I have developed a prototype for a new game concept. The game is an educational foreign language learning tool for K-16 students.

I am at the point where I need to test with sample groups of students, but would like some guidance on the following:

  • Beta testing software: My game is a prototype, so I know it will have bugs. I'm more concerned with gathering metrics on how users enjoy the product, if they learn from it, what features were most valuable to them, what features they could do without, and what features they were looking for. I'm not sure if a Bug Tracker is the way to go, but is there something else that can capture user feedback in this way?

  • For an educational prototype with a target demographic, what aspects should I be looking to test (software-wise, I realize I haven't given much context as to what the game is about or what it is trying to teach)? How should the tests be conducted to be the most efficient/effective? I realize this is a tad subjective, so I'm looking for the most objective methodologies for early beta tests, if any exist.

As far as software, http://www.centercode.com/ was recommended. After going through their tutorial teaser, their tool looks comprehensive with bug reporting, suggestions, dashboards, etc, but also they mention connecting and sending bugs off to their dev teams to fix.

At $499/mo, I'm wondering if it's sensible to use a tool like that if I am the sole developer, or for round 1 testing I should just create some ad hoc feedback collection tools?

Any other pointers would be extremely appreciated.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Beta test is when the product is nearly ready to ship and you're looking for bugs. With your first point, you don't seem to be in beta test stages, you still seem to be in development phase. For that, the only option I see is focus group and have a sample of typical users test your software. You need humans to record reactions and ask their opinion (including what they don't say). I don't think there is any metrics you can record in that stage, but I could be wrong. \$\endgroup\$ – Vaillancourt Jun 4 '15 at 2:32

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