Welcome to my blog, the story of my continuing journey into the World of Zombie Wargames.

Monday, 14 May 2018

"We want...... a shrubbery"

So as I've managed less than two
    To appease the knight who say "Ni,", the makings  of a shrubbery
hours' painting this last week (- usual excuses, lethargy, the weather, surgery etc.) and I also  haven't finished the fairly arduous (imo) task of writing up my last Jimland adventure, here's some more things that I managed to do in April.
In my last, as yet unpublished, foray  into Jimland I used some of my plastic jungle bits and pieces to mark out the playing area.

Photo courtesy of Frederick Cartington's latest expedition
In addition to the"shrubs" marking the limits of the playing area I added a few more for I added a few more to pad out the terrain , which is fairly sparse imo for both jungle and especially in the grasslands.
These can be seen in the photograph to the left, looking particularly plasticky.
First few attempts.
I decided that I really needed to make some, in part to represent  outcrops of scrub  that will be merely dressing for the game and won't provide cover or be obstacles to movement.
I gathered the various materials that I would need to make my version of the very popular tufts (I've always thought it a strange fixation wargamers seem to have for them).

The things I used can be seen in the top photograph :
'Finished' scrub land with Masked natives for scale.
A Poundlandworldbuy paste brush (disassembled and sans handle), originally bought to use as an experiment in thatching; some 20mm washers that I buy by weight and use for my zombie games; some coarse string that I've used for grass for what seems like forever and various bits of grassland plastic bits left over from my jungle making exploits. Together with my newly acquired Xmas-pressie glue gun I went work on these.
The process was fairly simply, great glob of hot glue (my fingers will attest that it is hot!) on the washer, stick some grass-like bits from the paste brush or plastic bits into it  and wait until it sets.
I used a roll of grease-proof paper to work on, in the hope I could peel the glued bases off afterwards (worked a treat). Next step was to add filler and paint the bases where the glue was a dark brown/black (burnt umbra) a dry brush of green on the base with a sprinkling of sand over PVA glue finished the bases off. The various paste brush bits were painted with a watered-down acrylic in various hues of green.
Another view of  the scrub, covering an area about 2 foot by 2 foot
The plastic bits have yet to be done but are fairly usable as they are. I did find the bristles of the paste brush to be about twice the length of I wanted, so I cut them in half, after the glue had set in the first piece and used the 'stub' for a second one. Trimming the scrub afterwards gave some suitable (imo) looking scrub.
It wasn't a difficult task (but a bit tedious and boring), so much so it took only about an hour to complete about 80 pieces as I found I could glue gun about 5 at a time.

It only took about another hour or so to completed them after the filler had gone on and had dried.
Yet another view of my scrub-land (boring huh?)
A Lidl mat, cut vaguely in half (obligatory very boring picture)
In my latest adventure into Jimland, my expedition and are having seemingly endless encounters with streams. I did like the idea I had of the variable width stream, but I did make the banks to steep and consequently l've had many problems standing figures on them. To remedy this I'm going to abandon the terrain board I've been using and look instead to using the mats from Lidl/Aldi for my adventures in Jimland.
I've cut one mat in two, giving a roughly 39" square; Jimland requires a a 30" square playing area, so my 39" square will allow a native set-up area rather than being 'off-table' at the start of each encounter.
The new river/stream 'board' (still fairly boring).
The second half of the mat was has a cut made from 15" in on opposite sides to get a stream effect, that won't have figures falling all over themselves!
An as it will fit on the bard length-wise, it will also follow the flow of the plastic sheet 'sea; that I use underneath (Clint).
LOOK !  A very thin boring stream!
So that's it from me this week, I'll get back to writing up the latest expedition into Jimland, as i really want another game and don't wan a back-log of adventures to have to write -up.

So that's it from me for another week, I've padded this post out as much as I could in the hope that you'll find something of interest amongst the boring bits.

As always your comments, questions, queries, bouquets and brickbats are always welcomed and appreciated.


