Monday, July 6, 2009

A Place To Call Our Own

Up until now, the preferred gaming surface of the Smib Thralls has been a glass coffee table with a piece of green felt draped over it. The table is approximately 40" x 48". When we want to play a 48"x48" game, we break out two folding tables, with the 4x4 grid marked out on the felt. For a while now, I have been talking about building some modular gaming boards to play on, but have been delayed by one thing or another.

Today was my final CPA exam for the summer, so I now plan on having a lot of time and mental capacity on my hands. I may even paint a second warjack... But the primary focus of my free time over the next week or so will be the construction of two 2'x4' boards that the Smib Thralls will be able to play on.

Here is a rough sketch of my goal.

The main resource I am using in the design of these boards is a series of articles I found at The designer did 12 articles step-by-step through his own 6'x8' board and I've found them very helpful. He makes a short case for 2'x4', instead of 2'x2', stating that the modeling possibilities are greater with the larger surface and I've come to agree with him. I will have enough foam and felt left over from this board that I'll be able to create another 2'x6' with the purchase of only 1 more piece of MDF. This other piece I'll construct in the future (likely next month) is also the reason I took the design steps in these boards that I have. Many people prefer to have open boards and add terrain, like hills, for more gameplay variety. But we've been playing on a flat surface for a year, so I like the instant difficulties that will arise from these boards. The top board will have a cliff surface running along one edge. This will limit the usability of the board, since it cannot be rotated, but I think it'll be worth it visually. The second board will have a permanent hill in it, but since it can be rotated, the hill can be either in the semi-middle of the board, creating a narrow valley with the cliff face, or rotated out to be in the deployment zone, as seen in the picture, allowing a large open playing surface. Future boards will incorporate a river and a swamp, but that is a difficulty level that I need to work up to. The last interesting terrain feature will be a space in between the Y in the road on the top board. This space will allow for an old aged tree to be used, or a pile of rocks, interchangeably depending on our desire for visibility and LOS.

So, I've done the write up. I'm off to get to work on it outside. I'll try to take pictures as I go along, and not just in the between steps.

1 comment:

bluecardinal said...

You've inspired me to finish my desert terrain modules. I've only been working on the one hill for well over 6 months.

If you want to work on terrain this Saturday, we can do that instead. It might be worth knocking out a few pieces and the playing a small game.