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Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Two-dimensional buildings for wargames

Recently, one of my regular blog readers – Mike Hall – made the following comment with regard to my MAKING THE TERRAIN BOARDS FOR 'CARRY ON UP THE NILE!' (5) blog post:
You may recall that I was looking for another picture of the Great Wall of Morobad. So far, I've had no success but did find some pictures of a Joe Morschauser gridded wargame battle which looks like it would fit right into your 'Carry On Up the Nile!' scenario. What intrigued me were the flat buildings which, since they stood on the grid lines, took no space away from the figures. Quite different from your new structures but I wonder whether you have ever considered or indeed tried Joe's approach?
In fact, some years ago (2014 to be exact) I did conduct some experiments with constructing some semi-two-dimensional buildings for use in wargame.

The first looked like this*:




I was quite satisfied with this 'proof of concept', and added another building to see how several semi-two-dimensional buildings would look when used in conjunction.





I then tried building a much more imposing structure that could serve as a more important building, such as a town hall, hotel, or government building.









At this point, Sue and I went on a cruise, and when I came back, I moved onto another project and never took this idea to fruition.

Chris Kemp – who writes the NOT QUITE MECHANISED blog – did pick the idea up, and used it to create cities for his ongoing Eastern Front campaign.

Chris Kemp's model of Moscow, which used a combination of two- and three-dimensional buildings. This photograph is © Chris Kemp.
Having looked afresh at the semi-two-dimensional buildings that I build five years ago, it seems to me to be a concept that I really need to revisit.

* The 20mm and 15mm-scale figures shown in the images have been included to give some idea of the size of the buildings.

10 comments:

  1. That Chris Kemp setup is incredible.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rob Young,

      It certainly is ... and makes it possible to fight battles in built-up areas without having to move buildings out of the way to do so.

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  2. Sort of like a doll house. Open in the back with a facade in the front. A very efficient idea.

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    Replies
    1. John,

      It is a bit like that. I got the idea from seeing images of Joseph Morschauser's buildings and from the way model railway modellers create the illusion of depth on their layouts.

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  3. Bob,

    A very interesting project. It seems a pity that it never got past the proof of concept stage as I'd like to have seen the buildings gracing the tabletop in a few of your battle reports. However, I know full well what it is like to have more ideas than the time available to implement them.

    Your buildings are rather more substantial than those produced by Joe Morschauser which look as if they are constructed from thick card - or something similar - and thus have no effective depth at all, though they do seem to have bases that define the number of grid squares occupied by the structure. Joe's buildings were also constructed to fit to the square grid size he was using (which some could find restrictive if they vary the grid or use hexes).

    You probably have a copy of the picture I mentioned in my comment but, if you do not, I'd be happy to send you a copy (I already have a scan on my PC),

    Regards,

    Mike

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mike Hall (Mike),

      It is certainly an idea that I would like to take a bit further if and when I have the time. What I'd like to develop is a mixture of two- and three-dimensional buildings that I can use in combination ... possibly a ending up with a sort of 2.5-dimensional end product!

      I have almost finished my 'City of Khartoum' model, and it has given me a few idea for similar, future built-up area baseboards. I'd like to grid them - or at least make it obvious where the grid lines would be - and have lugs fitted so that the buildings could be interchangeable.

      I think that I have a copy of the photograph you have described, and I suspect that you are right in your assumption that they were made from thick cardboard or mounting board.

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  4. This is very similar to terrain items I am theorising for my 10mm PNW setup.

    I envisage 2D buildings, fencelines and trees scaled to my Heroscape tiles.

    Watch out on my blog.

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    Replies
    1. Jim Duncan,

      You have piqued my interest! I'll be following you blog with interest ... as usual!

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete
  5. Chris Kemp's cityscapes rock, in my view. I reckon that those 2D BUAs you have designed would 'do the business' equally well. I'm sorely tempted to go the same way. My under-scale 3D efforts, though OK for the free table, and probably OK for my square grid table, haven't proved entirely satisfactory for my hex-grid table. Seeing the examples here, maybe a rethink is called for for my projects.

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    Replies
    1. Archduke Piccolo,

      The response that I have had to this and my earlier blog posts about two- and three-dimensional buildings for wargaming is encouraging me to do some more work on this concept. What I want to end up with are buildings etc., that are not entirely flat but which have a minimal footprint on the tabletop, hence my thinking about what I have termed 2.5-dimensional buildings.

      By the way, I think that the buildings of yours that I have seen in your battle reports are great.

      All the best,

      Bob

      Delete

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