Tuesday 23 May 2017

Necromunda Terrain Tiles - A Skirmish Game Project

Greetings Sinners!
With 8th Edition still four weeks away, 40k has taken something of a back seat just lately. For all of the snippets GW have released, there is still too much unknown to help me focus on a particular army project. Will I need more transports? Will Noise Marines be any good? Will Chaos Independent Characters be feasible? Will my beloved Castigators be overshadowed by the new scale of Primaris Marines and Plague Marines? I just don't know.
Fortunately, I still have plenty to keep me busy in the meantime.
Our Path to Glory campaign is keeping me and Rob entertained and I'm enjoying it so much that I haven't even opened my box of Shadow Wars: Armageddon.
With my attention firmly focused on Path to Glory, I have been busy building terrain for our games and trialling out the rules so that I can post up battle reports for the Blog. Of course until I paint the terrain, and get the layout of the battlefield sorted, I haven't been posting much.
While playing our games, Rob and I have been discussing the best layout that we can use and I've come up the idea to use 12" x 12" tiles to mount the terrain on.

You're probably wondering why I would want to use terrain tiles instead of using free standing terrain and just setting it up however I want?
There are a few reasons for this.

  1. It's quicker to set up the game.
  2. The terrain is much more stable (we quickly discovered that it was too easy to knock the terrain apart on a densely populated table).
  3. It gives me the opportunity to make the terrain much more like a diorama rather than a gaming piece.
  4. Terrain bases have a bad habit of warping.
I scoured the internet for gaming tiles and discovered these from TT Combat.

They were reasonably priced, £34 for 16 tiles that would give me a 4' x 4' gaming area. When they arrived I was a little disappointed to see that each tile had a lip when they were built....

This wouldn't have been a problem except that I was planning on using the terrain tiles as stand alone terrain in my regular games of 40k as well. Fortunately, I had an idea to build up the sides and incorporate magnets so that the tiles locked together instead of using the clips that came with the tiles. I added a strip of cork tile and a strip of Balsa wood to fit flush with the tile edge.

And drilled holes for the magnets

So after considerably more work than I had planned, I ended up with a lot of these. They stand an inch high, which is higher than I would have liked really (I think 15mm would have been better) but at least I won't have to worry about them warping now.

One of the things that Rob and I quickly discovered was that games played much better if the terrain was diagonal to the deployment zones. If the terrain runs parallel or perpendicular to the deployment zones, then the terrain doesn't block line of sight particularly well. So most of the tiles will have terrain running at a slight angle to the tile edges rather than running straight.

These tiles will primarily be used for games of Path to Glory, Necromunda and Shadow Wars: Armageddon, so with this in mind I want them to reflect the confined nature of an Underhive or heavily populated industrial complex.
I've had this idea of a favela style area where gangs, Underhivers and countless other miscreants would live for quite some time. The terrain that GW produce is excellent stuff, but it was hardly the place where the low-lifes would live. Obviously a sprawling town isn't really achievable but two or three tiles would (hopefully) convey a district that was (until recently) inhabited or that gangs would fight over and claim it as their turf.

Tile 1 - The Favela
I had taken more photos as I was building this but unfortunately my mobile has recently updated and I've lost the photos somehow (grrr.....), so I'll just show you tile 1.

I bought a couple of shacks from Microarts and used them as a template to build more.....

.........using lolly-pop sticks (Magnum....hmm....) and corrugated plasticard.

I can see the pub from here!
The platforms are plastic aquarium filter trays (a big thanks to Bronislaw Czevak for putting me on to these) that cost about a fiver for 16.

You'll notice that the walkways are offset to the tile.......

......We've found that it really does help with game play and helps terrain have a more intractive role rather than just a place to stick a heavy weapon.

It took quite a while to build, but once it was incredibly quick to paint once it was built.

There's even the entrance to a cave, the notice reads "Warning: Forbidden Zone."

So that's what I've been up to just lately. Hopefully I'll get another tile built up next week and I'll be sure to upload any work in progress shots next time around ;-)

Until next time.....may Our Lady grant you her number!


  1. Nice start, I like the multi level aspect to the tile, good use of those filter trays too! I wish I'd gone for smaller tiles sometimes, you can add a lot more variety to the board. It's still something I may add yet. Look forward to seeing more.

    1. Cheers buddy.
      The 12" tiles do allow for more variety but the larger tiles that you have does allow for more continuity.
      Some of my tiles will have to be very open or have very little on them so they don't clutter the battlefield, it's a fine balance really.....one that I'm sure you can appreciate having already built yours ;-)

  2. Looking nice! Around here, we're still getting the hang of setting up Terrain and taking advantage of it in these Skirmish scale Games. I'll have to try putting it at an angle next time.

    1. Cheers WestRider.
      We've found that it makes for a much better game.

  3. Very nice. I cant wait to get my models on your table.

  4. Nice Gaz! Like the overall run down shack look. Looks like it belongs in a western film lol. Why not try using the goblin town set from hobbit range just a idea :)

    1. Cheers Dyl. I'm too tight to spend money on the GW LOTR/Hobbit stuff!
      This way I get to eat Magnum Ice Creams ;-)

  5. That looks excellent, well played man. I only wish I had some similar terrain to play on.

    1. Cheers Rory, hopefully I'll soon have enough to start posting up battle reports again.

  6. Lord Adiatun Varunn24 May 2017 at 12:35

    It's always a pleasure reading of your progress in our hobby and this terrain is very interesting both to the eye and to the many possibilities to exploit it in game. Congratulations!

    1. Thanks buddy, I'm happy to hear it entertains you :D

  7. The tiles look awesome, and great idea to use magnets to hold them together

    1. Cheers Joe.
      There's nothing worse than knocking the table and half of the battlefield falls to pieces, hopefully the magnets will minimise too much seismic activity ;-)