Balancing Skills to Optimize Fun in Interactive Board Games

  • Eva Kraaijenbrink
  • Frank van Gils
  • Quan Cheng
  • Robert van Herk
  • Elise van den Hoven
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 5726)


Playing games against people with a different skill level can be boring or frustrating, which decreases fun. A solution is to introduce specific rules that balance a game. In this paper we describe a study in which we used an electronic board game with tangible interaction to investigate whether balancing a game indeed increases fun experienced. We also investigate whether balancing skill levels implicitly (players are unaware) or explicitly (players are aware) has an influence on the fun experienced. We found that players who lost a game felt more successful in the balanced game compared to the unbalanced game. The balanced game also offered the players more fun experience than they expected beforehand. Finally, players preferred to play an explicitly balanced game because it increased the feeling of effort and challenge.


Balancing skills board games tangible interaction game balance interaction design fun experience social interaction 


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Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eva Kraaijenbrink
    • 1
  • Frank van Gils
    • 1
  • Quan Cheng
    • 1
  • Robert van Herk
    • 1
  • Elise van den Hoven
    • 1
  1. 1.Eindhoven University of TechnologyEindhovenNetherlands

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