These are the prevailing game tester salary contract wages in the Seattle area. After 7 years full-time, I left my employer for a while, and did contract work as a level V. With overtime, it was a pretty nice wage!

 

Game Tester Salary Contract Rates - 2009

Level 1: 17-22\hr
Level 2: 20-25\hr
Level 3: 24-35\hr
Level 4: 33-45\hr
Level 5: 43-55\hr

Wages may be higher or lower depending on your area. Please note that game developers and designers in the Seattle area can earn quite a bit more than this. Most contract programmers will be earning around 60-70 an hour. Note that no one here is earning the claims of some sites of 80,90,120, even 150 an hour; that’s all bunk if you haven’t realized. There is a lot of misinformation out there; no one makes that kind of money unless they are a highly experienced independent consultant with some amazing skills. I can promise you that manual “black box” testers don’t see this kind of dough, so ignore the hype.

With that said, you really can earn a great living with a mid-range game tester salary - and you don’t need a computer science degree to start testing, either!.  It’s a great way to earn a living; you’ll make many new friends, and I highly recommend it. Video game testing has given me the foundation I needed to get into web development. Even after 10 years of testing, I still love playing games!

With the economy in the shape it is in, the job market has definitely tightened up. While there are still game tester jobs out there, it is a lot more competitive, and a lot of guys have taken 10% pay cuts just to stay hired. Things will pick up again, but for now,you may start out a bit less than you would have a couple of years ago.

This is where investing in one of the few legitimate game tester resources currently available can really help - a lot of other people are trying for the same jobs you are, so any edge you can get will help you be the one to nail the job.  There are a lot of guides and sites out there, but the only ones I would feel comfortable with would be those I knew were created and ran by games testers and developers.  The Gamer Testing Ground is one of the few sites I enjoy and recommend, and is a great resource for anyone just starting out, so check them out!

Video Game Tester Jobs Adviser

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