Well, this should be fun.

I really like that my address falls earlier in the day in the UPS delivery schedule.

 

Prusa delivery

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Jutting Rock Outcroppings

A few pics of some new terrain pieces I finished up recently. These are based on original models by Kevin Rau and are the first of what I’m planning will be several new terrain pieces created with this style of rock.

If you look closely, you can see that the three pieces are actually all the same original model, just scaled differently on their z axis (in other words, same base size/footprint, but different heights). These were originally a commission piece for a customer. Rather than deciding on just one, he thought all three sizes looked pretty cool and bought a few of each, so I figured I’d follow suit and make all of them available in my shop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Infestation Terrain Preview

It’s been kind of quiet here lately because I’ve pretty much had my head down working on filling orders and designing new terrain pieces. Here are a couple Tyranid-themed pieces (or Zerg-themed, if that’s how you roll) that I’ve been working on. First up is the “Thorn Prime Mini” from Worlds Over Run:

 

Next is an in-house take on the iconic “Spore Tower,” a staple of Tyranid invasions:

Both of these will be available in the shop soon, and there are a bunch of other Worlds Over Run pieces coming as well, which I’ll post as I work on them.

It’s the simple things

This is totally a first world problem.

One of the pain points with King of Tokyo when playing the full game (which is the best way to play it, unless you’re playing with young kids or adults who are complete gaming neophytes) is having the components divided up among three separate boxes, each with a very specific layout for which parts go in which box, and where. This has always been a small irritation for me, particularly when putting the game away, as the process seemed to take longer and be more difficult than it should. A small irritation, but one that slightly mars an otherwise enjoyable gameplay experience.

I’ve owned King of Tokyo and both expansions for several years and have tried several times to come up with a solution to make setup and cleanup simpler and easier. I had found an organizer on Thingiverse a while ago, but I can be pretty dense sometimes. I finally got smart recently and printed it up. It works perfectly, allowing all of the game components to be stored together in the box for the base game, and allowing all types of similar components to be stored in a single compartment.

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Note that the organizer is nearly as deep as the box, so there’s a second layer of dice underneath.

 

I think the jigsaw design may be a bit over-engineered, because even without the interlocking tabs, once placed inside the box, the four parts of the organizer would have fit snugly inside with no room to slide around. Plus, I had a few issues with getting the parts to fit together smoothly (easily solved with a hammer), but this is likely attributable to shrinkage issues and other minor imperfections in the printing process. I also expanded some of the compartments by a millimeter in each dimension to allow a better fit for sleeved cards and to make it easier to put away the dice. Overall, a simple, elegant design that works great!

Old Forest Vignette (plus Ice and Snow version)

This is another new terrain piece finished in the “Old Forest” theme that I’ve been working with recently. Also pictured are the minis for two of the other PCs that I painted for the short-lived D&D campaign I mentioned in a previous post. I’ve been getting a good amount of mileage out of my tree models lately now that I’ve finally started using them.

And here’s the same piece, finished in the “Ice and Snow” theme. I added an additional tree because I thought some more features would be a good idea. I still feel like it could use something else, but I’m not really sure what.

 

Small Stepped Hill – Badlands Theme

I’ve been experimenting with a new style of terrain piece, not to mention getting some more use out of the tree models that I sculpted over two years ago but which I hadn’t started using until recently. This is my version of a “stepped hill,” although I might call them something else if I can think of something flashier.

When making terrain, there’s normally a trade-off between aesthetic quality and playability. Stepped hills, with their relatively large expanses of flat surfaces are typically more abstract and less realistic than hills with a more “dynamic” design, but this also makes it easier to position miniatures on them. I think this design manages to retain the advantages of stepped hills without sacrificing too much in terms of aesthetics.

I painted this piece in the “Badlands” theme, which I’ve really fallen in love with of late since tweaking it by adding the Shadow’s Edge Miniatures grass tufts. It was a minor change, but because it’s such a simple color scheme, I think the little bit of additional color from the green tufts helps it pop.

Small Forest Vignette + Galdanoth

I finished up this scene using the test colors that I previewed a few days ago.

In addition to the new color scheme, there were actually several other things I was testing out with this piece: combining different terrain elements to create a new model; using 3D modeling software to plan out and create the scene; and using Realistic Water to simulate a low area of ground that’s normally dry but which had flooded with a few inches of water due to recent heavy rains.

This is a fairly small piece, but now that I have a “proof of concept” I can easily scale it up or design a new piece using similar elements and do a step-by-step. Below is a comparison of the 3D model to the finished version. It’s hard to see in the screen cap, but I added a small lip to the edge of the base to contain the Realistic Water. I designed the tree armature to provide enough structure to attach clump foliage to represent leaves, but to work without foliage as a dead tree or as part of a winter scene.

3D modelSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

 

The new colors also proved to be just what I was looking for for a basing theme for one of my miniatures (“Galdanoth, Elf Sniper” from Reaper). I had painted this mini a few years ago, and had a mental image of what I wanted to do for a base, but I hadn’t been able create anything that matched what I had been envisioning until now. The decorative base is from CMON’s base Kickstarter from a few years ago. They packed a tremendous amount of detail into these, but I went the quick route and just did a simple paintjob with various flocks and scatter on top to match the rest of the vignette.

 

 

Lastly, there’s one more reason I’m glad to have finally completed Galdanoth: He’s the miniature that my gaming group at the time used to represent our friend Michael’s character in a short-lived D&D campaign back in 2013. Michael tragically passed away that summer before I finished painting this mini, and we abandoned the campaign after his death, but still I think of him every time I see this mini. Michael, I still miss you, man.