“How can I get a job as a video game tester?”
It’s one of those questions that you hear all the time. Who in their right minds doesn’t want to get paid to play games all day? Stay home, do something you love, and earn money. For the naïve job seeker, the life of a video game tester is just for the lucky few.
A video game tester is much more important than you might think. Especially if you’re a game designer. Why? Objective feedback from a neutral 3rd-party set’s a game’s development on the right track. It’s that simple.
The key to crafting a meticulous experience is trial and error. Being sure that a game plays well means letting someone play it. Earlier rather than later. Want to know a fun fact? Game designers increase their chances of success by 20% when they work with video game testers. However, even triple-A game designers fail at this task. Self-funded indie developers have a very hard time getting it done at all. Perhaps, this is where we can make a difference.
Why we are running a video game tester program
We put a spotlight on indie games. This has always been our main focus. Recently, however, we’re realizing the importance of supporting new titles way before they hit the shelves. Indie game studios bootstrap all the time with small teams and time constraints. Indie devs have to juggle so much other stuff that they end up sidelining proper playtest programs.
IndieGala is not just a store and an indie dev studio. We’re also a community of gamers. This is why we’re calling out to everyone in our community (and beyond) to join our new video game tester program. But first things first.
What makes a good video game tester?
You probably wonder what it takes to be a good video game tester. (Other than button-smashing and yelling at the screen, of course.) The list below is not complete, but it’s a decent place to start.
(1) Play the Build Analytically
A video game tester is really not much different from a bug collector. Good playtesters put a magnifying lens on a game. They don’t just play; they explore every corner of the game and look for bugs. Actively. This will be the core of your job as a video game tester.
(2) Reproduce Bugs
When you catch bugs, it’s equally important to figure out how to reproduce them predictably. This is called a “repro” in playtesting lingo. If you can match unique actions to unique bugs, you can help the dev team zero in on the problem.
(3) Type & Submit Bug Reports
You realize that a video game tester has real work when it’s time to type up your first bug report. You’ll probably be submitting reports into a studio’s bug-tracking software. You should prep to sharpen your attention to detail and write clearly.
(4) Respond & Squish Bugs
The dev who receives your bug report might ask you for more details to help them track it down. You help solve issues faster if you’re timely with your replies. Remember that you’ll need to try and reproduce a bug when you get the “fixed” signal.
This is much closer to the reality of what a job as a video game tester looks like. Does it still seem like something you want to do? Then just wait till you hear some of the perks for joining our playtester program.
A video game tester gets to be the first to play awesome new indie games
Playtesting is important stuff but it can also be an incredibly fun activity. While you get to be the first to play blockbuster indie games like Die Young, Stayin’ Alive, and Downward, your feedback will actually contribute to the games’ development. Of course, you’ll get the games you playtest for free.
IndieGala’s Video Game Tester Pass
By joining our Playtester Program and working through projects, you’ll also get access to the Playtester Pass. This pass will grant you access to special deals and bonus GalaGold. You can use GalaGold to get free games from our Giveaways and Auctions sections on IndieGala. So you can’t earn a living, but this is another way to fuel your gaming hobby.
So, ready to work and play?
This is not for you if all you’re really after are giveaways or cheap PC games. We’re looking for playtesters who are serious about learning and putting the work into their play. This is actual work and so we need volunteers that we can count on.
We’ll be quite selective, so be sure you’re ready for that commitment before signing up. As a plus, we’re providing resources, tips and an IndieGala accreditation in case you’re interested in becoming a professional video game tester. Being a video game tester can also be a great springboard into the games industry. We want this to be a win-win situation for indie devs as well as for our volunteer playtesters.
Sign Up for our Video Game Tester Program Today
If this all sounds like your cup o’ tea, then don’t hesitate to sign up today and start getting ready for your first playtest assignment with IndieGala.
Signing up will automatically add you to our Playtester Program. Still, don’t expect projects to start falling into your lap. Keep an eye out for Playtest Assignments and take the time between to enjoy your perks. Practice what you need to in order to become a good video game tester.