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.
The perfect job! Drink while working or work while drinking! I need you to playtest a drinking party game (dare type, barnyard themed) while checking various aspects of the game: - which cards aren't working/fun. what changes could be made to them (rewording, rating and etc) - is there a way to balance the game better - is the game even fun? - what's the weakest part of the game? - how did the theme and characters fit this type of game? Requirements: - Testing will need to be conducted 3-4 times in 1 week. - Before testing we'll come up with a simple questionnaire that you'll ask your friends (did you like the game? would you buy it? what did you like most/least about it? would you play it again?). - You will need to print out the game (we'll send you the pdfs of cards) - During the test you will need to gather other info to report on (comments on content, reactions to content, playing time and etc). Comments on content can be written in the doc I'll send you, the rest we can just discuss over skype. - You'll propose changes and correction according to that report. :) If we work well together, I'll ask you to continue playtesting the game and even get involved in other game projects later. :) I would rather pay per playtest. So if you know that you are able to test an x amount of times, send me your offer.
Hi Tim, if you’re getting an Associates in Software Development then that’s a good ground to start out on. Here’s my advice: Build a very small game project while you’re in school, to use as a portfolio piece when you start looking for jobs. Then once you graduate, you can apply to jobs in other cities – just be prepared to move to a new city if you get a job offer. I wish you luck!
Testing videos games is one of the most vital parts of the game development process. Game developers need people like you to test their games to make sure there are no glitches or problems with the gameplay, music, graphics and general workings of the game. These companies are investing millions in there games and can not afford to release a poor game. So don't "unvalue" your importance and worth as a game tester.
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.
Companies often pay contractors a higher base pay in lieu of benefits, but Danny only made $10 an hour. Extrapolating this data, means the average salary for a full-time position is roughly a meager $20,800. The federal minimum wage is $7.25, but game-testers are information workers, not burger flippers. It takes skill and knowledge to test and judge a game.
I’ve always been interested in working at home doing something I enjoy ever sense I left the service. QA testing has always been a interest because of the detailed work and the ability to work on your own but with a common goal with thousands of others. The issue I’m having currently is that I’ve grown up casually gaming across all platforms and genres and I just don’t have the slightest idea on who I should talk to or where to send a resume. Any help would be extremely apreciated.
Hi Evan, thanks for the questions. First of all, playtesting isn’t a full-time job, you might be thinking about the QA Tester job that’s described in this article. That is a full-time job, and most companies do not require a degree to do that job. Also, there are dozens (hundreds?) of game studios in the US, so I recommend you don’t limit yourself as to which one you’d work for when you first start out — you’ll have a lot to learn, and you can learn at most any game company.
The job outlook for testers is directly tied to the video game industry. As long as people are lining up to buy the latest versions of Fallout, Madden, Call of Duty, or the hottest labels, there will be a need for testers to “break” these games. While it is unknown just how many video game testers there are in the US, the number is certainly in the thousands.
Game testing does not typically require specialized education, so you could start applying for jobs now. Search online for game studios or testing companies that have open positions for “game tester” or “QA tester”, and apply online. There are numerous articles on this site on how to write your resume and apply for jobs, look under the “Blog” menu for more information. I wish you luck!
This next question is kinda off topic, but were you, at a time, ever a game tester? If so, was is for a big company? I always worry that I won’t get hired, because, since it has to do with video games. A lot of people are going to want to apply for the positions. I’m also aware of the work involved in game testing. I know about the “bug hunting”. The reports about the bug found. What if after hours and hours of searching, you don’t find a bug or miss it by the slightest bit? Would you lose the job? And if you lose the job, would you have to send the equipment back?
Hello! I’ve been playing video games for nearly all my life. I’ve put in so much time on gaming it’s crazy. But what do I do half the time I game? I find glitches. I’ve participated in private beta trials in nearly 6 PlayStation exclusive games and two other well-known games. I have also acquired the knowledge to use Microsoft Office programs proficiently, and I am studying game programming for the sake of learning how to better grasp the terminology and understanding of how a glitch is caused, and how it can be fixed. I’m only 17 and I am a junior in high school, however my dream is to become a QA Tester at Insomniac Games, the developers of Ratchet & Clank (which happens to be my favorite game franchise of all time). With the progress I’m making and these goals I have in mind, do you think they would accept me in the event I choose to apply for the job? Thanks for your input in advance. 🙂
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A few companies offer college internships most do not, says Mencher. So, you must “create’ your own experience through game development projects, volunteering to be part of a MOD group or using the development tools that most game companies release with the games themselves. Want to work for Epic Games or a Game Developer using the Unreal engine? Go purchase the last game created with Unreal – and have fun using the tools provided.
"At this point, the 'testing madness' started to hit. One of our testers started cursing out loud regarding waffles and their condescending desire to be like pancakes. One by one I sent each tester home as their sanity became too unstable to control. At one point, I realized I was the only one left and we still had at least 3 more hours of work remaining."
