Tag Archives: playtesting

My Playtest Debrief Process

It’s Metatopia weekend, the hallowed festival of playtesting. And while I won’t be in New Jersey to enjoy it, maybe I’ll be able to gather my own playtest crew this weekend for a project. Seems a good a time as any to share my playtest debrief process. I picked this up from Sean Nittner years

Four Tips for In-Person Betatesting

There are two overall phases to playtesting a game: early development playtesting, where you’re in the room and explaining much of the game as it is in your mind, and betatesting, where others are playing off of documents you’ve provided and trying to learn the game for themselves. Sometimes, there’s a point where you’re both

Your Friends Aren’t Necessarily Good Playtesters

One of the issues that game designers — new and old-hat — deal with is getting people to try our games. The newer or less-known you are, the smaller your pool of available testers is, which generally means you ask your friends to help out. However, there’s a bit of a problem with using your

Not Giving You What You Want

One of the most curious aspects of game design is balancing playtest feedback with what’ll make the game functional. Invariably in playtesting, I’ll get some sort of response back akin to “we wanted more choices/skills/hero points/etc.” Of course you do, I think, you’re human. That’s not what I say, of course, but that’s always my initial

On Dice + Food + Lodging Episode 29

Last night, Josh Roby and I ended up spontaneously podcasting with the ever-charming Tim Rodriguez of the fine podcast Dice + Food + Lodging. Josh and I talked about playtesting — how we go about it, what we’re looking for, pitfalls we’ve dealt with, and lessons we’ve learned. The episode. It’s 25 minutes long. Josh

Using Smartphones For Playtests

Lately, I’ve been playtesting Zeppelin Armada, a card game being developed by Evil Hat & Jeff Tidball. I’ve playtested some other stuff for Tidball, including Fantasy Flight’s Horus Heresy. I like playtesting card & board games. And over the years, I’ve refined my process for being able to give decent feedback — and they all