Many years later my first experience of a true Role-playing game was a sit in on a session of D&D 4th ed. I wasn't familiar with the game universe but I could appreciate the imagery that the DM was weaving as the party played through a few interactions. I enjoyed the free form and unstructured nature of play. You could declare that you character was taking any type of action only constrained by your imagination and the roll of a d20.
I was a little bemused when it came to combat the DM would draw simple maps, the party and adversary's were represented by paper tokens.
Now that I am running a game, I find myself at an impasse. I like the feeling of a game has when it is condensed from the combined imaginations of my players. But I still long for a scene of tiny heroes crawling over the ruins of a destroyed alien city in the pursuit of forbidden treasure.
|Warhammer 40K Terrain|
So the compromise I have reached is all of the noncombat and most of the minor combat encounters are played out in purely narrative form and the larger more important cliffhanger combat encounters I plan to do something special. Full 3D terrain and miniatures. I only have a small assortment of minis suitable for Rogue Trader mostly Reaper stock. The bulk of my GamesWorkshop figures are Orkoid so I have turned to paper-craft to fulfill my vision of blood-soaked away missions. Terrain would be supplied by the excellent quality World Works Games TerrainLinkX and the bulk of the opponents will be paper standees obtained for a very reasonable price from OneMonk Miniatures.
Paper-craft products may be incredibly cheap but to produce a quality product takes time if I wasn't running a campaign book I don't think I would be able undertake these projects. Even with a pregenerated plot to follow I found I didn't have sufficient spare time, the TerrainLinkX is a nice product but it takes forever to cut, fold, glue and then leave to dry before gluing again. With a little CADfu and a A0 plotter I found a quicker way. The props and standees were still done the
|A1 battle mat|
|Closeup of TerrainLinX detail|
|Giant paper-craft bugs|
|The party is jumped in an alleyway|
|Tiles & alleyway junk from Worldworks|