ETC Playtest Day
Every academic semester, the
Entertainment Technology Center
holds a Playtest Day when graduate student teams make
available their project work for testing by guests for playtesting
. The work is
"in progress" with the playtests useful to help improve the
final project delivery. The term playtest
the use of an experience or game by a guest to see whether it is
performing as expected. Guests have in the past tested from
three to six projects over the course of two hours, along with an
optional tour of the ETC
and a meal break that starts off
or ends the visit. Some projects have experiences requiring two
or more guests at once, while others are meant to be used alone.
The following guidelines are shared with guests before they start
Listen to what the team needs.
teams will need your help in different ways. For example, some teams
might want you to talk about their art, while others might want to
hear your thought process as you play through their game or work
through their experience.
means finding out what's fun, pleasurable, exciting, or strange about
an experience. Don't hesitate to mess around, try things, and
Tell the truth about your experience.
are no right answers in playtesting. The most helpful thing you can
do is tell the truth about what you think and feel. If you can be
precise, that's great. If not, take whatever time you need to figure
out how to express yourself.
Bad news is good news.
you've found something that was confusing, difficult, or frustrating,
that's good news for the team you're helping. Finding it now means
they can fix the problem, so don't hesitate to bring it
Describe, don't solve.
is about you and your experience - not about solving the problems you
discover. Some teams may want you to offer suggestions, but some
won't. Follow the team's lead!
Don't hesitate to ask questions.
there's anything you aren't sure about, you can always ask questions.
Teams may or may not be able to answer you, but there's never any
harm in asking.
forget that half of playtesting is play! Enjoy the projects and have
a wonderful time!
ETC project teams often take pictures or video
to document the playtest experiences. We require the
filling out of an audio-visual permission form so that
the ETC students can document their projects with
descriptive 3 minute videos. Examples of these permission forms can be found here
for minors and here
for adults. You can also see examples of such projects on
the ETC website
for each of the prior semesters' projects.