Video Game Tester Careers


As a professional video game tester, you play games repetitively in order to find bugs and errors in the game. Errors could range from simple spelling and grammar mistakes, to copyright issues, up to the larger problems of programming errors and game balance. It is your job as a tester to find those errors, document them, and in the case of bugs, be able to reproduce them and work out what is causing them. If the problem is too difficult for you, you must be able to enlist the help of the development team and work with them to fix those errors.

How to Become a Video Game Tester

To become a professional video game tester, you need to have excellent analytical and problem solving skills. You need to have a good knowledge of programming, systems, and databases. You also need to have good oral and written communication skills, as you will be required to communicate with many people and explain to them how to reproduce the bug so that they can find fixes for them. Employers will also often want someone who has a passion for gaming and shows extensive knowledge about the subject. Having an experience as a beta or even alpha game tester would also be an advantage.

Types, Description, Information

As a games tester, you would often need to work long hours in order to meet deadlines. Games testing can also be repetitive, stressful, and hectic. You often need to work with programmers, artists, designers, and support teams. The work is office based, and you will spend your time either tinkering with the game assigned to you or in front of the computer doing reports and analysis of the game.

Qualifications: Courses, Training, Certification

A degree in games design, computing, or programming while not essential, will boost your chances of getting a job as a games tester. Some schools also offer work placements as part of their curriculum, so taking classes that give such placements will increase your chances of breaking into the games industry.

Schools, Colleges and Universities

  • Collins College
  • Game Institute
  • Brown College
  • International Academy of Design & Technology
  • Sanford-Brown College – St. Charles
  • American Sentinel University

Job Opportunities, Salaries and Recruitment

Despite the job’s difficult nature, it pays at the low-end of spectrum: 9-12 dollars per hour. It is possible though to earn more due to overtime and double-time pay. Most testers are hired on a temporary or per-project-basis but permanent work can also be found. Game testing is an entry-level job, and is often the route most people take to proceed on to other higher paying careers within the game industry.

Most game testing jobs are not advertised so you would need to do extensive networking if you want to get this kind of job. Jobs in testing management though tend to pay higher so if you stick around longer and have a few more years of experience with the job, you can earn as high as $70,000 a year.

Category: IT Careers

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