The weather is hot.
The sun beats down like a daemonic oven onto the patio around the back of my home. If you leave a miniature out there, freshly undercoated, its takes just over a minute for the paint to dry. Quite unlike the depressing and tedious autumnal crawl as you wait for the latest wash to dry because the wife will not let you use her hairdryer.
I have always said to myself 'when the time comes to build a wargames table it would be prudent to do so on a blazing hot day. For this will ensure that the bloody paint and glue dries up in good time and the damn thing gets finished.' Having seen those guilty lodgers lurking away in many a gamers' rooms, attics or garages (by this I mean the unfinished gaming board) I have always shied away from producing one of my own, especially as the wife is rather strict on 'clutter' around the house.
Of course I have my tiny board, as seen on my battle reports. This was originally constructed by me in an afternoon a few summers ago for small skirmish games. Its seen a lot of action with the Realm of Chaos campaign I have been involved in but as my numbers of painted miniatures increases the size of this board is woefully small. We can do little now but line up our troops and march in a straight line at each other. Not very tactical, I am sure that you'll agree.
So with my copy of 'How to Build Wargames Terrain' on my kindle I have been busy researching the possibilities of updating my gaming surface. At first I thought 'why not just buy a grass mat?' These mainstays of boyhood gaming have their place but I feel that a proper table or board are far more permanent feel and have a 'I'm here to stay' attitude about them.
Of course, being a gamer I dream about having a table like this...
Or even this...
But such things are pipe dreams at the moment, best left for my 40s rather than my 30s; when the children are all grown and the wife has run out of 'jobs' for me to do whenever the prospect of some 'free time' arises.
What is certain is that I DON'T want something like this...
I mean, paint the board brown and splodge on some PVA and scatter static grass around in unnatural and thoroughly unconvincing manner.
I mean it looks like Father Nurgle had a really bad curry one Friday night and pebble dashed the road!
I am certain of a few points though;
1) I want it to be cheap but not cheap looking.
2) The overall finish should match my old school bases for a bit of coherency.
3) It must be sturdy enough to be stored out of the way of the wife's accusing eye but no so heavy that the thing give me a double hernia every time I shift it!
4) I am not fussed about scenery, I'm old school so have envisaged a fairly flat surface. Hills, woods and buildings can be added later.
So then. Have YOU built a games table? What problems did you come across to forewarn me? What advice can you give good old Orlygg about this, his latest undertaking?