Las Vegas – (press release) Wizama, startup specializing in innovative gaming systems, unveils SquareOne: the first board game console. Featuring a built-in touch screen and pawns, cards, a dice and a track that act as controllers, it enables both physical and digital interaction – which ultimately opens players to a full experience of gameplay while preserving the sense of traditional board games: fellowship and sharing. Wizama won a CES Innovation Awards 2019 in “Gaming”. (Zennie62Media coverage of CES 2019 Las Vegas is sponsored by Lyda Music. Listen to her new album Divine Distraction, here at this link.)
Wizama unveils SquareOne: the first board game console. Born out of a father’s exasperation of having to fight an iPad to get his daughter’s attention, SquareOne offers the human experience, fellowship and sharing of board games, as well as the gamefeel and powerful rewards of video games, giving the whole a child’s play spontaneity.
SquareOne by Wizama is the first connected board game to merge two universes that never combined before: traditional board games and video games. It allows families and friends to compete, collaborate (and cheat) on a horizontal 19-inch screen, using connected toys (pawns, cards, toys, sets, buzzers, dices). Each of these toys every movement, effect, and interaction is calculated and illustrated in real time by the console. This interactive support modernizes board game and launches the era of the connected social game. SquareOne is a “video and playful” device that reinforces ties between generations, surpassing the screen generation by making the digital a driver of sociability.
Franck Botta, CEO of Wizama explains: “By combining board game and video game, SquareOne offers family and friends a way to experiment tons of fun and excitement without the generation gap around technology or having to learn a full rulebook. We provide a multigenerational way to play where everyone can interact, immerse, bond, compete, set challenges or cheat!”
SquareOne: a game not limited to the screen
Through patented technology, SquareOne solves the issue of identifying objects, as well as the gameboard’s physical importance: the traditional board games have been completely integrated into the experience; SquareOne screen is bordered by 26 dedicated slots that can be used by cardboard tiles and other connected toys to build specific playing areas and enlarge the gaming surface.
When placed on the console, cardboard tiles are detected and allow to automatically launch the associated game. Moreover, the console detects every dice roll and sends its value to the console through Bluetooth and NFC, while guiding players to their next move. The dice is completely passive, with no integrated battery and has a low production cost, which suits the needs of dice hungry board gamers.
The console’s brims are made of soft grip material that allows real cardboard, for player’s play zone, to be easily positioned around the console and, depending on the game, offer various gameplay insights and information to the players, such as, where to place their cards. These mixed materials distinguish the connected board game from a tablet to achieve a complete and new stand-alone object, reinforcing the unique mix of two universes: physical and digital.
Intuitive and interactive gameplay
Enhanced with artificial intelligence, the console adapts to the player according to his age and knowledge. Interactive tutorials avoid the reading of long game rules. The tedious tasks are made more comfortable: the counting of the points, the setting up and the running of the games. Games and universes can be changed at any time.
Games can be accessed directly through the board game console, which also enables players to record games, restart a match at any time, and set up profiles. During a match, each player can choose to play in one of the 32 languages available, surpassing intercultural barriers.
A catalogue of new interactive board games fits the emerging hybrid gameplay. Wizama partners with leading board game publishers, videogame studios and videogame schools such as Roberto Fraga, Atypique Studio, Sanuk Games, IIM, Pixel Wizards and Les Gobelins to offer a variety of experiences and the guarantee the release of exciting novelties. Games on release day will include:
Oya Stones: inspired by Snakes and Ladders, the game is played using a dice to advance and cards to attack or defend.
Chromacy: tactical game of conquest. Each player creates a strategy to move, attack opponents to gain the board and gain territory.
Krubera: tactical and chance game. Each player must simultaneously shoot on the blobs to acquire precious stones and win the match.
Cosmo Squabble: 2 vs 2 shooter that works with connected cards and evolves in a spatial and cartoon style universe.
Fistful of Screws: role game taking place in a junkyard where animals are the rulers. Players play these bizarre creatures and explore the junkyard by moving the pawn and using their action card.
19 x 16.62 x 1.22 inches / 482.4 x 422.1 x 31 mm
7 pounds / 3.2 kg
Multi-Touch display TFT-LCD active matrix 19-inch
Wide-viewing angle> 170° Hardless surface Anti-reflective
Computing Hexa-Core ARM
Capacity RAM 2GB Disk 64/128GB
Four speaker audio
Power and battery Built‐in rechargeable via power adapter; passive dice
1 micro USB port
Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n), Bluetooth 4.2 Low Energy and NFC (Near Field Communication) technology
32 languages: English (Australia, UK, U.S.), Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Arabic, Catalan, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Malay, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Slovak, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese
Wizama will be available early summer 2019 at a suggested Retail Price of 499 $. The package includes 4 interactive pawns (blue, green, red, yellow), 54 magic cards, one smart dice, one wireless dice track and an AC power adapter.