Battlefleet Gothic – Terrain Building

While I'm still deciding on which STLs to use for my Battlefleet Gothic Fleets, I already got my hands on some upcoming terrain pieces. You can use flat terrain with BFG, it works fine, especially as line of sight is measured from pin to pin of the bases, and you don't actually need the height of the terrain pieces.

Yet, I prefer some three dimensional pieces, with the huge question going for domes or spheres on bases. I went for a mixture, the large planet would be a dome, as it would simply be too big to store and to handle on the table, and the others would be spheres on bases. I got myself a set of mixed sized and a large sphere made from two halves.

Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain

I actually split the set, as I wouldn't need that many planets and could share the remainder with a wargaming buddy. The two sets I got, set me back 15 EURs, for a two halves 20 cm (8 inch), two 6 cm (~2,5 inch), four 5 cm (2 inch), six 4 cm (~1,6 inch) and eight 3 cm (~1,2 inch) spheres. You probably can get these at your local art store, just make sure you're not overcharged. As you can see, I did a spread of the pieces I keep, along with a brief scale comparison with one of the Chaos Cruisers by Italian Moose.

As we're working with styrofoam and the material is foamed inside a mould, the first thing we do is grab a file and grind any mould lines, marking and such from the surface. This will provide a better end result and goes a long way.

Parental Advisory: This makes for a great parent-child activity. I build these with my daughter, who's four years old and she had a blast.

We grabbed some brushes and went over the surface with the backside and did some dents into the planets, for more  structure. Then we did a first  test run on two of these, and smudged them with filler, to cover up the very recognizable styrofoam structure.

Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain

As it was kinda tricky to apply the filler without leaving finger prints or creating a larger mess, we decided to put them on bases for first. I didn't fancy buying the rather expensive Citadel flying bases for terrain, I was looking for alternatives and due to the lack of those, I went for nails hot glued to flat bases and glueing the styrofoam balls ontop of the nails. I'll need to do a clean up on the connection of the bases and nails, but that's a job for later.

Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain

I mixed up a second batch of structure paint, with sand, filler, pva and acrylic paint (from the DIY store). The paint isn't directly necessary, more to aid you where you already applied the mix. Word of advice, it creates a better result, if you stipple the paint instead of paint it on as you leave brush marks. I even had enough paint to start adding it to the large planet.

Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain Battlefleet Gothic - Planetary Terrain

We let that thoroughly dry, but it is clear that we need another coat of structure paint (and make it a bit thicker the next time), as on many parts the styrofoam structure shines through. But that's not a problem, I'm just currently out of filler (need to wait for the next time it is on sale at the store). And I have to grab two hand full of lava stones next time I'm at the hardware store, as those make for great asteroid.

As Battlefleet Gothic is another OOP side game by Games Workshop, the community has picked the system up and continued support in various forms like a Living Rulebook and a lot of custom pieces, to make up for the scarcity of models etc. For example you'll find a free to download BFG starter kit on reddit, incl. rules, tokens and even some STLs for you to print. Here is a collection of pdfs and information on the old Specialist Games website. And there is even an unofficial supplement for BFG to cover the battles of the Horus Heresy / 30k - called Battlefleet Heresy.

Posted by Dennis B.

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