At CES this year, there have been a number of table top systems shown off including a new one by Lenovo. Basically, imagine laying your flat screen down so it works like a table. You have a touch screen for multiple players, and even special tools that work with the screen like a set of dice, playing pieces, or a controller.
Right now, these look to be about a thousand bucks a piece and don't actually include a table, so you'd either have to be a craftsman and build your own table around the device, or you'd set it down on an existing table and it'd look a bit awkward.
That said, I like the idea. I think it bridges the gap between video game and traditional board and pen/paper games quite well. People can gather around the table and participate in a game. How is this different than everyone staring at a TV? I think there is a better social feeling about gathering in a circle around something than there is staring at something distant. I also think it can enhance many RPG style games. Imagine setting your pieces on the board and seeing things unfold around them.
I think the technology needs to get to a point where the screens are much larger and affordable, which is quite possible as everything gets bigger/cheaper over time. Having a large family sized table that is interactive. That would be amazing.
These things better be water proof and be able to with stand having a 10 pound ball dropped on it.
Just a thought.
I thought similar things. Again, if the screen is built into the table, the waterproof part could be accomplished fairly easily. As for the durability, good point. I guess Corning will have to continue to improve Gorilla glass until it's as touch as transparent aluminum.
didn't microsoft make something like this a few years ago and charge a fortune for it? then it sort of languished and now I never hear about it. my company has a few of them sitting idle in some R&D closet.
and for the gaming side: is spending a fortune on something the size of a coffee table to emulate dice a good idea? people bitch at the games already if they think you're dice's edges/corners aren't perfect because they won't give "truly" random numbers I can't imagine what i'd hear if i brought one of these things out.
Also: tablets can basically do this rpg stuff now and cost a lot less and are the size of a roleplaying game book.