Archive for February, 2008

Feb 29

Covering Foam Surface Tutorial

Mordheim Construction,Terrain Tips
Author: Ashton Sanders

As promised, here’s a little tutorial of how I used Spackle to cover Styrofoam and packing foam surface.

The Problem: If you have ever made anything out of the Styrofoam that comes packed around store-bought products (or seen it for that matter), you probably have noticed that the surface is definitely not smooth. Since it was made with little, round foam bubbles, the surface has lots of little bumps and gaps. If you are unfamiliar with this surface, you probably won’t need to read this tutorial. Here is a picture of Styrofoam with a base paint of black so you can see the surface:

Foam Surface Read the Rest of the Post >

Feb 28

Painting Styrofoam

Dice Tower,Mordheim Buildings,Terrain Tips
Author: Ashton Sanders

As you may have noticed, my dice tower (and most of my buildings so far) are constructed mostly of packing foam (Styrofoam). As you can see in this picture, the foam bubbles and small holes in Styrofoam is not really a desired look for model building, so I have gone on a quest to find the best way to hide the Styrofoam texture. Here’s a picture of my Dice Tower Wall after I painted the Styrofoam, and before I filled in the Styrofoam holes:

Click on any of these image for an even larger view.

Painted Styrofoam

If you put 3-5 coats of acrylic paint on Styrofoam, it will eventually cover up these holes. Another tactic I’ve used is to spread Elmer’s Glue or PVA Glue (White Glue) over the surface of your building. Or you can mix in the previously mentioned white glue into the paint before painting the Styrofoam or foam. All of these create a very smooth and flat surface on your foam, which is nice but not realistic.

I happened to have a small tub of “light-weight” Spackle hanging out in my closet, so I spread it over the surface of my building. In this next picture you can see how the Spackle automatically filled in the Foam holes, surrounded the Styrofoam bubbles and filled in the cracks. I accidentally painted this building black before putting on the Spackle, but in the end has helped a lot for these pictures.

This next picture shows the thin layer of Spackle I spread on this foam dice tower building. I tried my best to thin out the Spackle and create a nice, smooth surface over the foam. In retrospect, I would definitely recommend a thicker layer of Spackle. The extra Spackle will add more texture to your building and cover the foam better.

Painted Styrofoam

As you can see in this final picture, the layer of Spackle is too thin and shows some of the foam bumbles. I’ll be adding another layer of Spackle for texture and to cover the Styrofoam bubbles.

Painted Styrofoam

I’ll be putting together a Tutorial for Covering Styrofoam and Foam in the next couple days!


Feb 24

Mordheim Interest in Montana?

Dice Tower,Random Bin
Author: Ashton Sanders

Finally I have found someone in Montana interested in playing Mordheim!

My neighbors came over for dinner yesterday, and they brought their son. He brought over his Pokemon cards, and we “battled” with an extremely simplified, home-made set of rules. I took out one Orc Warrior and a Rat, and faced them in front of each other and told him the basic rules. I explained the game as we went, and told him what he need to roll each time.

To say the least, he fell in love. We did combat mini-games with Mordheim rules (starting 8 inches apart) 5-6 times.

We used my Mordheim Dice Tower the entire night, and since we were just playing on my work bench, it ended up being the most useful thing of the night. We only rarely had to find dropped dice (if we missed the entrance), and we didn’t have to get a huge space to roll. It also doubled as testing for my dice tower. I found one little bug where a dice could get stuck 1 in a 1000 rolls. But hey, at least I know before I’ve added the roof!

So maybe one of these days, I’ll actually play the game of Mordheim =) *knocks on wood*
-Ashton Sanders

Feb 23

Mad Scientist Terrain

Random Bin
Author: Ashton Sanders

There is a man by the name of “Froggy the Great” (on Terragenesis) who has been making a series of terrain models/pieces for his Mad Scientist. I enjoy them so much, I thought I’d share them with you. Here’s a link to see all of the pieces that go in Froggy’s Mad Scientist’s lab.

I love how every piece of terrain he creates has a name and function (and usually a humorous quote). He’s got quite the imagination. It’s times like these that I wish Mordheim was futuristic. =)

Ashton Sanders

Feb 21

Dice Tower Cont.

Dice Tower,Mordheim Buildings
Author: Ashton Sanders

The next step in my unorganized shamble of a plan, was to paint all of the ramps black along with the inside of the building. That way I won’t have a lot of trouble painting the inside after I glue it all together. Unfortunately, I mixed up way too much paint (I was mixing water with black to insure the black paint go into the crevices.) So instead of wasting the perfectly good, watered-down black paint, I painted as much as I could, and glued it together all at the same time.

