Ever wonder what it is like to be a game tester?
I do! Electronic Arts(EA) Vancouver offers individuals an opportunity to Playtest unreleased games or projects created by EA.
Star Wars: Battlefront, Fifa, NHL 17, Plants Vs. Zombies series, Need for Speed, The SIMS, Titanfall and Battlefield are just a few franchises developed by EA.
What are Playtesters?
Playtesters are individuals who attend sessions to test upcoming games. The job of a Playtester is to provide feedback to the game developers on bugs, gaming experience and suggested improvements.
Playtesters for EA are required to sign a Non-disclosure agreement(NDA) to ensure no spoilers will be leaked or confidential information about the games being Playtested.
Where are Playtests Sessions Held?
The Playtest sessions that I’ve personally attended were held at the main headquarters of EA in Burnaby, British Columbia.
There are other EA studios where Playtesting opportunities are also available.
Redwood City, California
How do I sign up for these Playtests?
There are a few places to sign up for Playtesting. The first time that I’ve heard about Playtesting was through my Facebook suggestions. Anyone the age of 19 years old may only participate in these sessions. Although, it is possible that a teenager 18 years and under may participate in these Playtests. All you need is for your parent or guardian to sign a separate agreement giving you consent to participate.
You can sign up HERE and additional information on Playtesting may be found in the list below.
I do recommend that you opt into the email notifications so that you will be notified of Playtests right away.
How are Playtesters chosen?
So being chosen for a Playtest depends on many factors. Here are a few known elements in being chosen for Playtests.
- All skill levels are welcome – Even if you have never played that genre before, you still have a fair chance to be chosen compared to an experienced player.
- Availability – It helps to be available for all times listed in your invitation. If not, mark down what times you are able to attend from the schedule provided. Don’t say you’re available when you know you are not.
- Respond to invitations right away – As soon as an invitation is sent to you via email, respond to it right away and fill out the survey. Make sure that you could attend that Playtest you’re responding to.
- Be honest – Be honest when answering your surveys because this is what determines where you fit in for the Playtest.
- Backups – EA chooses backups to attend just in case there are no-shows. Therefore if you are not needed, you will receive your free games and get to leave right away(win-win situation).
- Last minute invites – Sometimes EA will need last-minute Playtesters or backups, these positions fill really quick and have a better chance of being chosen.
I’ve been chosen to Playtest 6 times out of the 15 that I’ve signed up for. As a result, don’t feel discouraged and keep responding to the Playtest invitations that you are able to attend.
What do you get for Playtesting for EA?
Playtesting is not a job position, therefore EA will compensate you with free games. Consequently, the number of free games differs from each Playtest invitation. Longer Playtest sessions reward more games in exchange for your participation. Sometimes EA will provide lunch for sessions that are 7-8 hours long.
Personally, I enjoy doing Playtests because of the feeling you get, knowing that you played a role(even in reality it’s really small) in providing feedback of an unreleased EA games/project.
Finally, if no leaks or breach of contract occurs, EA will continue hosting the Playtest programs. Therefore everyone will benefit and have a blast at these Playtest sessions.