'Barbarism is the natural state of mankind,' the borderer said, still staring somberly at the Cimmerian. 'Civilization is unnatural. It is a whim of circumstance. And barbarism must always ultimately triumph.'

-Robert E. Howard
Beyond The Black River

Showing posts with label Scratch. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Scratch. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Episode 89: Desert Ruins!

Welcome back! I recently decided to do full terrain at conventions, and because of this, I found myself in need of a few new desert ruin pieces. I decided I should video the build and put out a youtube video for it!


I have provided a table of contents to take you to the pertinent locations in the video you may be interested in.
The ruins will be built from XPS and based on MDF board.

Needed:
  • MDF Base (1/4")
  • XPS Foam
  • PVA GLue.
  • Hot Glue.
  • Sand.
  • Various colors of brown from dark to light.
  • Black paint.
  • Gloss varnish.
  • You will also need Sculptamold,
I mentioned a few other things that I used at the convention that I thought people might be interested in as well.

18" Lazy Susan for Ultimate Dungeon Terrain
Amazon Fire HD 10

These last three links take you to Amazon, which gives me a small commission on each sale, helping to support the blog.

If you liked this article then don't forget to subscribe to get the next exciting installment on pulp gaming both Sci-Fi and Fantasy!

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If you need to check out any of these great games stop on by DriveThruRPG and pick something up through my affiliate link to help support the blog!

Till next time, don't forget to Keep it Weird!

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Forgotten Creatures: The Dire Wolf.

The Dire Wolf


The dire wolf (Canis dirus, "fearsome dog") is an extinct species of the genus Canis. It is one of the most famous prehistoric carnivores in North America, along with its extinct competitor, the sabre-toothed cat Smilodon fatalis. The dire wolf lived in the Americas during the Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene epochs (125,000–9,440 years ago). The species was named in 1858, four years after the first specimen had been found. Two subspecies are recognized, these being Canis dirus guildayi and Canis dirus dirus. The dire wolf probably evolved from Armbruster's wolf (Canis armbrusteri) in North America. The largest collection of its fossils has been obtained from the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles.

Wikipedia contributors. (2018, December 8). Dire wolf. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 16:56, December 20, 2018, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Dire_wolf&oldid=872741641

We often see creatures taken out of time to populate the Hyborian Age. In Red Nails the dragon Conan defeats is described more like a dinosaur than the modern concept of a dragon. The core rulebook for the new 2d20 lists the Sabre-tooth cat, while the new release, "Horrors of the Hyborian Age", list creatures like cave bears and dire rhinoceros.

In actuality the size of the dire wolf and a regular wolf isn't that great, but this is the Hyborian age, so I think they should be scaled up to match the time.

Actual comparison of average sizes
Hyborian Age Sized

Canis Dirus (‬dire Wolf‭) Darren Pepper
http://www.prehistoric-wildlife.com/species/c/canis-dirus-dire-wolf.html

So I give to you my take on the dire wolf. A giant version of the wolves found within the pages of 2d20. This version is tougher, and can deal more damage than it's smaller cousins. It is simply more bad ass. Perhaps packs of these roam the frozen north of Nordheim or the vast steppe of Hyrkania. Either way a pack of these stalking your players should be enough to give them quite a challenge. I have included two versions of the dire wolf, a toughened version and the Alpha Dire Wolf.


I'll make note that I haven't had time to actually play test these yet, as I am building them for an upcoming adventure. If you do use them I would love to get feedback from how they worked out at your table. As always I love hearing from everyone, so if you have any feedback please drop me a note!

Until Next Time. Keep it Weird!

Monday, May 28, 2018

Easy DIY Gaming Table Upgrade!

Welcome back!

Last year, late in November I did a quick video on what I use for a gaming table. It was easy and cheap and created a cool lifted surface. You can find that video here: Gaming Table!

I have always planned on rebuilding the top and making it nicer. Over the last year it has also warped a little, but not enough to be unusable. Since it functions and it would be a solely aesthetic upgrade it has become a low priority in my life. I did however have another idea I wanted to try out; under table LED lighting.


As you can see it creates a pretty cool effect! I got this inexpensive set of lights from Aliexpress which has a nifty remote and allows changing of colors pretty easily! All of the colors are good except for the pure yellow, which looks more yellowy green.

Total price for the strip and remote was about $10cad. Super inexpensive! I did have to get a battery for the remote that ran be a couple of dollars as well, but it didn't turn this from a $10 upgrade to a $30 upgrade. It was still under $15 when it was all said and done.

