January 21st, 2009 1,323

Do Game Testers Make a Difference?

This is a common question I am asked.

Whether you do or do not make a difference as a game tester is dependent upon two key factors:
1. The company you work for
2. How hard you work

So let me explain.

Many game companies tend to treat their testers like cattle.  They bring them in, sit them down in front of a game and have them play it until they just can’t go anymore.  BUT not all companies are like that with their testers.  It will take time and patience to find a company who is willing to hear what you have to say.  And then it may still be difficult to be heard.

The bottom line really is that you’re there to do a job.  If the company wanted your input, that would be in the job description and I can tell you I’ve yet to come across a game testing job that stated “Give us input on the games you test”.  When a game tester is hired, the company is doing it with the intention of having that person test the different areas of various games to make sure there are no kinks.  They are not hiring you to give them feedback about the game, or how it could be improved.  Now I’m not saying you’re never going to get that opportunity, but honestly that is not what many companies hire their game testers to do.

Ok so then it also boils down to how hard you work.  Meaning, you get the testing job done, but you want to be heard and you want to do so simply because you want to improve the game experience itself.

Obviously you can improve a game by finding and reporting as many bugs as possible.  So that when the game is released it’s done so with little or no errors.  But speaking up is also important as long as it’s done with the right person and in a professional manner.  If an employer tells you that they don’t care what you think, well then they don’t care and you should leave it at that.  But if an employer is receptable to what you have to say, then feel free to be open.

I think honestly game testers make a difference every day.  The harder they work, the less problems the games have when they are released.  If you take pride in what you do, it shows.

Let me share my wealth of knowledge I have on game testing.  Just sign up on GameTestingSecrets.com today and I’ll tell you everything I know.

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