Monday, 10 May 2021

Getting sidetracked Again...

As usual, I've got several things that I'm currently working on for the print & paste terrain (giant spider miniatures, a water-wheel and treadmill crane, to name just a few), plus a whole bunch of stuff I'm excited to announce when the channel hits 10K subs. But, like the title says ...I've got sidetracked by another little project.

Well, I say little, it's tiny really (at least in scale) - but let me explain the idea first (note that something similar to this was suggested by a viewer - but I can't remember who that was now)...

Anyway, even though I like to draw maps (something you'll be well aware of if you've followed me for any length of time), I've never really liked drawing town/village maps (and as far as city maps go - that's a big NOPE).

(note that, while there are several generators and various software packages that can help in that regard, and I do use stuff like that from time to time, it's not something I ever really get very excited about using)

On the other hand, I do tend to drool over pictures of folks' town/city/village terrain set-ups (a whole table of Dwarven Forge's city stuff for example) ...I mean, it just looks so darn cool.

However, for my own games that kind of terrain is probably not going to get much use (as 'town stuff' is much more likely to be 'theater of the mind' - as all the cool kids are calling it nowadays) - plus I wouldn't have the space to use more than half a dozen buildings at a time in any case.

But what if I were to combine the usefulness of a map (I mean, it's always good to have a map to show the players right?) and the 'coolness' of some 3D terrain ...and maybe make something like this:

 

(note that these are very early WIP/prototype images, so there's no proper 'textures' glued to anything yet)

As you can see, they're pretty small - and you could probably fit a whole village into an area the size of a single sheet of paper.

They're also pretty easy to put together too (if you've assembled any of my chests and crates, it's a very similar process). Here's a quick look at the underside (which might make things a bit clearer):

Furthermore, due to the way I'm designing them, they'd be the same size/shape/colours/etc. as the 28mm scale buildings that I've already made (just a LOT smaller). So I could make the whole village in this tiny scale, and maybe just the main building at the larger (miniatures) scale ...if I'm planning a specific encounter there.

 - a picture showing the two different scales-

I could even go a step further and develop some kind of hex-builder-system (where each hex tile would be big enough to contain a handful of small buildings, or a single chapel, or a villa, etc.) - so that I could use them over and over again to create a bunch of different layouts.

Does that sound like madness? ...or is it actually a good idea?

Is it something you'd use yourself? ...or does it fall into the 'it looks cool, but I'll pass' category? 

For my own part, I do have to admit that I'm far more excited about attempting something like this, than I am about sitting down and drawing a bunch of village maps :)


EDIT: here's the hex idea:

Monday, 12 April 2021

Broken Wooden Floors/Floorboards

For my latest 'print & paste' offering I thought that I would continue with something similar to the recent lava tiles (in the sense that the 'floor/base' of the tile is made up of two separate layers), and make something that could be used to represent abandoned buildings, haunted mansions, and that kind of thing.

And while I had a few teething problems to begin with, I think they've turned out OK in the end (though they do look better if you add a few extra pieces here and there - like the little bit of the sack texture that I've glued to the one shown below).

Anyway, as usual, here's the video (over on YouTube) that shows how easy it is to put it all together...

...and the (pay-what-you-want) pdf file can be found over on DriveThruRPG as normal :)

So, here's hoping you like 'em!!!

Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Lava (dungeon) Tiles

It's been a bit of a rough month or so, and I wasn't sure if I'd be able to get anything released in March - as right at the end of February this happened:

The annoying thing is that I've been super careful for an entire year (though obviously not careful enough) and unfortunately, it knocked me off my feet for a good while.

But, as you can tell, I bounced back (eventually) ...and I couldn't wait to get back to the crafting table and get to work on these lava tiles:

- the first prototype -

And as you can see, this whole concept could be used to make pits, flooded areas, and so on - just by using a different texture in place of the lava (note that I plan on making a 'tips' video on this).

Anyway, as usual, here is the video that shows how I put it all together...

 

...and the (pay-what-you-want) pdf file can be found HERE.

So, here's hoping you can put it to good use!!!

