A 12 Hour* Terrain Project

*or close enough to it

One of our local stores here, Gauntlet Games, has only in the last couple years started to open up to tabletop Wargaming. Great news for me as it’s very close to my house, but gaming in the store is still a bit disappointing due to a lack of nicer terrain to use.

However, as my buddy Marty and I are going to be hosting our first mini Heresy event there (and the first for the store) – we offered to paint up some of their terrain to give the players some good tables to play on. They were quite happy with this and even offered to double our prize pool, which we weren’t expecting!

So we figured we had to get this done quickly as the store has regular gaming going on and taking a big chunk of their terrain for a long period would be kind of crappy for them. The plan was to have it done in a weekend. We packed up a box full of city terrain (all the latest larger GW buildings and some cargo containers) and were off!


Marty took it all home to prime everything. I usually do all my priming via airbrush, but doing this much terrain would be a real pain. He has a bunch of rattle cans so was able to get it all done in 30min or so. We then gave it a good 24 hours to dry and harden up.


After work on Friday, Marty brought the primed terrain over to my place where we’d be doing our paintathon. We were gonna spend the day Saturday painting everything up, but I would be able to get a couple base layers down this evening beforehand.

I just did a base of grey on the buildings using vallejo air paints, and did the interior’s and underside of the floors in metallics. I also hit the containers with their base colours as well. This was probably an hours worth of work and checking the photo time it seems I finished around 1am (so technically Saturday already.. )


Saturday morning I was up early, coffee in hand, and started getting some more layers on before Martin came over, sometime around 9:00am. I managed to finish the grey highlights on the cathedral looking buildings before he got there, and also got the ol CRT TV setup to watch some shows (which is hooked up to a RGB switcher, which is then hooked up to an RGB to HDMI converter..and plugged into a laptop 🙂 ).

Once he arrived we put on some DS9 to start (specifically episode “The Changing Face of Evil” – which has O’Brien and Bashier playing a battle of the Alamo miniatures game) and got to work. There was also a quick trip to grab food from the local Japanese place, which kept the energy up for the day.

I gave the floor tiles a couple shades of light grey which popped pretty nicely with the building colours. Half the buildings were a Mechanicum looking forge type of ruin. We hummed and hawed over it for a little while and then just went with a class dark red theme on it.

While I worked on the outside airbrushing, Martin got to work doing window frames and random little building details like AC units. We also finished up with Star Trek and watched the whole first ( and sadly only) season of Mission Hill, and then went into Undergrads. A proper early 2000 era young teens TV programming, and two of my favourite shows from that time.

After I finished with the airbrush, I jumped in to help with details. I must have painted 10000 skulls while doing this. Holy cow. It wouldn’t be a GW building without a stupid amount of skulls though eh? I decided to give the columns on the outside a kind of basic marble look. I just dry brushed lightly a bright silver, and then went over messily with a darker grey to mute it and remove the excess.

Around 9:30pm we were hitting our finish line. It was tough to remind myself that this wasn’t my own personal terrain, and that it just needed to be good for the store and would be getting man handled and tossed about on the daily. Otherwise, I could have spent hours going deeper, doing little posters, further details etc… But it was rather liberating to just stop there I have to say. All in all, a very nice looking tabletop standard and enough to fill a 6×4 table for sure.

It was pretty much 12 hours total from spray painting the primer until the results above, give or take a bit. Copious amounts of Tea and snacks were also had.

I’ve never painted so much terrain in one go, and in so short a time. Frankly it was a bit of a confidence boost knowing we could pull it off. Though we were pretty sore by the end being hunched over the table all that time :). I’ll be sure to post pictures of the table after our event to see how it looks all out on display!

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