The Comm Guild Maelstrom's Edge

Entries tagged [terrain]

Terrain Spotlight: Generator Tower


Posted on Thursday Dec 05, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

My ongoing project to create updated versions of the classic Necromunda terrain continued this week, with a third structure - a generator tower, based on the hexagonal(ish) multi-level platform.




I started out once again with a rough sketch, to get a feel for what I was building. I wanted something similar to the original shape, but with the bulkhead on the narrow end rotated 90 degrees, and with something in the central hole rather than just having a big empty space.



Instead of building individual bulkheads, like the original Necromunda plastics, I built each support pillar as a single piece. I'm not intending these buildings to be reconfigurable, and doing it this way gives the structure some extra strength. I used foamed PVC for the core of the pillar, cutting out the basic shape of the bulkheads, and then added support struts from the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues up each edge on both sides. I also added some buttresses from off-cuts of foamed PVC to provide some cover zones for gangers to hide in.

Access between levels is via a ladder running up the short end of the platform, rather than building a ladder into each pillar. This makes the structure a little harder to get up and down on than the original, but can be made up for with catwalk placement when the table is set up in full.



For the floors, I used double sheets of 3mm foamed PVC. One layer probably would have been enough, but I went for the extra strength and visual bulk from the thicker platforms.



I took two generator coils from terrain sprue #2 and glued them together. The ends have a slight angle to them, so I sanded them down flat, and also sanded down an iris portal to fit over one end of the generator. The other iris portal fits back to back with the first.



To give the generator something to sit on, I took a couple of trapezoid windows from terrain sprue #1 and trimmed their long edges to fit inside the central hole in the middle platform. In between these, I glued an octagon of PVC, with a large pipe fitting glued to the underside.



Time to fit everything together! I took some offcut pieces from the support struts and glued them to the bulkheads to create supports for the floors.



With the floors glued in place on their supports, the last things to do were to add some pipes running up from another large pipe fitting to the underside of the generator, and a control panel on the top level made from another trapezoid window, a computer from terrain sprue #2, and some cutoff support strut pieces.











As with the previous builds, I'll hold off on painting this one until I have a few more ready to go and do them all at once.

Stay tuned for more!



To build your own hove structures, you can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Watch Tower


Posted on Thursday Nov 28, 2019 at 05:00PM in General


- by Iain Wilson

Last week, I shared a trash processing unit, the first of a series of terrain structures inspired by the classic Necromunda plastic/cardboard hybrid terrain. (If you missed it, you can find it here)

This week, I'm adding a watch tower to the set!




As with the previous building, I started out with a quick sketch. I don't always use a sketch, and when I do I don't always follow it precisely, but it can be a handy tool for visualising the process.



For this construction, I once again pulled out the 3mm foamed PVC, and a bunch of both of the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues. I started out by building the central pillar, which needed a ladder running up the center to the twin hatches on the platform up top. To give the pillar some depth, I decided to use two layers of PVC, with a ladder running up the outside of each face rather than just using one going up the middle. I wanted to be able to see through the ladder section, though, so cut out a strip up the middle of each pillar side just wider than the ladder rungs. The ladders themselves were taken from terrain sprue #1. I also engraved some panel lines into the PVC with a scriber.



I glued the ladders onto the PVC with superglue, two to a side, leaving just a small part of the ladder projecting above the top so it would reach to the top of the platform. I then ran a strip of support struts from terrain sprue #1 up each side of the ladders for some extra detail.



Because the gap between the ladders would be practically inaccessible once assembled, I sprayed the inside with some rust brown base before gluing the two halves of the pillar together.



For the platform, I made up the main part of the floor using grating pieces from terrain sprue #2, glued edge to edge and leaving two pieces out in the middle for the ladder access.



I then cut a surround from foamed PVC, with a second layer to give it some thickness, and to provide a support structure for the grating.



I designed the side pillars to give the structure some bulk while also providing some nice cover at ground level. As with the central pillar, these were made from two layers of PVC, cut to shape and with some panel lines scribed in on the outside pieces.



To give the side pillars some detail, I trimmed up some more support struts from terrain sprue one and glued them running up the edges of the pillars on both sides.



To finish up, I cut some waist-height (to scale, obviously!) walls for the platform, using some off-cuts of foamed PVC and some trimmed down corner brackets from terrain sprue #1. I then glued the structure together, and cut a base of hardboard for it to sit on.



And that's two structures completed! As with the previous one, painting will come later, once I have a few of these all ready to go.

Stay tuned!



