IGA is proud to offer distributed playtesting services to its IGA Lite and IGA Pro members. We've worked to develop a structure that encourages maximum feedback from a variety of viewpoints. Our playtesters are selected from our expert Minion corps. IGA Minions are heavily incentivized (via bonus Loot Points) to stick with playtesting teams. Minions choose the games they want to test, so you don't get negative feedback based solely on a personal distaste for the chosen theme or mechanic.
Upon creation of a playtest, a mailing list will be automatically generated. You can then email this list to communicate with all of your playtesters, and they can use it to communicate with you or with each other. You can also reroute demo reports and survey responses to the mailing list if you wish to encourage discussion, but this may result in playtesters unsubscribing from the mailing list if it becomes overwhelming, so we recommend checking with your playtesters before turning on these additional features.
Once launched, your playtest will be active for 90 days, during which time it will appear in our newsletters and on our Games in Playtesting page. We'll also email every Minion in our network and let them know about the opportunity to playtest your game. Note that it's strongly recommended to have your digital adaptations and print-and-play configured before launching your playtest, so that these links can be referenced in the announcement email.
Beginning 15 days from the playtest expiration date, you may renew the playtest from your Playtest Dashboard. You may renew your playtest up to 3 times, and each will add an additional 90 days to the playtest period. We do this to keep the "games under playtest" list fresh and free of games which no longer are in active testing. If you require more renewals, contact IGA Studio Support and we can help.
To earn the playtesting bonus, a Minion must record at least 3 plays of the game and collects a minimum of 3 surveys times the minimum player count (for example, in a 2-4 player game, 6 surveys would be required) in a calendar month. Minions who meet this requirement will earn a 50 Loot Point bonus. This bonus may be earned in multiple months as long as the playtest remains active, encouraging our volunteers to stick with a playtest as the game evolves and iterates.
If you wish to utilize IGA's distributed playtesting services, the following requirements must be met:
- The designer or publisher must be an IGA Lite or Pro member
- The game must be complete in the member's Studio Game Catalog and a playtest must be created on your Playtest Dashboard.
- The game should have a custom survey attached to it.
- If you want IGA to ship physical prototypes, you must submit a minimum of four complete, distinctly packaged physical copies of the game to be playtested, shipped to the address in the footer of this page.
- If you want IGA to test using a print and play or digital adaptation of your game, these must be specified in your Game Catalog.
- If the game to be tested is a tabletop RPG, we additionally require a learn-by-play game module that can be completed in 90 minutes or less.
While it is not a strict requirement, we request that designers utilizing this service credit the Indie Game Alliance in the Playtesters credits section of the game rulebook.
The Playtesting Process
Launching a Playtest
When you are ready to begin your playtest, simply click Launch my Playtest. This will activate the playtest and the associated mailing list, add any Minions who may have already filed a playtest for your game to the team, and send an announcement. This will also add the game to our Active Playtests page and to our weekly IGA newsletter. This will send an email to our entire Minion team, so please don't do this until you're really, really ready!
You'll then be redirected to the Playtest Dashboard for your game. From here, you can review or change the digital implementations and print-and-play , check up on stock of physical prototypes, and find some resources to help you expand your prototyping. You can also change or customize the feedback survey that players will be asked to complete. You can specify whether demo reports and/or survey responses will be directed to the entire playtest team (via the mailing list ) or just to you, and fire off an email to the mailing list.
This is also where you can renew, or end , your playtest if you wish.
Finally, you can view every playtest report and survey response for the game right from one place.
Once we receive copies of a prototype, we will take one copy and store it in the IGA headquarters game library. The remaining prototypes will be added to the inventory of our IGA Prototype Store, accessible only by Minions who have been accepted into our playtester program. This means that a designer supplying the minimum of four prototypes can expect feedback chains from three different playtesters. These copies will be available to Minions at no cost, but must accompany a regular game order for shipping purposes.
Do you do playtesting via print-and-plays?
Yes! Simply include the URL in your Game Catalog (also accessible from the Playtesting Dashboard) and it will be available to our Minions.
What about digital playtesting via Tabletopia and Tabletop Simulator?
As with print-and-plays, we're happy to work with digital adaptations of games, but you'll need to fill in the relevant information in your Game Catalog so our volunteers can find the games.. We currently support several major platforms. Please consider joining our IGA Digital Playtesting group on Facebook and/or our Discord server to help schedule games with our volunteers.
Do my physical prototypes, if I send any, need boxes?
Strictly speaking, no, although we've found that a box with art, even if it's a Goodwill puzzle box with a color photo taped to the front, does a lot to draw attention to the game at conventions and other demo opportunities, and that a game in a baggie doesn't have the same draw. At minimum, the games must come to us in distinct sealed bags so our warehouse staff doesn't have to play detective and try to figure out which loose components go to which copy of the game. It's tough for our Minions to playtest effectively if they're missing a critical component because it got mixed into somebody else's prototype.
Last edited March 12, 2019 14:16 UTC