Hybrid Games and Interaction Design

Guest Editors

• Nelson Zagalo, DigiMedia, University of Aveiro, Portugal
• Fotis Liarokapis, University of Technology, Cyprus
• Micael Sousa, University of Coimbra, Portugal
• Ana Patrícia Oliveira, University of Aveiro, Portugal

Important dates

• Deadline: January 15, 2023 -> February 28, 2023 (extended hard deadline)
• Notification to the authors: April 20, 2023
• Camera ready paper: April 30, 2023
• Publication of the special issue: half May, 2023


Board games gained significant momentum throughout the past two decades, with some of the best creations earning millions of dollars in funding platforms during 2021, in spite of the Covid-19 pandemic. Additionally, digital games have surpassed all other media, from film to music, in investments and returns. Board and digital games are two forms of play which use the same base of design – the game design – so it was without surprise that a new hybrid approach, that mixed both media, would appear.
Over the past five years, we have seen games with Augmented Reality, board games using smartphones as assisting tools, tablets being used as boards, or even games using real food–edible games. This combination of digital and physical components and strategies in games contributes to a new experience of play which enhances not only the player’s immersion and interaction, but also the contents, presentation, atmosphere, and control of the game. There are some questions emerging in this discussion, namely about the complementary relationship between physical and digital games: What are the borderlines between real and virtual dimensions in hybrid games? How can hybrid games provide a more participatory gaming experience while players become engaged with digital and physical components at the same time? Which model of interaction design of hybrid games best favors player experience, communication, and engagement?
In this special issue, we want not only to present the current state-of-the-art of the hybrid games, as the possibilities beyond current days, making use of speculative approaches to design, as design fiction, but we want to dig deeper through the lenses of interaction design, in order to understand the new needs in the realm of technologies. Furthermore, we want to understand the full impacts and effects of this move on human interaction with game artifacts and consequently find out what should we expect from the discipline of interaction design while using ludic approaches in the next decade.

Topics of Interest

The indicative list of topics of interest for this special issue devoted to Gamification of the Learning Process’ includes, but is not limited to:

• Hybrid digital/physical games
• Methods of hybrid game design
• Design Fiction and Hybrid Interaction Design
• Interaction design relation with game design
• Play Hybridism
• Hybrid systems;
• Hybrid design models;
• Hybrid game mechanics and patterns;
• Hybrid storytelling models;
• Hybrid Game interaction models;
• Cognition and game design;
• Aesthetics of Hybrid Digital/Physical Games;
• Board games and Digital Games;
• Hybrid-games design;
• Hybrid game User Experience;
• Players’ physical/digital behaviormodelling;
• NPC behavior and Physical Characters

Submission procedure 

All submissions must be original and may not be under review by another publication.
The manuscripts should be submitted anonymized either in .doc or in .pdf format.
All papers will be blindly peer-reviewed by at least two reviewers. Prospective participants are invited to submit a 8-20 pages paper (including authors’ information, abstract, all tables, figures, references, etc.).
The paper should be written according to the IxD&A authors’ guidelines .
Submission page -> link
(when submitting the paper please choose the section: ‘SI: Hybrid Games and Interaction‘)

For scientific advices and for any query please contact the guest-editor:

• nzagalo [at] ua [dot] pt

marking the subject as: IxD&A special issue on Hybrid Games and Interaction.