Thursday, July 21, 2011

Colorizing Thoumont's Roof Textures

Thoumont's comes with a set of blue roof textures. One obvious way to get some variety out of the set is to colorize the roof pieces. It turns out there are a LOT of pieces you'd have to do to pull this off - 6" roof, 3" roof, trusses, gables, etc. There's just a lot of pieces in the Thoumont's set.

Here are two examples of a change in color:

I admit I didn't spend a lot of time on this. I think the shading needs more black in the dark areas - I could probably play with the color ranges a little.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Stairwell Kitbash

I'm pretty sure the intended way to handle stairs is to simply put a 2d set of stairs on the 2nd floor, letting players know where the stairs are. There's no real benefit to having an actual hole in the floor. But, for whatever reason, I haven't adopted doing this. What I find myself doing is leaving a 3x3 area open.

What I end up with then is the desire to fill in most of that area, or have a railing to block off the exposed area. So, I messed around a little with a 3x3 tile, and here's what I came up with:

What you're looking at is a 2x3 tile that can fill in the area, leaving a 1x3 area exposed for the stairs below. I can imagine a kind of stairwell setup where you alternate these tiles, exposing the stairs on one side, then the other.

I think I accomplished one of my goals, which was to avoid having to make a lot of really custom pieces. Here's an exploded view of the pieces involved:

So, I started with a 3x3 piece, and cut 1" off one side. I then cut out two of the tab slots half their normal width. I started with the assumption that having the whole corner of the piece cut out wouldn't be structurally sound, so I figured this was a good alternative. I just chopped a corner off a normal tab. This can be inserted up-side down to go in either side of the tile.

I haven't actually kitbashed the texture yet. I just took a 3x3 tile and started cutting by hand. I will probably rework the angles of the flaps to try to get the most strength out of it as I can. If possible, I might even be able to get a full tab slot on the side that currently has none. This might be good for adding a railing to the side. It's unlikely that it's necessary to have anchors on the tile, so when I make a real texture for it, I'll probably go anchorless.

Here's another picture with the tabs lined up and ready to go in.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Additional Thoumont's Plans

The promo shots of the TLX version of Thoumont's has a neat building I want to try making sometime. I decided to whip up a TLX Planner file that attempts to capture the structure of the building. Here's what I came up with:

The first floor of the building is divided into two sections - plenty of room for some tables, storage, etc. I might rethink the first floor to be a little more imaginative. See that little alcove on the left? I might change the floor tile to be the grey stone floor, and put a wall with a door on it, and make that a storage room.

The second floor has plenty o' space for having maybe a stage for performances or something. One major thing that's lacking here is stairs up to the third level. I need to think more about that. I'm seriously thinking of kitbashing a 3"x3" tile with a slot cut out for stairs, so I could make a sort of spiral staircase sort of thing. I always find myself fighting with how to arrange the stairs.

The third level has a neat deck area. It would stink to not be able to access this! The remaining levels are all infrastructure for the roof pieces.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Thoumont's plans

As a proof of concept to demonstrate having markers in the TerrainlinX Planner, I went ahead and designed my Thoumont's layout in the planner. Here's what it looks like:

I only made a couple props from the Thoumont's set, and I made use of the monster markers. I would like to make markers for the different types of trees and rocks of the Hinterland Forest and Garden sets, and would like to make markers for things like crate piles and other props. Gotta start somewhere, right?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Modifying the TLX Planner - Part 2

I went and created forum topics for how to modify the TerrainlinX Planner with new markers or tiles. Hopefully others find the information useful. I was asked to also submit the modified markers as a kitbash, so that's just what I did. Here's the snapshot I provided with it:

It works pretty well, the markers. I hope to make markers for the trees from the Hinterland Forest set. That'll be pretty neat to see, I think.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Modifying the TLX Planner

I requested a feature of the TLX planner software on the WWG forums. I wanted to be able to add monsters or props to the scenes. Some kind member claimed it was possible, and actually quite easy to add your own .tlx files.

So that's just what I did.


