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Prior to my move (in February) I'd stalled out on my last terrain project, a modular space ship built from Hirst Arts blocks that I'm making for a friend. Since then, I've got no mojo for that project, and rather than waste the relatively good weather we've been having, I've been using the time to cast fantasy blocks, particularly from some of the newer molds that i've picked up. The move (from an apartment to a house) means that I've finally got some real space to store terrain projects after they've been built. In addition to building myself a modular fantasy set of cavern and dungeon pieces (a la Dwarven Forge), I've also had a number of building projects that I've wanted to work on. Foremost among those is a wizard's tower for the archmage in my D&D campaign. She is one of only two players who have played the entire 6+ year campaign with the same character. Early on in their career, I used a pre-gen called "An Evening's Entertainment" to introduce a small inn on a trade route. It was close to Halloween, and the adventure was a bit of a suspense/thriller in which a hive of death scarab beetles find their way into the inn through the mushroom caves attached to the back. They slaughter everyone, and leave behind a gory, gruesome scene that the players discover only a short time later. It was one of the most suspense-filled, tension-driven adventures in the campaign, and it left a mark on the players. So much so, that after they'd eradicated the bugs and cleaned up the mess, they installed a family of refugees as the new inn owners, and made it a regular stop in their travels. The wizard was heavily involved in this process, and has talked about using this location for her tower. So, this wizard tower is actually a two-part project. The first will be building the tower; the second will be building the nearby Sign of the Mushroom inn. This will give the rest of the characters a place to stay when visiting her. It also provide me an opportunity to build some underground secret passages that connect the two together, as a secondary means of entrance and egress from the tower. To start, I'm using the 4" and 8" Round Tower molds (#52 and #64 respectively, from Hirst), as well as the Ruined Tower mold (#65). The 8" Round Tower will provide the bulk of the structural blocks for the first few floors of the tower. Between the 4" and the Ruined Tower molds, I get the flooring I want to not have to make a custom floor for the tower. The 4" Round will provide some internal structure on the first floor, and will form the core of the top level of the tower, also granting access to the roof. I will use the decorative pieces (arches and columns) off of the Ruined Tower to provide additional internal structure on the lower levels while still maintining a more open feeling, and open up the top level to create a balcony feeling. The tower will also include a basement. I've decided to go with fieldstone blocks from the Fieldstone Wall and Accessory molds (#70 and #71 respectively) for the walls, and the Flagstone Floor Tile mold (#260) for the floors and ceilings (I'll explain this later). I've opted for a 5"x5" area for the basement with a 1/2" border around it; walls sitting on that border will effectively make this a 6"x6" area. This will create the slightest bit of overhang relative to the tower above it (6"x6" on the hypotenuse = roughly 8.5") but nothing that can't be hidden relatively easily. The basement (and most levels of the tower, for that matter) will be 3" tall. As the floor blocks are only a 1/4" thick, and my walls that stand on them are 2 1/2" tall, I plan to use a 6"x6" grid of Flagstone Floor Tile blocks face down on top of the basement. These will be attached to the first floor of the tower, which will also act as a keyed mechanism for setting the first floor of the tower in place correctly. In addition, the basement will also feature a working secret door, in which a section of the wall will swing out to reveal a passagewar. This passageway will be 2" wide, with a 1/2" border for the walls. It will be the same height, and use inverted Flagstone Floor Tiles for a removeable ceiling for game play. I've cast enough parts from all the mold in question to at least start the project (and perhaps even finish it; we'll see if additional casting is required). I dry-fit peices for the basement yesterday and started glueing up wall sections today. Once they are dry, I'll get some pics added to the thread. ~v
So, if you don't follow the HA forum, Bruce has just completed 4 new molds to decorate all those awesome building you make. Check out the thread at http://hirstarts.yuku.com/topic/5076/The-Inn-Market-Accessory-Mold-Thread (3 molds, bars, tables, chairs, bottles, buckets, ohemgee a lot) http://hirstarts.yuku.com/topic/6077/1-square-wood-floor-mold (4th mold, floor tiles) Pages 21, 24, and 26 have pictures of most of what goes in to the molds (first link, second link is only three pages). I cannot wait to get my hands on these. -Dave