To give it a go yourself, you can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Trash Processing Unit


Posted on Thursday Nov 21, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Way back in the day, the original version of Games Workshop's Necromunda game came with a small table's worth of industrial-styled terrain that was constructed from printed cardboard and held together with plastic bulkheads. Many battles were fought over my set of this terrain, and so when a friend and I started talking about revisiting the original Necromunda rules, I thought it would be fun to put together an updated set of terrain inspired by that original battlefield. This week I put together the first of the large platform structures.




I started this build by sketching up a rough design for the structure. The aim wasn't to duplicate the original version, but to create something similar to it, with an eye towards making the structures look a little more like actual structures with some sort of purpose rather than just random platforms.



3mm foamed PVC has become my go-to for buildings, as it's easy to work with and lightweight, but quite durable. So to kick things off, I grabbed out the PVC and some support struts from the first Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprue, and put together eight bulkheads. These were made from a single piece of PVC cut to shape, with two support struts running vertically up the sides of each face.



Four of the bulkheads were left as standalone pieces, while the other four were joined into corner pieces for the front of the structure.



I used some more PVC to put together a box shape for the tower. The cutaway at the bottom of the front wall would be used to add a trash receptacle - my thought was for the tower to be some sort of trash processing unit.



The roof of the tower has four exhaust fans, taken from the second terrain sprue. I mounted these onto floor panel pieces, just shaving off a little around the bottom edge of the fan to make them fit neatly inside the bracing pieces on the panels.



The door for the trash unit was made from pieces of foamed PVC, cut to fit neatly into the opening to look like it's jammed open.



To conceal the joins on the tower walls, I ran a strip of support struts from terrain sprue #2 up each joint on the front and back, and then glued on the roof and a control panel for the trash unit.



For the floor of the first level, I used two layers of PVC, with some holes cut in to insert some floor mesh pieces from terrain sprue #2.



I glued the bulkheads onto the underside of the floor piece, and glued the plastic floor panel pieces into the holes. With a very minor bit of trimming, ladders from terrain sprue #1 fit neatly into the central hole in the grating sections, hanging down to about an inch above ground level - low enough for someone (or at least, someone with upper-body strength!) to grab the lower rungs and haul themselves up.



On the back of the tower, I added a generator piece from terrain sprue #2, bulked out with a little PVC to make it protrude enough to provide a neat little covered firing point.



For the upper level, I put together a catwalk using floor mesh pieces from terrain sprue #2.



The support braces for the catwalk were cut from the sides of a ladder. The ladder up to the catwalk has some of the rungs leftover from cutting the supports glued to the back, to space it out from the wall slightly.



High catwalks aren't very pleasant places to be in battle without some cover, so I added a balustrade using posts from terrain sprue #2 and some offcuts of PVC. A trimmed down ladder added some access to the roof level.



The other side wall needed some detail, so I grabbed the junction box from terrain sprue #2, and some aluminium rod and installed some exposed wiring. The clamp pieces were made from short sections of plastic rod and some sections cut from the support struts from terrain sprue #1. The lower end of the thinner cable will drape over the first level floor, having been severed from wherever it was originally attached to.



Finishing up by adding a light to the front wall and an access hatch to the bottom left wall of the tower, I also added a 10' square of PVC as a slab base for the structure. At the moment, the base, first level and tower are all separate pieces, and the ladders are all similarly unglued. I will glue the base onto the bottom of the bulkheads after painting the underside of the first level, and glue the tower and ladders in place once they are painted. I'll probably also add a larger piece of hardboard under the whole thing for some extra rigidity and also to give it some more weight on the table - better to prevent it sliding around.









Painting will come later - I'll get a few more structures made up over the coming weeks, and then go through painting everything together!

Stay tuned!



To give it a go yourself, you can pick up the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the webstore here.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Specimen Tank


Posted on Thursday Nov 07, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

The new Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprue introduced a whole lot of fun new bits and pieces to play with, and I've been having a blast coming up with different ways to make best use of them. This week, I'm using some iris portals in a slightly un-portal way, to create a laboratory-style specimen tank!




For the top and bottom of the tank, I used a pair of the irises from the terrain sprue.



The two irises are joined together using a piece of 1mm thick, transparent plasticard. I cut this into a rectangle 74.5mm long, to match the circumference of the iris' inner rim. I then curled the plasticard around into a cylinder, and used another thin strip of plasticard as a tab to glue the edges together.



The instrument panel mount serves both to hold the controls for the tank, and to disguise the join in the cylinder. I used a piece cut from the side of the terrain sprue itself for the upright strut, a computer panel and the base of the sentry turret to create a sliding mount for the panel.



