Recommended Reading

Playtesting and Iterative Design: The Most Important Process for Making Great Games

By: Ira Fay

Check out chapter 13, starting on page 251, on the value of playtesting, how to quantify it's results in regards to making learning games, and a three step iterative approach to conducting playtests.

Playtesting for Learning Education Games


By: Yvonne Rogers

Creating “physical questionnaires” this series of projects explores how play and interaction data can be collected through play itself.

Art of Game Design

Artillery Games and Playtesting an RTS

By: Sean "Day[9]" Plott

How Artillery Games conducts and organizes playtests for their three man team versus team RTS title, Atlas.

Art of Game Design

Interview: Richard Garfield on Getting Design from Good to Great

By: Pierre-Alexandre Garneau

Richard Garfield explains how important playtesting is in designing consistently good games.

Art of Game Design

GLS Workshop Slides

By: Judeth Oden Choi

A workshop focused on "Making the leap from collaborative ideation to building a prototype."

GLS Workshop

The Art of Game Design

By: Jesse Schell

Anyone can master the fundamentals of game design - no technological expertise is necessary. The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses shows that the same basic principles of psychology that work for board games, card games and athletic games also are the keys to making top-quality videogames.

Art of Game Design

The Science of Playtesting

By: Gamespot (Laura Parker)

Gamespot goes behind the scenes at Valve, Bungie, and Epic Games to see how user feedback helps shape the game development process.

Science of Playtesting

How Indies Playtest

By: Naomi Clark

A survey of how, when, where and why indie game developers playtest their games. Developers from projects like: Osmos, Alone in the Light, JumpMan, Triple Town, Radiator, Das Racist, Killer Queen, Max Payne 3, Farmville.

How Indies Playtest

Recommended Videos

Extra Credits: Playtesting

Whether you're looking for a game industry career or simply curious about the way game developers think, Extra Credits makes video game design approachable by exploring concepts like gamification, perfect imbalance, the skinner box, the uncanny valley, and more.

NMSU Learning Games Lab

The NMSU Learning Games Lab is an exploratory environment where gamers play and evaluate games - all kinds of games, including those designed strictly as entertainment, educational titles, and games in development.

Recommended Scholarly Papers


The Anatomy of Prototypes: Prototypes as Filters, Prototypes as Manifestations of Design Ideas

In this article, an anatomy of prototypes is proposed as a framework for prototype conceptualization.


Understanding contexts by being there: case studies in bodystorming

A thorough appreciation of physical, social, interactional, and psychological contextual factors is crucial in the design of ubiquitous computing applications.


Experience Prototyping

A form of prototyping that enables design team members, users and clients to gain first-hand appreciation of existing or future conditions through active engagement with prototypes.


Tailored Scenarios

The on-going development of a method to elicit perceptions of design ideas for social technologies, through automatically tailoring scenarios presented in online surveys using information gathered from respondents.


That Cloud Game: Dreaming (and Doing) Innovative Game Design

The application of a methodology for game genre and player experience innovation called "play-centric design".


Putting the Users Center Stage

Lessons learned from a sequence of cooperative design workshops where end users were enabled to design mobile systems through scenario building, role playing, and low-fidelity prototyping.

Recommended Questionnaires


Immersive Experience Questionnaire (IEQ)

A questionnaire for helping the playtester express their immersion experience. Jennett et al. Measuring and defining the experience of immersion in games. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies 66, 9 (2008), 641–661.


Player Experience of Needs Satisfaction model (PENS)

Method of measuring what parts of the player's experience are most valued. (21 scales for Competence, Autonomy, Relatedness, Presence and Intuitive Controls); Ryan, R.M., C.S. Rigby, and A.K. Przybylski, The Motivational Pull of Video Games: A Self Determination Theory Approach. Motivation and Emotion 30, 4 (2006)


Too Many Questionnaires: Measuring Player Experience Whilst Playing Digital Games

Perhaps there are too many of these questionnaires?