Becoming a video game tester could be the dream job of many gamers: they’d get paid to do what they love. This article will serve as a guide about how to earn money from games and how fiction and reality may come together in a work that appeals teenagers and adults.
So, what are the requirements for making money playing video games?
In a nutshell, there are no major requirements to become a beta tester; however that doesn’t mean anyone can do this job. The usual recommendations that a game tester should have are:
- Intermediate level of English (Written English).-Experience with all types of games (First-person shooting games, RPG, strategy, sports).
- Attention to detail, patience, and extraordinary analytical skills.
- Basic understanding of programming.
- Be an adult.
The above are the main guidelines but there could be more or less requirements depending on the job description and the tasks to execute. It is good to clarify that having these skills are no guarantee that a job will be landed.
What exactly is the job of a Beta-tester?
First of all, there are different types of beta testers. A video game today comprises numerous sections, and although there is obviously a form of general testing tasks, most of the work is related with the specifics of the game.
For example, content testers are responsible for reviewing texts, dialogues and even signs that may appear in the game. The role performed is similar to what a spell checker does and of course it requires language proficiency.
There are other types of beta testers also known as “fans”, who work from home and communicate via internet. Basically they receive the game and then they send a report of all errors they encounter as they play.
The third type of beta testers is the professional ones, whose full time role is to test video games. Their job does not differ much from a normal software tester and is mainly focused on running tests related to performance, usability and reliability.
They usually focus on a specific part of the video game and try to force situations that lead to possible programming errors. Some of them are obvious such as graphical errors or AI glitches but there are others that require more attention and time such as running all possible actions in each place. This translates to move the character glued to the walls or solid objects, jumping everywhere, shoot anything that might break, etc.
How to find work as a beta tester?
Asking to work as a video game beta tester today may sound like a joke and traditional job boards may not shed any light to a candidate. There are options such as specialised online forums but then there is a possibility of being scammed. The whole idea of working from house without strains sounds too good to be truth and attracts all kind of lurers with no so-good intentions.
What about the pay?
Gaming companies usually pay depending on the engaged activities. For example if an online survey is taken a payment between $5 and $75 may be received. Other tasks that could represent a return for the tester are:
- Participating in focus groups.
- Previewing game trailers.
- Reviewing games.
It is good to always keep in mind that there are pros and cons in any activity that sounds too good to be true. For game testing jobs, the following list has been compiled as a guide for individuals willing to find a place in this industry.
- Access to new games before the current user
- Paid work
- They gain experience and contacts for the future
- You can work from home
- Repetitive work, tired and often may become boring if you are not used to
- Need to focus on different aspects to what is done when “playing as usual” such as exploring every millimetre of the map and testing all weapons and skills.
- It may cause video game sickness and what before was leisure not it is something that is done to survive and that could not be fun for everyone.