Written By Madison Clarke
Published on 4 Feburary 2022
All games should be play tested, and each type of game should be tested in a way that’s suitable and fit for the game designers’ goals. For game wholesalers or any purchasers, actively engaging in playtesting community or knowing playtesting rules can be very benificial.
Play testing as a rule of thumb
A game can be playtested multiple times while in each testing do your best to focus on one factor at a time. For example: if you want to test how the art work and mechanics blend together creating suspense in the game, so all you need to do is check out if in the test the players feel suspense. You may choose to test out the strength and balance of your cards Statuses making sure the balance keeps the players feel it’s a fair game and that they both have an equal chance of victory, If any of the players begins to feel it is unfair or that if only they had their opponents card they would win because the cards were overpowered you know you need to fix it by either making the strong cards weaker, or making the weak cards stronger.
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Play testing with different audiences
While playtesting your game make sure you have your original family and friends testing it out but be open minded and also test the game with new people. The reason being is not just because each person has their own unique perception, but simply showing the game to people for the first time, usually gives you an extra insight to how new gamers will react to your engine. Such a good refreshing insight will always help you come up with new concepts on how to improve.
Choosing what to look for
When you play test your game, make sure as in before to focus on one topic at a time, here are several main key elements you should be looking for and must ask yourself.
1.When players play your game, they are actually having fun, or simply dragging through it because they have to, or want to make you happy. If they are doing it with no fun on thrill you know something is wrong with your game, and it’s time for you to find a way to boost up the excitement.
2. Make sure your game increases freedom of choice, for example if your game has no intellectual properties to it, and all it has players do is role a dice, move the appropriate squares and who reaches the end line first wins, your game is about luck not choice, try to find an additional element to add for your game and have players make a choice of some sort or another.
3. Make sure your game has clear goals, so all the players have a clear understanding of what they must do in order to achieve victory.
4. Always check that your game has a special feel and energy, usually starting with a great story line that brings the players into your game world.
5. Ensure your game is well balanced and plays smoothly through the time period, for example if you have any cards or heroes or attributes in the game that out due others easily, they may be overpowered. Usually if you find any overpowered elements in your game it can be fixed in several ways, the most common ways are making them less powerful or be increasing the power of all the other elements too, however always keep an open mind when creating a game, and leave room for options like, sure you can have an overpowered card, but it will cost you double the price of any normal card, you got the main idea. Keep your mind open, and use the playtesting as a tool to spot unbalanced elements in your game.
Ignoring or nor ignoring
Many times when play testing your games you will hear hundreds of opinions, many of them will even contradict one another, for it is the way of life, no one person is the same like the other, and one person’s observation as flaws could seem like another person’s fun and excitement in your game. Our recommendation is first and foremost, keep an open mind and hear everyone and their opinions make sure to write them all down, and show respect to the players, including lots of patience.
After you finish writing down all the ideas save them in an idea box or file, and return to focus only on the main topic you were testing, also make sure to take in mind that your game has a target market, and you want to make sure it appeals to the people who will be buying and playing it. Try to use your logic wits and experience to decide what rules to bend and change, and what to leave the same.