Recruiting the perfect participants for your upcoming test is crucial and might seem a daunting task.

If you need help in that area don’t hesitate to check our other UX Playbook on recruiting your own participants.

While you’re here, you might be wondering: Do I need a tailored recruit or are the default demographics enough?

Screenshot Platform Recruitment

An example of default demographics as seen on the Testify platform

The answer is a resounding yes!

The default demographics provided are more than enough to get actionable insights.

This allows you to tailor your recruitment in a few crucial ways:

  • Age range, Gender ratio, and Country: You can adapt the range to your target audience or leave it open for a natural fallout.

  • Genres: Find players who like/love specific genres/themes to tailor to the right tastes.

  • Games: Find players who have previous experience in similar titles, and tailor the recruitment to the right target audience.

Venn Diagram

Venn Diagram showcasing a player's full profile

The end-goal of playtesting your games is to see how real players will respond to it, from visual appeal to narrative understanding.

Real players come in all shapes and sizes, a narrow recruit can be useful early-on but a broader audience will give more actionable insights and will more closely resemble the future players.

According to the Entertainment Software Association's (ESA) 2021 Essential Facts report, 214 million people in the United States play video games, and the average age of a gamer is 35 years old. Furthermore, the report shows that 41% of gamers are women, indicating that video games are no longer a male-dominated hobby, while that trend is the other way around for mobile games as women prefer them (63%) over other media (Google Play, 2023).

The average video game player is a diverse group of individuals from different backgrounds, ages, genders, and cultures.

Don’t let preconceived notions dictate your recruitment, let a broader audience speak to you.

You need to aim for your intended audience:

  • Players who enjoy this type of games (genres & themes).

  • For players who have played similar titles (game titles), this is optional as players who like/love the above genres & themes are likely to have played similar titles.

  • Players who fall into the age range and gender ratio you intend, but don’t make it too narrow!

  • Players who live in a country the game will launch, unless the game will be geo-blocked, aim for natural fallout for a quicker turn-around time.

Hyper focusing your recruitment on narrow demographics will end with a subset of the future actual players, and the insights collected will only be a drop in an ocean.

Tailored to Default to Real players

A diagram showcasing tailored insight's players are a small part of real future players

Default demographics will get you as close as possible to real players, which will allow you to get actionable insights at pace.

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