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Jordan Peacock

Fallout Terrain Elements (Warsenal, Antenocitis Workshop)

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A friend of mine (and fellow Fallout enthusiast), Chris Thesing, loaned me a box of MDF/plastic/resin terrain pieces he'd picked up from Warsenal and Antenocitis Workshop, in the hopes that I might be able to use them for my upcoming Fallout-themed games.  (Well, that, and once I'm done, he gets them back, painted up, and I don't have to worry about where to store them for long.  ;)  Win-win!)


Warsenal and Antenocitis Workshop terrain is usually engineered with the Infinity game in mind, which isn't QUITE in keeping with Fallout's retro-futuristic post-apocalyptic aesthetic.  However, there are various ways in which I can "brand" such pieces to fit in better, and then "grunge it up" for a post-apocalyptic setting.



To start off, I've been taking measurements of various available surfaces on the terrain pieces, grabbing Fallout poster images from the game (and a few retro images that just happen to have about the right "feel"), using retro-themed fonts (from FontDiner, especially), and then printing off and cutting out, and seeing if it all fits.




Most of the sets I have to work with are from "Warsenal," a local terrain-maker.  They consist of little packs of laser-cut MDF and plastic sheets, including some "glowing" translucent plastic elements for that cyberpunk touch here and there.





Nothing quite beats a BILLBOARD for being easily "brandable" for a particular setting.  The Warsen.al "billboard" pack was therefore pretty high up on my list.  These things are actually intended to perch atop a building (and will probably do so atop some Plasticville O-scale buildings I've been cobbling together and "post-apocalypticizing"), and they aren't designed to stack up like this, but I just found that they perched well enough like this when I wanted to take a snapshot so ... why not?  Images are cobbled together from Nuka-Cola and Vault-Tec imagery from Fallout in Photoshop in order to better fit the peculiar dimensions, with some "torn paper" texturing on the edges.  I also made use of FontDiner's retro fonts for some of the text replacement (e.g., the "FREE Nuka-Blaster" message at the bottom of the Nuka-Cola billboard).


The billboards are cut MDF, and assemble fairly easily with Tacky Glue.  The set also comes with some laser-cut translucent "neon" plastic pieces that serve as "spotlights."  Why would they still be glowing in the post-apocalyptic world of Fallout?  Well, that's because so many things (especially lights) seem to have their own nuclear power sources that last 200+ years, so you can experience the fun of wandering around in a vault with creepily flickering lights and eerie automated announcements over crackling speakers, vs. the much more realistic and BORING likelihood of pitch-black darkness and dull silence.  (And who'd want THAT?)





Another Warsenal project was a set of pallets.  They come in a set of 8, with the main support boards made of laser-cut MDF, and the much thinner planks made of plastic (with laser-etched "nail holes").  One might think that such pallets could just be made from cardboard or craft sticks with a hobby knife and some patience ... and you'd be *right* ... but the nice thing about these laser-cut pieces is the PRECISION I'm just not going to easily get when I'm cutting things out by hand.  What's more, the MDF support pieces have shallow ridges/grooves that serve as guides for where to attach the planks in orderly fashion.  Otherwise, it'd probably end up looking like these pallets had been assembled by ... I dunno ... a clumsy giant with thick fingers?


Painting was pretty easy.  I found it advantageous to spray-coat the pieces while still in the "sprue" in a light color, to provide some "anchoring" for the plastic planks (and also to make it easier to see which side had the "nail holes" etched, so I could make sure those were outside).  Once the pieces were all assembled, I spray painted the things white again, painted in slightly watered-down "Territorial Beige" acrylic paint, dry-brushed with flat white acrylic, then swirled a brush down in the bottom of my paintbrush water jar to get a nice grey-brown GRUNGE, and then flicked/speckled that on the pieces for a bit of oil-stain and splatter, to make things all the more "grungy."  (Sure, after 200+ years in the elements, it's far more likely that the pallets would be NONEXISTENT, rather than merely a bit mussed up, but ... eh ... chalk it up to futuristic manufacturing techniques?)


