It’s no secret that 3D printing technology is a perfect way to spice up your gaming nights. If you’re into tabletop gaming, you might have seen various wonderful examples of 3D printed scenery float past, while we recently came across a multimedia board game that relies on 3D printed miniatures. Things only start getting problematic when you try to combine 3D printed components with existing board or tabletop games and are thereby infringing on copyright issues.
By why worry about copyright if you can just 3D print your own game? That’s exactly the type of thinking that has led to the development of the Open Board Game platform that has just launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo. In a nutshell, Open Board Game seeks to become a platform/community for designing and constructing original 3D printed board games. At its core is a multifunctional hexagonal pattern, but the rest is left to your own imagination. These 3D printed tiles can be stacked for vertical gameplay, or can even be given an interactive dimension by incorporating sensors and servos. The games that can be played on it and the miniatures that you need can be fully designed by you and can be shared for free on the OBG platform. The idea is that a vast database of games will be developed, for which you will simply need hexagonal tiles and a 3D printer to play with.
It's a great idea that puts board gaming fully in the hands of the gamers themselves – after all, we’ve all had ideas to improve or redesign board games, and this is a perfect medium to do so. It has been designed by Bryan Salt and his company ThinkerThing, who you might know thanks to a previous 3D printing project. ‘We've been making games for 25 years and been developing for 3D printing for the last three. We're passionate about gaming and we want you to revolution the way board games are produced, new technology allows you to do just that,’ he writes. ‘We have been developing the Open Board Game framework bricks for over 6 months, working with hundreds of prototypes and possible layouts. The result is a trouble free, easy to print, interconnecting board that can be adapted and refined by you, the community.’
To illustrate the potential of this wonderful platform, Salt and his team have already developed the first two Open Board Games: Rust to Dust and Miomon. ‘[The first] an advance wars style strategy battle game with 56 fantastic Battle Robot Figurines. This first game to be designed to work with the interlocking board pieces of the open board game is our test bed and we want to involve you the community in its final stage development,’ Salt writes. ‘The robots have 3 classes, Range, Bruiser and Infantry, each with their own benefits and weaknesses. Attributes that are defined on their accompanying collectible playing cards.’ Miomon, meanwhile, is a Pokémon-like card game in an earlier stage of development.
But to make this very potent platform a reality, Salt and co need to raise $28,000 in crowdfunding by May 15, which will be used to improve the game framework and build the community site. Backers will receive access to a beta member site through which they can interact with the developers and, depending on the pledged sum, receive 3D printed miniatures for the Rust to Dust boardgame. This platform has the potential to become a driving force behind 3D printed gaming, and is definitely worth checking out here.