Physical interfaces have been widely adopted in digital games. In our project, we research one such type of physical interface---handheld augmented reality interfaces, and aim to create an engaging and novel play experience. Designing such games requires us to combine knowledge from both Human-computer interaction and game design domains. In this paper, we present a few research questions that we raised or encountered during the process of designing and developing the handheld AR game <i>NerdHerder</i>. We also present our current solutions and answers to these questions. We are going to conduct user studies to understand how handheld AR games are played in the wild. We will release the game and let mobile device users play it in their natural environments. Through the process of designing and iterating <i>NerdHerder</i>, we call for more research that explores how to adopt HCI principles into game design.
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