This review was scheduled as either Wolfenstein II or Tabletop simulator, depending on if I made more progress in that super fun shoot em up about killing Nazis. While I do love the Aldo Raine quote “We in the killin’ Nazi business. And cousin, business is a-boomin,” I found playing Tabletop Simulator soaked much more of my time these past few weeks both with friends and on my own, but of that 35 hours, majority of it is based around my time as a survivor in Kingdom Death: Monster but this amazing software does more than just let me play with myself for hours on end. Giggity.
Tabletop simulator is a game that you may or may not have heard of that allows players to (surprise surprise) simulate playing tabletop games. Individuals upload assets and more than that, enable scripts and automation so games of complexity and ambiguous rules (such as KDM which takes on average an hour at least to go through all the shuffling, set up, and prep for 1 TURN in a game with the length of 25 turns) and reduces this shuffling, set up, and prep by simply dragging and dropping items around and changing 15 minutes of set up into 15 seconds of loading and lots of fun with friends. Other fun components are the ability to import new assets and things like dice and pieces on the fly, for seamless and quick interaction, especially for things such as Dungeons and Dragons or Pathfinder. The largest and arguably most entertaining aspect of this game is being able to literally flip the table with a click of a button and ruin the game for everyone.
Thankfully with auto saves and a rather simple save/load feature it’s no big deal to reset. Now, beyond all the flexibility of the game and opportunities for games themselves, is something that goes beyond just playing a game. Another great aspect of the game is that we have the ability to boot in as VR players with any type of headset Steam accepts and rock a realistic and immersive gaming experience. I know the past few article’s I’ve put out have had an emphasis on maintaining work-life balance but that’s not my point tonight with this article. What I remember from board games as a kid before video games were a huge thing (especially multiplayer ones, and super-duper especially before online multiplayer became mainstream) was having fun with friends. From the tail end of college to now a days, I’ve been playing traditional games more and more, with me becoming huge into DnD and Shadowrun the past few years, but that camaraderie and fun in sitting around playing board games transcends just hopping onto Gears of War or CoD and killing some alien/Nazi/super soldiers. And much like how online gaming classics like Halo, Counter-Strike and Battlefield connected a number of people, Tabletop Simulator offers the chance to do that but even better with the at-home feel but over great distances. Not only do I play TTS with my oldest friend of nearly 25 years who lives almost 1,300 miles away, but we also play with CmdrCluckCluck and his significant other over a 2,500 mile gap. I also have it on the docket to get my brothers playing this game so that we can play more fun and random games that don’t require them to have high end PC’s.
Overall this game is more than a game and more than a simulator. It serves as a vehicle for you to play old school games and re-live those moments with friends and family, as well as save a considerable amount of money. I had initially gotten into TTS in order to save on buying into 40k (which didn’t work obviously, also I love painting) but playing KDM saved me in the realm of $700 for all the expansion packs. Board games are expensive as hell and I own a couple real world ones that ran upwards of $50 so this really helps you try out a game before getting it in meat space. This game costs a mere $20 (or $60 for a 4-pack which I highly recommend) by comparison, with it often times being on sale for half-price (which I really, REALLY recommend). Anyway, let me know if you like board games, KDM, or just having fun in VR and maybe we can get a game going! As always, leave a comment and let me know what you think about traditional games and if you enjoyed the article don’t hesitate to like and subscribe for more!