Finally, it's not much of a specimen tank without a specimen to put in it! I took a mature angel torso, and filled in the arm, leg and back sockets with 'green stuff' putty, to create a 'resting' angel form with no void gel extrusions.



On to painting! This was mostly done with Army Painter paints. I gave the tank parts (aside from the cylinder) a basecoat with a spray of Plate Metal, and the angel with Wolf Grey.



I followed up with a wash of Dark Tone on the metal parts. I wanted a grimy, green ooze look to the cylinder without messing about with water effects, so I painted the inside of the cylinder with some brush-on gloss varnish with a couple of drops of Green Tone mixed in.



The angel received a couple of heavy coats of Dark Tone over the grey.



To suspend the angel in the tank, I attached it to the upper iris with a piece of copper wire glued into holes drilled into the top of the angel's head and the underside of the iris.



With a final drybrush of P3 Pig Iron over the metal parts, and some detailing on the computer panel, I then assembled the tank by gluing the cylinder into the top of the base iris, sliding the angel inside and gluing the upper iris on top, and then attaching the panel strip to the side.





To give it a go yourself, you can grab the new terrain sprue along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the Maelstrom's Edge webstore.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Shipping Containers from Terrain Sprue 2


Posted on Thursday Oct 31, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

As one of my very first articles for Maelstrom's Edge, I put together some shipping containers/cages made from parts from the first terrain sprue and a little foamcore. With the recent release of the second terrain sprue, it seemed fitting to revisit the idea with the shiny, new parts available!




As with the original containers, I used doors to form the front and back of the container, with the rectangular doorframes from the new terrain sprue being perfect for the job. For the back of the container, I shaved off the control panelt and the gubbins up on top, as I planned to have the back as a wall. You could obviously just leave it alone and have a door at each end.



I linked the two doorframes together with the support struts from the terrain sprue, and glued in a floor cut from 3mm foamed PVC.



Inside the struts, I glued rectangles of 1mm foamed PVC, running up to about 1mm short of the top edge of the upper struts. This gives the container some strength, and provides something solid for the walls to glue onto and a ledge for the roof panel to sit on.



I glued another rectangle of PVC into the rear doorframe.



Onto the outer faces of the walls, I glued rectangles of corrugated cardboard, cut to fit flush against the edges of the doorframe and the struts with the corrugations running vertically. (There's no special significance to it being blue - it's just from a multicoloured pack of card I picked up a while back!)



Into the front doorframe, I added a piece of corrugated plasticard, cut with the corrugations running horizontally to simulate a roller door. Most modern-day shipping containers have hinged double doors, but since this doorframe is a little narrower I thought a roller seemed more appropriate. I used plasticard rather than more cardboard as the corrugations are slightly smaller, which helps to make it not look like just another wall.

With the door in place, I stuck another piece of corrugated cardboard into the top of the container for the roof.



The finished container, ready for paint:





And with some paint on:





To mix up the design, you could use plasticard with different textures in place of the corrugated cardboard.



You can also use other real-world container designs for inspiration, adding side doors, changing the length, or as below, using a trimmed down generator, a fan and a couple of other bits from the terrain sprue in place of the back wall to creat a refrigerated container.



And, of course, the discerning stellargee knows that nothing beats an old shipping container for knocking together your own little shanty cabin or business shack!







To give it a go yourself, you can grab the new terrain sprue, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the Maelstrom's Edge webstore.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Basic Sci Fi Quonset Hut


Posted on Thursday Oct 17, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Time for another building!

I don't know why, but I've always loved the shape of the humble Quonset hut. Some time back, I built some vaguely-Quonset styled buildings from plastic drainage channel, but the new terrain sprue gave me an excuse to revisit the idea and build something closer to the original design.




The bulk of the structure is 3mm foamed PVC. For the front and back walls, I grabbed a handy round thing and used it to trace out a pair of semi-circles, which I then cut out with a sharp hobby knife.



I also cut a rectangular piece for the floor, and a bracing strut to connect the tops of the walls.



I took a pair of curtain windows and a curtain doorway from the new terrain sprue and sat them in place on the walls before tracing around them with a sharp pencil and cutting out the resultant rectangles with a hobby knife. Then I used some superglue to stick them in place.



Using some more superglue, I fit the walls, floor and support strut together.



The roof was constructed from corrugated cardboard. I cut three pieces, one for each side, and a third to run over the top. Bending these short pieces over the curve was easier than it would have been to do it with one single, long piece, and the sections create a layered joint to give the roof a little bit of detail.

I started by gluing the side pieces in place along the bottom edges.



