Hi Kyler, your parents will want you (and rightly so) to pick a career that has more long-term growth potential, like Game Programmer or Game Artist. Think of Game Tester as a job that could help you start out in a video game career, but not something to do for your whole life. For example I started as a game tester, but then I took programming classes and eventually moved into a job at the same company as a game designer and programmer.
Of course, this is a little bit of a stretch, considering that the number of video game jobs actually on the market is very minimal. With the right determination and effort, however, getting your foot into the industry is possible. Like many careers involving constantly-evolving knowledge and technology, there are always new opportunities: Game developer opportunities are expected to increase by about 11% annually over the next few years and the US Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates occupation growth of 6% from 2014 to 2024.
I asked one of my friends who has run several QA groups over the years, and he’s heard good things about uTest. They provide a “crowdsourced” testing service, and he thinks that many of their QA employees work from home. But in general, if you want solid, full-time employment as a game tester, you won’t be able to work from home because nearly all game companies do not hire work-from-home testers. In fact, please be careful, because there are several scam websites that you need to watch out for. Learn more in my podcast about work from home testing scams. If it seems too good to be true… it is.
When a game is in development, there are many different bugs that are often easy to find. To write it up, you’d type your report into a specialized “issue tracker” software (for example, a program called Jira) that has form fields for each piece of information the game team wants to know about. Usually things like, what do you do to make the bug happen? What area of the game is it in? How “bad” is the bug on a scale of 1 to 5?
Learn how to become a game tester with my book, Land a Job as a Video Game Tester. You’ll learn the basics of game testing, and all the steps to apply, interview, and accept job offers. I worked hard to write a book that provides everything you need to know to get a job testing games, but if I missed anything then you should email me and I’ll answer any remaining questions you may have. read it
Hi Samin, your comment made me chuckle! If you could get paid to play games, then everybody would do that for sure. The fact is that game testing is a lot of work, and sometimes it’s not even very fun. You don’t get to just play the game, you have to search for bugs and write a report for each bug you find. Sometimes you could write 20 or more reports each day. Then when the dev team fixes the bug, you have to go into the game to make sure it’s really fixed, which can take a while.
my name is jose barbosa. I searched long and hard where to go to apply for a game tester. I want to get paid for something i love to do.I love to play video games alot. I went to the search bar and it kept sending me to sites that states to pay to become a member so they can get me out that the companies that are looking for game testers but it just seemed alil iffy for me to provide them info about me and my finances. I just want to know where do i go to apply for it because i known a guy once who was doing it and making good money doing it too.
Hi I have been wanting to be in video game industry’s since I was very little. And I’m not very book smart am a sports fanatic. I’m 18 and on my senior year. I don’t want to go to the military like my parents want so I want to pursue this dream. I could really use some eadvice and maybe a good company to start with. I’m very hard worker and focused on the solution rather then the problem. If you could help me out it could change my life. Thank you -Colten pol
Hi Samuel, video game tester and video game designer are 2 very different jobs. So the first thing you should do is learn more about each one, and see if you can decide which one you’d like the most. You can get an overview of each at the game careers overviews article, and get a sense of what a “day in the life” is like at the game career interview articles.
Hi Carlos, in your question, you mention several different game jobs: writer, programmer, tester, design, and art. So the first thing I’d recommend is to get some clarity on which game job you want to do. If you can identify what it is you want to do, then the path will be clearer. If you’re currently going for a degree in writing or programming, then try to do some game-related projects while you’re in school, to start building your portfolio. Then you’ll be able to apply for jobs directly after college.
I have been gaming sencie I was six, I have played many consoles. This includes the nes,snes,n64,GameCube,Wii,ps1,ps2,ps3,Xbox,and xbox360. I have played so many games I have lost count. I have always wanted to be a tester full time. I have many questions though. The first is do you need to be a highschool graduate to be accepted for a job as a tester. What are good companies like Square Enix to work for, and where are they located. What abilitys do companies require their testers to be capable of doing.
This is one reason why it’s best to try and get a full-time employment (“FTE”) testing job at an established game company. Most regions require that employers provide medical benefits to their full-time employees, so it’s often a safer way to go. If you can’t find and FTE job initially, you may want to consider working as a temp at first, just to learn the job and get some experience on your resume.
Hi Nima, there aren’t really any jobs as “work from home” or online game testers. You should apply for normal, on-site testing jobs in your country. If there aren’t any game studios or game testing companies near you, then consider working for a non-game software company as a tester, because you may still get useful experience in software development.
Jeez, some of the kids commenting here really can't type well. Either that or they're not good at English. You know it isn't all just fun and games you have to have some English skills because you have to write well detailed reports. You aren't just playing the game you have to analyze it and see where the bugs are or where are the rough patches and then report them to the company. I don't think that this kind of job is for 11 or 13 year olds. I think maybe you should explain that in your article above. This is coming from a 17 year old who has tested and now I make small games with a group of friends. (we're just learning the programs right now). Learning to program is a pain in the butt, but I think rather than small kids looking for jobs in video game testing, I think they should be encouraged to learn more about the games they love. You guys are to young. It bothers me just how many of you believe it is just getting paid to play when it isn't. Well those are just my two cents.
Testers don’t normally need to travel very often, but it depends on what kind of company you’re working for. If you end up being a tester on a project that’s developed in a different town than where you’re testing it – for example if you’re working for a publisher in San Francisco but the developer is in Seattle – then you might need to travel occasionally. If you can’t travel for some reason, it’s probably not a deal-breaker for most testing companies.
While this overwhelmingly looks like a gimmick, from your picture, Jason, to the e-book, this site has a lot of information and I hope it is true. I’ve done my homework and saw you were a part of Griptonite Games, which made largely handheld console games, which are based mostly on movies. Knowing this I am a bit skeptical because handheld games certainly can’t be as difficult to make as console games, and games based on movies are notorious for being bad. So how would you know about joining those big companies, or making “big” games? To be honest, I never heard of Griptonite Games until just now. Could you ease my skepticism here?
2. Most of the bug software works the same as all the others. For each bug you find, you create a new “page” (database entry) and fill out the form. The form will ask for information such as which area of the game you found the bug in, how “bad” the bug is (e.g. does it just look bad, or does it actually crash the game). Then you type up the exact steps you took to find the bug, so that a member of the development team can do the same thing to see the bug in action and fix it.
Most companies do not have a formal process for selecting a Lead Tester. If you want to progress in your career, then you should do great work and help your leads accomplish their goals for the project. Always work to take on more responsibility. If your leads come to see you as a hard worker who is capable of more responsibility, then they may promote you next time there’s an opening for a lead tester position.
The Quest for Your Career series can help. Each week, we’ll focus on one of nearly 30 jobs in the video game industry across several job families including art, design, programming, testing, production, and more. Each interview features an experienced industry veteran who tells all about what the job is, what it takes, and how you can start preparing right now.
I'm 19 year old female and love to play video games. I've been playing for about... maybe 10 years? I don't really remember... but I've been thinking of getting a job as a beta tester, but with no luck... I used to have the ps2 and wii, but we had to get rid of them and I currently have the 3ds and still play it... too much I might add. Do I have any chance at all on becoming one?