Sergio's blog: hints, ideas, pictures and news about SDS (and more) from the author

Sunday, April 21, 2013

New terrain project

Several weeks ago, I was looking for some interesting batreps on TMP and I found this:
I was astonished. For the first time I saw a realistic terrain, with rolling hills built in and without any visible artificial object on it. The pics were made by Jeffrey Knudsen, aka War Artisan. I avidly read the battle report (fantastic 10mm figures, by the way) and I discovered two more facts: 1) the rules used were "Napoleonic Command" written by the same person; 2) online there are also a couple of tutorials: one for making the cloth ( by elliottwjames and another - made by the War Artisan - that explains how he built the hills I liked so much (
Now, I have Napoleonic Command and I think it's one of the most innovative rules I've ever seen: in few pages, Jeffrey was able to include many of the game design concepts I really like (attrition, no markers, few modifiers , see my previous posts about these under Game Design) creating a fast moving, clean and elegant mechanism.
Unfortunately, Napoleonic Command is out of print, but Jeffrey will - sooner or later - publish a 2nd edition, as his notes say.
Back to the topic, I had to try and build one of this wonderful terrain cloths so I asked Jeffrey directly. He was so kind to answer, giving me some more hints and encouragement. My trip to Hellana Con last week was mainly to buy the flock needed, and a visit to a local hardware store gave me the rest.
 I started friday afternoon and I am taking pics while I go on, so I will probably post the whole process soon (adding here and there some mistakes to be avoided). In the meantime, here is the starting point (a cotton cloth 200x140 cm. where I designed the roads and rivers with a marker):
And here is the result so far:

It's taking more than expected, but I'm slow and think twice before every step. I'm also trying not to mess  the room up too much (this is a work better done in the garage, but I haven't one). Today (sunday) I should be able to finish about 60% of the cloth, if I have enough latex.
And this was all thanks to Jeffrey...


  1. Waiting to see the final thing!

  2. Unfortunately I ran out of latex. will go on next week...