Zone Mortalis table for under $100 – part one

Hey guys,

Apparently I’m on a bit of a terrain bender at the moment. I’ve only had a couple of games of Zone Mortalis, but really enjoyed the games that I’ve had. I love the table that Forge World produces, however they’re a little to expensive for me to justify, especially considering I’m not sure how often I’d use it. So, I thought I’d make my own.

How hard could it be…

I’ve been trying to figure out how to go about doing this, and I decided on a series of movable wall sections. I bought all the materials for the table at my local Bunnings store, but obviously any equivalent would do. The main materials cost me well under $100 dollars.

The first step is to build a series of blank wall sections. The design I’m using will be a blank wall section with a buttress on one side. The wall sections can then be positioned sitting up against the buttresses. This is a similar system to the one used by Games Workshop’s cities of death terrain.

Here’s a look at the materials I used.


So, the first step is to cut strips of 3mm MDF to act as the bases and tops of each of the wall sections. These should be cut to the same width as the buttresses that will be used. I found the easiest way to do this was to use the pieces of wood used for the buttresses as a measure for these sections.



I wanted to use pre-cut timbre that was one inch wide for the buttresses, but the closest I could find was 30mm. The length of these pieces is the width you want for the corridor, plus the width of the buttress. In my case, I wanted the corridors to be four inches wide, and so cut the base plates appropriately. I made these wall sections in two sizes, one 4 inches plus the width of buttress, and the other twice that. You’ll need two strips of these per wall section.

The next stage is to cut the buttresses. Obviously, the height you cut the buttresses is the height the corridors will end up being, plus the height of the top and bottom sections (6mm). I made the buttresses to be the same height as Cities of Death sections. You’ll need one of these per wall section, plus a few extras to cap off walls that end without butting up to other wall sections. I made twelve extra.

Now, you need the walls themselves. I made these from foam core board, as it’s cheap and easy to work with. Obviously you want these to be four inches long and the height of a CoD tile. It’s best to do this in long strips and mass produce them. I doubled these up per wall section to try and give each section a bit of extra strength. Foam core is also handy as you can trim them as necessary to try and compensate for any imperfections in the sizes of the buttresses and base plates.

Now, repeat! I found you will need between 20 and 25 sections of wall per 2’x4′ board section.


Next, assemble! These are really easy to stick together. I used a hot glue gun, although you could add a few screws to help keep the buttresses and top and bottom sections together. Below are examples of the two different sizes for the wall sections.


And below, you can start to see the vague idea behind the design and how the wall sections interact.20160918_134905

Right! Now you should have a giant pile of blank wall sections. Next step is to decorate. This is where most of the cost comes in, and where a lot of the time is spent. CNC workshop does a great product called a widget pack, which is basically a whole series of MDF laser cut decorative details for terrain, like fans, vents and other gubinz. Wooden beading (strips of wood used to edge windows and the like), and dowel are also really handy for this. Both of these should be available from any Bunnings or equivalent store. Guitar wire and plastic decorative strips for hobby work is also good. Use your imagination for this and have fun!

Here’s an example of some of the sections I ended up with.

You’ll also need some practical components, like door sections. I used sections of 6mm MDF. These were cut to 4 inches to match the width of the corridor, and the same height as the walls plus 6mm, to compensate for the added height of the top and bottom plates of MDF. I then decorated these with a couple of bits of beading, and I’ll probably add extra details later.


I also made a few different sections of wall, designed to add a bit of interest to the table. These doors were fiddly to make, but I think they should be useful. The doorways are 2 inches wide, so they act as a choke point for dreadnoughts and other large-based  models. The doors can also be opened and closed.

I’ve always been of the opinion that if something is worth doing, it’s worth overdoing! So, I made sixty wall sections, which was enough to cover a 6×4 table with a moderate amount of terrain.

I still need to make some base boards for the table, and obviously get some paint on it. But I think that should do for now!

Cheers guys!

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New Apocalypse Table -Update

Hi guys,

Progress on the apocalypse table! This time with some paint on the new terrain and some base boards to go with them. Combined with my city fight table, this gives me a 6 by 12 foot board, which should be plenty of room to have some apocalyptic carnage. I’ve also made a few dedicated terrain pieces to try and thematically link the city with the new pieces.

First up are the hills and fortifications, newly painted.

And the table combined!

Cheers guys

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A new apocalypse table

Hey guys,

One of the best things of moving house is I now have a large garage not currently doing anything. It has been claimed in the name of the Emperor and renamed the Hobby Den. First thing’s first was to make the Hobby Den a bit more livable. This involved adding some insulation to the ceiling, clearing away some of the old junk and getting some new shelves set up. It’s still a work in progress, but starting to get somewhere!img_2778

Also, as a side note, don’t go around adding insulation without professional assistance! Power cables are usually hidden in the ceiling and you don’t want to mess around with that.

