Friday, November 18, 2011

Thinking About Building Necron Terrain

I’m still reading and absorbing the new Necron codex and I’ve started building some new models.  I’ve got an immortal squad and an annihilator barge that are just about done and a few more models in construction.  In the mean time I’ve been thinking about building some Necron terrain.
I’m one of those players who would rather loose badly with a well painted army on a table full of good looking terrain than win with a plastic grey army on a table full of felt circle “woods” and cardboard buildings.  To that end, I’m looking at creating some Necron themed terrain to go with my metal warriors.
I love Hirst Arts Molds(  Bruce Hirst sells a line of silicone molds that model builders can use to cast plaster blocks used to build all kinds of neat terrain.  I’ve got many of his gothic and sci-fi molds.  He also sells a line of Egyptian themed molds that I’d considered in the past for Necrons, but while Necrons have a certain Egyptian vibe, it wasn’t close enough for me to pull the trigger.  With the reboot of the Necrons to be more Tomb Kings In Space, the Egyptian theme is a closer fit.  But to tie the whole thing together I’m going to need some blocks with Necron glyphs on them.
After wondering at the marvels of 3D printing recently, I decided to produce my own 3D Necron glyphs to combine with Hirst Arts Egyptian molds to create some Necron terrain.
Unfortunately I’m an old fogey.  As a point of reference, when I learned drafting in college, they still taught it with a drafting board and a T-square.  Over the years I’ve learned 2D CAD, but haven’t made the leap into 3D modeling.  I ended up designing some blocks in 2D and commissioning a 3D artist to put them into a printable format.  After that I sent the file to ( for printing.

Two weeks later, there’s a package of nifty little blocks in the mail.  That is just too cool for words.  Here’s a pic of the finished blocks printed in plastic.

As a comparison, here’s one of the Hirst Arts blocks with hieroglyphics. 

Unfortunately, I’m not ready to build just yet.  As you can see above the HA blocks have a pocked and worn finish.  Now I’ve now got to make a mold of the printed blocks, cast them in dental plaster and then I have to sandblast the casts so that they match the sand blasted finish of the HA ones.  Then I can make one last mold of the sand blasted blocks and I’m in business!  Yes, obsession is a dangerous thing.
I've got a draft design of a simple stele I'll try out.  I've got  a good holiday break coming up.  Hopefully I can make some good headway on the army and get the blocks ready for molding.

1 comment: