WHY PLAYTESTING GAMES IS SO IMPORTANT TO THEIR LONG-TERM PROSPECTS
Games with good concepts and good marketing can sell well for the first selling year, but they tend to fade away if the gameplay is flawed. The reason for this is that sales of board games are reliant on word of mouth, whether that’s spoken face to face or passed on in some online way. And people don’t tend to recommend games which aren’t fn or which have some kind of gameplay flaw which stops them being compelling.
From a business perspective, it is easy to take the view that most new board game launches don’t stick in the market, therefore why pay too much attention to them when we will have to develop new games again for next year anyway. The point though is that there is nothing more profitable normally than a game which sells year after year without additional development or marketing investment.
The way that you make games compelling to play is by taking time to test and tweak the gameplay in depth beyond just a quick playtest. How much longevity and repeat play value is there in the gameplay mechanism? How likely are people to have such a good time that they choose to recommend to friends, and above all can they get into playing the game quickly and easily?
These questions can all be resolved via repeated playtesting ad nauseum. In the same way as an author is often truly sick of a book by the time they have finished writing and tweaking it, that’s how it should feel to finally send off a game to manufacturing.
Playtesting shouldn’t only occur among your highly board games literate colleagues though, you should seek to play the game with as many different people as you can to enable you to deliver a game which appeals to the broadest possible audience – that’s how you maximise sales over the long term.
We offer a range of Board Games business Consultancy services, including professional research playtesting. We have playtested many iconic games for board games companies, including Monopoly, Cluedo, Risk, Trivial Pursuit and more. If you are struggling to get ahead in the board game biz, maybe one of our services can help you. For more information, please click here: https://www.boardgamebiz.com/index.php/board-game-business-consultancy-services/
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