Auto Magic Detailing products - Castle Products

Auto Magic Detailing products

Ralph Clark from Ingression Point asked me if I’d be up for reviewing a pre-release set of his company’s dry-erase Automagic Tiles, which are currently being funded through Kickstarter. I’m a fan of dry-erase tiles for tactical mapping, so I said yes; a package of tiles arrived a few days later.

This review is based on pre-release tiles that might differ from the finished product.

What has come before

It’s impossible for me to review Automagic Tiles outside of the context of two similar products that are no longer on the market: Tact-Tiles and Battlegraph Dry Erase Boards (aka Battle Boards). I reviewed Tact-Tiles back in 2006 and Phil reviewed Battle Boards back in 2009. (I also interviewed the creator of Battle Boards in 2009.)

The basic concept behind all three products is similar: dry-erase map tiles with puzzle-fit edges that enable you to quickly draw a map, add tiles to it as the PCs move around, and remove tiles to reuse them where they’re needed most. You also have the option of pre-drawing your maps, which requires careful tile stacking or some sort of non-absorbent material between the tiles. Tact-Tiles were 10″x10″, Battle Boards were 11″x11″.

Battle Boards were basically a successor to Tact-Tiles, which were popular but for some reason didn’t stay on the market for all that long. They were similar in size, but instead of being gray with raised (relief) brown grid lines they were white with grooved grid lines. I actually didn’t know Battle Boards had ceased production until I was doing my homework for this review and got a database error from their website; if my assumption is incorrect, then they might still be around.

This review isn’t a comparison of these three tile options. Given that two of them are out of “print, ” that doesn’t seem like it would be too useful. But the context is important, and you might have experience with one or both predecessor products, so I wanted to establish that baseline up front.

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