I’m only doing two terrains for the Gencon Fourthcore Deathmatch this year. The first one can be found here.
This second one is actually a reimagining of a map I did for last year’s Gencon event. (For the record, I didn’t do the reimagining, I’m just the terrain guy.) The first Citadel was much bigger, and had less “interest” than this one. This revised version isn’t symmetrical, and has lots of movement complications – difficult terrain, lava river, varying heights. I actually played on this map a month or so ago, and it was quite fun. I think the Gencon contestants are going to enjoy it. Ok, on to the pictures (because I know that’s why you’re really here).
First, here’s the map I was working off: (as always, click any picture for bigger)
So, we’ve got three terrain features – an onager, a ballista, and a cauldron. Plus the lava, but we went over that last week. There is also a disparity between the towers that has to be accounted for – two of the towers are 10 feet tall, and two are 20 feet tall. In fact, that was one of my bigger obstacles – how does one make a wall around a fort whose corner towers have differing heights? The answer is, you don’t. Sort of. Looking at the map, I see several areas of difficult terrain that look like smashed rock, and a river of lava flowing through the middle of the whole thing. In short, when I look at the map, I imagine that The Citadel has been through a war, and then some. So, instead of building an intact wall around the piece, I made the walls look smashed and deteriorating in certain places. Here’s the top down view that matches the map above. You’ll note that the middle section of each joining wall is missing. (Don’t worry, there’s better pictures of it later)
As for the terrain powers, I approached each one differently. I originally wanted to use the D&D Arcane Ballista mini for the ballista, but it looked too big on the finished model. Instead, I used the D&D Arbalester mini. It’s also a ballista, but smaller.
The onager was a bit more difficult. There are no prepainted onager miniatures (that I could find) so my options were either an unpainted mini, or making my own. I chose the latter. I just used wood from the craft store, and stained it. It’s not super fancy, but it works.
The final piece – the cauldron – was the most difficult one of all. I tried a mini cauldron from a halloween supply store, but it was far too large. The cauldron from the Hirst Arts mold 85 is too small. Molding my own out of sculpey was an option, but not one I was too keen on. I finally turned to the Hirst Arts forums with my quandry, and one of the users gave me the perfect solution – a Ping Pong ball! It was the right size… so I cut off the top, made a rim made out of sculpey, and painted it with black primer. It looks convincing.
Finally, the areas of difficult terrain. This was very easy to do – any time you cast Hirst Arts stuff, there’s overflow of plaster. I just salvaged some, and smashed it with a hammer. (I recommend putting it in a sandwich bag before smashing. Otherwise, chips fly in unexpected directions.) Then I added a few smashed decorative pieces for interest, and glued it all to the board. As a final step, to make sure the tiny bits didn’t flake off, I mixed some Elmer’s glue with water, and painted the mixture over everything. This creates a thin layer of glue that “laminates” the tiny pieces of plaster to the floor.
Ok, enough talk. Here are the rest of the pictures.
If you’re at Gencon on Saturday, come by and check it out in person!