What is Steam Playtest?
Steam Playtest is a free, low-risk solution to gathering playtest data without the stress of managing email lists and Steam keys or worrying about user reviews, or wishlists. By using a specific associated appID that is linked with, but separate from your main game, you can do the playtesting you need without interfering with your main game.
Benefits of using Steam Playtest
How to use with Go Testify
- Set up the game to playtest on Steam, in an "open" state. This allows players to access the game without any delay.
- Once this is ready, set up a web URL test on Go Testify, and use the Steam Page as the URL.
- Invite your players to your Test on Go Testify, then provide instructions to click Launch Browser when the Contribute app opens on their device.
- Then ask them (Via Special Instructions, or another method such as a Briefing Page) to sign up for testing using the Steam page. This should allow the download of the game.
- The player takes part as normal - following any tasks/special instructions provided by you as part of the test.
- They end/finish their session as normal and complete any surveys you provide.
- You can then remove the player from the playtest on Steam.
- When the test is over, you can deactivate it on Steam which will stop any further signups for the test.
- All feedback from your players will be captured on the Go Testify platform, ready for your review!
Remember that when a Playtest is in an open state, anyone can access it via your store page on Steam - So you may see players outside your intended audience.
If the playtest is set to limited in Steam, they will authorise people who apply at random. The worry here is that the decision is out of your hands, which could lead to delays in the playtest period or players you have invited being left out of the test.
If you're late in development, you can set it to open, and (if you use an external survey) you could even include a survey link somewhere in the game as a pop-up after an amount of time has passed to catch any "extra" players you hadn't invited!
If you're early in development and haven't announced anything yet; We suggest using Steam's Key system in tandem with a Beta Branch (with a password) to ensure secure access to your build.
Q: How does Steam choose which playtesters to admit to a limited Playtest?
Steam will choose playtesters at random from the set of Steam accounts that have requested access. You do have the option to select to admit players from certain countries, although this would mostly make sense for limited server availability and addressing latency issues.
Q: Is my Steam Playtest confidential?
Purely through Steam, No - players signing up for a Playtest aren’t under nondisclosure agreements with you, and there shouldn’t be an expectation of secrecy. If you want to run a confidential beta and require players to agree to an NDA, you can do a few different things.
- Use the Playtest App ID, request keys, set the Playtest to Playable and Store Visibility to Hidden.
- Use the main game's App ID and request release override keys.
Q: Does my Steam Playtest have a store page? Can customers find it in the store?
The Playtest will not have its own store page; instead, it will be listed as an option available on the main game’s store page. That way, any search traffic, store recommendations, etc all funnel towards the real product for users to wishlist and follow.
Feel free to reach out to us via email - Support@gotestify.com - or click the little bubble in the bottom right of this page, we'll be glad to help!