In the background on the right is another pallet with some barrels on it.  That was actually custom-made by Chris Thesing on his 3D printer.  I made some custom paper "labels" in Photoshop, using the Red Rocket label (from Fallout) and a rusty-barrel texture, to fit into the recessed areas on the main body of the barrels, and then I painted the exposed surfaces a mix of "Rust Orange," some washes of "Graphite Gray" and "Melted Chocolate Brown," with some flat white dry-brushing to try to get the supporting bands to roughly fit with the look of the printed rusty-barrel textures.  The 3D-printed pallet was painted using the same scheme as the Warsenal pallets.


The brick wall ruined pieces are (I believe) some loose resin Armorcast pieces.  I was going to put some tattered remains of Fallout-themed posters, signs, etc., on them, but the problem is that they were sculpted in such a way that it looks like there are remnants of plaster clinging to sections of the brick.  In that case, if the walls are so wasted that the plaster has been knocked off, there's no reason a POSTER would still be clinging to any sections with exposed brick (and the patches of plaster just aren't large enough for a sign or poster of note).  Ah well.  I guess not EVERY last thing has to scream "FALLOUT!" to still be usable for such a setting.  ;)




Then, some more "brandable" terrain: some Antenocitis Workshop resin "tri-ad" pieces.  Technically, these aren't fully assembled, as there are some "neon" plastic rod pieces that are meant to be cut to length and inserted into the recessed corners (for lighting, I suppose), but I was mostly focused upon making some custom poster inserts for the panels.  To accomplish this, I scanned the paper poster inserts included with the set to get the dimensions just so, and used various Fallout-themed artwork (some official, some fan art, some just retro art force-fit into the Fallout universe), with a bit of FontDiner text (Sparkly and Swanky typefaces, mostly) to fit in.  These are for a specific scenario taking place at a Repconn Aerospace Museum, so there's a mix of ads for recognizable Fallout products (especially by Repconn subsidiaries, such as RobCo and Abraxo), and then things that might plausibly represent exhibits.  Once I'm done, I might swap out some of the ads with some more generally useful to the Fallout universe ... but, honestly, who's going to be looking THAT closely, anyway?  


The important thing is that the pieces give a general sense of the "retro-futuristic" setting -- not that the players are going to feel compelled to lean in and make doubly sure that the text on the poster reads exactly the way the GM is narrating it.  (At least, I hope they won't be doing that.  That would be sad.)


Other, more involved Warsenal & Antenocitis Workshop pieces are still in progress, as there's only so much room on my little portable workstation (and I have to keep putting it away in between crafting sessions).

Edited by Jordan Peacock
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I want to play in your world.


Welllll, if you happen to be in the vicinity of Tampa, Florida in late October, around the time of Necronomicon (http://www.stonehill.org/necro.htm) there would certainly be some opportunities.  :)  I plan on running some playtest games in the next few weeks before the convention, using my regular player group as the "test team" while we're in between campaigns anyway.  


(Another member of the group just wrapped up his turn as GM for an Iron Kingdoms Unleashed campaign.  I'm next up to bat AFTER the convention to take the Iron Kingdoms campaign to the high seas.  Other projects on my worktable include kitbashed Mage-Knight-Steam-Golems-as-rusty-sea-themed-warjacks, and steam-and-magic-powered paddleboat conversions.)


But after THAT, I hope to finally get to run my Fallout-themed campaign.  I suppose that gives me some time to flesh things out a bit more.

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Warsen.al benches, with a bit of paint.  I procrastinated for a while, uncertain of just what color scheme would be appropriate.  (Dark green and brown for a "city park" look?  Grey and rusty, as if the frame had been made of metal?)  In the end, I opted to just go with turquoise and grey, just ... because those are the paints I had handy at the moment, and I was sick of spending so much time being indecisive, and, hey, I could always just paint them over again LATER.  I painted the frames, base, and planks separately, then assembled them, and the fit is tight enough that it holds together without requiring glue -- so the prospect for repainting later when a better color scheme hits me isn't so far-fetched.


