secret 6 QA veterans who worked on almost all Secret 6 game dev projects, such as Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Generations and games from Cartoon Network—among many others.
Eventually, as the team formalized into a standalone company, they expanded their services to include Art QA (Art Quality Assurance) for AAA projects. This is beyond the continued QA support for Pocket Gems and all of Secret 6’s game development projects, including our very own IP, Project Xandata.
Formed by experts and veterans from a diverse spread of backgrounds, team members are driven by a passion for different kinds of games, a critical and vigilant eye, and most importantly, a commitment to quality. “If you’re capable of doing what’s required and of growing in this field, you’ll always be welcome,” says our Senior QAUX Department Lead, Rizza Martinez.
Quality Work is the Name of the Game
Game quality assurance isn’t just playing games all day, though. Game software testing is of prime importance, especially at launch. Isaiah Ilacad, our QA Lead, explains: “Game Quality Assurance at its core is finding bugs. Testing is done to ensure that quality requirements and standards are met, and to catch mistakes and defects during development. This is to prevent them from being encountered by end-users after shipping.”
Art Quality Assurance is also another area of focus for Aphondo. The team provided art QA support for Blood and Truth and The Last of Us Part II. They use various tools to ensure that all deliverables meet the clients’ technical standards.
Beyond collaborating with art and game development teams during production, Aphondo leads also communicate directly with clients. This way, they can ensure that our work is aligned with their vision.
This track record, combined with further engagements in this field, will bring further improvement to skills and processes, sharpening the tools needed to provide quality work.
Aphondo’s goal is to be highly recognized in game QA, including testing gameplay for triple A games. The team is constantly working towards this: always improving and innovating on work pipelines, and upskilling our team one game, one asset, and one bug at a time.
Our Commitment to Quality
With the Art QA and Game QA capabilities of Aphondo, Secret 6 continues to offer and provide relevant services in the game development industry. Our passion for fulfilling good work that makes our clients and partners successful created this dedicated group.
Success in quality assurance is all about the details. Aphondo lives up to the origins of its name by working thoroughly, making sure that things like graphic assets and the user experience are working as envisioned and intended.
Visit the Aphondo website and let’s work together in creating quality experiences in your apps and games!