The Geeknson Henry Gaming Table is our second gaming table. It’s a beautifully made table but does so at a costly price point. This type of gaming accessory is most definitely a luxury item. Not everyone needs one, and a gaming table like this is not a minor consideration when deciding to purchase one. We hope this review will help guide you in making the decision if this table is right for you.
When we bought our new house, we decided we wanted to invest in our second gaming table. Our first table is a Jasper Gaming Table from Allplay (formerly BoardGameTables.com) This table is an excellent table for all of the reasons in our previous review. However, for our new space, we wanted to have a signature table that more closely matches the wood finishes and look of the room as a whole.
Why the Geeknson Henry?
This was quite a discussion as we poured over reviews of various gaming tables. Quite honestly, once we settled on Geeknson the decision was between their Denis table and the Henry. The Denis seemed to much more closely resemble our current Jasper gaming table. Sure, it was going to be more solidly built and have some accessory functionality that we don’t have with the Jasper. Yet, visually it looked very similar.
On the contrary, the Henry has what we feel is a more elegant look that is fitting for a table that we intend to be the centerpiece of our gaming space. This table distinctly pulls this feat off, really looking regal in its space. I especially love the look of the table with the toppers on. Visually, this table is quite stunning.
We did select the 120×200 cm table size (approx 38.5×70 inch play space), which is the larger version of this table. We also went with the standard 82 cm (approx. 32 inches) height. Our table is made of Ash in the G-106 Walnut stain with the standard varnish.
The Ordering Process
Due to the fact that the ordering process is much different for this table, I think it’s worth mentioning it. This isn’t one of their crowdfunded tables, so I can’t speak for how that process may be different. We ordered this directly via their website. When you do that, you don’t actually submit the order, but rather are requesting a quote.
A wonderful sales assistant by the name of Terry followed up on our inquiry with several questions. Considering Geeknson is a UK-based company, this process of ordering was going to be via email and electronic means. Terry’s knowledge of the product and the options was exceptional. He provided us options to purchase previously used demo tables or even to consider a Denis. I cannot say enough about how helpful Terry was in the process of deciding which options and which table was right for us.
Once the order was complete, we had to do a deposit on the table. This is where things fall down in my opinion. Geeknson’s preferred way to handle funds is via wire transfer and if you have ever done an International wire transfer of funds into a foreign bank into a foreign currency then you probably understand the literal hassle this process was. After some back and forth, they did present an option for us to at least use our credit card, but even this wasn’t straightforward and simple. Be prepared that if you decide on a Geeknson table the process to pay for it is going to be a hassle.
The entire time from the order to when the table was delivered was roughly five and a half months. Add in some time to discuss customization options and accessories via email back and forth was about another two weeks.
The Gaming Surface
When it comes to gaming surface the Henry has a fabulous gaming surface with the most options in a gaming table (I believe) on the market. What I mean by that, is built into the table that you receive. On our table, we have the standard inset and depth that comes with the Henry. The cloth fabric and padding underneath it is very nice. I have had no issues picking up cards or game components from the surface.
Yet there is an additional function with the inset play area that is pretty standard on Geeknson tables. You can pull the board that the cloth mat is attached to out using the little nylon loops. On ours, due to the larger size of the play area, it’s a two-person job to pull out this board. Once removed, you discover a clear piece of plexiglass on top of another board. This plexiglass can be picked up with the included suction cup so that you can put a map or game components underneath it. This is particularly useful for RPG games that I run. I can put my grid map underneath the playing surface, see it, and draw and write with my wet-erase markers as needed to quickly sketch a dungeon map.
Like any gaming table, there are numerous available accessories. We opted to pick up many of the add-ons to this table. The Henry, and other Geeknson tables, use a grove around the exterior of the table that can accept the “L” shaped end of the accessories. Accessories for any Geeknson table should be able to be used on any other table they make. The only spots on the Henry where these groves don’t exist are where the drawers are on the two narrow ends of the table.
We added the obligatory cup holders. These are exceptional. Yes, there is the standard removable metal cup. Inside that cup holder though is a custom-cut piece of cork that not only stabilizes your glass or beverage but also absorbs moisture and condensation. This will prevent long-term damage to those cup holders keeping them nice for much, much longer!
Wine Glass Holder
As we get older we drink more wine. As such, we wanted to add a few wine glass holders to be able to use. These are really nice solid wood components. I don’t like how far the stem of the wine glass sits into the legroom of the table. You need to take care with the wine glass holders when holding a wine glass or you are likely going to bump the stem with a knee or leg while gaming. When using the wine glass holders we keep them slotted in near the table legs where it is least likely we are going to bump and break a wine glass.
Counter Holder, Wooden Bins, and the Player Desks
We love the look of a clean gaming table so we picked up the counter holders and wooden bins. The quality of the construction of these is superb. These attach via the same grooved track around the exterior of the table. Since they sit outside of the table and at the height of the Henry I feel like sitting a bit too far away from the gaming area. This makes it a reach to grab anything I put into the component holders.
