I am always impressed by Brett Simpson’s Pacific War tables for Crossfire. He inspired me to improve my jungle terrain. More jungle will be useful for Burma, Portuguese Colonial Africa, and Vietnam. I made some steps before we played the Pick up game in Burma, but I wanted to make my tables even better. So I’ve been bolstering my crossfire terrain and now have Pagodas, rice paddies, Bamboo groves, boulder fields, rock fields, palm trees, ravines, depressions, Burmese houses, jungle undergrowth (not featured here), crests (not featured here) and cliffs (not featured here). Some of these I’ve posted about previously, and some are yet to come. Now, after all that effort, I wanted to know two things. Do I have enough jungle terrain to fill a table? Does my jungle terrain look good enough? So I got it all out and threw it on a 6’x4′ table. I can definitely fill a table. And I reckon the table looks good enough, not perfect, but good enough.
Here are a few top views. you should be able to spot the ravines, bamboo groves, houses, pagodas, watch tower, palms, boulder fields, rocky fields, rice paddies, rough ground, and hills (including rocky and wooded options).
I’ve had a go at gullies and depressions before. But they look too much like hills. So I decided to have another go modelling just the edge of the depression.
Ravines are a new concept for me in my Crossfire games. Because I am building up forces for the Italian Campaign I had a look at some of the Hit the Dirt scenarios. And some of them feature ravines. Kind of like long depressions. So I made some. You can see a long ravine in the next photo, starting at the pond.
From a slightly higher point of view you can see the big ravine stretching across the table and branching at the further end. You also get to see some smaller ravines and depressions.
You can see that my ravines have area terrain templates inside them. These area terrain templates are integral to the ravine model but are treated as separate terrain features in Crossfire. They give the model structural integrity and make set up much faster. The area terrain inside a ravine can be any of the normal options: wood, rough ground, boulder field, rock field. The example has a bamboo grove (nearly impassable wood), palm grove (wood), and a couple of rough ground features.
Here is another view of the main ravine snaking away into the distance.
I did lots of ravine pieces. One of them is a pond. The idea being that either the start or the end of a ravine might be a pool of water.
I like the way the ravine has bends and curves.
You have seen my rice paddies before. I’m pleased with them but I think I will add a bit more vegetation i.e. rice sprouts.
My palm tree collection is growing. I probably have enough now. The thing that bugs me is not all trees in a jungle are palms. In fact palms form a minority of jungle vegetation. I lack other kinds of trees – something to work on.
My Bamboo groves appear in many of these photos, but I didn’t feature them specifically. Here’s one photo that includes a few clumps of bamboo.
I had my Pagodas and unpainted houses for our Pick up game in Burma. But I have subsequently thatched the roofs and painted them.
Brett Simpson’s Table
If you want to see some of Brett Simpson’s tables then check out: Assault at Walkers Creek, Marston Airfield, Stoney Creek, Mac’s Missions in the Pacific, Dig in and Wait!
15 thoughts on “How does my Burmese battlefield look?”
Looking very good, like the ravines and depressions very impressive. I guess you will be having rice for dinner if you leave that set up too long….
Rice for dinner. I’m okay with that. South-east Asian food is my favourite in the entire world.
Your table looks very nice and the gullies idea works a treat IMHO.
Looks good Steven! Just need a bit more palms & foliage to complete the visual effect. Like the paddies.
Hi John, actually I reckon I have enough palms. I think I need more actual trees to make it a proper jungle look – and I have a bunch. I’m guessing the pine trees and fruit trees won’t be suitable but other generic trees. And I forgot to get out my jungle undergrowth for this photo shoot.
Yes indeed Steven.
An attractive and practical modular set up. Very nice!
One reality of the Ricefield….they generally abut each other…they don’t leave much space between them…
every inch is used if it can be used….if you place your fields right next to each other, instead of separated–I think you’re closer to the actual terrain…
Actually moving to retire in Thailand…going to be looking at the bamboo and forest areas along Burmese border to south…south of “The Bridge” few 100 miles….
love your stuff
A good reminder. In earlier photos shoots I did nudge the rice paddies together. I forgot to do that this time.
Good luck in Thailand.
Wow Steve, there’s a huge amount of work gone into all that and it’s certainly paid off. That’s now a very impressive layout. I have a post colonial Africa project in hand at the moment, for which I’m trying to build up my stock of suitable terrain, so this post is a timely inspiration (if also rather daunting). Regarding modelling depressions, I think it’s really difficult to pull off. Yours are definitely a good shot but I’m also always slightly disappointed by the rather contrived look of the raised edge, on bodies of water as well as dry depressions. I’ve been experimenting with trying to get a kind of trompe l’oeil effect, whereby the color scheme moves progressively or abruptly from light to dark as the depresssion deepens but the flocking, scatter or other edge effects do the reverse, i.e. more at the edge, less in the depression. I’ve tried it on some river sections so far and it’s not a bad approach. I aim to do some ponds next and then try for some dry gullies. Best regards, Chris
Chris I used progressive shading on my earlier depressions. So the floor was different to the (small amount of) walls which was different to the edge. It was effective and suggested greater depth than really existed.
But now that I’ve disappeared the floor I have less painting space so this time around I didn’t bother.
Hmmm, I should have known you’d have tried that’s one already :-D. I can also see how the current system renders the Trompe L’oeil approach redundant.
The low angle shots look brilliant – really evocative yet playable terrain! The one thing I’d change would be to make the water in the pond match the lovely colour of your paddy fields. Only if that wouldn’t look too incongruous when used in your Italian campaign, of course.
Thanks Ross. Of course, I can do a muddy pond. 🙂