What Is a Game Tester and How Do You Become One?
The video game industry is a multi-billion dollar, and as the industry continues to grow, so does the demand for video game testers.
A game tester is a person who is responsible for testing video games before they are released to the public.
They are an integral part of the game development process and play a vital role in ensuring the quality of the game.
In this article, we will discuss what a game tester is, the skills required to become one, the responsibilities of a game tester, and how to become one.
What Is a Game Tester?
A game tester is a professional responsible for finding and reporting any bugs, glitches, or errors in a video game before it is released to the public. They play a crucial role in ensuring the game's quality and that it is free from any issues that could affect the player's experience.
Game testers work closely with the game development team, including programmers, designers, and artists, to identify and report any issues. They test the game from start to finish and provide detailed feedback on any problems. This feedback is then used to improve the game before it is released.
Skills Required to Become a Game Tester
To become a game tester, you will need to have a variety of skills, including:
- Attention to Detail: Game testers need to be detail-oriented and able to spot even the smallest of bugs or glitches in the game.
- Communication Skills: Game testers must communicate effectively with the development team to report any issues they find in the game.
- Analytical Skills: Game testers need to be able to analyse the game and identify any issues that may affect the player's experience.
- Patience: Game testing can be tedious and repetitive, so game testers must be patient to play the same game repeatedly.
- Technical Knowledge: Game testers need to have a good understanding of the technical aspects of video games, such as game engines, coding, and scripting.
Responsibilities of a Game Tester
The responsibilities of a game tester may vary depending on the company and the game being developed. However, some of the typical duties of a game tester include the following:
- Testing the game: The primary responsibility of a game tester is to test the game thoroughly and identify any bugs or glitches.
- Writing reports: Game testers need to write detailed information on any issues they find in the game, including steps to reproduce the problem.
- Providing feedback: Game testers need to provide input to the development team on any issues they find in the game and suggest possible solutions.
- Collaborating with the development team: Game testers must work closely with the development team to resolve any issues before the game is released.
- Participating in testing sessions: Game testers may need to participate in testing sessions with other testers and development team members to identify and resolve any issues.
How to Become a Game Tester
If you are interested in becoming a game tester, here are some steps you can take:
- Gain technical knowledge: To become a game tester, you must understand the technical aspects of video games. You can gain this knowledge by taking programming, game design, and scripting courses.
- Build a portfolio: It is essential to have a portfolio of your work to showcase your skills and experience. You can create a portfolio by testing games independently and reporting any issues.
- Network: Networking is essential in the video game industry. Attend industry events, join online forums, and connect with other game testers and developers to build your network.
- Apply for jobs: You can apply for game tester jobs once you have gained the required skills and built a portfolio. You can find game tester jobs on job boards, company websites, or through networking contacts.
- Be prepared for the job: Once you land a game tester job, be ready to work long hours and perform repetitive tasks. Game testing can be challenging and demanding, but it is also rewarding to be a part of the game development process.
Game Tester Salary
The salary of a game tester can vary depending on the company, location, and level of experience. According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a game tester in the United States is around $49,000 per year, with entry-level salaries starting at around $33,000 per year and experienced game testers earning up to $77,000 per year.
Game Tester Job Prospects
The demand for game testers is expected to grow as the industry expands. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, computer and video game employment is projected to grow 9% from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations.
A game tester plays a vital role in the game development process by identifying and reporting any issues with the game. To become a game tester, you must have various skills, including attention to detail, communication, analytical, patience, and technical knowledge.
You can gain these skills by taking courses, building a portfolio, networking, and applying for jobs. Game testing can be challenging, but it can also be rewarding to be part of the game development process.
What qualifications do I need to become a game tester?
You don't necessarily need a specific qualification to become a game tester. However, having a degree in a relevant field, such as computer science or game design, can be helpful. More important is having the necessary skills, such as attention to detail, communication, analytical, patience, and technical knowledge.
What does a game tester do daily?
A game tester's daily tasks may vary depending on the company and the game being developed. However, their primary responsibility is to test the game and identify bugs or glitches thoroughly. They also need to write detailed reports on any issues they find, provide feedback to the development team, collaborate with the team to resolve any problems and participate in testing sessions.
How do I build a portfolio as a game tester?
You can build a portfolio by testing games independently and reporting any issues. You can also participate in game-testing contests, attend game jams, or create games to showcase your skills and experience.
What is the average salary for a game tester?
The average salary for a game tester can vary depending on the company, location, and experience level. According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a game tester in the United States is around $49,000 per year, with entry-level salaries starting at around $33,000 per year and experienced game testers earning up to $77,000 per year.
Is being a game tester a good career choice?
Being a game tester can be a good career choice for individuals who are passionate about video games and want to participate in the game development process. However, it can be challenging and demanding, requiring patience, attention to detail, and technical knowledge. Additionally, it may not offer a different level of job security than other careers in the video game industry, such as game design or programming.