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Subject: Survery for Potential Playtesting Service rss

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Benjamin Engh
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Poll: Survery for Potential Playtesting Service
In this online service testers would be other individuals around the world that have also subscribed to the website. The service would cost a small monthly fee plus a small fee for the number of games you would like played. Designers would be given simple tools to not just upload images of cards and boards but the ability to create a game that follows your rules and gameplay. The designer is also sent a video of the game that was played so they can see the actual gameplay. Finally the testers will be sent a survey made by the deisgner.
Would you use an online based program that would allow you to connect with other gamers to have them play test your game?
Absolutely
Probably
Maybe
Unlikely
Nope
      32 answers
Poll created by audiolight
 
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maf man
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I assume it depends on the price.
and your asking people to pay a membership fee and do all the work?
 
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LeeT
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marc lecours
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As a designer, I would be willing to pay for a service that would organize to get my game playtested.

As a player, I would never be willing to pay for the "privilege" of playtesting a game. Play testing a barely tested game and filling out a form after each game is is not something I want to pay for when I have tons of barely played great games at home.

When I started reading the post, I assumed that the service would pay the playtesters some nominal amount (usually the game for free or the cost of printing out the play test copy as a minimum.) But it looks like the play testers have to pay as well.

Since your system does not seem to have a way to attract play testers, I am guessing that your intention is to get game designers to pay to test each others games. That, I am not so much interested in doing.
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Benjamin Engh
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The deatils of how this could potenitally work go as follows.

A desginer would pay a small monthly fee probably about $5 to be able to post their game to be playtested on the website. Why does it have to cost any money at all? Becuase it is a company and it is providing a service for you!

Advantages:
You are not uploading images to have someone download and print a PnP. Instead the site is giving you the ability to make your game online with easy to use tools so others can easily play it. This means that anyone can make a game that can be easily playtested that keeps the rules for you.

The site would allow you to circumvent the whole printing and or shipping process, giving others instant access to your game.

Tabletop simulator is terrible for playtesting games and game designers deserve better. TTS is a physics generator, there is nothing about it that makes it conducive to playing or testing games. I know there are other websites our there that are sort of like TTS. However they are difficult to use and have unfriendly user interfaces. I can not believe there isn't a better way.

This site would connect you to other people who also play, make and playtest games. For all the game designers that don't have a group of friends or a nearby community to playtest their games with this gives them access to many people who they would never otherwise meet.

You can playtest as many games as you want for free. In fact you are encouraged to do so.

Most people are only willing to playtest games for a ridcilous price or if you play test a game of theirs. There is no one in the world who's oppinion I value so much I'd pay $30 for a playtest. Besides if any game is to be good it needs to be tested at least 100 times. On this website you are not required to play another designers game to have your game tested but that is probably how most tests would proceed, which is how they currently happen.

At the end of the playtest not only do the testers fill out a survey but the designer is sent a video recording of how the game play.

The site allows you to do so many things that you can't do easily with a PnP game. Shuffling cards is as easy clicking a button. On a PnP shuffling paper cards is very difficult as they tend to get stuck together and will not seperate. Rolling a dice is also as easy as clicking a button. Any game that requires you to write anything down is easily taken care of with an easily made spreadsheet with all the required fields already written in. You could make a tutorial that walks testers through how you play your game making understanding the rules easier. Any number, shape or type of pawn is easily created. Pawns actually snap down onto the board onto valid positions, they don't fall over, get thrown across the room or are placed in the wrong area. Any random distribution of cards or any other piece is easily done. The amount of mechanics you can easily make and test are numerous.
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Jeremy Lennert
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Sounds like the core feature of your idea is a better version of TTS, but it also sounds like your ideas of exactly how it would be better are pretty vague. The only really specific things I notice are:

1) NOT physics-based. (Have you tried Vassal?)

2) Rules will be enforced (I think?)


Imagining that this software actually existed, I don't know why you'd want to use it solely or even primarily for testing games. Rules enforcement is significantly more valuable for finished products than for playtests (since the rules for a game in playtesting will be in constant flux). Why wouldn't you turn it into a general boardgaming platform including published games?


