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Making Sector Mechanicus terrain modular

Jeff announced he was planning a small Necromunda campaign, and so I took it as an excuse to buy a pile of Sector Mechanicus scenery. For reference, the images that follow were built from the following kits:
  • 2x Mechanicus killzones (that's the stuff in brown plastic)
  • 2x thermic plasma regulators (2 regulators per kit = 4 in total)
  • 1x sacristan forgeshrine (that's the Imperial Knight maintenance bay kit)
  • 1x galvanic mangavent (mostly to  increase the amount of available walkways)
  • Oh, and a spare crane I didn't use when I made the munitorum scenery.
Jeff will also be donating his walkways, as he has no use for them. Here's everything laid out:


When Tom and I assembled this, we focused on flexibility. See, everything there comes apart. The kits, designed by Ray Dranfield, are astonishingly modular. Tom and I kept finding new combinations of parts that worked together during construction and were pretty much blown away as a result. The level of detail is similarly nuts. That's not to say they're perfect; I'm not wild about the design of the railings, which look more like a sci-fi picket fence, and there's also the question of cost. I've spent about £200, but saved a chunk of money with the killzone boxes. Had I not done so, it would have cost me at another £80. Even with this much stuff, it'd take a lot more to have a vertiginous 4x4 Necromunda table, so I'll be supplementing it with more cost-effective buildings and suchlike.

I think the main reason for the added expense is that cylinders, when broken up, take a lot of space on a sprue. It's why walls are such an efficient form of scenery. Clearly it's a price I was willing to pay, but now that the Sector Mechanicus Killzone has been taken off the GW webstore I don't know if this lot would be worth £280 to me. Of course, these things are all subjective... from my partner's perspective it's probably not worth one crisp fiver. (Don't worry, she accepts my love of plastic crack.)

Behold, it all comes apart:


By way of demonstration, here's another quick layout:


It turns out there are raised rivets atop the walkways which are specifically spaced to help locate parts placed on top, which means you can stack the terrain without having to glue it - perfect for changing up layouts from game to game, and for tidying it all away when not in use. So yes, it's pretty expensive per square foot of board covered relative to other GW kits, but it is delicious. Just... try not to think to hard about what any of these things actually are. They're clearly designed to be "generic industrial MacGuffin" rather than a particular thing. That does make their use more flexible, so I get it.

These days I don't tend to post much WIP stuff... the painting effort begins tonight. Rather than painting the whole thing as one big job lot and driving myself insane, I'll probably try and complete little chunks. Honestly this much unpainted terrain is kind of intimidating... wish me luck!

Comments

  1. Pretty sure I'm still a little high from all the glue, and I certainly haven't managed to get all the plastic shavings from cleaning mould lines out of my clothes...

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    1. My jumper was moulting plastic the next day at work. I like to think it had a rustic charm.

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  2. Yeah, the cylinders and domes take up an unfortunate amount of space on the sprues for how much table they cover. I'm still head over heels in love with these kits, tho. So many possibilities, and so many of those don't need to be glued together that the modularity is just astounding. Did you see Dranfield's recommendation of @the_kit_basher on Instagram? Absolutely mind-blowing work, and a bunch of ideas for the Fragdrill kit that make me want to get like 12 of them.

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    1. Ye gods that's a cool instagram account. Thanks for the knowledge! I bookmarked the crap out of it.

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    2. Absolutely. Only good things can come of spreading something like that around.

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  3. I do love the new kits, they have quite a tall LOS big presence on the battlefield if you play no LOS through area terrain, but I do miss the sheer LOS blocking walls of the Cities of Death range, good job I have plenty of that yet to make! I think I have a complete Imperial Sector untouched as yet!

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    1. I haven't got around to picking them up yet, but the Manufactorum and Derelict Manufactorum kits seem like they should help a lot with LoS blocking. Not nearly such big windows as the new Sector Imperialis stuff. Shipping containers (Munitorum or third party) can help a ton as well.

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    2. You're right about the LOS angle, Siph. Like WestRider I'll be mitigating that with shipping containers and the like, and the Mechanicus buildings do indeed look to be hopeful on the LOS front... as does that sector fronteris stuff.

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