Tuesday, June 16, 2009

And on the 7th Day He Rested...

The Battlefleet Gothic Game Day draws near, and I have essentially done nothing to prepare. Luckily, I painted my fleet last year, so I was charged with contributing some terrain to the cause. Specifically, Ken and I were in charge of making a planet each.

I bought one of these green styrofoam half-spheres, the kind that flower arrangers use to stick big arrangements in. I forgot to measure it, but the footprint is the same size as the large cardboard planet template that came with the original boxed game. I started off by making a base out of thin cardboard and gluing the planet in place.

Next, I grabbed a large brush and coated it with slightly watered-down white glue. The purpose of this step was two-fold. First of all, I wanted to seal the surface, as lots of tiny green bits come off each time the styrofoam is handled. Also, I wanted to strengthen the surface so it would stand up to transport and handling.

This was left to dry for the night.

Next, I coated the entire planet with a base coat of craft paint. I applied a dark shade of red (much darker than this photo would suggest) using the same large brush pictured above. This was left to dry when I went to bed.

...and through the magic of the internet, 24 hours has passed, the dark red coat has dried, and it was time to turn it into a steaming, lava world. I have a large-ish collection of craft paint that I inherited when my mother decided tole-painting wasn't for her. The left-most colour was the basecoat. The other three were applied with the same large brush, one after the other, without letting the paint dry.

To achieve the effect below, I simply stippled my way around the planet, trying my best to keep it random. This is not model-painting, and my advice is, wack the paint on and don't be shy. Don't water down the paint, and don't wet the brush. The bristles need to be stiff so that the paint goes on in uneven patches. If you look at the palette above, you'll see that I let the colours bleed into each other as I went. I made no effort to keep them separate from each other.

The final product with an Imperial cruiser for scale. I painted the base of the planet black before calling it a night.

I also experimented with making gas clouds from cotton-batting, but the whole proceeding failed miserably. I tried soaking it in watered-down paint and attempted to ink it with a brush. I guess that spray paint is the only sure-fire method. If I have the time between now and the tournament I'll see what I can do. If not, we'll make due. In any event, when all of the pieces are brought together, I think we'll have four very serviceable deep space tables.

Come on Saturday, and as always...

Thanks for reading,


OttoMunoz said...

That looks really good!
As I was scrolling down I was thinking oh man I think it's gonna look really cheesy and weird. but no it came out nicely.

Good job man!


General Jigger said...

If you are nice I'll let you put your planet in my Outer Space.


General Jigger said...


It just sounds wrong when I say it like that, doesn't it.

Anonymous said...


Awesome BFG photos! Enough to convince me that playing the game might be both worthwhile and fun. You blokes really produced a fantastic looking, totally off-the-usual-wargaming-wall tabletop game.


Dan the Aussie
With fond memories of late night Southern accents in Newfoundland