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CMON and Xplored Announce New Digital Board Game Console

U Updated
Teburu
There Will Be Games

CMON and Xplored are teaming up to bring players the next evolution in board gaming. Teburu is a gaming console that seamlessly integrates the physical and digital worlds, keeping players focused on the board and its components while the system takes care of game rules, enemies’ behavior, and storytelling events.

Groundbreaking technology senses where figures representing heroes, monsters and other gameplay elements are anywhere on the board. This information is transmitted seamlessly to any compatible tablet or computer running the Gamemaster App – no more hunting around in the rulebook. Make your move and the Gamemaster tells you what happens next.

Players can keep track of their own characters on Companion Apps running on their own smartphones networked to the Gamesmaster App, which is able to throw surprises at players with a malevolent intelligence never before seen in boardgames. What’s behind the door? The Gamemaster knows…

Roll the wireless dice anywhere, and Teburu does all the heavy lifting, taking into consideration player and monster statistics, equipment and other modifiers and displaying the final result instantly. No more math, just shoot zombies (with your dice)!

The first game on Teburu will be Zombicide Evolution – Las Vegas. It’s the game millions of Zombicide players the world over know and love, but evolved – faster, enhanced, and with a great campaign full of meaningful choices that will carry over a series of gaming sessions.

CMON’s CEO, Chern Ann Ng commented, “We are excited to bring new technology and gameplay innovations to tabletop games in the form of the Teburu. We expect this will both excite existing tabletop gamers and draw a whole new audience into tabletop gaming.”

Xplored’s Founder and CEO, Davide Garofalo noted, “CMON immediately understood the groundbreaking potential of our technology applied to board games, allowing us to bring an ambitious product to life. We strongly believe Teburu is the paradigm change this market has been looking for.”

Players will get their first chance to try the Teburu gaming system at Gen Con this August at the CMON booth (#417). Participants will be able to try out this new, fully-integrated style of gaming with demos of Zombicide Evolution – Las Vegas.

There Will Be Games Teburu

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Vysetron's Avatar
Vysetron replied the topic: #299823 19 Jul 2019 09:06
Remember Golem Arcana?
charlest's Avatar
charlest replied the topic: #299825 19 Jul 2019 09:14
I was waiting for someone to post it here and see Barnes take (beyond his amusing tweet).

This will never succeed, at least not this iteration.

Problems:

A - It's a hassle (more setup, more hoops to jump through turn to turn, making sure minis register and dice come up correctly, connection issues)
B - It's going to be expensive as hell
C - Its titles will be limited (CMON only?)

I'm eager to see all the threads pop up after this delivers detailing all of the bugs.

I'm probably one of the most receptive here to the concept of digitizing some of this stuff, but not like this.

The only way something like this would succeed would be a surface mat that provides digital boards/tracks/etc for you to play on top of without requiring anything else electronic. It would need to have a large swathe of games and have a robust module for users to create additional content.
hotseatgames's Avatar
hotseatgames replied the topic: #299826 19 Jul 2019 09:21
Count me in the "Nay" camp. This looks like a way to produce an average board game and an average video game.

As a general rule, I don't like media that desperately tries to be other media. You want your video game to be a movie? I'd rather watch a movie.

You want your board game to be like a video game? I already have TONS of video games and they are better than your board game hybrid.

I partake in board games for their social aspects, not so everyone can stare at their phones or wait for the iPad to puke out some tinny sound effects and "gripping" story bits.

My board games never need to be updated, charged, synced, etc.

Now, after that "get off my lawn" bit, I will say that the thought of playing a traditional miniatures game in VR completely appeals to me. Being able to virtually paint my virtual collection, virtually manipulate them on virtual terrain, etc. Give me that now.
Michael Barnes's Avatar
Michael Barnes replied the topic: #299829 19 Jul 2019 09:40
But folks, it makes sound effects when you open a door!

This is total garbage and I can’t resist another opportunity to dunk on it.

Apps work best as assists- the Gloomhaven tracker or Roll20 for example. Not as a platform or format. Anything else is a gimmick, and this thing really doesn’t do anything fundamentally different than what Dark Tower was doing almost 40 years ago with about 50 cents worth of Radio Shack electronics.

It is going to be expensive, and as shown in the video each player has a mobile device and there is main tablet. I’m betting $500-$700 for the board at a minimum, which won’t include those devices or the copy of Zombicide Enhanced you’ll have to buy.

