Twigs make forests

Today I've got an idea which is nice and simple, and gives you a load of easy to make and easy on the eye terrain for very little outlay. Usually, wargames tables feature trees in full bloom, but some of the most striking photographs of the Great War are of trees blasted by artillery until they have lost every branch and scrap of leaf. Fortunately, it's the perfect time of year to recreate that look in scale.

* Hot glue gun and sticks
*A base (I've used a spare bit of plywood here)
* Sand
* PVA glue
* Paint and brushes
* Some twigs from the garden

1) Make sure the twigs are dry, and aren't filled with wee creepy crawlies. This is both for their sake and yours. Do you want to explain that the house is suddenly full of woodlice because you brought in a load of wood? Didn't think so!

2) Sort the twigs so you have ones that look right, and put a few on each base. Don't overcrowd a base or you won't be able to move your infantry through it. Grab the hot glue gun and stick the twigs to the base.

3) Paint slightly diluted PVA over the base, and cover it with sand. Once this has dried apply another coat of diluted PVA to seal in the sand. See Fig. 1.

4) Wait for the second coat of PVA to dry, then paint it. If you want, you could add some dead leaves, bits of grass, skulls or other detritus, but you can quite easily just paint the model as totally blasted and lifeless. See Figs. 2, 3 & 4.

5) There you go, folks. Nice and simple. You can get a very evocative forest in this way in absolutely no time at all. See Figs. 5&6.

Until next time, happy gaming!

Build a bigger bunker

Hi, I'm Pete, and I've been asked to contribute to this nifty blog. I have been fond for a fair few years of recycling bits and bobs to make terrain. I'm equally fond of vegan ice cream (since I'm a vegan), and I have loads of old containers littering the house. They're octagonal, so make good-looking bunkers, but smaller (or differently-shaped) ones work equally well. What I do is get the ice cream tub, cut a hole in its underside, and vision-slits in its sides, then knock up a door from some plasticard, and glue that on. I thicken up the walls with some foamcard secured with a hot glue gun, and make sure that the vision-slits go all the way through the wall. Then I apply a bit of diluted PVA glue, sprinkle sand over that, and let it dry. I apply another coat of diluted PVA glue so the sand doesn't fall off like the dandruff of someone who really needs a medicated shampoo, and when that's dry, I slap on the paint. Because it's mostly coated with sand, dry-brushing with successively lighter shades of grey (or other colours more suited to your gaming table) works brilliantly. You can set these things up so they have a massive vantage point from the front, all-round coverage, or strategic blind spots - whichever suits your style. Check out these pictures for an idea of what I mean.

We can rebuild them...

Ever had a piece of terrain that you no longer liked? Don't just chuck it out, recycle it! I put together these pieces of terrain a few years back during my Fallout 3 addiction and the beginning of my love for the post-apocalyptic genre. I rediscovered them a few weeks back whilst going through my terrain collection.
To be honest, I'd never been completely happy with them. They don't look terrible, but there was a few parts that annoyed me - partly as I don't seem to have been able to decide whether I wanted them still being utilised by the locals or completely abandoned to decay and also as you could see into the unpainted interior in some sections. 
I did what any good scavenger does - broke out the pliers and ripped them apart! I saved all the goodies and then went about rebuilding the first one into a lived-in post-apocalyptic home. To begin with, I got a screwdriver out and removed the plastic "glass" insert that bugged me so much.
After that, I went about covering up the windows with corrugated card and a mix of different materials, adding some foamboard struts to add strength to the whole thing. Lashings of hot glue sealed everything together! 
The finished (apart from painting and basing materials...) product! I added a chimney in the roof, some spare tires, a cog of some sort and used filler to close any gaps. The camper is mounted on an MDF base. I'm much happier with the results - it's quite clearly still being used and will look perfect in my shantytown!

If you have any more ideas for how any of these pieces could be used in terrain, please leave a comment!

Save those packing materials!

I'm always on the lookout for interesting packing materials, nicely shaped cans, boxes, decent corrugated card - anything that I might be able to use in one of my terrain projects!

This piece of packaging was the box that my old digital camera arrived in - to be honest, I think I was more excited about this than the camera itself!
The packaging is an eggbox-card shell, which you get all kinds of different electrical gadgets in. I've had this one nestled away with the idea of turning it into some Tatooine-esque post-apocalyptic shantytown buildings...
I separated the different sections of the cardboard with a craft knife and began to trim the edges to blend them better into MDF bases - I'll get 3 buildings out of this piece of packing material.
Before gluing the pieces to their separate bases/additional pieces, I used some junk materials (in this case, some polystyrene foam packing that I couldn't really use due to it's lack of durability, plus some scraps of foamboard) to add some sturdiness to the pieces, rather than having them hollow. As always with terrain, the hot glue gun is your friend!
Here's one of the pieces, combined with an old junked Rhino, various additions and some polyfilla (spackle for those in the US!) - these could work well in a lot of different urban environments - for example, as pre-fabricated dwellings.

