Laser cutting is a great tool for prototyping and getting things made fast. Laser cutters can cut through many different materials of different thicknesses and can also be used to etch and engrave many surfaces. Want a custom pattern on the back of your phone? Find a local laser engraver. A lot of makerspaces and community colleges have one available for public use.
A laser cutter makes use of a high power laser to melt, burn or vaporize material. Sometimes they are coupled with an air jet to blow away material. Laser cutters can cut through plastics, paper, wood and even metal. Some plastics are forbidden like PVC and vinyl because the cutting process may release some toxic gasses.
The benefit of using a laser cutter over a mechanical cutter is that a laser doesn’t wear down, is extremely precise and won’t warp the material due to mechanical shear. They are also very quick and straightforward to use. My generation 4 board tiles (pictures below) were made in a matter of 15 minutes.