Monday, December 21, 2015

Review: Gamemat.eu G-Mats

In recent posts, you may or may not have noticed some new gaming mats appearing on our tables. I recently acquired three G-Mats from Gamemat.eu, and after having played a few games on them, wanted to write up a review.

Mayhem Square
By now, the idea of a neoprene gaming mat is, I think, pretty well known. Having two of the early entries into the field, the FAT mats, I was able to do a side-by-side comparison on the mats.

First off, quality and durability. If you know FAT mats, you can expect the same thing from the G-Mats. They are of similar thickness, made from the same mouse-pad material. As a test, I crumpled one of the mats in a ball and left it tucked in between a couch and a bookcase for two weeks. After that I pulled it out and it instantly laid flat, no creases, rolling, or anything.

Designs: The three mats I got were a 4x4 Space 1, 6x4 Mayhem Square, and 6x4 Snow Storm. The Space Mat wasn't quite as bright as I thought it might be, but still a very cool design and great for Armada or other space games.

Space 1 Mat
 The Snow Storm mat is very cool, with some sweet designs, but suffers a little bit from the theme being a little monochromatic. I don't think it actually was, but the white and grey scheme makes for a washed out feeling, that doesn't pop. That said, paired with snow themed terrain, I think it would look a lot better, I just don't have any.

Snow Storm Mat
The Mayhem Square might be my favorite mat. It overcomes the somewhat monochrome theme with copious blood splatters in a few areas. It also has the benefit of being laid out with 12"x12" squares that make Dawn of War and Hammer and Anvil deployments a breeze. This gives a fun and easy alternative to the city maps using streets to mark deployment zones.

Price: This is where the G-Mats have a concrete lead, even with International Shipping. For the 6x4 mats, a single mat is about $88 shipped. Adding mats drives that down, making the value even better if you order several, or with a group; two mats are $160 shipped, or $80 a piece, and three are $230, or just over $76 a piece.

Gameplay: Again, just like other neoprene gaming mats, these mats are great for rolling dice on and sliding models. Now that I have several of these mats I couldn't imagine going back to playing on textured plywood or felt mats.

Overall, I'm really happy with the quality of these mats and they provide a great option for adding theme and a great playing surface to your gaming table. Gamemat.eu have a great selection of mats at a good value (even with international shipping!). I'm definitely looking into adding one or two more to my collection, like one of the 3x3 mats for Malifaux. If you're considering a gaming mat, you'd do yourself a disservice to not check out what G-Mats are available that would fit what you're looking for because there are a lot of very cool designs available, with new ones being added all the time it seems.