Originally Posted by Eonwe
Exactly, there shouldn't need to be evidence presented given the huge history of betas in the past on OUR side. You should have to present evidence showing that betas with randomly chosen testers WOULD yield good results.
Quite simply, randomintarweb poster is a complete unknown.
So, given that, how do you get testers?
It wouldn't be too much of a stretch to consider game devs as gamers in their spare time. Further, it's not like they leave their respective office and go to their cave until the next working day. They have friends. They have family. And honestly, every dev I know has a short list of people they game with on a regular basis that they know that:
a) they can trust not to break the NDA
b) they can trust to give objective, honest feedback
c) can be depended upon to do what needs to be done and aren't personally vested in the project
So taking that into consideration, if every dev, artist, coder, designer, producer, writer, and random company desk jockey knows 5 people, and with an average team size of 120 people, that's 700 people minimum that can test the game from start to finish. No real need to bring in outside people until absolutely necessary.
One of the last betas I was apart of was the model of what not to do. Blind invites to players they had no real history with beyond a forum registration date and number of posts (literally, if z registered before x, and y>1000 posts, then z gets a FFA invite. Seriously.) Invites to 'popular' forum people that they didn't know whether or not could actually run the game
. Needless to say, this game blew 50 million dollars
and didn't launch.
On the flip side of the coin, another beta I was in was probably THE most well run beta I've ever been apart of, but the end result of the game was crap. Not because of the beta, but because the game was fundamentally flawed on a design level, not on an execution level. It absolutely did what they designed it to do, but the design was crap. It ran really well from a playability stand point- very little server or client stability issues, everything pretty much worked as intended. But since the design was crap, the game ended up being crap.
"What's next, giant spiders? Giant cockroaches?? FUCKING CIRCUS CLOWNS?"