I just have to laugh at it being a CMON thing...like they have ever come up with a design complex enough to require computer assistance.

This kind of thing has already failed multiple times- Golem Arcana, World of Yoho...even FFG’s more successful attempts at this have been tentative and really kind of largely swept aside over time. If there were truly demand for this kind of thing, we’d already have it.

The whole thing reeks of coming from a meeting with an out-of-touch CEO or investor am pitching the idea of a “tabletop games console”...right down to the nonsensical bullshit product name.

I don’t even really give a shit about all of this fatuous “potential” it supposedly represents for designers. Designers today can’t even get a handle on how to express basic themes and innovative concepts in the format, let alone with a device that encourages more crossover into video games territory.

I can’t possibly hard pass on this more...I used to think apps were the future, now I’d rather just play a great Knizia game that explores the limits and boundaries of the format than pursue some pie in the sky bullshit like this.
Michael Barnes's Avatar
Michael Barnes replied the topic: #299836 19 Jul 2019 10:35
Have they announced when this will be available at TJ Maxx?
ubarose's Avatar
ubarose replied the topic: #299837 19 Jul 2019 10:39
Maybe their market is game cafes/clubs/stores. A place by us that charges a fee to play was considering getting a giant tablet table that just displays maps and terrain for D & D and tabletop mini games.
Space Ghost's Avatar
Space Ghost replied the topic: #299840 19 Jul 2019 10:42
Teburu sounds like a D&D demon.

The last thing we need is something that eliminates the last vestiges of math from our lives.
Gary Sax's Avatar
Gary Sax replied the topic: #299844 19 Jul 2019 10:46
I don't know if it's bad, but it does seem like a boondoggle. VR more broadly has really struggled so these specialized takes feel doomed to me. This reminds me most of the Playstation Eye in its original form, where it came with that CCG and a board/grid.
drewcula's Avatar
drewcula replied the topic: #299845 19 Jul 2019 10:49

Michael Barnes wrote: Have they announced when this will be available at TJ Maxx?


There it is. Thank you MB.
charlest's Avatar
charlest replied the topic: #299846 19 Jul 2019 10:50

ubarose wrote: Maybe their market is game cafes/clubs/stores. A place by us that charges a fee to play was considering getting a giant tablet table that just displays maps and terrain for D & D and tabletop mini games.


I don't know the game cafe business or anything, but if I owned one I would not want this. I'd be worried patrons would damage/steal bits and pieces, and if you lose the chipped dice or they get damaged - how the hell do you replace them?
Vysetron's Avatar
Vysetron replied the topic: #299847 19 Jul 2019 10:55
Not to mention the device costs and how much a single spill, drop, or grubby child could cost you in repairs/replacements.

This isn't -for- anyone aside from people who are actively looking for a way to spend more money on "tHe HObBy".
fightcitymayor's Avatar
fightcitymayor replied the topic: #299853 19 Jul 2019 11:42

Michael Barnes wrote: ...and this thing really doesn’t do anything fundamentally different than what Dark Tower was doing almost 40 years ago with about 50 cents worth of Radio Shack electronics.

I bet if you hit the Haggle button you could get those components for a quarter.

dysjunct's Avatar
dysjunct replied the topic: #299857 19 Jul 2019 13:41
Hardware is fiendishly hard even if you do it well. Ouna console, Pebble Smartwatch, Microsoft Zune ... so this is basically doomed even if they pull it off perfectly.

And even if they pull it off perfectly, hard pass from me. Something that works on a device I already have (i.e. companion app on my phone), I'll consider. I don't need another big lump of hardware in my house.
RobertB's Avatar
RobertB replied the topic: #299865 19 Jul 2019 14:48
Yeah, them newfangled horseless carriages will never work.

Some of you folks going to Gencon should go look at it and report back.
Gary Sax's Avatar
Gary Sax replied the topic: #299866 19 Jul 2019 14:51

RobertB wrote: Yeah, them newfangled horseless carriages will never work.

Some of you folks going to Gencon should go look at it and report back.


I think the eventually successful version of this looks a lot more like an expanded tabletop simulator, perhaps with some VR-ish hardware. I'm still very skeptical that mobile platforms haven't already solved this problem for the market that wants digital board games.
Sagrilarus's Avatar
Sagrilarus replied the topic: #299869 19 Jul 2019 16:05

Vysetron wrote: Remember Golem Arcana?


