If you have a board game that you would like to publish and make a roaring success, then finding playtesters to see how your game works is a must.
Finding playtesters sooner rather than later will help the early development of your board game. Especially, if you want to make a game that everybody wants to play.
If this is a personal project, finding playtesters (Or board game play testers) is also important.
You don’t want to invite all of your friends around to play your fangame, only to realise the game doesn’t work. How embarrassing!
Or perhaps you can get your friends to be the first long-suffering playtesters for your board game?
The question is.
Where can you find playtesters for your board game? A big clue has already been given.
This article offers answers and ideas as to where you can find fans and individuals to playtest your board game. Be it for commercial purposes or personal purposes.
Read on to find a list of ideas of how to get board game playtesters.
Where to find playtesters for my board game | The short answer
To find board game playtesters you should consider asking close friends, family, and relatives. Especially for early versions of your game. You can also find playtesters at board game conventions, “Meet up” groups, and on dedicated board game forums.
That is a simplified quick-fire answer of where you can find board game testers to ‘try out’ your board game.
But what if you need a bit more. What if you need to go the extra mile or offer games to playtest to reach a wider market?
Suggestion listed below.
Where can I get game testers for my game for free?
It should be noted, that if you are running a commercial venture and this board game project is part of a company, you should not exploit an individual’s free time for your own financial gain.
If this is a friendly fun project that you just want to do for the sake of doing it. Then asking for a playtesters’ free time is fine – among friends. If they want to give up their time for the fun of the game, that is down to you and them.
There are ways you can get people to playtest early editions of games without the need to spend money. Not upfront anyway.
The 2 methods below suggest ways in which you can for boardgame playtesters (playtesters) for free. Or paid for later.
Method 1 ) Ask people you know to playtest your board game
The most straightforward way of finding a “free” playtester for your board game is by asking friends and family. If you are wondering “where can I get playtesters for my game for free” your friends and family are your most likely participants. To find your friendly and willing volunteers, all you need to do is check your contacts on your phone. Then, pick some likely participants.
Method 2 ) Offer an early sample of the game
If money is hard to come by, and you need play testers for your board game. You can offer a free sample of your board game for free once it is completed in exchange for time. Eg, once the game has been published and launched.
This is a great way of getting early support and playtesting your board game before a big launch. Offer your game on crowdfunding platforms or forums in exchange for time. Once the game is made offer a copy. Or better still, an exclusive crowdfunding copy. That would incentivise a playtester to take part.
Finding Playtester for a boardgame | list of ideas
Finding people to playtest your game can be challenging, but the answer might be more straightforward than you realise. and perhaps you would sooner read a list of ideas.
Open up your phone and see if you have any willing participants.
Failing this, here are more detailed ideas for getting playtesters for your board game.
How to find a playtester for your board game :-
- Ask local friends to playtest early versions of your game. This is a good way of feeling your way through the game mechanics and seeing what needs tweaking.
- Ask family. Although family may not be ideal playtesters, they can be good at discovering holes in the rules and game mechanics. ( More for development of the game )
- You can recruit playtesters at conventions and shows. Sign up for a convention and hire a table. See if anybody wants an exclusive look at your board game. You can also offer a copy of the game once it has been launched.
- Forums. To find a playtester for a board game you should browse board game forums such as board game geek.
- Social media. Although the level of response may be low on some platforms, Facebook, in particular, has an active board gaming and tabletop gaming community.
- MEET UP groups. “Meet Up” is a website that is filled with smaller communities and groups. You should have a look here to see if you can find any playtesters for your game.
- Boardgame Cafes. To test your game on (potentially) experienced players should consider board game cafes. If – you have board cafes in your local area.
- Boardgame shops. By going to a board game shop you may find volunteers or participants willing to help playtest your board game. Ask around and see what you come back with.
- Libraries are another potential area to recruit playtesters for your board game. Ask the librarian, whether you can place notices somewhere where people are likely to see.
Summary list of where to find board game playtesters
To summerise where you can find playtesters for your board game. Or recruit playtesters for a commercial game are as follows:-
- Conventions and shows
- Dedicated board game forums (board game geek)
- Dedicated board game groups on social media
- Find playtester and boardgame groups on Meet Up
- Boardgame cafes
- Boardgame shops
- Community centres ( 1 extra for good measure )
I’m a board game tester, where can I find board games to test?
To find board games to playtest, you should consider attending conventions and board game expos. Attending board game conventions is a great way of introducing yourself to board game companies.
Alternatively, you can find board games to playtest on forums, Meet Up groups, or on Crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter.
Boardgame designers are often looking for people to playtest their game before a launch or test how the games works against real people.
It’s also a good way to get fans and ‘evangelists’ for the board game. If the game is good, you may land a free edition of the game or be paid for your time.
Person-to-person situations, typically are a great way for you to offer direct feedback. As a playtester, you can also educate how the game is played by the non-creators.
It’s great way for them to see how games can be played in unexpected ways and to learn how to improve the game.
You can also get paid to play board games or, as is often the case, get a free sample of the board game for your participation.
Where can I promote myself as a board game playtester?
To promote yourself as a board game playtester, you should consider setting up profiles on websites such as Board Game Geek, Kickstarter and when the opportunity arises the chance go-to board game exhibitions. You can even create your own calling card and rates.
Where can I get a job as a board game player?
In order to get a job as a board game player, you should become part of the board game industry. Many board game testers start as volunteers. If you wish to do this commercially you should put together a CV talking about your passion and apply for work on company job listing (often on the website) and on forums.
The take away!
The key to finding playtesters for board games is to ask friends, network, and advertise opportunities where board game fans hang out.
Seeing people face to face is also a good way to observe how a board game is played.
Attend conventions, groups and forums.
If you are needing to test the early mechanics of a game. Ask friends! The Beta testers.
Other helpful links around board games
- Where to find board game beta testers
- UK based distribution companies
- Painting miniatures is an art!
- How to create a fan-made game for fun – getting creative with board game design
- How to handle sore loser board game players
- Fun board game ideas for house share!
Where can I find playtesters for my board game? Not under your bed or games cupboard. But perhaps your friends and gaming network can help. Good luck Table Top Game creator!