While the iPad is basically a device intended for use by one person at a time, the tablet has also proved suitable for multiplayer apps. In some cases, however, its 9.7-inch display is certainly too small to replace a larger, traditional game board and besides, many users prefer playing with physical pieces on a physical board. Dutch-based company Identity Games is seeking the middle ground with GameChanger - an interactive electronic board that merges the old and the new to bring family gaming to the iPad.
To start the game, the iPad needs to be placed inside the GameChanger's cradle which connects it to the board. Players then place the appropriate game skins on the board and run a corresponding application on the iPad. Utilizing 48 pressure-sensitive fields on the board, iPad's screen changes according to what happens during the game. There are four multi-game playing pieces that interact with the game, while everything else is displayed on the screen.
At the moment, GameChanger is offered with two games: Animal Mania and Magic Schoolbus. It's suitable for two to four players of ages six and up and both games combine entertainment and education aspects according to Identity.
GameChanger's dimensions, 25 x 11 x 1 in (63.5 x 28 x 2.5 cm), should be sufficient for a comfortable family gaming. Compatible with iPad and iPad 2, the board is available for purchase via Apple Store and Amazon.com at a price of US$79.95.