Although I am always fascinated by dungeon terrain it must be said that most of the fantasy roleplaying adventures I run are overground, not underground. I am always on the lookout for economical and transportable terrain to enhance these games. Personally I look on a plain, squared mat covered in squiggles as a bit of a failure on my behalf as a GM.
I have looked at the fantastic terrain we are starting to get from the likes of 4Ground, Manorhouse and their ilk and, like most of you, drooled and dreamed of the lottery win I’d need to get enough of it. As a working chap with wife, family, mortgage and the usual array of debts these magnificent edifices are beyond my reach. I am quite handy at scratch-building this sort of terrain, but pressures of work etc. do mean I never get enough time to do this.
So I was delighted this week when I came across a couple of possible solutions at prices the average chap could afford.
The first was Deep Cut Studios terrain and roleplaying mats (http://www.deepcutstudio.com/).
If you haven’t been to look at this site you need to as soon as you’ve stopped reading my waffle. Although the 6’x4′ mats are in the tens of pounds they do a range of 3′ square mats especially for roleplayers. Mats you can have customised at no extra cost with 1″ square or hex patterns. The mats are available in dyed cloth or printed pvc versions that can be rolled up for easy storage and transport.
These mats include absolutely gorgeous dungeons, settlements, open land, ruins and castles of various types and even a ship with each deck being a mat in itself. The basic 3’x3′ terrain mats are less than a tenner and few of the map sets are more than thirty! I looked at them and thought with just a couple of these I could run dozens of encounters simply by adding a little 3D terrain on top.
Which brings me to my next discovery… Watching the weekly Beast of War videocast I saw a company that was making stunning terrain out of foamed PVC for the Infinity game. So I ambled over to their site (http://www.plastcraftgames.com/en/) and also found they do a number of other ranges including medieval historical and fantastical.
These are moulded in sheets and with just a few snips all the parts come out and allow you to quickly assemble a full building with lift off roofs and floors. What I particularly like about this method is that most of the painting can be done while the building is still in sheet form, which is much easier in my mind.
The other thing I like is the price. A small building is only 10 euros which is about £7.50. I’ll let that sink in for a minute, a whole building for about the price of a single resin miniature or a couple of pewter ones.
There is also a range of useful accessories such as walls, fences, goods and chattels etc., again at very reasonable prices.
My mind is now racing and trying to match up these buildings with the mats I described above. As soon as get my hands on these I’ll let you all know.