Balance Ninja: towards the design of digital Vertigo games via Galvanic Vestibular Stimulation

Richard Byrne, Joe Marshall, Florian 'Floyd' Mueller

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperResearchpeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Vertigo - the momentary disruption of the stability of perception - is an intriguing game element that underlies many unique play experiences, such as spinning in circles as children to rock climbing as adults, yet vertigo is relatively unexplored when it comes to digital play. In this paper we explore the potential of Galvanic Vestibular Stimulation (GVS) as a game design tool for digital vertigo games. We detail the design and evaluation of a novel two player GVS game, Balance Ninja. From study observations and analysis of Balance Ninja (N=20), we present three design themes and six design strategies that can be used to aid game designers of future digital vertigo games. With this work we aim to highlight that vertigo can be a valuable digital game element that helps to expand the range of games we play.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2016 Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play
EditorsRegan Mandryk, Paul Cairns
Place of PublicationNew York NY USA
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781450344562
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes
EventACM SIGCHI Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play 2016 - Austin, United States of America
Duration: 16 Oct 201619 Oct 2016
Conference number: 3rd


ConferenceACM SIGCHI Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play 2016
Abbreviated titleCHI PLAY 2016
CountryUnited States of America
Internet address


  • Exertion games
  • Ilinx
  • Movement-based games
  • Play
  • Vertigo
  • Vestibular Stimulation

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