In the last post I waxed lyrical about the overall amount of terrain required for a good game, terrain types and ensuring a gaming table includes a good mix of those types. All of which brings me back to the crux of the matter, namely what am I going to build when it comes to my 12 hours of terrain production?
As established I need a minimum of 12 “items”, where an item can sometimes be a single large piece and sometimes a collection of 2-3 smaller pieces. In addition, to afford some further variability to the battlefield I’ll also need some extra stuff so every game doesn’t feature the same terrain, so a target of 16 items seems more sensible.
My gaming club (Tanelorn Wargames Club) already has a few bits of terrain that I can resuse for my Ice World terrain set, namely roads, Cities of Death ruined buildings and craters, plus assorted sundry items like stacks of tyres. I’ll count these as catering for the extra 4 pieces meaning I really need to focus on the 12 core pieces.
I’ve tried to ensure that the 12 pieces are spread as evenly across the terrain type table as possible, with a self imposed rule that I’ll make no more than 3 items for any given combination, and will make at least 2 items for each line of sight terrain type (i.e. at least 2 line of sight blocking, 2 heavy cover, 2 light cover and 2 open ground pieces).
When picking terrain to make, I found it useful to have a distinct theme in mind. I decided my ice world would feature a promethium station of some kind, and numerous relay pipes. I’ve also been hankering to add some real height to my gaming tables for a while, so it had to feature cliffs of some kind. A picture formed of a remote wilderness station battered by snow storms. Ruins and buildings don’t really fit into the context of this battlefield so well, but since I have them available via the club anyway they may as well be included.
Line of Sight Blocking Terrain
- My starting point will be two tall, long cliff faces. Because I won’t have a tiered gaming board these will effectively function like very large hills with one edge ending abruptly in a sheer rock face. They will be able to be placed together and in that configuration should span nearly the entire width of the board, so they’ll need to have a footprint of roughly 18″ x 12″ and a height of at least 4″ at the cliff face. That cliff face is impassible to both infantry and vehicles.
- A promethium relay station, plenty of pipes and containers, all accessible by infantry but impassible to vehicles.
- The last line of sight blocking item will be one or two lengths of promethium relay pipe, positioned slightly above ground. They’ll block line of sight to infantry sized models, and prevent anything moving across them except infantry who will be able to climb on or over the pipes at a couple of inspection sites.
- 3 wrecked vehicles. I’ve always wanted to build some rusted out wrecks and will be plundering old Imperial Guard bits and cheap kids toys for this purpose. I want them to be properly wrecked, so infantry can actually climb inside them. Climbing in a wreck will be dangerous for infantry, due to jagged metal, fumes or the wrecks still burning or prone to further explosions, and they’ll be impassible for vehicles.
- Cities of Death ruins, two “sets”. These are included only because they already exist at the club. They are big so in this case count as difficult for infantry and impassible to vehicles.
- More promethium relay pipes, this time partially buried so they only offer hard cover rather than blocking line of sight entirely. Difficult for infantry and dangerous for vehicles.
- Some boulder fields composed of various sized rocks. They are clear terrain for infantry and impassible or dangerous for vehicles depending on the height of the boulders.
- 2 sets of forests, each one containing 2-3 bases of trees. So essentially 6 forest bases, being difficult for infantry and impassible to vehicles like normal forests.
- A set of craters, already at the club. They are difficult for infantry and dangerous for vehicles.
- A large wooden river bridge, both clear terrain for infantry and vehicles but offering light cover by virtue of the wooden beams.
- A set of roads already available at the club.
- Continuing the cliff theme I’ll also make a 4′ stretch of cliff to border one side edge of the table. I’ve always liked the enclosed feel this sort of terrain gives to a gaming table. The use of a cliff at the edge of the board means we can add height and something for infantry to traverse without creating too many line of sight blocking features.
- An icy river, impassible to vehicles and dangerous for infantry to attempt to cross where iced over (and impassible where it is not iced over).