The same scene used in the review of the Roman Pavement, except that the model of the City House Ruin has been turned around to change the picture. The terrain module is based on 10 mm chipboard, the exposed edges of which still need to be airbrushed or painted in the darker colour of the road surface. Another way to hide the chipboard is to cover the edges with dark brown tape or strips of felt. The separate terrain modules interlock to form a large playing area for simulation games. Wargamers will find this type of terrain very practical, because new scenarios are quick and easy to set up. When not in use, the terrain modules may be used as display bases for figures and vehicles.
Tools & Materials
- 10 mm Chipboard, cut to 50 × 25 cm
- 1.5 mm Posterboard
- Roman Pavement Nr. 652
- PVA Glue
- Interior Filler
- Acrylic Paint
- Pencil or Pen
- Size 5 Flat Brush
Modular terrain systems are a little unrealistic, because the natural landscape does not fit into the typical square or hexagonal grid used in simulation games. One way around this problem is to use the grid system only along roads, and in built-up areas, where humans have already introduced geometric patterns. Outside of these areas, hills and woods are set up to overlap the borders of the grid squares at random, and latex roads cross the terrain along the most likely route.
50 × 25 cm is a perfect size for road modules, it leaves enough space beside the road to include a block of buildings. The block on the other side of the road is on another module. Placed in the same orientation as the first module, this second road section completes the city street. Placed facing each other, the two modules form a main street, twice as wide. The modules should not normally be identical in design, although one would expect a certain uniformity in suburban communities.
The module shown here is set up as follows, from bottom to top: 5 m of road (70 mm), 1.5 m of sidewalk (21 mm), and two Building Sites with 14.76 × 11.30 m, and 17.28 × 9 m of ground space respectively. The plot on the right has the ground space of the POLA City House Ruin. The plot on the left is a little larger than the POLA auto repair shop. The model can be made to fit by adding a strip of pavement to the rear of the shop, converting that part of the plot to a parking lot. The buildings are not glued on, they may be swapped with other models to add variety. The easiest change of scenery is to turn the buildings around. An intact building my be used at first, only to be replaced by the City House Ruin later on in the simulation.
Do not Tilt
The building models are surrounded by raised sidewalks on three sides, and they stand exactly on their assigned plots. The sidewalks are made of 1.5 mm posterboard, covered with a thin layer of interior filler. Tiles are carved into the still moist filler with a pencil or the tip of a pen, and painted afterwards. The joint between the building and the sidewalk is hardly noticeable. Care should be taken when the modules are used at public demonstration games. Anyone not familiar with these modules may be tempted to pick them up for inspection, not realizing that the buildings are not permanently attached. A fall from great height is the likely result.
The buildings may be used without the road module, the module itself is a flat piece of terrain which may be stacked for ease of storage. If modern scenery items are left unattached, the basic module may be compatible with different historic periods. Road modules may also be used to display figures and vehicles, they are narrow enough to fit on most shelves. At public events, vehicles should be secured with pianowire pushed through small holes in the road surface, and secured on the underside of the chipboard.