Evaluating a distributed physical leisure game for three players

Florian 'Floyd' Mueller, Martin R. Gibbs

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

18 Citations (Scopus)


Physical leisure activities such as table tennis provide healthy exercise and can offer a means to connect with others socially; however, players have to be in the same physical location to play. We have developed a networked table tennis-like game that is played with a real paddle and ball, augmented with a large-scale videoconference. Unlike existing commercial console games that encourage physical activity, our system supports social interaction through an audio and video communication channel, offers a familiar gaming interface comparable to a traditional leisure game, provides non-virtual force feedback and can be enjoyed by players in three geographically separate locations simultaneously. We are presenting results from an empirical evaluation of "Table Tennis for Three" with 41 participants. The players reported that they had fun, used the game to build social rapport and experienced a sense of playing "together". Some participants did not enjoy the game, and we present informed opinions to explain their reactions. With our work, we provide other HCI researchers with a further example of an evaluation of a novel type of experience that lies in the realms of physical activity, fun and social interactions. We hope we can inspire designers to consider our results in their future game designs by looking at the characteristics of traditional physical leisure games to promote similar benefits such as exercise, enjoyment and bringing people together to socialize.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAustralasian Computer-Human Interaction Conference, OZCHI'07
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9781595938725
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes
EventAustralian Computer Human Interaction Conference 2007 - Adelaide, Australia
Duration: 28 Nov 200730 Nov 2007
Conference number: 19th
https://dl.acm.org/doi/proceedings/10.1145/1324892 (Conference Proceedings)


ConferenceAustralian Computer Human Interaction Conference 2007
Abbreviated titleOZCHI 2007
Internet address


  • Exertion interface
  • Physical
  • Ping pong
  • Social interaction
  • Sports
  • Sweat
  • Table-tennis
  • Tangible
  • Team spirit
  • Videoconferencing

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