After giving the glue time to set properly, I added more glue up along the wall tops and carefully pressed the roof sections down onto the curve.



I used a similar process for the top section, initially gluing the centre line in place along the support strut, and then gluing the sides of the section down overlapping the side pieces.



A few final details from the terrain sprue, and the hut was ready for painting:





For a quick and easy paintjob, I gave the hut a basecoat of AK Interactive Rust Basecoat. Over this, I sprayed a light and rough coat of Army Painter Plate Armour, and then added rust by dabbing on Army Painter Dry Rust. Some quick details like lights and curtains, and then a drybrush in the creases with Vallejo Beasty Brown finished it off.











To give it a go yourself, you can pick up the new terrain sprue, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the Maelstrom's Edge webstore.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Conversion Spotlight: Epirian Heavy Drone


Posted on Thursday Oct 10, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

One of the best parts of this hobby, for me, is when you find yourself looking at some bits and get a little flash of inspiration on how to turn them into something completely different to what they were intended to be. I had one of those moments this week, while cutting some parts off the new Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprue, when on impulse I put a couple of the fan pieces together back-to-back. One thing led to another, and the Epirian Heavy Drone was born!




This is actually a really simple conversion, using parts from the Epirian Hunter Warmech, and four fans from the new terrain sprue.

The first step is to take the Hunter torso and use a sharp hobby knife or razor saw to cut through the waist joint.



With the two halves of the remaining torso glued together, there's a large hole in the bottom, into which a flight stem fits quite neatly. Fill the front half of the hole with green stuff or similar putty.



The Hunter's Cutter machine guns are in two pieces, one of which has a wide flap that covers the underside of the weapon once assembled. Don't use that one. Take the other halves of the two cutters, and glue them to the underside of the Hunter torso. They sit in quite neatly, nestled in under the bulge of the chestplate.



Next, take the four fans from the terrain sprue and glue them together in pairs, lining up the fan blades, to make a pair of turbines.



Glue the turbines onto the Hunter's shoulder sockets.



One drone, ready for painting!





With some paint on, it winds up looking something like this:









Now I just need to figure out what to call it! Any suggestions?



You can pick up both the Hunter kit and the new terrain sprue, along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge range, from the Maelstrom's Edge webstore.

As always, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

The new Maelstrom's Edge Terrain Sprue is available now!


Posted on Monday Oct 07, 2019 at 05:00PM in Models


The Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprues consist of modular, high detail, plastic components which are designed to be clipped out and affixed to boxes, scratch-built structures or any junk you might have found that looks building shaped. You can find lots of ideas and tutorials in the hobby section of the website here.


Sprue Front


Sprue Back



Each sprue contains a range of terrain elements, including customisable doors, stairs, windows and parts for creating catwalks or low walls and barricades.



Round detail pieces for an exhaust fan or porthole can fit onto the end of the large pipe fitting from terrain sprue #1, or attach flush to walls or roofs.



The sprue also includes customisable struts for reinforcing walls, and a host of smaller details like a computer terminal, small vents, a generator coil, a junction/control box, lights, an antenna, and parts to combine with our plastic Broken Infantry weapons to build an automated sentry turret!



This pack includes two sprues - 118 components in total!



Get yours from the Maelstrom's Edge Webstore now!

Terrain Spotlight: Raised Building using gift boxes and the new terrain sprue!


Posted on Thursday Oct 03, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

I've spent the last couple of weeks happily playing with the new Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprue and building up a nice collection of delapidated buildings for my Broken force to defend - or loot, as the mood may strike them! This week, however, I thought I might take a break from painting rust and see how something a little better maintained might look with the new components to hand.




I have turned to the ever-useful discount store cardboard gift box for this build. These boxes are perfect for creating buildings, as they come in a wide range of different sizes, are inexpensive, and are quite solid.



I started by flipping the box upside down, and cutting a hole in the side for the door frame from the terrain sprue by tracing around the back of the frame and then cutting with a sharp hobby knife. For the door itself, since I wanted something that wasn't all patched up, I went with a shutter-style door made from pieces cut from the support struts from the original terrain sprue.



My previous giftbox buildings have generally had flat roofs, so I decided to make this one angled, just for something different. I took the lid of the box and cut the sides away at a diagonal along the short edges.



I glued the lid upside down onto the bottom of the box (the top of the building, since the box is upside down!), glued the cut-off pieces of the short edges into the middle for reinforcing, and then stuck a piece of corrugated cardboard on top. I also added the vent windows on two walls, tracing and cutting as with the door frame.