In regards to my hobby, I have an unhealthy obsession with massive games using massive models. So, naturally the first thing I thought of when I saw the size of the Hobby Den was Apoc Table! At the moment my only real terrain is the city fight table. I will definitely want to expand this into a full apoc table (because I’m a glutton for punishment), but that’s definitely a long-term project. In the mean time, I figure the fastest way to expand the terrain collection was to add some ash waste terrain as if surrounding the city. I love the Forgeworld display table based on the battle for Istvaan V, and drew a lot of inspiration from this.

So, the terrain was designed to be pretty quick and easy to make, and is mainly composed of simple hills. Hopefully they look alright at the end.

The first step was to cut up some basic shapes to act as bases from the hills. I used 3mm MDF cut using a jigsaw. The next step was to cut up the basic shape of the hills using high-density insulation foam.


I wanted to have some rocky outcrops over the hills, and thought the easiest way to do this was to glue real rocks to it. I got a bag of shale for about $10 from Bunnings and then used a hot glue gun to attach them to the hills.



The next step was to use some gap filler, usually used for filling cracks in walls, and use this to smooth over where the edges of the rocks meet the foam of the hill. Try to avoid getting to much gap filler on the main faces of the rocks, as you want to try and preserve the details of the stone. The gap filler will probably take a good few hours to dry. Once it’s dry, fill any more gaps if necessary. When it’s all dry, give it a quick sand to take away the worst of the rough edges.


The next step was to add some small pebbles and rocks to add extra details, and then apply sand to the rest of the hill. I found the easiest way to do this is paint PVA over everything except the large rocks, and then sprinkle on the pebbles, followed by sand. Again, wait for this to dry.


I made several different pieces, adding in dugouts and weapon emplacements on a few of them.

That’s the basic hills constructed, so the next step will be to apply some paint.

Cheers guys!


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Mechanicum – Myrmidon Destructors

Hi guys,

More Mechanicum, this time a squad of Myrmidon Destructors. One of the interesting things I’m finding with this army is that because all the models are so different, I need to reinvent the colour scheme for every new squad. Although I’m happy with the overall colour scheme, finding the right balance on each new squad can be surprisingly tricky. I found this squad particularly difficult. Originally I wanted to do them with the same glossy red on their armour as the rest of the army. However, after trialling five or six different version, I just couldn’t get it to work. I tried black robes highlighted grey, black robes highlighted red, and several other different combinations, none of which worked. In the end I settled on red robes and black armour, which I think works with the rest of the test models.

I also did some minor conversions on the squad, mainly to magnitise their weapons. I want to be able to switch between different weapon loadouts, and thought this would be the easiest way.

Cheers guys

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Mechanicum – Krios Venator

Hi guys,

More Mechanicum, and more tanks! This time it’s the Krios Venator. I love this model, and can’t wait to use it on the table. I’m really enjoying the steampunk aesthetics of the Mechanicum units, and how different they are to everything else in Games Workshop’s collection.

Cheers guys

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Mechanicum – Thallax

Hi guys,

More test models for the Mechanicum, this time a squad of Thallax. I love these models, their blank, expressionless face masks in particular. Since I have a small obsession with tanks, I’ll likely be fielding an Ordo Reductor Mechanicum force on a regular basis. As such, I’ll be needing a lot of these guys, as they make up the compulsory troops choices for that faction. I’m fairly happy with the test squad so far, although they’ll need some weathering.

Cheers guys

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Hey guys

Firstly, a belated new-years to you all! Secondly, an apology regarding 2016. It was a particularly busy year for me, and consequently, a pretty poor year for the blog. I have all the usual excuses, and I’m sure you care for them about as much as you care for everyone else’s excuses. All I can say is I’m hoping 2017 will be a particularly epic year for hobby. To kick things off, I’m starting a new project. Several years ago I converted up a Mechanicum themed Imperial Guard army. Since then, Forge World and Games Workshop have both released Mechanicum armies, and so it’s time to update my collection. Since I pretty much only play Horus Heresy these days, I’ll be focusing on the Forge World models to create a playable Mechanicum army for that system.

I already have two titans, both of which are from Legio Ignatum. My mechanicum force is going to be aligned to Legio Ignatum as well, acting as an escort and support force for the titans.

And so, here is the first test model for the army, a Triaros Armoured Conveyor. It’s still WIP, but gives an idea of what I’m going for. This model is a beast, massively bigger than a land raider. I love it!


Cheers guys!

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