A nice little touch about the benches is that their bases have a stylized shape to the back that lets two benches "interlock" fairly easily when placed back to back, making it easier to line them up just so.  I suppose, if one really wanted, they could be permanently glued together that way, but I prefer the flexibility of leaving it so they can be separated, so I could opt to have a bench backed up against a wall, fence, or other obstacle.


The seat-backs are decorated with custom printed "labels" I made in Photoshop by taking various Fallout images (mostly billboard designs) and shuffling around the elements to squeeze them into the available space.  Sure, repainting the pieces would require tearing those off, but I could print more.


That figure in the foreground is Reaper Chronoscope #50143 "Agatha Fox, Female Spy," with a little putty added.  I don't consider it finished, though it's "good enough for the table" for my purposes.  I was painting up a few minis to represent assorted civilians/settlers/survivors the heroes might encounter, and the thought hit me what with Agatha's trenchcoat that with a little work, I could probably give her an outfit reminiscent of Piper from Fallout 4 (intrepid reporter for the "Publick Occurrences" {sic} newspaper of Diamond City).  Somehow the hat didn't look so horrendously oversized when I was applying it, but the photo makes that unavoidable.  I think I'll go back, remove the hat, and try again with a SMALLER crumb of putty.  (That, and the face needs some work, the scarf needs some work -- it ALL needs some work.  ;)  )

Edited by Jordan Peacock
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Necronomicon 2016 is over with, and I made use of some of the terrain pieces for a couple of Fallout-themed scenarios using the Savage Worlds RPG rules.




One scenario featured a running road battle, with Micro Machines cars and playing pieces from an old 1980s "Thunder Road" board game representing the various vehicles, and some repainted Hot Wheels track sections for the roadway.  Billboards come in lots of sizes, I suppose, so I still got some use out of the Warsen.al billboard as some sideline decoration.





For skirmish-scale encounters, the billboard saw use again, this time perched atop some of my buildings -- but just for opening scenes.  The Warsen.al billboard is very front-heavy, and designed to be permanently attached to a building top -- though I prefer a bit more flexibility -- so what I really need to do for future use is to either give it some sort of base with a little more forward support, or else weigh it down in the back for greater stability.  All it took was one player to bump his chair against the table and -- *WOBBLE - CRASH* -- that billboard didn't stay on top of that Plasticville Diner for very long.

Oh, and as for how the Nuka-Cola truck "magically" appears in both scenes despite the scale difference, that's because I made a crude little custom papercraft version of it for the micro-scale road battle, reserving the original one (a Hot Wheels transporter) as set decoration for scenes with the action taking place at regular 32mm scale.


One nice thing about having most of the cars in such tiny size for the road battles: This convention, I was able to pack all my miniatures (not counting scenery!) into a single Portable Warfare "Sergeant" bag, rather than strapping together a tower of them to lug around as with previous conventions.


Ah yes -- obligatory Reaper mention: The Bones "Starship Generator" (80053) took on a surprisingly important role in my second Fallout scenario, as the group (once having acquired a small tractor and a trailer, and exhibiting a tendency to grab everything that isn't nailed down, and quite a few things that ARE) managed to put it to critical use in the explosive final showdown with the bad guys in "Planetarium of the Apes." 

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Okay, this isn't really TERRAIN, per se, and not even MINIATURES (it's 1:1 scale!) but I just found this in my mailbox this morning:




One of the players in my Fallout-themed convention scenarios sent me these.  Apparently they're homemade!  At first I thought they might just be bottlecaps spray-painted white, with laser-printed stickers on them, but I checked the surface, and they're smooth.  I've got to find out how this was done.

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Okay, this isn't really TERRAIN, per se, and not even MINIATURES (it's 1:1 scale!) but I just found this in my mailbox this morning:




One of the players in my Fallout-themed convention scenarios sent me these.  Apparently they're homemade!  At first I thought they might just be bottlecaps spray-painted white, with laser-printed stickers on them, but I checked the surface, and they're smooth.  I've got to find out how this was done.

Wow! Those actually look better than the official ones Bethesda handed out at their booth at PAX a few years ago.
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