Breaking the Magic Circle

Game Research Lab Spring Seminar 2008 Tampere Finland 10-11 April

Registration is now open!

As the preliminary programme for the seminar is published, we are opening the registration. (NB: All speakers are automatically registered. The announcement primarily concerns the non-presenting participants.)

Seminar is free of charge, but the number of participants will be restricted. Full papers are distributed prior the event, in order to facilitate discussion. We expect all participants to be familiar with the papers.

You can register by sending an email to INFO-GAMESTUDIES[at] The message should include your name and affiliation.


Programme published!

Programme for our upcoming Breaking the Magic Circle seminar is now available online. On the programme page, you can find 17 interesting working titles in 5 sessions spread to two days. Notice also the updated social programme. We are looking forward to a very interesting and inspiring seminar!

Submission closed and notification of acceptance letters sent

The submission of abstracts is now closed and notifications of acceptance/rejection have been sent to all of the authors. 

This year we received more submissions than ever before in the history of the Game Research Lab annual spring seminar and thus, we inevitably had to reject a number of papers that we found interesting or well-written. The quality of papers submitted this year was exceptionally high and we are looking forward to an outstanding seminar.

Organizing committee thanks for all of the authors for providing interesting pieces to choose from!

We are now waiting for confirmations of participation and working with the final schedule that will be announced later.

Practical info updated

Check out the travel and accomodation tips that we have provided for you from our updated practical info page.

CFP announced!

The call for papers for the Game Research Lab annual spring seminar is now available. This year topic is “Breaking the Magic Circle”, borrowing the concept of Johan Huizinga from the 1930’s.

“Huizinga wrote about the free and voluntary nature of play, how it is “an activity connected with no material interest” and how it “proceeds within its own proper boundaries of time and space”, involving and absorbing players utterly into a separate world set off from the “ordinary” life, while being created and maintained by communities of players.

“Breaking the Magic Circle” seminar invites presentations from multiple points of view, including theoretical as well as empirically based studies into that question or expand existing conceptions regarding digital games and play.

Particular fields of study might include, but are not limited to:

  • pervasive, mobile or location based gaming,
  • alternate reality gaming
  • casual, non-immersive or coincidental forms of play,
  • professional gaming,
  • money gaming, betting and gambling within digital games and play.”

Read the whole call for papers here.