Now, when I set the table up for RPG games all of a sudden these become invaluable. The players can use these for additional storage of pens, dice, and other bits that they bring to the table. Players on the long table edges are also then using the Player Desks. These are roughly 12×8-inch wooden boards that slot into the groove. This really sets up those players to have everything they really need to play on the outside of the playing area and really compliments the component holders sitting right next to those player desks!
The Card Holder
This is actually a component built into the table. There is a small grove that goes around the entirety of the interior of the gaming table. Since it’s the entire edge, you can really stick any number of cards into this groove you would want. Like a number of cardholders built into these tables, it’s still not perfect to prevent other players on the same tableside from being able to see our cards, but I find it better than many since players tend to sit closer to the table.
One detractor to using the cardholder is due to the way the inset(s) sit into the table, basically floating on their supports, there is a small 1/16th approximate gap that’s formed around the edge of the play space. This is perfect for cards to slide right through to the floor. Not to mention the occasional board game component that slips through that crack. There is a certain annoyance factor here that we wanted to make sure was pointed out.
The Table Toppers and Leaf Box
Unlike some other tables, the toppers are included as a standard part of this table. The toppers are one of my favorite things about this table. They run the width of the table, which means to put all of them on and off they are smaller and lighter than other tables. Suzanne loves this fact about them as she can easily switch this table from inserts installed to uninstalled on her own!
Each topper has a grove with a rubber gasket that can accept the next topper as it slots onto the table. This rubber gasket helps create a seal between the toppers as they are pressed together. This should help any fluids spilled on the topper when fully installed to not go through to the playing surface. In addition, the card rail also has small holes drilled into it near the table’s legs that will allow any spilled fluids to drain to the floor when the toppers are installed. I didn’t test this and take Geeknson’s word for it.
What isn’t included with the base table is a way to store your table toppers. For an extra fee, you can add the Leaf Box which is made out of the same wood and cloth as your table. This box isn’t terribly tall or large, but it seems necessary if you plan to keep the toppers off the table for any amount of time. The toppers in the Leaf Box are not particularly attractive and I would recommend that you have a closet or similar near to your table that you store them in there rather than next to the table. Unfortunately, I am not that lucky.
Pros and Cons of the Henry
Visually, the table is stunning. Compared to any other table I have owned, this table is more solid and stable (and heavy). It’s also the most expensive piece of furniture that we own. I absolutely adore all of the component trays and I find that I am using the Player Desks far more than I ever thought I would.
I have to mention the table height. This table is close to 32 inches tall. The standard table height for your dining room tables is 30 inches. You would not think that 2 inches would make that much of a difference, but it’s actually a pretty big deal. People that experience this for the first time with this table at game night tend to initially be thrown off and have expressed some negative feedback regarding it. Indeed, I wasn’t sure about it myself when I first sat at the table. After having played a few games though, I noticed that my back did not hurt as it did after a day of playing games. The table being taller forces me to sit up straighter and slouch less.
The table we have has two drawers. The drawer that we have positioned on the short end near the wall folds up to become a bookstand and an additional place to sit books and materials. This is a neat feature, and I thought I would love to use this for GMing. The problem for me is that it isn’t wide enough (only the width of the drawer) so I can’t put out all of my DM stuff. I think if I skipped using as many miniatures, my computer, and a couple of other things that this would work perfectly. We haven’t really found a use for it for board games yet, but that day may be coming.
Is this Table Right for You?
That’s a challenging question and I can’t answer that for you. We love our Henry, but if you are trying to decide between the Henry or the Denis from Geeknson I would steer you toward the Denis. That doesn’t mean we regret our purchase. Quite the contrary, we love playing games at the Henry. The Denis is definitely what most people really think of as a gaming table though and has most of the features I described above.
I should mention delivery to the US. Since this table is sold and manufactured overseas Geeknson actually installs the table with their own employees in your home where you want it. No having to deal with having to help unload the table, carrying the table into the home, or finding the right tool to attach the widget to the winding. Unfortunately, they leave you with the giant box and packaging the table is carefully packed in. Expect your trash bins to be filled for the next few weeks with cardboard and packaging materials!
Another thing I need to mention as I wrap this table review up is the price. The Henry, or the Denis, are not inexpensive tables. By the time we were done with add-ons, finishes, and shipping (over $1000 alone) we wrapped up a bill of well over $9000 USD. This definitely puts this table in the price point area that you may want to consider The Prophecy from Wyrmwood or The Dresden from Bandpass.
If you have any questions we are always happy to answer them. Just tag us on social media or send us an email.
For more from WiscoDice, check out these great articles:
- Strong Tower Gaming Convention Recap and Review
- Kickstart Monday: Body of Evidence: The Murder Mystery Autopsy Game and Fromage
- Kickstart Monday: Lands of the Mesozoic and Everdell Cozy Critter Blankets
- The Long Halloween 2023 – A Batman Miniature Game Tournament
- Kickstart Monday: Midhalla and Farms Race