To make this building stand out some more, I wanted to put it on a raised slab. For this, I used the lid of a larger giftbox.



On the so-far blank short wall, I gave the building some independent power using the generator from the new terrain sprue and linking it to the control box using some plastic tube and aluminium rod.



To finish up, I glued the base slab to a piece of hardboard, and added some stairs and small vents from the terrain sprue. I also fenced in the top of the slab using the upright posts and grating pieces, which fit nicely around the edge.





With some paint on, the finished building looks like this:











The new terrain sprue will be available from the Maelstrom's Edge webstore here from October 7th!

In the meantime, feel free to share your models and terrain, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

The New Maelstrom's Edge Terrain Sprue - Available October 7th!


Posted on Tuesday Oct 01, 2019 at 05:00PM in Models


Since the release of the Maelstrom's Edge Terrain Sprue, it has proven to be our most popular plastic kit. Packed with an array of detail bits for adding to scratchbuilt or generic building shells, the sprue is an easy and inexpensive way of making great looking terrain. And now the time has come to mix things up a bit, with the addition of a second terrain sprue to our range!


Sprue Front


This new sprue is themed around the Broken faction, with detail pieces intended to help you build ruins and run-down structures, with a few extras to mix things up a bit.


Sprue Back


Unlike the solid doors on the first terrain sprue, this time around we've included a couple of empty door frames. These can be used as is, or you can fill them with an included solid door piece or a curtain, both of which are double sided so that you can mix up the facings for more variety.


Doors


The three windows on the sprue carry on the theme, with one covered with a curtain, one with metal mesh, and the third with a vent-style grill.


Windows


You can reinforce your walls with struts sized to match the similar struts on the first terrain sprue. This time around, though, the struts have missing panels which can be replaced (or not!) as you choose with several different patch pieces, included some that match the original panels. This lets you mix up the look of the struts to suit yourself. You can also use the extra panels to add patches to walls.


Windows


If you would rather get away from straight edges and corners, you can use the round porthole and iris portal to add some more rounded details. The iris can be used as a floor or roof hatch, or can also serve as a small access door. The porthole and a similarly-shaped fan piece can be glued straight onto a wall or roof, and are also designed to fit neatly onto the top of the large pipe fitting from the first terrain sprue.


Iris, Portholes and Fan (And a scifi shipping container from Laser Cut Card!)



Iris, Portholes and Fan


The first sprue included a ladder for getting up above ground level, but this time around we've included some stairs. The stair pieces are designed to stack up, so you can customise them to whatever height you want for your walkways or doors. The sprue also includes several different grating designs which can be used to make walkways and catwalks, or paired with the upright posts to make fences or barricades.


Stairs and Grates



Barricades


The rest of the sprue is filled up with technical details - a new computer terminal, light fittings, small vent pieces, an antenna, a generator coil and a junction/control box with a separate lid that can be attached open or closed, or used as a wall patch!


Barricades


And finally, we have also included the pieces to make a small, automated turret for securing your hard-won territory against rampaging gangs or bloodthirsty pirates. This is designed to work with the larger weapons from the Broken Infantry sprue, with the weapon mounting pieces attaching to a slide rail so they can be positioned as needed. This piece is just decorative for now, but we have some plans for ways to incorporate these into your games, to come later!


Barricades


The new sprue will be available from the Maelstrom's Edge webstore from the 7th of October. Like the previous terrain sprue, it will be sold as a two-pack, at the same price. Stay tuned for more terrain ideas featuring the new sprue!



Terrain Spotlight - An experiment in eroded rocky outcrops from foamed PVC.


Posted on Thursday Sep 26, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

I came across a tutorial online a little while ago for making eroded rocky outcrops using stacks of corrugated cardboard coated in filling plaster, and then distressed with a wire brush. It was really effective, but I'm not a huge fan of using plaster on gaming terrain as it tends to chip easily. So I thought I'd have a go at making something similar, using foamed PVC.




From putting together buildings, I tend to wind up with a lot of small off-cuts of foamed PVC sheet. This would potentially work with any thickness of sheet, but the thicker the better. Here, I'm using 3mm sheet as that's what I had to hand.



I cut a series of roughly oval shapes from the sheet, slowly decreasing in size so that they would stack up to form the shape of the outcrop.



Using superglue, I glued the layers together, trying to not get glue right out to the edges of the PVC pieces as this would interfere with the texturing later on.



Next, I used a hobby knife to smooth down the layers, more or less. These didn't have to be perfectly blended, but enough to disguise the separate layers of PVC once the texturing was applied.



