Friday, 19 February 2016

The Crude, the Mad and the Rusty: Mini Gaming Table

Greeting all! What do you think of this? I built it yesterday afternoon out of a few scraps I could find lying around the house. It is a scale scenic playing board based on the battlemat published as part of the Crude, Mad and Rusty scenario I have been working on. 

As you know, I have just completed the selection of models that form the pieces in the game and felt like experimenting with the old ruleset to tweak things here and there. It gave me great pleasure to see Mr. Graeme Davis, one of the original authors, contributing to that particular blog post with some background detail about the development of the scenario - it is really quite interesting so pop back over to my miniatures post to check that out of you have not already do so. 

Now many of you will remember that I a fan of putting together cheap and lightweight gaming tables. I have posted about this before. Have a look at these articles if you are interested in my previous endeavours. Last summer, I produced a 'theme' board based on the first scenario for McDeath, Winswood Harbour. I thought that it would be fun to attempt another 'theme' board, this time for the Mad, the Crude and the Rusty - after all, the battlemat in White Dwarf 89 was shocking to say the least!

Let me explain how I built the mini-table you can see at the top of the post. 

My first step was to cut out some foamboard to represent the brown areas from the original battlemat. Now, despite reading through the scenario several times I just couldn't work out what these areas were supposed to represent - so I went for slightly higher ground. I made sure that I used diagonal cuts with the blade to create a sloping edge to each piece of foamboard before sticking them on in roughly the correct places with Copydex. For the base I used a thick piece of plasticard, which by an incredible coincidence was exactly the right size for the battleboard and required no trimming at all!

You can see here that I used the original magazine to work out the dimensions of the foamboard cuttings. 

Copydex doesn't take long to dry, which is what makes it ideal for building scenery and fantastic for cardstock houses like you find in Warhammer Townscape. If you have never used this glue for model making I really do recommend buying a bottle and trying the stuff out. It is excellent stuff and quite reasonably priced too - I think I paid £4.50 for my large tub. 

Using PVA, I just painted on adhesive in rough strokes around the edges of the foamboard pieces and across the base of the plasticard. I rarely cover the whole surface of a gaming board with sand and prefer just to cover the areas I am going to keep 'exposed' so to speak. I dried this with the wife's hairdryer on the lowest speed setting. Shhh! Don't tell her! 

I used a black acrylic to basecoat the whole board and while it was drying I cut out a second piece of foamboard to act as base for the mini-table. I left about one inch around all of the edges. Placing this aside, I began dry brushing the board with my darkest brown shade and worked up in stages until this looked like this! 

Drybrushing complete, I slapped on the PVA once more, this time concentrating the adhesive over the flat untextured areas of the mini-board. I made sure that the glue was spread out in a fairly natural way, as nothing breaks that sense of immersion with a gaming board than poorly applied flock or static grass. 

With the grass stuck on, I again recruited the services of my wife's hairdryer to slowly dry the glue that held the static grass. Nothing beats leaving this to settle naturally, but I was working on a strict timetable of a couple of hours - I don't think you can tell can you?

The final stage saw me sticking the board onto the base and painting the foamboard black to create a defined edge. I also added some different shades of static grass in patches around the board, to help break things up a little. Gale Force 9 do some excellent seasonal tufts of scrub, and I opted to add a little selection of the autumnal stuff here and there to further break up the edges of the gaming board. You can see that I printed out the original title graphic too! 

Highlighting the larger stones in white was the final touch. Oh, apart from adding a miniature or two!

Now to think about testing out how the scenario works and implementing any changes that spring to mind.



  1. Replies
    1. To me, Warhammer should be mad and zany and this scenario is both of those things! Thank you!

  2. That is more than slightly wonderful.

    1. Thank you Hum-Con - it is strange where projects lead you. I had no plan at all earlier on this week to construct this board, it just happened!

  3. What a nice little board. Aside from this use, you could also use it as the ground for miniature photography, as it is nicely colored, as well as not so detailed as to be distracting.

    1. I had considered this too, and I intend to use it as such in the future.