Golem Arcana – A Table TopTBS Hybrid

Harebrained Schemes, the studio behind the successfully Kickstarter funded and about to be released tactical RPG, Shadowrun Returns, is about to begin another Kickstarter campaign.

This time they want to do something rather different that I am quite excited about. It’s called Golem Arcana and the simplest way to describe it is as “a table top battle game where the calculations are done by a digital device.”

What does this mean? Well for starters, if implemented correctly if would lend a great deal of fluidity and flexibility to miniature combat. As any veteran of table top games will tell you, even the most studied and versed players spend a great deal of time referencing rules and tables in order to conduct their turns. Whether you play Warhammer, Warmachine or BattleTech a large portion of play time can be expended just looking at spreadsheets.

Golem Arcana wants to do away with this by empowering the player with the aid of a wireless “wand-like” stylus. When you tap an area of the playfield or a miniature a signal is sent to your digital device which displays statistics about that area or unit. It’s not yet known to what lengths the physical models and their digital stats will interact but in the introductory video it appears that combat can be conducted simply by touching your stylus to a model and then to your intended target.

This has the potential to revolutionize the table top game.

This has the potential to revolutionize the table top game.

If they can successfully combine the enjoyment of collecting miniatures with the accessibility of computer based strategy games then they might just have something very special on their hands. If the popularity of games like Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure are any indicator, consumers are ready for collectible miniatures with a digital presence.

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