This project is based on a raised tabletop, but if you had a sunken play area you could use it on that as well just as easily. It adds a new quick and easy dimension to your game that can really help with mood, if you can add this to your area, I highly recommend it!

Have you done any upgrades like this to your gaming area? LED lights? something else cool? Drop me a note and let everyone know what cool things you have done!

One last thing don't forget that buying items through quite a few of the links I provide gives me a small kick back which helps to support both the blog and the YouTube channel! Thank you to everyone that stops by and enjoys my ramblings!

Until next time! Keep it weird!

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Monday, February 5, 2018

New video up!

I finally managed to get the first half of a craft video up this weekend!

Hope everyone enjoys it, tried a bunch of new ideas with this one.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Pillar of Skulls!

New terrain project up on the YouTube channel. This week we are building a marble pillar adorned with 4 skulls and chains. It is a cool craft and great addition to any dungeon! Check it out!


Thursday, September 21, 2017

Episode 41: Portals of Doom!

New video on the youtube channel on building wall sections with removable panels.  I hope you find it useful!


Thursday, August 10, 2017

3d Printing useful or not?

Awhile ago I picked up a 3d printer from Gearbest. It was the Anet A8, an inexpensive/cheap acrylic frame printer below $300cad. It is a basic FDM model, a clone of the Prusa system.

I have printed in ABS and PLA, and frankly I have gotten nicer prints with the ABS, but it is trickier to work with and has nastier fumes, so I am now working largely with PLA.

My latest video is an overview of printing miniatures (I needed 8) for a scenario using statues/golems.

For me the answer to the question, is that it is useful, though not a replacement to regular modeling and miniatures.

Have a watch and don't forget to leave a comment.


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

The Unknown Isle: Skull peak.


With my next session only a few days away I needed to put together the central piece for what will either be the climax of the evening, or very close to it. I have known what I wanted from the beginning of this part of the campaign.

The players are essentially shipwrecked on a mysterious island. There are hints of magic, there is a giant stockade, a small tribe of natives, an ancient city, apes and of course dinosaurs. On the peak of this island rests a skull cavern.

I had initially sought to carve this from foam and got a decent way into the rough cut of that carving, then I was in Michaels, and being as Halloween is the next major holiday I got a foam skull for about $5cad. It's scale was close to what I was building and would allow me to just short cut around the caving of the skull I was working on.

I didn't have time to film the construction, but I thought I could take a few photos and build a blog post around it. I hope you all enjoy it and find it useful.

And ON TO THE BUILD!

You will need......

Tools
Razor knife or hot wire cutter.
Hot glue gun.
paint brushes.

Materials
A foam skull.
XPS or similar.
Tinfoil.
Papertowel.
PVA glue.




The Skull in question. Foam, ~$5cad at Michaels.
Take the XPS, trace the skull foot print and cut it out.
Bevel the edges and make a cut inwards for the cave.
The skull sitting on it's rocky base.
Using some scrap foam, cut out to boulder shapes.
The front of the skull cave.
Using tinfoil build up around the skull.  Glue it with hot glue.
Test fit the skull and make sure you are happy.
I could have used more tinfoil, but it worked out.
Using some paper towel, water and PVA I applied some body to the piece.
Generally, wet the paper towel, place where you want and brush watered down PVA over it.
After it had dried I added some more shape with tinfoil to make it more rocky.
The other side of the skull.
Add more towel and glue over the new foil armature. 
The more of this you add the stronger it will be, but the longer it will take to dry.
Once the towel and glue is dry, give it a nice black base coat. 
Mod Podge and black paint.
Next base the whole thing in whatever color of stone you want.
I used a dark brown here.
Using a highlight color sponge paint the entire structure to bring out the texture.
You can use 2 highlight colors here for more depth.  Sponge the first darker highlight
on about 60% coverage and the next brighter highlight at about 10-20% coverage.
Add fake greenery liberally, yet sparsely over the skull.  I also glued in a couple of
plastic crystal gems I got at the dollar store.
And the skull peak in place on a rocky plateau ready for some adventurers to come and seek it's mysteries.


This was a fairly quick craft. I managed to build it over a course of a week spending a few minutes here and there on it.  It adds quite a lot of character to the scenario and a dramatic center piece for your game. 

I hope you enjoyed the idea and found it useful.  Feel free to browse the blog for other ideas, or leave a comment below with your thoughts on this project.

And of course come check out the You Tube channel over at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvCRyMzJoQBnjb-Qq5Rng_Q

Keith

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Episode 34: The Rope Bridge.