To apply the rock texture, I scraped horizontally around the edge of the outcrop with a wire brush. The aim here was to vary the depth and length of the scrapes to give a random, rock texture, without cutting in too deep and making it all too flimsy.





With a spray coat of black, and a drybrush of a mix of brown and grey paints, the outcrop was ready for the table.



It's not perfect - it could use some more defined layers running around the circumference, level with the flat areas. This would give it more of a stacked-rock effect and look less like a single lump. But it was an interesting experiment, and a fun way to use up some scraps. I'll have to tinker with the idea a little more and see where I can take it!





Do you have terrain creations you'd like to share? You can get feedback on your work, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

You can pick up the entire Maelstrom's Edge model range, including our plastic urban terrain detail sprue in the webstore here.

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Tutorial: Rocky Outcrops.


Posted on Thursday Sep 12, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Buildings are all well and good, but sometimes you want to get out of the urban sprawl, and wage apocalyptic war surrounded by nature! I've shared articles previously covering alien forest bases made from silicon aquarium plants and cactus clumps made from foam balls, but this week we're tackling the ever-popular stacked rock outcrops.




These rocky terrain features are made from sheets of expanded polystyrene. I've used pieces cut from an old foam vegetable box here, because that's what I had laying about. You can generally buy expanded polystyene by the sheet in various grades and thicknesses from hardware stores or foam specialty stores, but if you're more thrifty-minded it's worth asking your local fruit and vegetable retailer if they have any old boxes laying around, or you can save the packaging inserts from electrical equipment.

Expanded polystyrene is composed of loads of small balls of foam pressed together to form a sheet. For this sort of project, you want polystyrene composed of relatively small beads (under 2mm), as the larger sort is much harder to cut cleanly and is more prone to damage.



The first step is to cut a piece of foam to form the base of the outcrop. This can be whatever shape you like, just remember to leave one or more flat spots for the stacked rock spires. For cutting the foam, you can buy heated wire cutters specifically for the purpose, but generally a sharp knife will do the job - just don't use the good kitchen knives, as cutting foam does tend to blunt the knife fairly quickly.



Next, cut rocks for the stacks, starting larger and making each successive rock a little smaller, for however many you want to stack up. Rocks come in all sorts of different shapes and textures, so the actual shape here isn't too important, but I like to use largely flat cuts to create a faceted look. Avoid making really sharp edges on the foam, as these will be fragile. Make your rocks different thicknesses, and you can angle the tops a little to avoid the stack looking too artificial.



Once you have your rocks cut, glue the stacks in place with PVA glue. Don't use superglue or plastic cement, as these will melt the foam. For a little extra strength, you can push toothpicks or wooden skewers cut to an appropriate length down the centre of the rock spires. Push this in until it is sitting just below the surface of the topmost rock, and then glue a scrap piece of foam into the hole to plug it up.



Now we need to disguise the foam a little, as just painting over the foam with regular paint tends to look like, well, painted foam.

So instead, paint the outcrop with a textured paint. Again, the specific texture is more or less up to you depending on the look you want, but here I'm using a Dulux 'River Rock' textured paint. This is an acrylic, indoor house paint with a fine sand texture mixed through it. You can generally pick up sample pots of similar paint from hardware or paint stores, or check out their clearance bins for mis-tinted paving paint, which you can sometimes grab for cheap. If you can find a colour that you want to use as a base colour (as I've done here) that's great, but otherwise you can just paint over it, so the actual colour of the textured paint isn't too important. You can also just use regular paint and stir in some fine sand - silversand (sold in pet stores) is ideal for this.

Dab the paint on with an old brush, rather than brushing it. This avoids brushstrokes and helps to clump the texture. The paint I'm using takes two coats to build up the level of texture I wanted for this outcrop, but coverage will vary depending on the paint you use.



To add some visual interest, glue some sand and/or small gravel to the top surface of the base of the outcrop with PVA glue, and once the glue is dry, undercoat with a similar colour to your textured surface - a few shades darker or lighter is fine, once again just depending on the look you want.



Finally, choose a lighter colour and drybrush over the whole thing. Here, I've used Army Painter Ash Grey, as it's a nice, pale grey with a slight brownish tinge, so it ties into the textured basecoat nicely. If you're unfamiliar with drybrushing, you take a large brush, dip it in your paint, wipe it on some paper until there is hardly any colour still coming off, and then brush that over the surface to be painted. With so little paint on the brush, it just picks up the raised detail, leaving the base coat in the crevasses. You can slowly build up the colour in this way until you get the level of highlighting that you want. It's a great technique for painting rough surfaces like rocks or fur, or for getting worn metal effects.

