Over the last few years, a number of electronic gaming products were under development, such as Microsoft’s Surface (said to be ready to go in 15 months from now, but geared more toward sharing information between your portable appliances and the tabletop):

and Phillips’ Entertaible (now put on hold, indefinitely):

These were touch or scan sensitive tabletops that interacted with objects placed on them with various cool effects.

The topic is now being revisited with a new wave of products that are a generation ahead of the old ones: they’re  modular. Here are two examples:

At the recent TED conference, David Merrill talked about his prototype interactive blocks, called Siftables.

And Frantz Lasorne is in the process of creating something called Augmented Reality Toys:

Augmented Reality Toys (Work in progress) from Frantz Lasorne on Vimeo.