Tuesday, March 6, 2012

SAGA, Warhammer or any Wargame Terrain - The Great Lake How to!

In our last post, we told you about the great lake we were finishing for Saga and Warhammer games.
Well here we show you some of the basics in creating this great terrain piece!

We mentioned this one is over 15 inches at its longest dimension and 10 inches across. It makes an awesome barrier to keep those pesky Norman cavalry off your flank!

We started by cutting a shape from hardboard. The shape used lends itself to having a crossing if you and your opponent agree ahead of time. We counted it as swampy terrain, passable but at half the normal movement. We used joint compound to build up the edges and dry ground.

If you want, glue on some small rocks and debris to suit your terrain. Let everything dry thoroughly and prime it in black or any dark color. Using three successively lighter shades of brown, apply them in a drybrush fashion to bring out the textures.

Here is a 28mm Reaper miniature added for scale.
We used a pin drill to make holes for the "reeds", filled them with craft glue and shoved the grass into the holes. We added a mixture of Woodland Scenics "Coarse Turf" and old parsley flakes in and around the tall grasses. Then we applied a mixture of blended turf and medium tan ballast, both from Woodland Scenics, all around the edges. This should blend with your tabletop playing surface.

Lastly apply the base colors for your water. We used a medium blue for most of the water. Mix in a darker shade for "deeper" water. We also added green for algae in the shallows.

Here it is, ready for our water.

We used clear acrylic caulking which only cost about 3 dollars. Make sure to remove any excess loose turf or debris before this step. Apply the caulking in a very thin layer, no more than a sixteenth of an inch. Keeping your finger wet by continuously rinsing in clean water, gently smooth the caulking to an even surface. Move around the center to the edges keeping in line with the shore. This will produce ridges that look like natural water motion lapping off the shore.
Blend the watery caulking into your shore to leave a wet look.

Next is making waves in the windswept deeper area. Using this high end serious modelling spoon, which we found at the local fast food restaurant for free, smack the wet caulking repeatedly.

This will leave small rises that simulate waves. Add as much as you want. We went over the area where the dark blue was painted.

Then let it all dry.

When dry it should resemble this texture.

Lastly we added a drybrush pale blue over the waves to highlight them. It makes a nice touch of realism to the water.

Here you can see the overall look of the finished waves.

Here's the swampy end.

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact us. We'd be glad to help you build one of your own or build one for you!

Have a Great Battle,
The Old Crow


  1. I can't wait to do this now. Been itching to do a nice water obstacle for a bit now. Thanks!

  2. Sounds great, let us know how it turns out.