Two free e-books on terrain.
A. I made an e-book on making Flexible wargame terrain for Civil War battles — although the same concepts can be used for World War II and other eras. Click MakingWargameTerrainEbook,_small for a free eBook (725kbs) or instead click for larger version MakingWargameTerrainEbook (print-ready version 6mbs in size).
The purpose of this terrain technique is to balance several factors:
- Flexibility, to recreate historic maps more fluidly (a lot of purpose-built terrain can be limiting being less useful in unique situations).
- Lower cost. Although there can be a bit of waste in that not all the roads/river material can be recycled (especially if you don’t have a Dustbuster to vacuum each up separately).
- Looks. The goal is to have smooth transitions between contours but well-defined for game purposes …and unique shaped rivers and forests.
Trade-offs: this sort of sprinkled terrain is best in a home or permanent club location as opposed to being as easily take on the road. Then, at a “convention” or other situation where you must set up and take down, you might want to revert to masking tape roads and rivers made of cut-up blue “sheet protectors”.
B. If you want to learn how to be master craftsmen andd make beautiful Unique terrain tables, for another free e-book click BrucesTerrainBuildingArticle (2.2mbs) for spectacular examples and a “How To”. Featured are the incredibly beautiful tables made by Bruce Weigel. Here’s an example:
For a look of the diversity of tables Bruce has made, click here for my page on his tables.
PS A half way step between both above approaches is “geomorphic” like GHQ’s 3″ Terrain Maker hexes or 12″ square tiles. Each could be like a little diorama. The problem to me is the amount of time it takes to make up a enough diverse terrain and the “stiffness” of how the road and river networks must follow what you have built already. And again, a gaming hobby becomes more about terrain craft than playing uniquely modeled and set-up games “on the fly”. To each his own!