Tuesday, 31 January 2017

More Floor Plans Part 2

The finished corridor, with nasty occupants (both Reaper Bones).
Here's the finished piece I started yesterday.  The edges have been covered with a strip of thin black card and hot glued in place.

I really like the finished product.  

We got to try some of them out last night (without the cladding) and we agreed they were a step up from the original efforts.  You may note that there are a few wisps of hot glue around the edge.  I will either paint over them or trim them, or a combination.

If I were going to make even better floor plans like this I would seek out thicker foam, but the thin stuff is cheap and easy to find.

Monday, 30 January 2017

More Floor Plans

A long while back I showed my version of Heroic Map's floor plans.
I've recently been making many more of these, and I have tweaked the technique, both for speed and, I think, to give a better result.
I wanted to avoid the fiddly cutting out around the pillars in these particular sets, and also make them look better by covering up the corrugated card along the edges.  The edges were simple, I borrowed Wyloch's system of hot gluing edge strip to the sides.  To get around the fiddly cutting out I decided to use a material for the walls that was easier to cut, and apply a lot of the detail, such as the pillars, separately.  A bit of searching around later and I found that craft foam stuff rather like mousemats.  The brand I bought is called Funky Foam and comes in around A 3 sheets for £1.  I bought black so that it already gives a good colour for the walls.  For the pillars I simply used an old cork borer of the right diameter (easily bought on eBay) to cut circles for the pillars.
O.K. enough background, now the step by step.

The materials and tools (except the cork borer, which was just off the picture, curses)

Cut all the wall thickness off the printed floor plans.  I wanted a piece like a lopsided 'H'.

Two sheets of single ply corrugated cardboard, with the corrugations running at 90 degrees to each other (this strengthens the floor plans, and reduces the chance of warping, its the same theory as plywood).  the card was cut to fit the floor plans, with a 1/4 inch border for the walls.
Glue together with tacky glue and allow to dry, preferably with a weight on top.

Meanwhile, cut 1/4 inch strips of the craft foam for the walls.

Bore out enough circles of craft foam for the pillars.  Remember when choosing your cork borer its the inside diameter of the hole that matters.

Glue the floor plan to the cardboard, glue stick is sufficient (and reduces the chance of warping).  Add the foam strips for the outside walls.

Cut out segments for the pillars, often these can be used for small pillars in inner corners.

I added two rectangles of foam to complete the walls.

Not quite finished, there's still the edge strip to add.
Here it is, finished.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Homemade GM's Screen

I'm showing something a bit different this week, my 'cheap and easy' homemade DM's (or GM's) screen.
The body of the screen is two A4 ring binders.  Find the thick card ones rather than the plastic coated ones, I got two for 75p each at Wilkinsons, shop around.
Choose a colour you like, there will be a thin margin of it showing around each panel.  Two binders gives you enough material for a four panel screen, and the card is nice and tough.
You also need gaffer tape of an appropriate colour to match or contrast the board colour, A4 transparent pockets (two per panel for a double sided screen) and double sided tape (clear if you can find it).  A4 card is also useful to help apply the pockets smoothly and easily.

Cut each binder into three along the spine, this gives you the four panels.  The card is thick, so several gentle cuts rather than trying to sever it in one (unless you have a +5 craft knife of sharpness).  Cut just beyond the fold, as below.

Take two boards to make the centre panels.  I found it useful to line the boards up on the lines on my cutting mat, it makes the whole thing a lot easier.  I made my screen landscape, but if you prefer portrait, just set the panels vertically, I'm sure you can work it out.

With the outside of the panels upper most (they usually have a shiny and a dull side, choose which you want facing you or the players) butt them together and fasten with gaffer tape.  Smooth the tape for a good join, then trim the edges.

Turn the constuction over and fold together.

Apply gaffer (duct) tape to one board.

Then run it round the fold and smooth over the other board.

And trim.

The outer panels are attached the same way, but the folds, or hinges, work the other way so you can fold it up. So apply the tape to the inside of the screen first.

Once you've finished with the gaffer tape it should look like this; the world's quietest concertina.

Take one of the A4 pockets.

Trim off the stip with the holes in it, being careful to cut the outside of the seam that holds it together.

Stuff card into the pocket (pink to show up the tape) and apply two strips of double sided tape.

Stick to one of the boards.  I lined the non seamed edge up with the edge of the inner lining of paper on the board, but you will find where you want it yourself.  I chose the freshly cut edge to be the top of the screen, so it doesn't fray with wear against the tabletop.  The card inside the pocket makes it much easier to get the pocket on straight and smooth.

