Ask a Game Design Expert

Can my testers be my family, scout troop or friends?


Yes! Your testers can be whomever you like. However, be sure to pick people who you think will follow your instructions for testing the game and then give you honest feedback about what they thought of your game. If you have friends whom you trust, then they would be excellent people to playtest your game. But if you think your friends might take charge of your testing session or tell you only what they think you want to hear, then maybe you might want to ask some people who you don’t know as well, such as members of another patrol or some of your brother’s or sister’s friends.

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  • David Radue is an Eagle Scout and co-leader of the Game Design merit badge development team. He is also the co-founder of the Salem Boardgames Group in Salem, MA, and has had a lifelong passion for games of all kinds. David is a mechanical engineer at MIT Lincoln Laboratory where he has worked on projects ranging from missile defense radars to laser communication systems.

    David Mullich has been a Scouter for eight years and is the father of an Eagle Scout. He designed and programmed his first professional videogames for the Apple II computer while still in college and went on to become a game producer at such companies as Activision, 3DO, Spin Master and The Walt Disney Company. David has spoken about game development at the annual Game Developers Conference, volunteered as a game industry mentor at the USC GamePipe Laboratory, and serves on the Los Angeles Film School’s Game Production Department Advisory Committee.

    Tom Miller is an Eagle Scout and has been a Scouter for many years. He remembers playing games of Yahtzee at family gatherings when he was in Cub Scouts, but his real passion for gaming began in high school, when he joined a club that played games from Avalon Hill such as Afrika Korps and Midway. Now as a father with three teenage sons (all Scouts), Tom continues to enjoy playing games with his family, be it board games like Settlers of Catan or electronic games like World of Warcraft.