Gaze controlled games

  • Poika Isokoski
  • Markus Joos
  • Oleg Spakov
  • Benoît Martin
Long Paper


The quality and availability of eye tracking equipment has been increasing while costs have been decreasing. These trends increase the possibility of using eye trackers for entertainment purposes. Games that can be controlled solely through movement of the eyes would be accessible to persons with decreased limb mobility or control. On the other hand, use of eye tracking can change the gaming experience for all players, by offering richer input and enabling attention-aware games. Eye tracking is not currently widely supported in gaming, and games specifically developed for use with an eye tracker are rare. This paper reviews past work on eye tracker gaming and charts future development possibilities in different sub-domains within. It argues that based on the user input requirements and gaming contexts, conventional computer games can be classified into groups that offer fundamentally different opportunities for eye tracker input. In addition to the inherent design issues, there are challenges and varying levels of support for eye tracker use in the technical implementations of the games.


Computer games Eye tracking Taxonomy 


  1. 1.
    Abrams, R.A., Meyer, D.E., Kornblum S.: Speed and accuracy of saccadic eye movements: characteristics of impulse variability in the oculomotor system. J. Exp. Psychol. Hum. Percept. Perform. 15(3), 529–543 (1989)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Dodge, R., Cline, T.S.: The angle velocity of eye movements. Psychol. Rev. 8, 145–157 (1901)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Dorr, M., Böhme, M., Martinetz, T., Brath, E.: Gaze beats mouse: a case study. In: Proceedings of COGAIN, pp. 16–19 (2007)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Duchowski, A.T.: Eye Tracking Methodology: Theory and Practice. Springer, London (2003)MATHGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Isokoski, P., Hyrskykari, A., Kotkaluoto, S., Martin, B.: Gamepad and eye tracker input in FPS games: data for the first 50 min. In: Proceedings of COGAIN, pp. 10–15, (2007) available at
  6. 6.
    Isokoski, P., Martin, B.: Eye tracker input in first person shooter games. In: Proceedings of COGAIN 2006: Gazing into the Future, pp.78–81, available at
  7. 7.
    Jacob, R.J.K.: The use of eye movements in human-computer interaction techniques: what you look at is what you get. ACM. Trans. Inf. Syst. 9, 152–169 (1991)CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Jönsson, E., If looks could kill—an evaluation of eye tracking in computer games. Master’s Thesis, Department of Numerical Analysis and Computer Science, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden (2005)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Klochek, C., MacKenzie, I.S.: Performance measures of game controllers in a three-dimensional environment. Proceedings of Graphics Interface 2006, pp. 73–79. CIPS , Toronto (2006) Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    LC Technologies, Eyegaze User Manual, September 2006Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Lin, C.-S., Huan, C.-C., Chan, C.-N., Yeh, M.-S., Chiu, C.-C.: Design of a computer game using an eye-tracking device for eye’s activity rehabilitation, optics and lasers in engineering, 42(1), 91–108, Elsevier (2004)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Smith, J.D., Graham, T.C.N.: Use of eye movements for video game control.. In: ACM Advancements in Computer Entertainment Technology (Hollywood, CA, USA, June 14–16, 2006). ACE 2006. ACM Press, New York (2006)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Spakov, O.: MyTobii Applications available at: Accessed 28 Jan 2007
  14. 14.
    Špakov, O., Miniotas, D.: EyeChess: a tutorial for endgames with gaze-controlled pieces. (abstract) In: Abstracts of ECEM13, Bern, p. 32 (2005) Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Starker, I., Bolt R.A.: A gaze-responsive self-disclosing display. In: Proceedings of CHI 90, pp. 3–9. ACM Press (1990)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Wade, N.J., Tatler, B.W.: The Moving Tablet of the Eye: The Origins of Modern Eye Movement Research. Oxford University Press, NY (2005)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Wikipedia, Lines (video game) available at. Accessed 28 Jan 2007

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Poika Isokoski
    • 1
  • Markus Joos
    • 2
  • Oleg Spakov
    • 1
  • Benoît Martin
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Computer Sciences/TAUCHIUniversity of TampereTampereFinland
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyDresden University of TechnologyDresdenGermany
  3. 3.LITAUniversity of Paul Verlaine, MetzMetz Cedex 1France

Personalised recommendations