The rope bridge is a classic in adventure scenes. It even has it's own entry on tvtropes.org, have a look, http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/RopeBridge



Do you have one or two built for your D&D, Pathfinder or other RPGs? If not you have come to the right place. I am going to show you how to build a pretty simple bridge from basic materials: a bamboo matt, some XPS Styrofoam, chipboard and glue.

You can build it exactly like I did, or you can use this as inspiration and go your own way. The sky is the limit, or maybe the depth of the chasm is limited only by your imagination.

The video is available now on my YouTube channel, so swing by and have a watch!


Thursday, July 27, 2017

The Black Coast: Mitra's Justice

As the Conan RPG rules become solidified for Modiphius I look toward the start of a campaign. I have always enjoyed the tales of the Black Coast and the Black Kingdoms and have decided to start my players in those humid and mysterious realms.

First we need to get them there. I have taken a look at a few videos on this matter, and really need to blame Black Magic Craft for his ship, it made me want one.

As I have worked on this things have changed here and there. I had no real plans going forward with this.

For sailing the rough oceans and trade routes of Argos I decided I wanted something a little bit more substantial, and so I give you a build for the mighty ship, "Mitra's Justice".

This ship will probably be a stand in for a lot of ships of size for the campaign, and I do plan on building a smaller one as well, more like what BMC created to work as a pirate vessel.

In the end I suspect I would do some things different, especially when it comes to the wood planking, but overall it is a very cool piece to have used in the campaign and once I get another ship complete it will allow for some extra cool miniature based scenarios.

I hope you all enjoy the build!

This is 1/2" blue Styrofoam.  It measures about 19" long and 5.5" wide.  The figure is a Reaper Bones Miniature.  This will form the basis for the ship.

Next I cut out the quarter deck and the forecastle deck.  The quarterdeck is doubled to give it a little more height.

Next, working with foam core, I began work on the sides by first measuring 1/2 the total hull length with a long sheet of paper and then transferring it, as well as the deck measurements. 

Once these measurements were transferred I cut them out to create the two sides of the hull.

Peeling the paper from the outer side of the foamcore first I then used a sharp knife to score the foam core so it would flex around the blue foam.

This was done at the front and back of the ship.

Next, using white glue I started gluing the main ship decks together.

Once the decks were together, I glued the hulls to the deck using more white glue with pins to hold everything in place.
I decided to change the boat up and add some fortifications to it.

Adding the back structure for the fortifications.

Foam core cut to make the base of the walls.

Everything dry fit.

Items are glued with white glue.

Cut cardstock into 1cm wide strips and hot glued to the hull.

Ship planking coming along.

Cutting boards for the fortifications and adding texture.

Ship wall planks ready to go.

Ship with most of it's external texture pieces.


Adding railings with gaps for gang planks.  Melted holes into the foam and hot glued the dowels into place.
Railing complete with a figure for scale.
Adding a back keel using foam core, test fitting foam core size.
Adding some basic texture to the back keel.
I decided to add an extension to the back to create the illusion of a larger cabin.  Have I mentioned I had no real plan?
Back view of the ship.
Foam extension glued onto the hull and keel.  This will also give us the advantage of having a stronger keel.
Adding wood planks around the cabin extension.  I will probably add some windows around the cabin as well.
I was unsure how I wanted to texture the decking.  I decided on individual planks.  Main deck
Forward deck planked.
Working on the rear deck.
Rear deck finished, now to work on the remaining exposed foam.
Back deck more or less completed.  Will still need a ships wheel.
Closing up the front.  Used regular and skinny popsicle sticks to add a stepping system to allow everything to match.
Cutting matching grooves into the deck hatch so it can still attach.
Main deck hatch glued into place.
Remaining parts of the ship covered in wood.  Temporary door placed for photo.
Cut and texture two identical popsicle sticks long enough to reach from the main deck to the top of the quarter deck.  Also cut out 5 or so bamboo skewers approximately wide enough to allow a miniature to climb the ladder.  Evenly mark spots you want to glue the rungs.
Glue the rungs in place with hot glue.
Add a dab of hot glue to the tops of the rungs and attach second stick, make sure the bottoms are even so the ladder will stand.
Attach, or don't, the ladder to the main deck and quarter deck of the ship.
 
Beginning to paint it all with a black base coat.
Was still missing something.  Quick look at some reference photos and I added this front piece to finish the look.  Foam and carved wooden dowel.
Finished the black base coat.
Adding a dark brown over the base coat.
Wooden planking of the ship.
Dry brushed with a lighter brown and adding nail details with a sharpie.
Mast.  Washers encased in a craft stick box glued to a carved dowel.  Cotton string added to the base of the mast.
Ship all together in a mock scenario. Pirate miniatures from Monolith's CONAN board game.