Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Desert Watchtowers

(or,  I need something to see over all that tall grass I made!)

Well, I guess I am still on my terrain building kick...

Anyone see any filthy Xenos out there?

Thankfully the wife bought a bunch of treats for the feline members of the family, so I managed to score a bunch of plastic bins that will do just fine for some watchtowers in a desert theme!  A little Rustoleum textured paint and we end up with the basic structure.  I recommend that you do two or three light coats of the textured paint as it tends to blow around and bunch up if you put it on too thick in one pass. (but maybe that is the "texture" you are looking for!)  It also helps to cover up the somewhat glossy surface of the bins, the labels and the dancing cats on those labels.  (No really, I'm not a crazy cat person... really)  The lids to the bins can be glued to the bottom to provide a bit more structural support.  In my case I think it adds a bit of detail to the base of the tower to have the bin top inverted and glued over the opening.

Since this is all in keeping with the desert theme, I hit the watchtower with the same 3-color scheme as I've used previously.  Brown Oxide, Territorial Beige and Khaki.  All craft paints.  I'm really glad I scored a bunch of them on sale earlier in the year, as I'm going through the Brown Oxide really fast, even when thinned!  The other two colors aren't being burned through nearly as fast, as they are just a drybrush coating.  Good thing Amazon has more of the Brown Oxide in large containers!!  First rule of building a Terrain "theme", make sure you have enough of the same (or similar) paint!  Nothing more frustrating than an essential color being discontinued in mid-stream!

Well no point to having a watchtower without some sort of battlements to place a unit of defenders on top of!
I find your lack of battlements.. HERETICAL!

 My intent was to make the battlements simple to manufacture, detachable and fairly basic looking.  I opted to build a box out of cork, and place a floor within.  One small detail here.  It seems that hot glue never dries fast enough when you are holding a part in place, and TOO fast when you are assembling multiple parts.  So, after learning the hard way, I recommend you affix two wall panel into an L-shape, then add the floor.  Then you have room (and time) to affix the other two walls and ensure they are aligned.

Just like my first experiment with cork-based buildings, this one isn't pretty, but it does the job!  I built is just slightly larger than the bins, so you could fit a 5-man unit on 32mm bases on top.

A quick basecoat of the Brown Oxide, along with the two drybrush coats and the battlements were ready to accept a unit of defenders!

While it may not be the fanciest watchtower, I think it fits the bill of cheap but useful terrain.  I need to add firing ports to the tower structure itself so that a unit can man those firing points, along with an entrance door.  (But all of that can wait while I finish the other three towers that I have ready to go...)