  1. I thought I recognised that matt (after you pointed it out a few posts ago). No such thing as a boring stream to an adventurer! Think of all the new critters or plants or even mineral deposits, maybe even panning for Gold. AND FRESH WATER.

    A stream is a wonderful thing to an adventurer. At least I think so. Maybe less exciting to a wargamer!

    1. Thanks Clint, if only it was always fresh water that was encountered. Streams I think are a great scenic feature too, but only when they allow your figures to stand on the their bakns!

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks Michael, but they're only to supplement my larger jungle pieces and to rpovide something to put on fairly empty grasslands terrain.

  3. Very nice jungle flora, Zab.

    1. Thanks Jay, doing stuff like this keeps me off the streets and mentally stable - sort of.

  4. Replies
    1. Thanks you Michal, I'm aiming for a more figure-friendly terrain

  5. the scrubs work really well Joe, nice one dude

    1. Thanks dGG, I reckon it's also going to be useful for areas other than Congo-type jungle games

  6. Another "really useful" post Joe - plenty of helpful advice on how to use the plastic plant parts, and I've added a note to myself to pick up a cheapo pasting brush on the next shop-pain trip!
    I'd had the same idea about cutting the mat to create a river, but hesitated because of those 'dimples' on the underside. You have allayed my fears sir :-)

    1. Thanks WA, though this post was really a 'filler', I do like having some sort of record of what I've done.
      I too had some second thoughts just cutting the mat in half, as the dimples on the back of my piece didn't align with the 90 deg. cut I wanted to make, but all turned out OK imo.

  7. Very nice report there Joe. I have also planned to make some bushes and these items that you made are spot on target.Maybe also make some small "hills" with lying three-steems and rocks?Great inspiration.The stream will come very handy but I do not dare to cut my mat in two.I will make my stream in 6mm mdf and make it modular eventhough it will build up in height.

    1. Thanks Ptr, I had been looking at the commercial static grass clumps (which seem a bit pointless imo).
      My smaller terain ;hill; are really just rises to depict rough terrain, but were simple to make.
      Modular rivers are a great mainstay for any gamer too.

  8. Great idea with the mats. They are still a bit like rocking horse shit round here I can't find one!!

    1. Thanks Brummie, I'd been looking out for these for several years and jumped at the chance to get them when I could. Good luck in your searches

  9. Hi Joe a very opportune post, since starting to read your blog I've been haunting Wilko and the other day bought a load of 25 and 30 mm washers to do exactly what you've done, I was going to use decorators caulk instead of hot glue but may try your route. For what appears to be a small effort you have a huge reward in terms of useful scenery.
    Cutting the Lidl mat in half is a bold move as they are so scarce but I'm sure will look good. Does this mean the blue River will run along the stream instead of across it ;-)

    1. Thanks Vagabond, I bought my washers from a wholesaler, I asked how much for 200 - £2 was the answer, he came back with a bag of two handfuls, with nartly 300 in. (second or third time I've used him! I notice the saesized washers at B&Qs at £3+ for a dozen iirc. Screwfix may have better deals, - just saying.
      I was very apprechensive about cutting the mat, but I do have a 'spare' and I would really need at least three to carpet a useful size table (6' x 8')/ The streams/rivers will indeed be able to 'flow' the length of the stream instead of across it, as I hinted at (to Clint).

  10. Hi Joe just back from hols so a bit behind but first let me say this post was very interesting while we all love to hear the daring tales from Jimland its also great to see how other folk are going about doing things :)

    Unlike John ;)I think cutting the Lidl mat was the right thing to do as I'm not a fan of water or pits or anything that should be lower then the ground sitting above it & for anyone who can't get a Lidl mat you can get sheets of flocked paper in model railway shops in different sizes that are cheap enough & could be used to do the same thing, I'll finish up by saying the shrubby worked out very well :)

    1. Thanks Frank, surprised anyone found anything of interest in this post!
      I'm pleased that I've now cut the mat, it's worked out well imo nad the older type of GW paper/f;ock terrain is quite easy to make, too - I've got one stick to an MDF terrain board. I really like by shrubbery too!