If you have any more ideas for how any of these pieces could be used in terrain, please leave a comment!

Reinforcements! Please welcome Chris.

Chris from Chris' Miniature Woes has sportingly agreed to assist me with creating content to try and get Terrain from Junk back up and running again.  The goal is to get more "junk" posts up, and Chris also has big plans for some tutorials as well!

April is looking pretty swamped for me currently, but I hope throughout the summer months to get into the swing of some terrain building now that I own a house with a garage so I don't need to make a huge mess indoors!

So keep on the lookout for Chris' posts, definitely continue commenting with ideas and if you have any further suggestions, or are interested in becoming a TfJ author yourself, please contact us at

Heads Up: GW's Great Gameboard Giveaway.

Games Workshop is giving away a completely finished Realms of Battle gameboard to some lucky person who submits some terrain photos.  I know of five people (2 + 3)  who can enter this with a quick email!!

The short version;

Be a registered user of the Games Workshop website and Email a few pictures to GW of any piece of terrain you have made and painted by Friday the 3rd of September.

The long version (copy & paste from GW site);

Right then, on to the competition: Warhammer World are just about to run their first ever Realm of Battle Workshop, where you get to paint and texture your very own gameboard over the course of a day. Intrigued, I've decided to have a go myself and have booked a special session for tomorrow. Now, as I already own two gameboards, and we've plenty here in the office I thought I'd give my finished gameboard away, in what I'm cheerfully calling 'The Great gameboard Giveaway'. So, to win yourself a Citadel Realm of Battle Gameboard all you have to do is email me a picture or two of a great-looking terrain piece that you've made and painted. The closing date is Friday the 3rd of September. Oh and don't worry, if you're one of the dozen or so folk that sent me some pictures of your terrain over the weekend, I'll count your entries too.

Unless you're particularly interested in the legal stuff for the giveaway or are having a slow day at work, you can stop reading here.
Gameboard Giveaway : Competition Terms & Conditions
  1. Entrants must be 12 years of age or over and must be registered account holders with Games Workshop Limited ("Promoter"). Employees of Promoter may not enter.
  2. Entries must be original and the sole work of the entrant. Entries submitted on behalf of third parties will not be considered.
  3. The winning entry will be chosen by Promoter's Global Web Team and the winner notified by email by Monday 6th September 2010. The judges' decision will be final and no conversation or correspondence will be entered into.
  4. The winner will receive a customised Citadel Realm of Battle Gameboard and have their entry published on Promoter's website.
  5. Entries should be submitted by email to: between midnight (GMT) on 18 August 2010 and midnight (GMT) on 3rd September 2010. Late entries will not be considered.
  6. By entering the competition entrants agree that Promoter may use their name, age and place of residence (in the format Rob W, 21, of Nottingham, UK) for advertising and promotional purposes.
  7. By entering the competition entrants agree that their submissions will become the property of the Promoter in accordance with the Promoter's submissions policy (click here).
  8. Promoter reserves the right to vary any of these terms and conditions without notice. In such event Promoter will make reasonable efforts to communicate changes to entrants.
  9. This competition will be governed by the laws of England and Wales and subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts.
Entry to the competition indicates acceptance of these terms and conditions as final and legally binding.
Promoter: Games Workshop Limited, Willow Road, Lenton, Nottingham, NG7 2WS.

Data Protection:
Games Workshop Ltd is registered as a Data Controller in the United Kingdom under the Data Protection Act 1998 (the "Act"). The data given as part of this competition will be held and processed under the terms of the Act. We may use that data for communication, administration of the competition, and security purposes. We will not sell, share or give any information given to us as part of this competition to anyone outside the Games Workshop group of companies without your explicit consent or unless the law permits or requires us to do so.
By submitting your personal information you consent to the processing of your personal data as set out above and you confirm that the information is accurate and complete.

WINNER - terrain building contest #2

voting has closed for the second terrain building contest, so it's time to announce the winner!

poll results placed John in first with 48 points, Chris in second with 22 points and Thomas in third with 14 points.
John earned 1 bonus point, Chris earned 2 bonus points and Thomas earned 4 bonus points.

Congratulations John for your excellent cat bowl outpost, please send your mailing address to so your prize can be sent.

final results;
John (48+1) = 49 points
Chris (22 + 2) = 24 points
Thomas (14 + 4) = 18 points

thanks to all for participating!

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