Sorry if it's hard to see from the picture, but the letters on the left are from a .tlx file I created called "Monsters: Normal Size"  It contains markers for every letter in the alphabet, and the marker is one 1" square large. To use them, I created a new layer on top of my map, and set transparency to "100%". It's on this new layer that I added the monster tokens.

This has its pros and cons.

One nice thing about doing this is that the monster tokens are always on top of the tiles. If I didn't do this, then any tile I add AFTER adding a monster token will be ON TOP of the monster token.

One negative aspect to this is that I have to set transparency of ALL layers to "100%", making it harder to do the actual planning. It also means that I wouldn't be able to see the tile layer above or below the layer I'm editing.

I think for now the negative is not a big deal. I can temporarily adjust transparencies to create my images, and I can slide layers up or down if I really need to see them. In any case, it proves that I can kind of be done.

I'm going to take a stab at modifying the markers to include monster tokens. This might be more what I'm looking for. It doesn't look like I can just add new .wwz files like I can .tlx files though.

EDIT: It's great to know I can make .tlx files, but it turns out I can easily add to an existing .wwz file. Adding the markers to generic_markers.wwz was trivial, and works out much nicer - the tokens will always be ON TOP of the tiles, and it will display the whole set of markers in a much more compact fashion. No more fiddling with transparencies, and no more fiddling with extra layers!

Monday, July 4, 2011

A Ghoul's Plight

My 6-year-old decided he wanted to try D&D again. He had tried when he was 5, playing along with his brother who is a couple years older. It was a bit much for him to follow along with, and he couldn't read so it really held him back.

So, to let him try again, I dusted off his dwarven cleric named Adrik, printed off some power cards that he could read himself, and put together a scenario.

The setup was this: Adrik was passing through a small town, and settling own to an evening of ale and storytelling. As he finishes a story, a local tells him about an old woodcutter who has been having trouble in his woods - something about pests among the trees keeping him from being able to collect his wood.

Not one to turn away from a plea for help, Adrik follows the dirt path through the forest. He arrives as the afternoon is starting its transition into evening at a wooden house amongst the trees. Using the end of his war hammer to rap on the door, an old voice calls him inside.

In the far corner sits a grey old man. The two share an exchange that informs Adrik of the pests in the woods. Wild animals that attack whenever he tries to go out far enough to collect wood. He tells Adrik that there's a clearing just beyond the line of trees. It is there that he has been attacked. The old man promises whatever valuables he has as a reward.

Adrik finds the opening and confidently but quietly heads into the clearing. Ready for some wolves or some such beast, he acts as though he was there to chop wood, trying to anticipate any attack. As the evenings light fades, Adrik turns to leave, disappointed at the calmness of the forest. It is then, as Adrik lowers his hammer and begins to head for the path through the trees back to the house, that he catches a glimpse of motion from the ground.

Boney fingers begin wriggling through the dirt, eventually punching through the surface and pulling skeletal frames through the earth. Within moments, Adrik finds himself surrounded by clattering bones of skeletal warriors. Most clutch bones as crude clubs, though behind him stands a sturdy skeleton clad in rusted armor and wielding a sword of well worn metal.

It turns out Adrik was a born skeleton destroyer. It was only due to the sheer number of undead foes that Adrik breaks a sweat. In the end, Adrik stood among piles of crushed bones. Were these the things that were attacking the old man? Adrik heads back to the house to inform him of what has transpired.

The old man is visibly surprised when Adrik returns. Adrik begins to explain what happened, but the old man's expression changes from surprise to rage. As he rises from his chair, Adrik is caught off guard at the strength the old man exhibits. It's then that Adrik notices the mans eyes - no longer cloudy and grey, they burn with a yellowish anger. His fingers are tipped with razor-like nails. This is no ordinary old man.

It turns out the old woodsman was killed and eaten by a ghoul. The ghoul was possessing the remains of his victims, using them to help capture more flesh on which he would feed. Adrik was never meant to survive the attack. The ghoul attempts to finish Adrik off himself, though the cleric is able to trade blows and eventually overpower the creature.

In the end, bloodied and tired, Adrik returns to the ale house he left that afternoon, and had another pint of ale. Much as the adventure began, he found himself relating another heroic tale to whomever would listen.