Time for some terrain, and this time it’s for myself rather than commission work. I took the plunge and bought a bunch of GF9 Battlefield in a Box series river sections. They come ‘pre-painted’, but pre-painted usually means “not useable in any way”.
Given how I have to take pictures of (and like to play with) miniatures of all kinds of historical periods and sci-fi/fantasy settings I’m always on the lookout for generic terrain. For quite a while now I’ve been debating with myself about getting some rivers. I planned to make some myself from acrylic mass (the stuff I made roads sections from last year), but never really got around to doing it. So I gave in and bought a few sets of GF9’s Battlefield in a Box river sections. I was asked to borrow my Dark Ages terrain for a SAGA table an event, so I thought it would be a good occasion to get some rivers done.
I was also curious about the product. It’s my first BFiaB set, because I’m naturally opposed to anything pre-painted (not the least due to the fact that the stuff most of the times looks **** poor) and a big fan of DIY when it comes to terrain. I got the stuff, got the sections out (they come with little baggies of static grass. In my opinion way too little for the amount of sections you get). The river banks are pre-painted (painted dark and drybrushed; looks rather nice, but it didn’t fit my terrain bases, so the river banks was the first thing I repainted.
The water itself is without any texture, has very, very slight brighter lines sprayed on and is really, really, really blue. Way too blue for my tastes. So I repainted that as well, using darker and more greenish colours. I also added some more lively stripe patterns and 1 or 2 layers of water effect. Barely any texture as they have to work for any scale to getting to detailled or specific would make it fit for one scale, but not for another. I still went for a quite blue colour, because, despite better knowledge of real rivers, I like the look on the table. Going too green would make it meld with the green surface too much, so I prefer a more blue look, but still somewhat natural-ish.
In the end I used some fine sand to add sand banks and to suggest possible fords (as I don’t have any real ford sections or bridges YET I thought this was a nice solution to get by). It also adds a nice effect to give some sections a more interesting look. I also glued on some clump foliage for additional vegetation. This would work at any scale as well. At 28mm/20mm it would be shrubbery, at 15mm/10mm it would be tall hedges and such and for 6mm/2mm it would be trees growing along the river.
In the end I used some fine sand to add sand banks and to suggest possible fords (as I don’t have any real ford sections or bridges YET I thought this was a nice solution to get by). It also adds a nice effect to give some sections a more interesting look. I also glued on some clump foliage for additional vegetation. This would work at any scale as well. At 28mm/20mm it would be shrubbery, at 15mm/10mm it would be tall hedges and such and for 6mm/2mm it would be trees growing along the river. In the pictures you can see the thinner streams with some 10mm figures around them.
…and wider river sections with some 28mm stuff:
All things said and done I’m not entirely sure it was worth the purchase. For what you get the river sections aren’t bad (once you’ve put some work into them), but they aren’t cheap either. I think that if I’d planned a bit better and used some acrylic mass I think the same results could have been achieved at about a fifth of the price. of course instead of a weekend it would have taken me about a week to get them done, because that acrylic stuff takes quite a while to cure properly.
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