Tag Archives: tabletop

4xD: Paint it grey; The Monotone Monologue

13 Jun



Now, there must be some of you out there thinking to yourselves that I seem to favour the colour grey quite a bit. Maybe it may be a subliminal reflection upon myself and my psyche, but there is method in my madness.

Sure, I have to admit that a great deal of my terrain work features the colour, but I think it is reflective of the world around us. Grey surrounds us in the form of natural rocks, the cloudy skies, the urban tarmac below our feet, and of course, the endless municipal 20th century buildings and dwellings we seem to have in the western world. As depressing as it sounds, grey is everywhere.

St Georges Minster Doncaster: One of my towns local landmarks. For as much as it’s beautiful architecture, it’s pretty darn grey!

Ok, so where is the colour? Why should this real life dredge apply so much to terrain building and my stuff primarily when I have all the colours in the world to deal with in these imaginary worlds that I can create?

The grey monotony of the stark and austere dungeon terrain is broken by the colour of the individual figures and models.

As much as I like garish and bright colours, I believe that terrain should not just look pretty on the table, but should reflect the world imagined around them. More importantly, since I’m dealing with miniatures, as much as I want my terrain to shine, it’s them that are the primary accent of colour on the table, the battlefield and terrain are secondary. I feel that everything else should be muted, that way the focus is on the action and the models, and making sure that the figures are not lost in a blur of colour. Monochrome terrain helps the colourful figures pop and stand out from the scenics. Now I’m not saying that everything should be grey on the table, but my preference allows for highlights that draw the eye, not to bombard the eye with far too much busy colour that might not be needed unless it’s really called for, hence making the important figures and objectives the centre of attention.

Grey everywhere, yet the lone blue creature stands out from the scene.

Now this is just my own opinion, but I much prefer this to overtly busy and incorrectly used colour palettes. I would however like to know your thoughts. Do you think that I’m talking bull? or do you think there is some truth to this?

Whatever your opinions, let me know in the comments section and give your side!

Grim’s Dungeons of Doom: Dwellers of the Pit: Giant Scorpion

9 Aug


Welcome to the companion series of articles that’ll build up a bestiary of miniatures for my game, and it’ll be here for those of you who want to use the info for your own projects.



The first article here is going to deal with the Giant Scorpion (mostly for my memory from Deathtrap Dungeon) So lets set the scene, dish the stats out, then we’ll talk more about other aspects.


Description: (Quoted from the Original Out of the Pit (puffin books 1985 & Beyond the pit weblink)

Giant Scorpions are fearsome creatures found in many parts of the world, from temperate wastelands to the burning hot sands of deserts. They are aggressive predators, and are not afraid of attacking humans. Around three metres in length, they are covered in shiny black brown armour. Their huge claws extend out on strong limbs, and above their backs hangs their deadly sting, as large as a mans head.

Special Abilities/Attacks:

Their typical attack is to grasp their victim with a dextrous claw and lash him with their sting. Each claw can attack independently, if it is taking lone prey, it will attack with both of them at once. If a giant scorpion gets a strong grip on its opponent (If 22 is rolled for its attack strength, or in the case of two opponents, if both attacks are successful) its sting will whip forward and inject a fatal poison that will take scant seconds to kill the victim(s). Once the prey is dead, the giant scorpion will drag away the fresh corpse into its bone littered cave  or shady corner, and eat it.

The Giant Scorpion from the Fighting Fantasy Gamebook, Deathtrap Dungeon

The Giant Scorpion from the Fighting Fantasy Gamebook, Deathtrap Dungeon

Grim’s Dungeons of Doom Conversions

Firstly, you’ll notice the stat scroll has the addition of movement stat (MOVE). Since this game is miniature based skirmish, there needed to be a standard of movement here, and as far as I can be sure, there is hardly any mention of game turn distance, its all rather loose. As a rule of thumb, I’m going to say, just as in many other games (WFB, 40K and other GW stuff) the standard for a human is 4. Remember, the pedigree of Fighting Fantasy, it’s almost a GW thing, so it makes sense to use a GW based term.


The scorpion has therefore got a MOVE of 6, meaning since this is a big creature, it moves faster than a humanoid/human but only proportionally (or it would be faster) imagine the big carapace plating, and remember the science of large insects (not having an internal skeleton at those sizes mean extra stress on the creature as far as I can think).

If an adventurer is unfortunate enough to be fatally stung, the victim can make a test against LUCK, failure results in gradual death within 3 rounds unless administered an anti-venom antidote. Whilst in this poisoned state, the victim is prone and can take no action. If the victim takes anymore damage or does not receive the antidote, they will perish (game over)

The giant scorpion is a true terror and is meant to be a deadly foe. Even so it’ll probably take out half your party of treasure seekers, but you have to give them a fighting chance against monsters like this!

