Kirb your enthusiasm!


"Pink isn't a color. It's a lifestyle." - Chumbalaya
"...generalship should be informing list building." - Sir Biscuit
"I buy models with my excess money" - Valkyrie whilst a waitress leans over him

Friday, April 8, 2011

Guest Article: Adepticon Terrain

This is an article by stillfrosty from stillfrostyconversions and the White Scars blog. He has kindly offered his services in writing a couple articles about Adepticon including the terrain, missions and overall organisation/feel of the tournament. Here is his first article relating to terrain! Enjoy.

Good morning everyone!

Today I am going to talk about the terrain at Adepticon as there has been some debate and complaints about the terrain on the tables. Foremost, I would like to remind you that in the Warhammer 40k championships alone here were 128 tables for the event. This does not include, combat patrol, kill zone, fantasy, warmachine, flames of war, ancient battles, and so forth. By any measure that is a massive amount of terrain even for just the 40k event alone! Secondly, terrain has to be kept similar on all tables so that no one has an unfair advantage because the terrain set up. The best way to do this is have a standard layout for all tables to have along with maintaining similar pieces on all tables. So if there are 128 tables (lets factor out the other games being played) and there were six pieces of terrain on the table at a time that equals 768 pieces of terrain that has to be paid for, built, painted, and transported for this event.

So what exactly was the terrain?

Well on every table there was a little fluctuation in theme and general feel of the table. There was Desert, Necron, Grass Land, Urban, Mountainous, and Ice World. These different themes, though looking completely different all played the same way. There were generally 2-3 pieces of some sort of ruin or building, 2-3 pieces of some sort of forest, and the remaining amount of the terrain was hills. The majority of the games I played, there was one piece of terrain that blocked line of sight, was a building, and was in the center of the table. In the corners there were generally a hill in opposite corners and forest in the other set of corners. The running parallel to the center of the table there were two ruin pieces. To get an idea of what the tables looked like imagine an "x" with a line down the middle. So there was plenty of terrain for everyone to take advantage of so I never felt there was a "planet bowling ball" nor did I feel I was playing in city fight. Everything was balanced and nothing was overdone.

How did the pieces play?

Lets talk ruins first. Ruins were easily identifiable and easy to play on. There was not excess rubble so models could be played on the piece without fear of them tipping over or complicating the game more then it has to be. Each piece of ruin was on a defined base. The bases were defined as being area terrain for all games to simplify the battle. The ruins on the flanks typically did not block line of sight, however they were not in someone's deployment zone so they could just camp devestator squads in the buildings. The pieces had to be fought over and they were very strategic in order to win games. In the center of the table there was either a bunker, building, or a hanger which was large enough to block line of sight of rhinos, speeders, and land raiders. But it was not so large to detract from the battle. It was placed there so armies such as imperial guard could not blow away tyranids in one round. I would argue this was the only large piece of line of sight blocking terrain.

The forest terrain had easy to play and defined boundaries. There were typically 3-4 trees, cacti, crystals, rock pillars, etc. All of these extra elements gave the table extra flair but they were removable for game play so they do not interfere. These pieces were large enough to obscure line of sight to vehicles and completely obscure line of sight to infantry models. Also there pieces were either one tier or flat. Most forests were flat, but there were a couple forest pieces has had a 1 1/2 inch tier. This tier is tall enough to completely block line of sight to infantry and bikes. The hill elements were the same way where they could block line of sight to infantry behind them. They also are clearly defined by a base and was played as area terrain.


Well honestly, I feel that the vast majority of the tables were fair and balanced and there was plenty of terrain to make the game interesting while not overdoing it. However there were a handful of tables in which you could tell they were starting to run out of terrain. These tables either had all buildings (which surprisingly came from the Toldeo Game Room, as I have played on them before) or the board that Games workshop designed which was terrible. I played one team game on that table and besides allowing premeasuring built into the table nothing is even and everything has a tendency to fall over. Dice also bounce on this table so several times I had to go searching for run away dice. It looks great but for tournament game play it is not good. My other complaint, which is out of the Adepticon Staff's control is making sure that the tables were even. The tables are banquet tables provided by the hotel and in several games there was an uneven spot on the table where models would tip over. Personally, I did not care, but my opponent who was playing a beautiful eldar army was concerned about his wraithlords tipping over.

Lack of Line of Sight Blocking terrain?

A few of the complaints that I have read online was the lack of LoS blocking pieces on the table. I have identified that there was one piece that could block practically everything and the hills/forest would block LoS to infantry and bike models. My first rebuttal is that too much of this sort of terrain is not fun and can be over done very quickly. Secondly is transporting the terrain. 768 pieces are not going to move themselves and have to be packaged and moved from event to event. Having loads of massive LoS blocking terrain take up a lot of space, can get damaged easily in transport, and cost more money. So I completely understand why they did not go overboard.

Overall, the terrain on the tables was fair, balanced, themed, and well done. I would not mind a few larger pieces such as more 2 tier hills to block rhinos but it is not needed. A few more themes to fight over would be cool as well such as jungle, eldar, chaos, or tau home worlds. Next year I challenge the Adepticon Terrain masters to ensure that those handful of tables that were not fair get replaced, but I want to congratulate you all on a fantastic job in getting all of the terrain together. It was awesome and very impressive.

More terrain pictures can be seen at the back 40k as well to get a better idea of what all the tables looked like.

Follow us on Facebook!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...