I also glued my now black dice tower to a section of thick card I got from the back of a picture frame. This “base” will act to hold the dice catcher in place, connected to the dice tower. Here’s a picture:

Mordheim Dice Tower
Here’s a close up picture of the Dice Catcher in progress:
Mordheim Dice Tower

Next I will conquer the “Styrofoam Texture” on the side of my Dice Tower!

Stay Tooned,
-Ashton Sanders

Feb 19

Mordheim Dice Tower

Dice Tower,Mordheim Buildings
Author: Ashton Sanders

I’ve run into some trouble with dice “sticking” in the dice tower. This only really occurs when I roll a lot of dice at once (like 7+), and fortunately for me, Mordheim doesn’t usually require that many dice being rolled at a time. Even when that many dice are rolled, it only gets stuck 1-3% of the time. I’ve tried everything I could think of to handle the problem so I’ve accepted that it will happen sometimes. I’m okay with that.

Here’s the pictures of the new tower:

Mordheim Dice Tower
Mordheim Dice Tower
Mordheim Dice Tower

I played a good game of Star Wars Risk using the dice tower, and it didn’t go to favorably for me. I rolled about 20 battles through the dice tower and lost 17 of them. Hopefully it will be happier once I’m done putting it together. =)

-Ashton Sanders

Feb 17

Mordheim Dice Tower In Progress

Dice Tower,Mordheim Buildings
Author: Ashton Sanders

I’ve been working a lot on my Mordheim dice tower. Here’s some pictures of the progress:

Dice Tower Start Read the Rest of the Post >

Feb 15

What is a Dice Tower?

Dice Tower,Mordheim Buildings
Author: Ashton Sanders

As requested by TRoss on my last post, here’s my definition of a dice tower:

A dice tower is a tower that you throw dice into the top, it gets bounced around inside, and then is spit out the bottom into a contained area. This keeps the dice in a contained area, so dice aren’t flying across the table, hitting models, or getting lost. This also prevents dice from landing askew on random sections of your board. This is especially useful for games like Risk where you don’t have a lot of space to roll the dice and you usually end up hitting and disrupting the game with your dice.

Here’s some links to some example dice towers I came across:

Here is a generic dice tower:

Dice Tower

Here is a Great example of a Dice Tower that doubles as terrain:

Dice Tower Terrain
Click for Details

So I’m going to try to create a dice tower that looks like a normal building, and try to hide the fact that it’s a dice tower =) We’ll see how it goes.


Feb 14

Next Competition

Dice Tower,Mordheim Buildings
Author: Ashton Sanders

I know I really shouldn’t enter another Terrain competition, but I couldn’t help myself.

Because I won the last competition, I got to choose the rules for this one. I decided to do a “Dual Function” competition. Where every entry had to be a terrain piece that doubled as something else (like a jewelry box or book end).

And I’ve been wanting to do a dice tower building for a long time (almost 3 weeks…), and this is a perfect chance to do it. So here are my first sketches and thoughts for my Mordheim Building that doubles as a dice tower:

Mordheim Building and Dice Tower

More to come as this develops =)


Feb 9

Terrain Competition Victory!

Collapsed Tower,General
Author: Ashton Sanders

That’s right! The Terrain Gods have smiled down upon me with their ever-loving rays of light and given me a victory in my first terrain competition!

This is now my most highly decorated Mordheim terrain piece. =] lol
Collapsed Mordheim Tower - Front

Here were the results from the poll:
Ashton’s Tower Destroyed by Comet 44% [ 26 ]
Ghetti’s Crash and fallen telephone pole 18% [ 11 ]
Caleb’s Crushed Crapper 10% [ 6 ]
nealcrankshaw’s Fallen Warhound 8% [ 5 ]
Dragonflies7033’s Toppled AT-AT 5% [ 3 ]
jedion357’s Camping with 3 Ladies 3% [ 2 ]
Kishkumen’s Fallen Light Pole 3% [ 2 ]
Maenoferren’s Maen’s fallen over too 1% [ 1 ]
Jedion357’s Jersey Barriers 1% [ 1 ]
Armoury-Terrain’s slag piles 1% [ 1 ]
NetTerrain´s toppled statue 0% [ 0 ]

Total Votes : 58

I’m a huge fan of TerraGenesis and these competitions. I think they’re a fantastic Idea. Props to all who entered. I am very glad to be a part of it.

-Ashton Sanders

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