No.
Sagrilarus's Avatar
Sagrilarus replied the topic: #299870 19 Jul 2019 16:26
Okay, so, here's the thing. This is the antithesis of modern design. The whole damn world is trying to get away from dedicated hardware. This is dead on arrival because you just can't tool for something like this game after game. Modern manufacturing won't deal well with this. And I'll tell you what -- purchasing version 1.0 of the hardware for this thing should be considered a charitable donation at tax time.

Here's the bigger truth -- you can do every damn thing that this huge hardware package is trying to do with a couple of smartphones on tripods. You can image process damn near everything with a couple of angles of view, and I'd wager 80% of games played today have two smartphones within a couple of feet of them. Zero hardware purchase, same capabilities.

Don't believe me? There's a guy in Russia that just released a scoring app for Ticket to Ride (original and Europe) where all you do is photograph the board at the end of the game. All routes are totaled and scored, longest route, it asks each player for their Destination Tickets with their most likely tickets listed first, based on the positions of their pieces on the board. One photograph.

That was literally one young guy in his bedroom doing the programming, and he's releasing it at no charge. Sure it's sending your location to the GRU, but they probably have it already. The damn thing works, based off of one photograph! It's pretty damn impressive.

A game company could sell a cardboard game, and an app that comes with it and replicate 100% of the functionality of this exceptionally complicated set of hardware components. If they're crazy CMON will release a first game using it. That's as far as it will ever go, and sure as hell no other game manufacturer is going to license it.

The day someone releases an SDK for vision-enhanced-gaming software the market changes.
Michael Barnes's Avatar
Michael Barnes replied the topic: #299874 19 Jul 2019 17:17
But dude, it makes a sound when you open a door.
Sagrilarus's Avatar
Sagrilarus replied the topic: #299875 19 Jul 2019 17:45

Michael Barnes wrote: But dude, it makes a sound when you open a door.


You know, that promo video was hokey as hell. I particularly liked the animation of the electricity zooming up the dedicated wire between the space on the board and the cpu. And the explosion diagrams with the battery and the usb ports labeled.
Michael Barnes's Avatar
Michael Barnes replied the topic: #299876 19 Jul 2019 17:52
What pisses me off about that trailer is that they blew a perfectly good opportunity to use the Alan Parsons Project song “Sirius”.
Robert Facepalmer's Avatar
Robert Facepalmer replied the topic: #299884 19 Jul 2019 23:55
Please be the thing that finally kills CMoN.
mtagge's Avatar
mtagge replied the topic: #299886 20 Jul 2019 04:34
So I'll be one of the dissenting voices and say that I typically like apps who play the "overlord" to let me and my kids play co-op. It works for us in Imperial Assault and it works with X-COM.

IA however works as three different games in one. A 1 vs 4 campaign, a 1v1 skirmish, and a app vs 4 campaign. But with this I have to ask why? From what I can tell this does exactly what the Imperial Assault app does (translate pre-programmed cards into actions for the monsters, and trigger events). So why does this need to be a full console? Hell the IA app is FREE.
Sagrilarus's Avatar
Sagrilarus replied the topic: #299889 20 Jul 2019 07:19
Great question, and if you read the promotional materials it appears that a hardware company showed up at their door and presented them with the idea. That is, CMoN is a partner in another company's product.
mtagge's Avatar
mtagge replied the topic: #299897 20 Jul 2019 18:56

Sagrilarus wrote: Great question, and if you read the promotional materials it appears that a hardware company showed up at their door and presented them with the idea. That is, CMoN is a partner in another company's product.

Interesting, so like a group of geeky grad student EE majors that developed the sensor mat and tried to spin up their own business? Makes sense as that is the age group for a game like Zombicide.

In that case the best to them, even if I'm not interested. I'm not sure that a full console with a hand held for each character and a single use tablet CPU is the way to go on this. Better for them to develop the sensor mat and pair it with a USB connector so that folks could connect their (already owned) laptop or Android.

And if you have to pair each sensor with what it is in the game it's going to flop. I'll stick with IA. I have no problems perusing character sheets, tracking wounds, and tapping inventory and skill cards.

However I could see this as a replacement for the massive kickstarters out there. Gloomhaven, Shadows over Brimstone, etc. Just not Zombicide.