I really like those resin coffee tables with the blue water effect, they’re very striking. Thought it would be cool to make a world map version, but given how complicated it would be to make such a thing, I started thinking about a simple way to execute the idea: blue glass.
I’m surprised no one has done this yet, at least from what I could find online. So I thought I’d post a concept or two here.
Basically a pane of blue-tinted glass with a map affixed to it (can be vinyl stickers or printed on a clear film), with another pane of clear glass on top to protect it all.
It does look good if you have a light-colored floor (top image), but another way to go is make an enclosed coffee table with a white backdrop beneath the blue glass:
Went with RISK here but any map with a lot of water will look good. Westeros, Azeroth, Elder Scrolls, Los Santos, Last Airbender, and so on. RISK would make for a nice gaming table as well.
This would be a lot easier to execute than the resin approach. Plus these glass tables would be a lot lighter in weight compared to a resin coffee table.
If you want to be extra-fancy you could illuminate this with a light box underneath.