To get hired as a game tester, there are several skills you’ll need to learn: how to find and reproduce (“repro”) bugs, how to write bug reports, and how to verify that the game development team has fixed them. There are also “soft skills” you’ll need to learn such as being a good communicator, detail-oriented, and self-motivated. You can learn all of this and more by reading 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. It’s got everything you need to know to get a job testing games. read it
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?
I was searching for job like this.. honestly, this type of jobs is my dream, first thing that i known about how to become game tester is the passion on playing a games. I know, the main jobs of the game tester is searching bugs/glitches from the game. A real gamers still can’t be the game tester if he/she can’t focus on searhcing bugs on the games that they’ve played. Now, let me introduce myself.. I’m not a good programer, I’m not a skilled person that can drawing something manual or using computer, but i had experience about game tester that i learned from internet. A bit of story from me, I only had a laptop with bad specs, but i always want to play games. So i setting my pc until i can play a games work on 60fps, but from that, i got some experience especially on focus when playing a games. One thing that important to be a game tester is focusing to search any bugs on games. And then, the most important after focus on searching bugs on games is reporting the bugs that i’ve found. The report must be detailed, so the programmer of the games can fix the bugs from the tester found. Please reply this message Mr. Jason, i just want to get job that same as my hobby.. and that is be a “Game Tester” Thank You..
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.
Online Game Tester is a website, network and job database created by a team with a big passion for games, game developing, game designing as well as game testing and reviewing. We have a lot of knowledge and experience within game testing, QA testing, game designing and developing, and we want you to make money by playing new cool games! We help you to become a game tester the easy way! We have developed some custom tools and guides that would help you succeed as a game tester, and created a job database and network with easy access in cooperation with companies like Activision, Blizzard, 2k, Rockstar Games etc
Hey Jason, I really hope you reply to this because I can use the advice. I’ve been playing games since I was about 8 and ever since I love pointing out glitches and bugs. Because of this I would love to become a game/QA tester. Unfortunately I’ve been looking for advice online to find colleges for a while now, and I’m running around in circles. If you email me I would be able to get into more detail and information about my situation. I greatly appreciate any advice you give me, thank you.
Thank you for this informative site, i am a frustrated mother of an 8 year old. My son is only allowed to play video games during the weekend and on a non busy day he can play for 3-5 hours. In two 3 hour sessions he can clear a game. Is this Normal? I know every parent thinks their child is special, I am a realistic person, although he is adorable, I just don't know enough about games. We have x-box, PS3, WIi, DSI and PS2. I am sure I make most parents cringe but we let him play Call of Duty, Red Dead redemption, Modern Warfare, James Bond eagle eye, halo, Simpsons and ect. No matter the level he's done it just 2 days! He's been doing it since he was 4, so we have became pros a game renting since the challenge is a breeze. I don't think a game tester is place for an 8 year old, I just don't know if we should be trying improve a skill I find a tad annoying but something he is good at and enjoys doing. I am not game savvy, so clearly he doesn't get it from me, I just don't know how to challenge him or direct him for a possible gaming future!
Game testing jobs generally don’t require advanced degrees. Since you’re going for post-secondary degrees, then it might be more applicable for you to work toward a job as a video game programmer, rather than a tester. In either case, start by looking up job postings for game studios near your home to see what requirements they list, and then start working toward those requirements. There are a number of large game studios with a presence in India such as Ubisoft, EA, Microsoft and more.
Make sure to keep up-to-date on video game trends. For example, by reading industry magazines or blogs, you can find out when new games will be released and which games are preferred by certain demographics. Trade magazines and blog sites may also offer insider information about game developer companies, which may prove to be useful knowledge when you try to find open video game tester positions.
I've seen a wide variety of people succeed in game testing roles. Everyone from a recent College graduate with a Computer Science Degree (or equivalent) to someone who has been working in a manual labor or retail position and looking for a way to get into the tech industry. I work with a wide variety of companies and managers and each has their own ideal candidate. Not everyone that applies to a specific game testing role will be a fit due to specific needs of each team. That being said, there are some skillsets and characteristics that are common across all roles: strong written and verbal communication skills, excellent troubleshooting and problem solving, and demonstrated ability to work at a high level within a team environment while also able to be an independent contributor. Of course, and most important, being a huge fan of gaming.
Hey sir I’m want to be a video game tester, and we are doing this project and one of the requirements are to interview someone in the field who has the same career me and my teacher couldn’t find any one and the last and only way to get an interview is with you, hopeful you’ll take the time to ask some questions but, I can send you the questions in a email if you want to do it. Like i said hopeful you have some time because my interview is due in a week, no pressure.
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.
Hi Sam, getting a job as a game tester may not be as far away as you think. Most testing jobs don’t require a college degree, you just need to know some of the basics of testing and you can apply for testing jobs. If you haven’t checked out my book on becoming a game tester, then I think that’s a great place to start because I wrote that book specifically for people like you. 🙂
The reality is, there are thousands of people who do have those cool jobs working in the video game industry. In fact, for those of you who were told by your parents to get off the couch and do something with your life, the reality is, playing video games can be a key to success in the gaming industry, says Marc Mencher, president of Game Recruiter, the premier search firm in the game industry.