The finished outcrop, ready for the table:



You can glue your outcrop down to a piece of hardboard to give it some extra weight if you wish - this can be a help in preventing it from sliding around the table!





Keen to give it a go? Be sure to share your creations, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

You can pick up the entire Maelstrom's Edge model range, including our plastic urban terrain detail sprue in the webstore here.

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Painting Tutorial: Rusted Shanty Buildings


Posted on Thursday Sep 05, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

Our new, upcoming terrain sprue is themed around Broken terrain - delapidated, cobbled-together structures either repaired from abandoned ruins or cobbled together from salvage. I've been putting together a series of run-down shanty buildings and thought I would share my method for painting them up and making them all grubby and rusty!





The building I'm painting up here is the one shown in the walkthrough in the first preview article here.



The first step is a basecoat of dark brown. The exact colour doesn't matter too much, but here, I'm using an AK Interactive Rust Basecoat.



Over the brown goes a spray of cream, sprayed downwards at an angle to let the brown form some natural shading. I'm using a Dulux Chalky Finish cream spray, as it gives a fantastic, non-glossy surface finish.



Over the areas of exposed metal, re-undercoat with a dark brown. For painted metal areas, like the reinforcing struts, apply the dark brown with a sponge. (You can find a tutorial on sponge weathering here). The exact shade of brown doesn't matter too much, as rust comes in a wide range of shades dependong on age and exposure, but I've used AK Interactive Shadow Rust here.

For areas of lighter rust, apply a sponge of dark gray over the brown. This will give the effect of old but unrusted metal showing through the rust in places. Where you want heavier rust, like on the roof, leave this off. For this building, I used Vallejo Heavy Charcoal for this step. I have also painted the base with Vallejo Neutral Grey at this stage.



On the larger rusted surfaces, like the roof and door, apply a rough drybrush of orange. This doesn't need to be particularly even - you're aiming to create a rough highlight to accentuate the patchiness of the rust.



Now the magic part! The final coat of rust is applies with Vallejo Dry Rust. This is a worryingly bright orange paint that goes on gloopy and dries down to a very flat finish. Applied over the brown, the orange is dulled down to a perfect rust finish. Use an old brush and just dab it on, working downwards so that the rust collects most strongly on upper surfaces. As with the drybrush layer, the aim isn't to evenly coat everything, but to create a blotchy effect with the rust heavier on raised, exposed areas and lighter on undersides.



Around this time, drybrush the base with Valljeo Light Grey or similar.

Once the rust has dried, it's time to add some dirt. But first, paint in any remaining details - lights, control panels, grafitti or other markings on the walls, are all best added in now, so that the weathering goes over the top and they don't look out of place with the rest of the structure.

Then, use a medium brown (Vallejo Beasty Brown here) and drybrush around the bottom edges of the walls, in any vertical raised recesses, along the edge of the roof under the corrugated card, and along the tops of doors and windows. This is also a good time to drybrush some dirty patches on the base.



Finally, use a small drybrush to add some more brown along any remaining upper surfaces, like the tops of each segment on the reinforcing struts, the rim of the light fitting and anywhere else that dirt and dust would collect. I also like to add some oil (or other fluid) stains around the base by applying small drops of Army Painter Quickshade wash and leaving them to dry.











The new terrain sprue will be available soon. In the meantime, you can still pick up the original terrain sprue along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range in the webstore here.

As always, feel free to pop along and share your creations, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: Firepoint Emplacement


Posted on Thursday Aug 29, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

As I mentioned in last week's article, we have a new terrain sprue coming!

Because new terrain gets me as excited as a very excited thing on a special day to be excited, I'm currently locked in my office, figuring out the best ways to make use of the new bits and pieces on the sprue and putting together new buildings for the ever-expanding terrain collection. One of the new pieces I put together this week was a small firepoint, just perfect for holding the line against incursions of lawless rabble!





The bulk of this structure is made up of floor grates from the new terrain sprue, and a combination of 3mm foamed PVC and 6mm foamcore for the walls.

I started out by laying out a floorplan, and gluing the grates together edge to edge. Then I cut the PVC and foamcore into sections to fit neatly around the three straight edges of the floor.



The sprue includes some posts which can be used to make low walls. For this build, I'm using a couple of them as floor supports, so trimmed off the rounded top.



Some stairs were needed to get up to the floor level in the firepoint. The stairs on the new sprue are designed to stack up on top of each other, and two stair pieces stacked come to almost exactly the same height as the floor grates sitting on the posts.



With the wall pieces glued together, the lower PVC sections form a support rail, on which the floor grates will sit.