If you want to know how it was made check out the Giant Scorpion monster mini make here.

So that’s it! Let me know if you agree, or what do you think the rules should be based on the original source material, please let me know and comment!

Crowdfunding Spotlight: Tabletop Towns – Cargo Containers Kickstarter

14 May


There’s so much cool stuff for 28mm wargaming these days, it almost makes me want to start the switch back over. The choice and availability for the scale seems to far outstrip the rest that for most, it’s classed as god’s own scale!

Regulars to the site will recognise this latest KS from the tabletop towns stable of products, with this time, something for the wargamers who play modern & scifi. These containers suit the modular nature of the tabletop towns style of simple block shaped buildings and terrain, and I’m sure there will be plenty of takers for them.

Ideal scenics for a modern/zombie setting as well as the plethora of more scifi orientated stuff, and quite asthetically pleasing when grouped, it adds another string to their growing catalogue of portable card scenery. If you’ve been paying attention to the evolution of tabletop towns, I can see great things to come from them in the future.

Personally I’m holding out for some 15mm stuff (city blocks and the like) and I’d be all over them like no ones business, but I think that there’s probably more viability in 28mm in terms of sales from the 28mm folks, but with the growing popularity of 15mm, I still reckon there’s a good untapped market with the 15mm crowd.

As ever I wish them the best with their campaign (even so I know they’ll get full funding)

Tabletop Towns – Cargo Containers. by Julian G Hicks — Kickstarter.

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Crowdfunding Spotlight: Wargaming Table by 4thwar Equipment on Kickstarter

6 May


One of the most important features of any tabletop game is undoubtedly the surface that its played upon, in most cases the table.

This crowdfunder over on kick starter thinks its cracked it in more than just this issue, as well as being 100% green and recyclable, by coming up with this “novel” (sigh!) idea of a cardboard portable folding gaming table.

Yeah, great idea. Well, not really. I know that probably doesn’t sound very complementary, but I’m not here to sing the praises of this project, rather I just see so many things that are against this being a smart invention.

I’ll try and be fair with this project though, I’m not all bad, so I’ll point out lots going for it, such as the fact that it’s innovative in its design and use of materials,and yes it does solve a problem that many of us gamers face from time to time, plus it’s a polished production to both the idea and the project itself. However, there are a few problems with using this kind of corrugated card can bring.

First one of the many flaws to this is that card of this type is very easily damaged used as is (like this) and won’t look like it’ll take much to accidentally get either bent, knocked or wet from a spill etc. The easy damage factor is a big issue, not to mention warping from heat or damp. If you have kids around, that’ll make it twice as likely to get messed up too, trust me!

Next is the wibble factor. Just how many have completely level floors in the area we wish to game? It’ll just take one unlevel surface to sit on and I’m sure it’ll shake like a pensioner with parkinsons just like any other table would, just this one will shake even more as its lighter being from cardboard.

Price. For what it is, it seems a little expensive to me. Ok, I know that you have to factor lots of things into getting an idea to being, and a lot of stuff can be prohibitive caused by just how much some things do actually cost, but $109 seems a bit much for just a table made from card! Sod the extra chaff stuff too, why would I want a sodding T-shirt? Some might disagree, but I can think of much cheaper ways to make an ad hoc gaming table. I make do with bits of wood that go on top of various surfaces, easy to buy, store and go up quickly, usually well within the 3 minutes they say in the vid!

I don’t want to rubbish the idea, honestly, but maybe this just isn’t for me. Yes I can see that there are plenty of takers on board already, but the funding level seems a bit high for it to work, $99,000 is a hell of a lot of cash. I just see it struggling toward the latter half of the funding period to be fair.

Check it out and make up your own mind.

4thWar Equipment – Wargaming Table by 4thwar Equipment — Kickstarter.

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Crowdfunding Spotlight: Mote – Virtual Tabletop Kickstarter

7 Mar

Next in on Crowdfunding Spotlight, is Mote, a virtual tabletop, brought to you lucky people by Idle Ideas Inc. Now, I’m quite old school when it comes to my gaming, but I do appreciate new ideas that might come to revolutionise wargaming in future years.

I’m not saying that I totally get it, nor would I switch from more traditional types of wargaming and RPG types of gaming, but I reckon times will change and more, and more will either switch to systems like this or grow up with newer tech and become used to the virtual side rather than the old ways. I find that this is a time of great change in the fabric of tabletop games and how they are played, but us old guard are pretty safe for the time being!

If the virtual gaming arena floats your boat, go and check out Mote (Jeez look at me, I’m a poet and I didn’t know it!!)

Mote – A Powerful, Free, & User-Friendly Virtual Tabletop by Idle Ideas Inc. — Kickstarter.


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