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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Destroyed Apartment Building by 4Ground

By Throckmorton

When I first started doing war gaming I never wanted to buy terrain. I figured I could just go down to my Friendly Local Corporate Game Store and have a good time shooting heavy bolters at greenskins. Well, now that I've left all that behind and play mainly historicals I've found that I want my own table, my own terrain and well, more stuff in general. So, when the most excellent Mr. Scott Simoneau hosted the Flames of War Late and Early War tournaments at NOVA Open he was nice enough to decide that I deserved a reward. Thoughtful of him right?

In that bag of schwag was the 15mm Damaged Bank/Appartments by 4Ground Terrain. Now, if you've never heard of them before (and you should, we did another review of one of their products recently) 4Ground is an MDF terrain building company.  MDF is short for Medium Density Fiber-board and has gained popularity across a number of era's and scales as a way to make excellent looking laser cut terrain.

There is certainly some assembly required with these buildings but (unlike some other MDF terrain manufacturers) no painting is needed at all.

Won't you join me as we take a look at how we went from this:

To this:

Here's the package. It comes in a nice zip lock style bag that seals in that fresh MDF smell. And trust me, when you open it you will notice an odor. Personally, I like the smell of fresh cut wood and of ink so it appeals to me. I've certainly heard others complain about it however. 

All the pieces and parts come on these pop-out MDF sheets. Each part is numbered and the instructions (see below) will show you where they go. 

The absolute, unadulterated, best part of the kit is this. You get a ton of signs, propaganda posters and other historical looking advertisements to spice up your building. All of these came in just one kit. Which means I've got a ton of cool stuff to put on all the other buildings I own. Way to go 4Ground, I'm over the moon about this addition as it adds a ton of historical flavor to the building (and now all my other buildings as well!)

You will need wood glue to get a long term, solid hold between pieces. It's cheap, go grab some. 

The instructions are double sided and in full color. Another huge help. No diagrams here, just the actual thing being built step by step. 

Ground floor. Notice the notch posts on the top of each corner and coming off the bottom of the kit. The top notches hold the floor above in place (something every terrain maker should think about) and the bottom ones will hold the exterior wall. 

Like this

Bottom floor all built up. Interestingly, it's the only floor with no interior detail. 

As building proceeds up the levels you'll notice the damaged walls. These are separate pieces that slide into the yellowed walls. It's a bit tricky to figure out how they go at first, but once your eye gets used to it it's relatively simple. 

Up we go with the other floors.

And finally the roof, which was a bit tricky to get situated properly. Especially the smoke stacks on top which took some time and dry fitting to align properly. 
 In fact, when doing these MDF models dry fit everything first. It will let you see how they go together before you commit to laying on the glue and setting them in place.

Last up are the little bits. In this case the window sills. There are about 40 of these guys to put in directly under the windows. 

And finally, cut out and glue on those super awesome advertisements and signs. I went with some wine on one side...

And directions to Abbeville and Calais on the other. Too cool, right?!
Overall: This is a fabulous kit, and not super expensive for what you get. It took me about an hour to put the whole thing together and now that I've got the hang of it I'm sure other similar sized buildings will go much more quickly. The addition of signage and posters really puts it over the top as they are value that can be carried over into other buildings.

I give this a solid 5 out 5 Cinzano Posters.

"Throckmorton is a reclusive cactus farmer living somewhere in the frosty northern climes of Alberta, Canada. When not pricking himself on pointy caryophyllales, he occasionally deigns to climb down from his northern 'Cactus Throne' to play some Flames and very occasionally writes about his adventures on Throck Of War, his personal blog."

Terrain provided, via prize support, by 4Ground

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