Salary of a Video Game Tester – What You Need to Know

Salary of a Beta Game Tester Topics

Woman in the Game IndustryIf you love video games and are looking for a new career, then game testing may be the right job for you. This can be a fun job full of excitement as you get to experience games before they are even released. However, there are a few things you should keep in mind to help you become a game tester. By understanding them you can get a better understanding of what you will need to do.

What You Will Do

The first thing you should think about is what the job entails. Though many people envision this as sitting at home playing as you would in the evenings or with friends, it is actually quite different. The point of the testing is not to just play it as you normally would, but to explore all the different pathways to find any potential issues or bugs. This means going through every facet of the video game to see what you can find. You will generally also have to play the game at the company office as the company does not want the game leaked.  You also may not be playing games you enjoy, as every game needs to be tested before it can be released.

The reason this is an important part of game development is to ensure that the game has no errors. When a game is released that is full of bugs, it negatively impacts the franchise and poorly reflects on the developers. While computer games can generally be fixed with a downloadable patch, console games are not as easy to fix. By locating all the issues in the game before it reaches the consumer, the company can ensure they are giving the customer the best gaming experience for their money.

Video Game Tester Requirements

Though many people think you simply need to love gaming, there is much more you need when it comes to video game testing jobs. The company will require you to have superior gaming abilities, which generally will be tested. You will also need to have knowledge with certain software, such Microsoft Office. This will vary depending on the company as some may require other software knowledge.

The main thing most companies will look for though is education related to the gaming industry. While you do not need to get a degree as a game designer, having some classes under your belt can help you to get your foot in the door. Most companies will only hire people who are going to school for video game degrees or have pursued education for it. Though this may sound like a lot of work, it is important to realize that just about any career will require you to have education to help you better understand your job.

By going to school you can learn about the way it works as well as the different aspects that go into it. This can give you better understanding of what you are doing as a tester as well as other things to look for. If you do have plans of becoming a game developer, then being a tester can help you get your foot in the door with a company.


Realistic Game Tester Salary

The thing to keep in mind is that even experienced as a tester, you will not have a video game designer salary. It is also important to note that the video game tester salary payscale varies significantly. For those who have no experience in this career, you can expect to make anywhere from $10 to $15 an hour. Some of the large companies pay experienced testers as much as $80 an hour. The average video game tester salary in 2011 was between $8 and $50 an hour, meaning that potential earnings be six figures.

The thing to keep in mind is that this depends on many things. For one, the more education you have, the higher you will be paid. Also, the more experience you have, the more you can expect. On top of this, you will want to look at the company you work for as smaller companies can’t afford the salary of one of the larger companies, such as Nintendo or EA.

Tips for Getting in the Industry

Game DeveloperThe video game tester career has skyrocketed over the last decade as more and more households have video game consoles or use their computers for gaming. More games are being produced every year, which also increases the number of testers needed for the games. There are a few things you can do to help get into the industry:

  • Find a small company and offer to do work for free. This is a great way to get experience, though you will not get paid.
  • Networking is essential to getting the job you want. By creating connections within the industry, you will find it easier to get a job, even if it is simply by having the recommendation from a seasoned professional.
  • Never stop learning about the games. There are many places online where you can learn about how games work and what all goes into their creation. Though this may not directly impact your chances, having a better understanding of the industry can be a big plus when it comes to interviews.
  • Play as much as you can. You want to play video games as much as possible to help you get the job you are looking for. The thing to practice is finding every little thing you can. Explore the games like you never have before as this will help you in your career.

Remember that there is nothing that can replace experience in just about any job capacity. The problem is that simply stating that you have been playing since you were in diapers is not enough. You need to be able to give applicable experience in relation to finding game errors. This is why it is important to find different ways to test games. Even signing up to beta test games can help to give you experience, though it is generally perceived to be a lesser experience that actual game testing.

There are many things to think about when it comes to testing. Video game tester salary in 2012 has shown that this industry is increasing and this will continue for the foreseeable future, which makes this a good choice for your career, especially if you are a gamer. Though finding video game tester job openings may not be the easiest thing, remember that as with anything, as long as you apply yourself and have what it takes, you can make it in the industry.

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