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Game designers, artists, coders and testers have a language all their own. Sometimes they don't even realize that what they're saying at events and on the forums goes right over our heads!

We thought we'd help clear things up a bit by offering a look into their secret language. Here are a few terms you might hear from the mouths of devs.


Ambient Audio: Ambient Audio makes up all the sounds that help create an immersive environment.  For example, dogs barking, birds chirping, or dripping water.

Alpha: A development milestone at which the feature set is frozen and the product is fully functional and documented.            

Bug: Meaning "defect in a machine" (1889) may have been coined c.1878 by Thomas Edison (perhaps with the notion of an insect getting into the works).

Code Freeze/lock: A development milestone where the product is ready for final testing before Engineering Release. 

Collision: Object physics that prevent one object from passing through another.  It is placed on walls, objects in the world, and even NPC's to make sure that the PC does not run though any geometry.

Cluster: A group of individual server processors that make up a single play server.

Easter Egg: A component of a computer program that is hidden from plain sight and usually is not executed. Typically, an Easter Egg can be revealed by entering an otherwise unused sequence of commands.

Fall out of the World (FOTW): A term for the issue where a player falls through geometry due to missing collision in the world.

Hot Fix: Making a repair during normal operation.

Patch: A downloaded software update.

Sanity Check: A pass review of code when something is changed on a Test server to ensure its basic quality.

Smoke Test: A quick verification test of all major systems of a program to ensure that basic functionality exists and no major errors are present to prevent testing.