3 Awesome Ways to Make Wargaming Terrain (Cheap, Easy, and Free)

3 Awesome Ways to Make Wargaming Terrain (Cheap, Easy, and Free)

3 Awesome Ways to Make Wargaming Terrain (Cheap, Easy, and Free)

Posted on the 28th of February 2022.

Are you a tabletop miniature gamer? The battlefield you play on might be a dining room table, but it should be more. That’s where terrain pieces come into play. If you’re playing games like Warhammer 40k and looking for terrain ideas, all it takes is an online search. Images of beautiful wargaming terrain are everywhere. But, if you want to make your own wargaming terrain without breaking the bank or spending a lot of time, here are a few great ways to do it.

In this article, I show you 3 fun and easy ways to make terrain for tabletop wargames and roleplaying games (RPGs), like Dungeon and Dragons or Warhammer 40k.

How to Decide What Terrain to Make?

Consider space and time.

The approach I’m using is made primarily for the Warhammer 40k terrain boards for an urban city environment. The basic principle is the same, however, across a variety of game types.

Terrain for wargames can span the gamut. History and place (anywhere in the imagined Universe, really) is open to a creative approach for terrain for wargaming.

Buildings are just one way to setup a board for a tabletop wargame. Terrain DIY style is great because it is free-form.

Ultimately, when it comes to making your own terrain for a tabletop game, you’re only limited by your ideas. If you have a vision for how you want your battles to play out, you don’t need to spend a lot of money.

Here, all you need is to grasp the idea that your battlefields exist in a space (the actual world) and the time period (whether this is a fictional or simulated actual history).

As with choosing a color scheme, deciding what wargaming terrain to make is simply starting with an idea.

Then, with this spark, you can go through the process of what you want to make.

3 Ways to Make Wargaming Terrain

Here are the 3 approaches you can use to make your own wargaming terrain:

  1. Follow reference images from books and papercraft instructables
  2. Use 3D printing and modeling software
  3. Improvise by scratch building and kitbashing

1. Follow Reference Images, Photos, Books, and Papercraft

A lot of what you do in the modeling and miniature hobby arises from admiring all the work you find out there. The internet is chock-full of ideas and beautiful art.

You can see my Pinterest board with the things I’ve found inspirational for terrain pieces. Terrain making is an art!

Reference photos and books

The other way that can help you decide what terrain pieces to make is to use books. There are ton of books on the internet about wargaming and the art of making terrain.

For example, the book entitled “Wargames Terrain & Buildings: The Napoleonic Wars” is an excellent example of an instructional and reference for scratch building terrain buildings.

The book is all about scratch building terrain for a tabletop wargame. Although the period in history is a bit different than the dark grim style of the Warhammer 40k Universe, or other sci-fi genre, the basic principles for terrain making are the same.

The photos inside the book are top-notch. And, I love flipping through the step-by-step guide just to spawn new ideas.

The book is filled with terrain making techniques, including what to build, what materials to use, including glues (I’ve been fascinated by glues), and general best practice for handling challenging builds.

Again, although you will find the history time period a bit different than what you might be lookin for in a game of Infinity, Warhammer, or any of the fictional war games we enjoy, the underlying ideas are the same.

Finally, as mentioned, you can certainly find a ton of references with simple online searches.

Once you find something you like, you merely take some of the basic techniques from these books or other tutorials and create the pieces.

When it comes to homemade terrain, I like taking the easy route.

Learn much more by visiting the Original Post here! 

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