Just heard via the D6 Generation of an interesting hybrid between computer based games and more traditional figure based games.
Ex illis uses traditional plastic figures as is now more common ala games workshop or rakham, though these figures are snap together and unpainted.
Bastion games say:
Ex illis is a hybrid miniature wargame that offers the best of the two worlds: the convenience of technology that makes video games so popular and the human interaction that is the essence of tabletop gaming. Ex illis is a large deployment wargame where players engage in battle using 70 to 100 high quality plastic figurines on a 36” x 45” squared mat.
The game board is paramount to any tactical thinking and all your device will display is a single square at a time. Ex illis uses iPod Touch, iPhone, netbook or notebook to resolve battle, it replaces dice, measuring tape and thick and expensive rulebooks!
Internet access is required though they unclear if you need a persistant connection or not to play, they showed the game at gencon running on an ipod touch though they say netbook’s and macs can run the software so it looks like a java client.
Its implied they you have to connect to their servers to upload you army at the start of the game but can then disconnect – how this would work when you have a pc/device for each player peer to peer or you have to have one pc/device as a master they dont say.
Also i’m not sure how this would work at large shows as big convention centers prices for data can best be described as eye gouging. And and hoc wifi networks have a few interesting security problems – I suppose you could set up a small infrastructure wifi network – but I would imagine that the intersection between wargamers and wireless networking is quite small.
Its an interesting idea but this has been done before I remembe years ago a similar computer moderated Napoleonic system that ran on Atari ST’s with then than at the time very expensive hard disks.