...we need the tools to do so properly.
I'm glad there is a test server available to let players test patches before they go live and help with feedback and bug reporting. That said without the tools to really test with, the test server will not truely be of any use.
DAoC had a test server for players to use before a patch went live as well. They also had many testing features available to the players which allowed them to be thorough in their testing. Below are 2 examples.
Stat and skill resetting: This is is quite possibly the single most important feature needed for complete testing. On the DAoC test server players could make their toon any level, reset their stats and respec their skills at any time. This is extremely important for testing min/max differences and to see if things are scaling correctly. Additionally this let players test the effectiveness of various builds before spending large amounts of time and money changing their toons around on the real servers.
Static Mobs: There were 3 different melee damage types in DAoC, crush/slash/pierce. The test server had stationary mobs placed for players to use that each did a specific type of damage to test the effects of each damage type against avaliable armors. Additionally these mobs could be configured in various ways when testing. You could set them to be passive and not fight back to test positional attacks, defensive to test the ability to bypass parry and block abilities or aggressive. With the current work on mob AI and the addition of new mob types the ability to be able to test the effectiveness of the mobs would require ready access to the mobs so players dont have to hunt for an hour to find a mob to test on.
The above are just some simple examples of tools the players need for any real testing to be done. I personally have no problem jumping on a test server before new patches to help with player testing. But if you dont give us the tools required to test properly there really is no reason to have a test server imo.