Wednesday, 24 February 2021

Puzzle Room & Player Handout

 This is another one of those projects that I've been thinking about for a while ...and I thought it was about time that I actually sat down and did it!

So, as you can see in the picture above, I've created a floor tile with a dragon-like emblem upon the floor. Furthermore, there is a stone plinth in the middle of the chamber - which is represented by the handout shown below.


At some point during the course of the encounter/adventure the players will find a bunch of jigsaw-like puzzle pieces that will fit into the recess of this plinth...

...and the 'picture' that they make (when assembled) is the same emblem that is found on the floor (so it shouldn't be hard to figure out ;) ).

Anyway, as usual, here is the video that shows how I put it all together...

...and the (pay-what-you-want) pdf file can be found HERE.

So, here's hoping you like it!

PS. The channel is getting close to 10K subs now - so if you're enjoying this stuff, and haven't already subscribed, feel free to do so (and maybe even share your favourite video with someone else that might find it interesting/useful) ...as I'd love to get to 10,000 by my birthday in July.

Thursday, 4 February 2021

More Tips & Tricks

 So, I'm a bit late updating the blog with news of my last two videos ...but better late than never right?

Anyway, back in January I posted a video about making a whole (mini) dungeon that can be stored inside a single box (with the box itself being part of the terrain). Here it is if you missed it:


Then, yesterday, I released another video discussing a method that I sometimes use to pick up cheap miniatures...


...and if you stick around until the end of the video, you can see how I then used those miniatures as inspiration for a little dungeon encounter.

Now, obviously, since I've been messing around with these 'bonus' videos, that has meant that I've not really worked on any new 'print & paste' textures of late - but that's about to change - as I have an idea for a nice combination of 'player handout' and 'dungeon tile' that I'm about to start work on ...but more news on that when I have something to show.

Anyway, I hope you can get some use out of these two 'tips & tricks' videos ...they've been a nice change of pace for me ...but now I'm itching to get back to designing new textures ;)

Thursday, 7 January 2021

Tea Light Braziers

Following on from my last video, this latest one (and the first video of 2021) continues the 'lighting effects' theme - but this time I've used some of those cheap (battery powered) tealights that you can get pretty much anywhere.

- a picture of the lights in action (with some of the PCs from my online game) -

Anyway, as is usual with this kind of thing, here's the video that shows how I put it all together...

...and HERE is the link to the pdf file over on DriveThruRPG (as always, it's a pay-what-you-want download - so feel free to pay as much/little as you like ;) ).

So yeah - I hope you like them, and I hope that you can put them to good use!

Friday, 1 January 2021

Using my (VTT) tiles in Roll20

 If you have ever loaded a map with it's own grid into a virtual table top, you may have come across the issue of trying to align the pre-drawn grid of the map, with the default grid of the VTT itself (this can be particularly annoying if the map has a border of irregular size).

However, with my own maps and tiles it's a pretty straight forward process (or at least it is in Roll20) - so I thought I would discuss the method I use to get the tile to align with the grid (the whole process takes about 10 to 15 seconds).

So, to begin with, I make sure that I have the map layer active...


 ...and then, assuming the map has already been uploaded to my library, I'll drag it onto the battlemat area.

Now, as you can see, it will rarely transfer at the right size - so right click on the image and choose Advanced > Set Dimensions...

...and because most of my maps are multiples of 12 (i.e. the small tiles are 12 x 12 squares, and the larger tiles are 24 squares), simply change the 'pixels' pull down menu to 'units' and input the number of squares that the map contains (so in this instance I've used my latest tile - which is 24 x 24 squares).

And, as you can see below, that will resize the map and align it perfectly to the inbuilt grid of Roll20.

As I say, the whole process takes a little over 10 seconds - so you should be able to build a nice looking map in just a couple of minutes.

Now, I don't know if it's quite as easy as that in other VTTs (as I say, Roll20 was the first one I became familiar with - and since it works well enough for me, I've stuck with it) - but if there is a similar trick, then feel free to post it in the comments.

Anyway, I hope that was of help. It's the method I use for my own maps, and it seems to work rather well :)

 

(NOTE: you can find all of my own map tiles HERE ...there's currently over 400 of 'em)