Continue to apply pockets to complete the screen (this is the prototype, and not as neat as the one I now use).

There are plenty of inserts available online, just choose what is useful for you.  For the outside, simply print of nice artwork of photos.  I use maps of the regions where the adventurers are exploring, changes as necessary.

I hope this is useful, any questions, just ask.
Oh, if you're interested, the whole lot came in at under £2.50.

Friday, 13 January 2017

Rebels Are We, Born To Be Free

As promised, my Rebs faction for Deadzone.
Group Shot, watch out for the commander on the high ground with her long rifle.

The Rebs leader, a nice mini in a nice pose.  I'd like to find the variant they did with a sniper rifle.

Yndij Sergeant.  This is a converted Dreadball Extreme mini

Yndij group shot.  I thought of these as 'lion men' and chose colours accordingly.

Human Rebels.  There are only two variants so far, but a bit of arm swapping gave me two more.  One of them has rather long arms, but maybe his grandmother was Bassilian?

Grogan, Nice minis, but I'd like a bit of variety other than the weapon.  There should be another Grogan in the Star Saga stuff sometime late this year.

Sorak with blaster and Eddek, one of the Mercs.  

My favourite, the Teraton.  I went with the idea of Ceremonial blades and thought of ceremonial armour, so she is wearing lots of expensive looking metals.

Survey drone awaiting proper basing.

I have had mixed fortunes with them so far.  Equipping the commander with a Sniper Rifle is a must if points allow, otherwise go for a Holo sight.  I haven't tried the Yndij sergeant yet, but his ability looks fun.  I had dismissed the survey drone as pretty useless, but in my first game with it, it managed to grab important objectives twice, and helped my win, so I think one in the place of a trooper is good, not happy about it taking up a specialist slot though.
As for tactics, use the commander's abilities as much as possible, but be aware that if you are using Always Short, you will pick p the booby trap when you do.  I'm still struggling to get the best out of the Teraton, but its such a nice mini I don't like to leave her at home.  I suspect some combination of grenades to knock opponents prone, followed by a teleport into melee, but I'm still experimenting.

painting wise they were all pretty straight forward.  They all have green armour plates, largely as a fashion statement, as it gives no protection in the game.  I spent ages edge highlighting it, but after varnishing you can hardly tell.  Grrr.  Clothing is a combination of light and dark grey and light and dark brown, but no actual uniform.  The Yndij, as I said above, were painted to look like lions, so golden fur/skin, with darker manes.  Other aliens were pretty much what I grabbed out of the paint box, but I put darker blotches on the Grogan around the head, as they remind me of B5s Narn.  The Sphyr is so much like a Zora that he wa lucky not to have his fish tail glued to the back of his head.  Next time maybe.

I've still got more to add, the medic, the Zee and the Kraw, and perhaps a little bit of mechanical help, plus additional poses of some of the aliens above.
I also got the Tiger Corps from Mars Attacks fro Christmas (thanks T'Other One) which I will paint up as another Rebs team, but that's more of a long term project.

(And a no-prize if you can identify the title quote, let me know in the comments section).

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Planning The Future

So, not a lot from me recently, well I've been busy, vanquishing personal demons and generally sorting stuff out.
I have looked back at this blog and it seems to me the first year was much better than the second.  If I am to continue I want to go back to that style.  that said, if there's anyone out there that particularly wants to see anything, please leave a comment.

Games wise I received Warpath just in time for Christmas (or a week early for Hogswatch).  I've played quite a bit of Deadzone, and loved the new version, and more D&D.

last year's monthly themes didn't work too well.  The idea was good, but a month didn;t give me long enough to really finish a project, and other stuff kept on popping up ( I need a complete new set of Dungeon tiles for Monday, help).  This year I am going to try and 'chunk' new projects, and also plan when I do stuff.  First up is finish off a couple of DZ forces.
I have a few Enforces in various stages of completeness, but I want a good sized force to play through the Nexus Psi campaign.  I am playing against T'Other One (well, there are zombies...) and he royally trashed me in the first game.  It's a difficult game for the Enforcers I feel, but I'll get my revenge in the second game.
I have also got a fair few Rebs painted.  They were always the force that appealed most to me, but in first edition they were very hard to play well.  They are much better in the new edition, and I have worked out a short narrative campaign for them against Merlin's Enforcers.  I have enough painted up, but I'd like to finish them, as there are some options I haven't covered.  I'll get pics of them up soon.
The final DZ target is terrain.  I've built a bit more, including a landing pad, very useful, if a bit big on a DZ mat.  Now I need to get some paint on them, or convince everyone that they come in grey.