To cover over the exposed ends of the foamcore, I took some support struts from the original terrain sprue and cut them to the same height as the walls. Four of these attach to the corners, neatly sealing over the foam.



The short, leftover pieces of the support struts were a nice length to form some bracing for the walls. I cut some small triangles of PVC and foamcore, which when glued together are exactly the same width as the struts.



That just left the top edges of the wall exposed. To seal that over, I cut a piece of foamed PVC in a lopsided 'U' shape to match the path of the wall, making it wide enough to overlap slightly on both sides, just to look prettier.



With the structure complete, I glued the firepoint down to a piece of hardboard. I wanted the firepoint to have some dirt piled up against the front, so I cut some expanded polystyrene to form the bulk of the dirt pile, and glued that in place around the front and the sides.



Finally, I gave the expanded polystyrene and the remaining exposed hardboard a generous coat of PVA glue and sprinkled a sand/gravel mix over it.

Ready for paint!





With some paint on, the finished firepoint looks like this:







The exact release date for the new terrain sprue is still to be confirmed based on production scheduling, but should be in the next few months. I'll be showing off some more previews in coming weeks to reveal other components included on the sprue.

In the meantime, you can still pick up the original terrain sprue along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range in the webstore here.

As always, feel free to pop along and share your creations, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.

Terrain Spotlight: New Terrain Sprue Sneak Peek!


Posted on Thursday Aug 22, 2019 at 05:00PM in Tutorials


- by Iain Wilson

In the time since the release of the Maelstrom's Edge terrain sprue a couple of years ago, this useful little frame of detail parts has consistently been one of our most popular plastic kits. As good as it is, though, it was always intended to be just the start of a range of different terrain component kits. So over the last 18 months or so, we've been hard at work designing and sculpting a new sprue to add a whole slew of new building options!

This new kit will be out very soon, but to whet everyone's appetites, I thought I would take the opportunity to throw together a quick building walkthrough to show off some of the great new details!





To keep things simple for this build, I turned once more to my humble favourite: the cardboard gift box!



As with the first terrain sprue, the doors and windows are designed to slot into holes cut into the walls of the structure - although this time around, the doorframes and doors are separate components, so that you can model them open or closed!

To fit them into place, I started by flipping the box upside down, and drawing a guide line 12mm up from the bottom of one of the long walls. Then I held a door frame in place a third of the way along the wall and traced around the inset back of the frame with a sharp pencil. As I wanted two doors on this wall, representing a pair of joined habitation units, I repeated this a third of the way in from the other end of the wall as well.



To cut out the doorway holes, I used a sharp exacto blade, following the pencil line and making several passes rather than trying to cut right through in one go.



I then glued the doors in place with superglue, and cut and glued a window in each end wall using a similar process.



To reinforce the walls of your structures, the sprue includes a number of bolted struts like the first terrain sprue. These struts have some missing panels on them, with optional, separate panel pieces that can be glued on to vary the look of the struts a little.



One of my favourite details, the sprue also comes with two stair pieces, designed to be used individually or stacked up for a taller set of stairs. For this build, I was just using them individually, and also wanted to butt them right up against the wall, so I cut off the triangular support pieces from the backs of them with my exacto knife.



I glued the struts upright on the ends of each of the long walls of the building, and the stairs nestled in under each of the doors. I also glued an exhaust fan onto each end of the building for some extra ventilation.



To finish up, I covered over the rather boring top of the building with some corrugated cardboard, and build an awning using another piece of cardboard, some plastic tubing, and a couple of posts from the terrain sprue. I also added a base of foamed PVC, and some underfloor ventilation using vent pieces cut from the reinforcing struts on the original terrain sprue.



On the rear of the building, I glued a generator in the middle to service both hab units, and built a small fence to protect it and provide some low cover on the table, using some grating pieces and a couple more posts. I also added a couple of corrugated patches on the walls for some low-tech, DIY repair.



With some paint on (which I'll cover in a future article very soon!) the hab block was ready for the table!









The exact release date for these sprues is still to be confirmed based on production scheduling, but should be in the next few months. I'll be showing off some more previews in coming weeks to reveal other components included on the sprue.

In the meantime, you can still pick up the original terrain sprue along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range in the webstore here.

As always, feel free to pop along and share your creations, or ask any Maelstrom's Edge- or hobby-related questions on the Comm Guild Facebook page!

For other Maelstrom's Edge modeling articles, including tutorials and walkthroughs of a wide range of different building and miniature projects, check out the Hobby section of the Maelstrom's Edge website here.