Sunday, February 22, 2015

Picture Perfect: From Physical to Digital

(Picture example of the ePawn - Chess)
 I must admit that I have had an unending love for tabletop games ever since I was first introduced to them by my parents. My love developed into a quick mastery of any game I touched, and shortly after I started playing Chess the rest of my family quit. It would appear I had gotten too skilled at it, as I haven’t enjoyed a challenging game of Chess since one of my uncles visited us a few years back.

Tabletop games have been with society for centuries, proving to be an enduring source of entertainment for many throughout the ages. I should know, since I’m one of them. From Chess to Risk, Poker to Monopoly, I find an escape from everyday life while enjoying the challenge these games provide. Some love them so much that they have dedicated their livelihoods to talking about them as a

With every passing year, new tabletop games were invented to help us pass the time and allow us to pretend to be the masters of strategy and critical thinking. It was from that mold that the Warhammer tabletop game was born. But it did something no other game did, for it allowed us to become generals of grand armies and mighty heroes the likes we have never seen except from novels and comic books.

Yet in a digital age, gaming has evolved to match the needs of a new generation. Video games have taken its place, and Warhammer has stepped up to combat the rising tides while defending its proud tabletop history. From this change, Dawn of War and Space Marine were developed with many others having been made before and after these two particular games for the enjoyment of Warhammer fans and gamers in general. 

(Picture example of the ePawn - Dungeons & Dragons)
Warhammer 40k: Space Marine was the first game I was immersed in, and I found myself captivated by the strength I was granted through the conduit of the pixelated Space Marine on my screen. The story was that of a losing battle that had taken a turn for the worse, and by the end I was left with questions unanswered which drove me to learn more about the Warhammer universe. From there, I started to play the Dawn of War strategy games and began to truly feel like a cunning general in the Warhammer universe.

But while I, and undoubtedly many others, have been busy spending my free time enjoying such games, I began to wonder as to the fate of the tabletop games that started it all. Research shows it to be very much alive, with new updates to the game having released as recently as January in the form of a faction
update for the Necron army.

Yet this suddenly has me concerned and aware of the fact that I haven’t touched a tabletop game for so long, having found a new escape though video games. It has replaced the void once filled by the table games themselves, even if I had not noticed it until now. This shift from the physical to the digital is a fact that, humorously enough, Warhammer developers are aware of.

An upcoming game, titled
Warhammer 40k: Regicide, is a chess game planned to be released sometime this year with Battlefleet Gothic: Armada, a discontinued tabletop game set in the 40k universe, also in the works. Furthermore, Mordheim: City of the Damned is coming out which is based on the fantasy board game. This thread seems to be a push from Games Workshop to introduce a new generation to the Warhammer universe.

I believe it to be smart marketing, for it sure worked on me. But I must wonder as to where this is going to leave actual tabletop games. Is it going to adapt fully into the video game world, or can it manage to thrive without the need to change? Make sure to share your thoughts down below!

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