Thursday, May 23, 2013

28mm Sci Fi Terrainapalooza - A Golden Age

Much like the last 3 years have been a golden age for those of us who enjoy the virtues of small of stature Sci Fi miniatures (15mm), there is a current explosion of 28mm Sci Fi. But not necessarily the miniatures. Quite honsetly, while there are a lot of good companies doing good Sci Fi work,  a lot of it is just noise at this point. It seems like quite an over saturated market. But the quality is high. But how many variations on the heavily armored and light armored Human can you use. I have at least 6 10 12 15 ranges myself. But what has really caught my eye is the bounty of 28mm Sci Fi Terrain that has hit the Market over the last year or so. Finally, we don't have to fight over gothic hell and skullz, or Mos Eisley. And the accessories may be even better. Here's a run down of just a few:

Game Workshop - Whether you hate the Evil empire, or love to be bad, we all have to give it up to GW for pioneering adaptable, high quality sci fi terrain with Necormunda. 40k has come a long way from the Deodorant Bottle hover tanks of the Rogue Trader days, but the real terrain innovation came with the plastic sprues of bulkheads and cardboard floors. They built and built on this knowledge and the art of plastic model making for gaming(more robust than for scale modeling) and have really put out some extraordinary terrain. It is still the only thing I consistantly look forward to being released from GW. Its the singular reason I check their site occasionally. Excepting the skullz of course.
Set of 93 Bulkheads and Original Cardboard sold for $300.00 + on ebay

Litko Aerosystems - The Industrial Tower System by Litko has been a round a little while. I have had mine set for about 3 years now. It is the absolute closest thing to matching the terrain in one of the funnest games GW ever made, Necromunda. Towers, ramps, open girders, etc. Great system and super easy to play with and in and around. Extremely verastile in piece selection and build. It is pretty light on surface detail compared to recent offerings by other companies. But it does feel right for industrial areas. If you want to put some detail work in, this system is awesome, and pretty affordable considering the value of the bundles.

Micro Art Studio - The small company from Poland. These guys really seized the technology of laser cutting and made it special. while Litko showed everyone what was possible with MDF laser cutting as a new(to us gamers) MAS showed everyone what layering, creative design, and faithfully interpreting a brand(Infinity), and have been copied by everyone since. For me these guys started the real burst of creative 28mm Sci Fi Terrain we are seeing now. You can see it in everyone's work.

Spartan Scenics - New Kid on the Block in MDF Terrain, If Spartan is gonna do something, they are all in. I really like the approach these guys have to giving gamers full lines of product. And as big as they are, they don't have to do a Kickstarter to decide they want a terrain line. They just do it. A great start, and the resin accessories are really where they shine. Just gorgeous. Everyone has been doing weapon lockers and med labs and consoles. But the genius 3-d sculptors at Spartan really did a nice job here.

Mantics Deadzone - This Kickstarter from Mantic has delivered some pretty good looking plastic/resin figs, but the real kicker is the Terrain. A real robust successor to Necromunda, only developed more for buildings and outposts instead of the industrial underhive open structure. Pretty good looking stuff. I am very curious about the battle damaged terrain, and the have added some accessory options from a well known supplier that may or may not be a good deal in the kickstarter. Not sure that its for me as I am a little Kickstartered out, but I will wait and see. Nice stuff though.

Sedition Wars -  I know, I know. This one really kinda blew up in Studio McVey's face. They weren't ready for the response, they have been behind on the whole thing, and there seems to be a lot of unhappy people about the whole thing. I bought into the Kickstarter, and got my box of minis. And yes they had mold lines, material and fit problems, but I have always loved Mike's sculpting style and I am going to give them a try. the models have a great style. Phase II is coming out sometime this summer, and with it are is the release of the terrain packs. Mike released pics of the painted prototypes. I must say they are pretty great. and fit in well with the rest of the sci fi offerings out now.

Now there have been many people putting out great sci fi terrain and accessories for a while. But with the proliferation of easy CAD and Laser Cutting, and the ease of 3-d printing, the terrain world is now wide open.

This stuff has gotten me very excited, and maybe the next thing I work on.

1 comment:

AHunt said...

Nice roll up. Thanks for putting that together.