Today's review is a little different. It's not a game, but if you play games (and we assume you do!), then you should definitely pay attention to this one. It's the Quiver Gaming Mat, and it's awesome.
So what are they like? Well first, there's a grippy rubber back that really holds onto the table. And on the front is a polyester material, with a nap texture, that keeps tiles in place, lifts cards slightly so you can grab them more easily, and dampens dice rolls. And the mat rolls up into a lightweight and portable package.
The mats come in various sizes, including 36" x 36", 36" x 48", and 40" x 58". The basic colors are grey, green, and orange. There's a polygonal pattern, but it's not distracting.
Firestone--When the mat first came I was surprised it was so thin--I expected a thicker, spongier material. But the more I used it, the more I realized it was the perfect thickness. If it was that thicker material, it would be heavier and more unwieldy--and its portability is one of my favorite things about the mat! It rolls up easily and tightly, and is light enough to cart from table to table in the house.
Jeremiah-- Yeah, I also imagined the spongy rubbery material when I hear the word "play mat," and fully expected that. The problem with a spongy, thick material is exactly what Firestone said, but also that they're not nearly as durable. They tear fairly easily, and take dings and begin to disintegrate. Quiver's mat--while only time will tell--appears to be nearly bullet proof. The rubber bottom is super thick and heavy-duty. I feel like we're discussing aeronautics, but the top provides a great balance of lift and drag, cards deal out nicely but there's enough drag for them to not fly wildly off the table, and enough lift to make them super easy to pick up. It's a win-win!
Firestone--My kids LOVE this mat. Ever since I got it, when I try to play a game without it, they want to know why we're not using the mat! (To illustrate how light the mat is, after one of these discussions, my 6-year-old went downstairs, rolled up the mat, and brought it upstairs by himself.)
Jeremiah-- Yeah. There's really not many reasons I can think of NOT to use the mat. I've played on some pretty ragged surfaces in my day, rough wood tables, tacky tablecloths, the list goes on. On the other side I've played on tables that put the fear of God into me as we tried not to chip, or ding it up with game pieces, dice rolls, etc. These mats take care of all of that!
Firestone--I'm SUPER excited about the space mat. I've almost bought some fabric as a "mat" but I was never excited about it. I just wanted a space mat for my game! But this mat is perfect for that, and I really like the artwork on it.
Jeremiah's Final Verdict-- I often play on less-than-ideal tables for gaming; some are okay and some are not... This mat creates a better and more consistent gaming experience wherever you play, and whether you're laying tiles, dealing cards, rolling dice, or moving miniatures, there isn't a game that won't be improved by this mat!
Firestone's Final Verdict--I really like this mat. It's does everything I want a gaming mat to do. I had never really thought about getting a gaming mat before, but now I can't imagine playing without it. Big thumbs up from me.
Quiver Gaming Gear launched a Kickstarter this morning for these gaming mats, so head on over there and check it out.
Quiver Gaming Gear provided us with review copies of the mat. This in no way affected our opinions on it.