Also, rules enforcement for an arbitrary game is a complex topic and I am highly suspicious of anyone who claims they can make it easy. You'll need something extremely persuasive for me to take that claim seriously (probably a detailed demonstration of a working product).
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marc lecours
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audiolight wrote:
The deatils of how this could potenitally work go as follows.

A desginer would pay a small monthly fee probably about $5 to be able to post their game to be playtested on the website. Why does it have to cost any money at all? Becuase it is a company and it is providing a service for you!

Advantages:
You are not uploading images to have someone download and print a PnP. Instead the site is giving you the ability to make your game online with easy to use tools so others can easily play it. This means that anyone can make a game that can be easily playtested that keeps the rules for you.

The site would allow you to circumvent the whole printing and or shipping process, giving others instant access to your game.

Tabletop simulator is terrible for playtesting games and game designers deserve better. TTS is a physics generator, there is nothing about it that makes it conducive to playing or testing games. I know there are other websites our there that are sort of like TTS. However they are difficult to use and have unfriendly user interfaces. I can not believe there isn't a better way.

This site would connect you to other people who also play, make and playtest games. For all the game designers that don't have a group of friends or a nearby community to playtest their games with this gives them access to many people who they would never otherwise meet.

You can playtest as many games as you want for free. In fact you are encouraged to do so.

Most people are only willing to playtest games for a ridcilous price or if you play test a game of theirs. There is no one in the world who's oppinion I value so much I'd pay $30 for a playtest. Besides if any game is to be good it needs to be tested at least 100 times. On this website you are not required to play another designers game to have your game tested but that is probably how most tests would proceed, which is how they currently happen.

At the end of the playtest not only do the testers fill out a survey but the designer is sent a video recording of how the game play.

The site allows you to do so many things that you can't do easily with a PnP game. Shuffling cards is as easy clicking a button. On a PnP shuffling paper cards is very difficult as they tend to get stuck together and will not seperate. Rolling a dice is also as easy as clicking a button. Any game that requires you to write anything down is easily taken care of with an easily made spreadsheet with all the required fields already written in. You could make a tutorial that walks testers through how you play your game making understanding the rules easier. Any number, shape or type of pawn is easily created. Pawns actually snap down onto the board onto valid positions, they don't fall over, get thrown across the room or are placed in the wrong area. Any random distribution of cards or any other piece is easily done. The amount of mechanics you can easily make and test are numerous.


OK...now I have a better idea of what you are trying to do. It makes more sense now.
 
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Crazed Survivor
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Sounds unnecessary when conventions, friends, and BGG exist and can provide tons of feedback without a subscription fee.
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Caroline Berg
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audiolight wrote:
You can playtest as many games as you want for free. In fact you are encouraged to do so.

I'm a professional playtester in the video game industry. Do you have any idea the amount of work that is? Learning the rules for each game, playing the game, providing valuable feedback - there is a reason I get paid for that.

To have designers pay for your site, and then have to do all that work for other designers... it's a bit mind-boggling for me.

Yes, the more times a game is playtested, the better it is. But that's work, just as much as designing the game is work. And to encourage people to do as much work as they want for free after paying for a service, seems kind of backwards to me.
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michael colbert
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adularia25 wrote:
audiolight wrote:
You can playtest as many games as you want for free. In fact you are encouraged to do so.

I'm a professional playtester in the video game industry. Do you have any idea the amount of work that is? Learning the rules for each game, playing the game, providing valuable feedback - there is a reason I get paid for that.

To have designers pay for your site, and then have to do all that work for other designers... it's a bit mind-boggling for me.

Yes, the more times a game is playtested, the better it is. But that's work, just as much as designing the game is work. And to encourage people to do as much work as they want for free after paying for a service, seems kind of backwards to me.


I think that Carol has raised an important point, that of professionalism and time. The designers who use the service, what are their day jobs? What of family or study commitments etc? Do they have the time to test one, two or more games in the ways that may be required (depending on the complexity of the game)?
 
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Caroline Berg
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mlcolbert wrote:
I think that Carol

Please... never call me Carol. Ever.
 
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michael colbert
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adularia25 wrote:
mlcolbert wrote:
I think that Carol

Please... never call me Carol. Ever.


Caroline, will do, please accept my apology for shortening your name.
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