Saturday, May 2, 2015

Game Table Ideas

Been a little obsessed this past week drawing designs in sketchup. I want a gaming table. Not only do I want one, but I want it all. The table I want has to accommodate any kind of game. The problem was the space where I can put it is a little cramped. A full table would work for gaming, since you don’t need to move around much. Basically you’re standing in place or sitting in a chair while moving the minis around. But then I have to live with a monster table in this small space. What to do? The first idea that came to me is to make it fold.

My criteria so far: it has to be big enough to accommodate wargaming on a 6’ x 4’ table for Warhammer 40k; accommodate a 4’ x 4’ game space for smaller games, and in its most compact form still be usable for 1 v 1 games like chess. I looked at the companies out there which make game tables, and I’m not up for spending thousands of dollars. Also, being the son of a carpenter means I’m not going to buy what I can make. To make a gaming table that folds will be an ambitious project, but I think it can be done.
In sketchup I checked out what’s already been done.
This is pretty cool for roleplaying games. The players aren’t far away from the Dungeon Master, and the DM’s side of the table has room for books, a drawer for notes, and a place to sit your laptop without obscuring one of the players. Now can it be used for wargames? Nope. On to the next.

This one is a very interesting design. Those wood trays slide into the boxes, and the legs fold up so the box can fold down into an octagonal table. It has folding, allows a bunch of players to sit close to each other while fielding plenty of room for books. Yet, it can’t accommodate wargaming. Maybe it could but it would be a balancing act, and I don’t want to take a risk with my fragile minis.

Finally, a table that can accommodate a war game. Except it’s kind of tall, and bare, and big. The boxes on the legs are cool. That’s all this really has going for it. Next.

This is looking nicer. It has the fold outs like in the video at the beginning of the post, and I think the box in the center is for a projector attached to one of those DIY touchscreens. Problem is the space issue. Moving on.

Now we’re talking! This one has some fancy stuff. Rounded corners, nice legs, built in dice towers, and a few of the foldout spots are replaced with some interesting looking storage areas. The top of it can be covered with panels to cover the inset area with a flush surface. The space issue is still a problem. My solution:

This could be the world’s first folding game table. It has 8 fold outs, each corner has lidded boxes (saw this on another design) useful for dice rolls, and storage underneath. This accommodates a full 6’ x 4’ wargame of any variety. Now on to the folding aspect.

This has one side folded. The fold is flush with the floor, and the inset has a leaf insert to complete a bounded 4’ x 4’ game table. Next slide has both sides folded without the leaves:

The last slide of this design has both sides folded with leaves, and a center leaf to make a 4’ x 2’ table taking up minimal space. I threw on a little tile area for chess on top. Saw a cool Craftsman video where they took stone tiles and used them for a chess set.
I like the way it looks, but I have a feeling this design is too narrow. If this tips over I’ll have some real problems on my hands because all that wood is heavy and might create a new room if it hits a wall. So I thought what if I extended the base?

This here solves the tipping problem, and is interesting looking. It’s a little too ‘interesting.’  I’ll be going back to the drawing board and seeing if I can find a middle ground. If you have any ideas for improvement or questions I’d love to hear it.


  1. You can conjointly build a router table fence that has clamps engineered into it to secure it to the table. Add further options to your router table like a router fence vacuum.

  2. woah, I like the way it looks. Very easy to move and change stances. You know how to turn gamers like us up, man.

  3. A friend built his own foldable gaming table based on a few ideas he saw online. Well, he built it according to the board games he wants to use it for so it was personalized but I think it worked out great in the end.

  4. I think you can make the base bigger from the inside, i.e., the contact area should be bigger by increasing the size of 2 legs along the table. That will keep the overall size of table and have much more stability. And you sketch all those designs by yourself? I always try to learn some graphic design software but I guess I don’t have the knack. Good luck with your table.


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