Home Board Game News Tabletopia – The digital platform for board games

Tabletopia – The digital platform for board games


Tabletopia Kickstarter

Love it or hate it, digital board gaming is here to stay. While nothing can truly beat the experience of sitting down at a table with some friends and slinging some dice, it’s nice to know we have some alternatives. I have friends in many different states, including BGQ’s own Alex and Steph (New Jersey Residents) and our newest writing team, The Petersen’s (Arizona transplant). When I want to game with them, my options are to wait till our annual Gen Con pilgrimage or head to the internet.

While many games are making their way over to iOS, and there are a lot of great options for gamers, there really isn’t one central hub for tabletop gaming online that everyone seems to gravitate to. A few sites have tried to do it with varying results, but nothing so far that has really blow me away.

Tabletopia Publishers
Currently liscensed publishers on Tabletopia

Recently, a new comer to the digital tabletop arena has appeared. Tabletopia, now in funding on Kickstarter, and has promised to do for board gaming what iTunes did for music or the Kindle did for ebooks. One centralized location where players can gather and satisfy their board gaming fix.

According to their Kickstarter page, Tabletopia is a sandbox. “Players should know the rules of the game to play it. There is no AI or rules enforcement, but at the same time it has the freedom to play the game your way – exactly as if you were playing at a real table. However, we have done a lot to make each play for you a good experience:

  • Automatic game setups, card dealing, drafting etc.
  • Player’s turn control, timers, game phases indication
  • Interactive zones on the table with predefined automatic actions
  • Intelligent counters for tracking victory points and many other in-game parameters
  • Custom surfaces, game room wallpapers, sound effects advanced camera controls … and many other useful features!”

Coming to PC, Mac, iOS and Android, I’m excited both on the possibilities and also that it will be launching on many platforms.

I’ve tried out their beta myself and I must say, I’m impressed. They already have a large stable of games to play (all officially licensed from their publishers) and the interface is one of the slickest I’ve seen (even if it still has some bugs to be worked out).

Tabletopia Imperial Settlers

There are pledge levels for both gamers and game designers, so no matter your need, you’ll find something here.

Pledge levels start at $10 for access to the early-beta and go up to $250 for a permanent private game room and access to a workshop pro account. For me though, the sweet spot seems to be either $25 for 6 months of silver access or $50 for 6 months of gold access.

Ether way, they are absolutely worth a look. Head over today and check it out. The future is almost here and it’s the best I’ve seen so far.

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  1. Have you used Tabletop Simulator from Steam? I just got into this to test out some games that I would like to own and have also started looking at the Steam Workshop to publish games as well. There are around 4k games published within Steam Workshop for Tabletop Simulator which are all free to use.

    What is the advantage of Tabletopia over Tabletop Simulator? To use Tabletopia, it requires a monthly fee and not a cheap one at that, especially if you want to develop a game and game test it.

    I saw one poster ask this same question but not a really great response. I tried their demos and it definitely has some cool elements, like sound effects and what not, I couldn’t see myself spending that much money on something I can get very similar for $20 for life.

    • I haven’t tried the tabletop simulator on Steam, but one of the things I like about Tabletopia is that they are all liscensed games. I don’t know if the one on steam went that route, but I’d prefer that the publisher/designer get their due for the games. 🙂

      • Thanks for your reply Tony. I totally get that. I guess in the digital age, I would love to see more game designers use this platform for customers to try the game out, maybe provide a limited use, and then they can decide to buy the game…either digitally or physically. I feel that Tabletopia is doing the cable TV approach. You have to pay to use stuff you’re never going to use. Obviously they are going to have overhead that needs to be covered. The Kickstarter is going well so maybe I am in the small minority here.

        Appreciate your write ups. In fact, “The Petersens”, Jeff stole my thunder. Was thinking of approaching a site to handle family gaming.

  2. I really think board games going digital is a bad idea. One of the appeals of boardgaming is that you take the time to sit around a table, moving components and using your brain, with out a screen. Maybe it’s just, me, but this sounds bad.

    • I totally feel the opposite way. While I’d much prefer to sit around a table, there are times I want to game with my friends in other states. This is the perfect way for me to be able to do that.

    • I will never accept digital tabletops over physical board games. However, as @BoardGameQuest mentioned, it does allow one to game with people that are far away. Also, I like the idea of digital tabletops for D&D dungeons. I no longer have the time to build intricate and elaborate physical components. It’s a great alternative for that. However, character management and rolling dice will ALWAYS be done physically. I HATE rolling digital dice. Card games don’t bother me as much. Dice, UGGGGGGG!

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