What is PlayTesting? How to Get Good Feedback For Your Game?

In the process of creating a video game, playtesting is like assembling a band of courageous explorers to go off on a perilous trip to test the game.

Players may assume the roles of heroes and villains in this vast experiment, exploring virtual realms and facing off against pixelated adversaries.

But the game is more than just about defeating dragons and looting dazzling objects.

No, there’s a lot more to it than that! During playtesting, game designers anxiously watch these brave players and take notes on every movement, emotion, and victorious or frustrated grunt they make.

It’s an exciting moment to find the player experience’s buried gems and track down elusive bugs that hide in the code’s deepest crevices.

So muster up your bravery, my fellow explorers, because playtesting is the forging ground where games are created and legends are born!

What is Playtesting?

play testing
Playtesting is a commonly used testing technique for games. This quality control method repeats itself at many points of the gaming application/software design process.

A nominated group of players play on-going versions of a game to find failings in the game, and to discover bugs and gaming glitches. It also focuses on describing out the unclear points, increasing fun features or decreasing boredom, etc.

Playtesting is a very generic technique for testing gaming apps and software. It has become an important part of the gaming software’s design phase.

The expectations of the gamers have made the designers consider end-users’ feedback at every stage of designing.

It helps to ensure that the final version of the game is as per the end user’s expectations.

What are the different types of playtesting?

Playtests are done at four points during the design process:

  • Gross Playtesting: It includes the group of testers who test the most basic running model of the gaming app, they look out for the basic faults in the gameplay. The design team involved in the designing of the game itself play tests the game.
  • In-House Playtesting: it is carried out by contracted play testers or people of the company. To find more glitches in gameplay and formulate the game for broader testing, In-House playtesting is done.
  • Blind Testing: the group of testers who have no prior experience with the game tests the app during blind testing. The testing by end users detects many faults that are often missed by professionals.
  • Final Playtesting: it is the last phase of playtesting, and is done before the game launch. This playtesting version is close to the final version of the game.

The playtesters have an important role in improving the game, and hence they are paid for the work.

And this pay is even higher when it is done in the earlier phases when the game is in more technical stages.

Playtesting in Video games

In video games, playtesting introduces the game to the audience during the development phase to collect their feedback and design flaws.

It ensures that the game will be commercially feasible upon release. It is very different from Quality Assurance (QA) testing, which aims at finding software bugs and not to identify their commercial feasibility.

Role-playing games

Role-playing games focus on the game’s mechanics and flow of the game. The feedback from players helps developers to adjust and alter the mechanics as per the final audience’s expectations.

Other games

Playtesting plays an important role in all other types of games, in deciding the mechanism, game flow, content, and visual appearance of the game.

It helps in delivering the game as per the user’s expectations so that the game is commercially viable when launched and does not end up being just a flop.

Playtesting can be carried out in either a traditional manner or using automated techniques.

The Traditional Way of Playtesting

Playtesting is conducted to recognize the player’s experience. The gaming process is categorized into three parts.

  1. Creation: designers use their imagination to create perfect graphics to justify the theme.
  2. Balancing: designers take help of other people or playtesting companies to ensure the game is challenging and modify their game and twist it to make it entertaining for everyone.
  3. Release: the game is released in the marketing.

What is automated playtesting?

Automated systems and scripts are used in automated playtesting, a method of game creation that eliminates the need for human interaction in simulating and analyzing gaming situations.

It entails programming agents or bots to play the game in accordance with predetermined rules and patterns, enabling developers to collect information and get insights on different gameplay elements.

The benefits of automated playtesting include scalability, consistency, and the capacity to repeatedly recreate certain situations.

Developers can effectively evaluate the mechanics, balance, and performance of games as well as spot any possible flaws or problems by automating the testing process.

Automated playtesting also lessens human bias and allows game creators to swiftly examine vast amounts of data, allowing for more well-informed judgments throughout the game development process.

Why do you need an automated Playtest?

Balancing is a time-consuming process, where the designers have to wait for weeks to get playtesters’ reviews.

After getting the reviews again days are spent to alter the game. It is hence a very time-consuming process. And there arose a need for automated playtesting.

Benefits of Automated Playtesting

The main idea behind automated play testing is to let virtual playtesters test the game.

By running them over the cloud and using the power of artificial intelligence the task that used to take weeks to be done could now be done within a few minutes. Virtual playtesting help in recurrent feedback reports.

Read also : Top 23 Gaming Glitches of All Times [Full-List with Video]

Playtesting had many benefits for game designers, but automated playtesting increased these benefits even further.

Some of the major benefits are:

Better Quality Content

Automated playtesting results in faster feedback, which assists the designers to do more revisions to the gaming content and hence ensures better content at a much faster pace.

It ensures that the final content users get is as per the end-users expectations.

More In-depth and Constant Playtest

With human playtesting, you might get confused with varied feedback. Due to the human factor, you ought to get different feedback from different.

This creates confusion for the designers and hence controls the best alterations. In automated play testing, such situations are wisely taken care of.

A QA (Quality Assurance) Byproduct

The automated playtesting also assists to find bugs and ensures that new features do not hinder the remaining game. It increases the games’ quality as a whole.

Disadvantages of Playtesting

Playtesting has many benefits, but one of the biggest risks that come along with playtesting is the fear of its leak to the internet even before its release.

Though there are ways to prevent this. If the game is not leaked, details can still be leaked.

Though manual playtesting is a very slow process and can delay the release date of the game.

But it has been taken care of by introducing automated play testing which is comparatively faster.

Since automation is costly, automated playtesting cannot be deployed by all the gaming agencies.

Tips For Better Playtesting

  • Create a comfortable and distraction-free playtesting environment.
  • Do not disregard user recommendations and comments because they are difficult to implement or would raise the game’s budget. Be honest and modest!
  • Playtesting may be done at any time. As soon as you have a working prototype of the game, you can give players access to it so they can provide insightful feedback and help you make quick changes. Early testing also gives you information that you may utilize to validate your game’s design later on.
  • You can be infatuated with the game you made. However, if a player has any reservations about any component of the game, they should consult with other players and take the appropriate action.
  • You already know what your game’s main element of engagement is. What if some players find the game’s other features to be more interesting? Finding it out can be very effective in enhancing the game as well as in marketing.
  • Avoid having in-depth discussions with people who are playing the game since it will sway their opinions.
  • While playtesting, capture their gaming session. It can reveal a lot.
  • Make a survey rather than recording user feedback.
  • Allow the user to abandon the game if they become tired of it. Never force someone to play a game simply because you paid for it. Make sure you ask them what’s wrong if they find it uninteresting.
  • Make sure your team includes people who are not simply professional gamers.
  • Take note of common pain points, frustrations, and positive aspects mentioned by playtesters.
  • Iterate and make changes based on the feedback received, aiming to improve the overall game experience.
  • Collect both quantitative and qualitative data to gain a comprehensive understanding of the player experience.


Play testing is an important process of gaming development; it focuses on altering the game as per the expectations of its end users. A designated group of end-users tests the game to find unclear points, increasing fun features or decreasing boredom, etc.
Play testing increases the chances of the game to be accepted by its end users and be liked by them. After play testing there are few chances that game will be disowned by its users.

Exclusive Bonus: Download PDF