Interested In Becoming A Video Game Developer or Tester? Here’s How!

The passion for video games spans across the current generation, with many individuals under 40 having spent considerable parts of their childhood and adolescence engrossed in gaming, guided by the evolution of graphics and game development. This growing fascination raises the question for many: How does one become a game tester, turning a hobby into a profession by testing new games for a living? This inquiry extends further into the realm of game development, exploring the transition from tester to creator.

To embark on a career as a game tester, a keen eye for detail is paramount. Testers are tasked with identifying and documenting bugs through detailed reports, necessitating strong writing skills to communicate issues clearly to developers for resolution. A background in gaming enhances a tester’s ability to understand and navigate the complexities of the games they are evaluating. Additionally, some positions may require basic troubleshooting abilities and a thorough approach to describing encountered issues.

Game testing positions are typically at the entry level, and while a college degree is not a prerequisite, it can influence salary potential. Initially, testers without prior experience might earn around $40,000, but with time and expertise, this could rise to approximately $70,000. A degree in fields such as design, software engineering, computer science, or art could further augment a tester’s earning capacity.

Successful game testers share several traits, among which patience stands out. The job may involve working on games that vary in personal appeal, requiring a professional and enthusiastic attitude regardless of personal interest. Moreover, the ability to write comprehensive reports detailing bugs, including the sequences leading to and following the issue, is essential for facilitating developers’ work in fixing these glitches.

For those aiming to transition into game development, the path differs significantly. A college degree in computer science, software engineering, or a related field lays a foundational understanding necessary for the intricate work of game design. Proficiency in programming languages, such as C++ and Java, is crucial for tackling the technical challenges of game creation. Aspiring developers can distinguish themselves by designing their own games, even if these are simple prototypes, to demonstrate their capabilities and creativity to potential employers. This approach not only showcases technical skill but also conveys a candidate’s passion and initiative, potentially catching the attention of major game development companies.