Thursday, January 8, 2015

Big Box Terrain, Part One

The terrain starts off simple. Free CD bases measure about five inches across, and that makes them about one sixth the size of my battlemat.  Perfect.  

Rough Ground

Sand and rocks from the yard, glued and primed.
As mentioned previously, the golden rulebook for this box is Neil Thomas' One Hour Wargame Rules (OHW).  In some eras some unit types cannot enter rough ground.  In some eras some can.  So we're left with a bit of a dilemna.  Do we fill the base with rubble, signifying a no-go area?  Or do we scatter limited terrain (which doesn't look as good but) which allows bases to fit into the area?  What to do, what to do?

Drybrushed white to lighten up the piece.
Paging Doctor Solomon to the baby splitting office!  The compromise is to make pieces with visually interesting terrain, but which include "blank" areas where you can stick a full base in the event some irregular troop does enter the area.  For the purposes of the game, the entire base is considered rough ground, even if the whole base doesn't look it.

Say, that's such a great idea, it might just work for woods, too...

 Wood Base

Here we see two different types of wood bases.  On the left a small light forest that blocks well ordered troops.  On the right a smaller copse that is/will be dense with rocks and prickly bushes and dead falls, and that will block all troops, RAW be damned.
These are both constructed of a simple base (CD on the left, craft circle on the right) to which short lengths of round toothpicks have been super-glued.  I used sticks about 3/5ths of an inch (left) and 2/5ths of an inch.  The nice thing about this trick is that you don't have to be all that precise with the lengths.  The tippy tops of the trunks are going to be hidden by foliage, so any gaps won't show.

Here I've added a few small stones and a sandy base make a more natural floor cover.  And things are looking good.

The woods on the left have a large open area where you can drop a full base of figures to show that they are in the woods.

Fully painted
We could stop right here if we were making terrain for World War One.  But we're not, so next time let's add some leaves and grasses.

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