Okay so you have your copy of Panzer Thrust or Steam and Steel and now it’s time to assemble the parts. But it can be a bit daunting I mean what should you use and what techniques; if any; are useful? So let’s talk about putting all the pieces together.
What do you need?
1) Xacto knife is the most indispensable piece of equipment you can own. I recommend getting blades form Ebay. There are plenty of sellers and 100 packs make a goodly number. Make sure to change out your blades often when cutting. This of course goes without saying, that’s why I am going to say it…BE CAREFUL!
2) Box Cutter: The best knife for cardboard there is bar none. Best of all their cheap. Ebay is my personal source and I’ll buy 30 or so at a time. Snap off the blade EVERY TIME you start to cut cardboard. “Can’t do nothing without a sharp knife”–Julia Child…
3) Poster board is cheap and easily bought at any dollar store. I buy my again at Ebay. (Sensing a pattern?) I buy 25 sheets at a time which lasts me about six months or so. Hey! I’ve got a lot of ideas okay? Poster board is best used for counters. It’s not really sturdy enough for map boards that need to be butted together.
4) Cardboard! I LOVE Cardboard I want to thank Mr. C. Board for inventing this stuff!!! Cardboard is free if you just keep your eyes open. One of the best places is the grocers they have cardboard coming out of their ears and love giving it away to any shmuck who wants it, and I’m just the schumck their looking for! Cardboard can be used for counters, but its thick and not that attractive as a counter backing. Not to me anyway. I use cardboard for the backing on maps, and to build buildings for miniatures, plus hills, rivers, canals etc etc etc. A variety of other uses for gaming I have found for this wonderful and recyclable stuff!
5) Finally spray adhesive. Now I have tried them all believe me, if it’s sold in the US, I’ve sprayed it. The only one I recommend is 3m Super 77. It is simply the best stuff. When using make sure to cover everything the spray goes every where. Outside has never worked for me, too many particle that get stuck and won’t let go.
Okay so now you’ve got your equipment now what? Print out the counters and maps using your home printer, a color laser printer is best but not everyone has one of these. Inkjets will work just fine. I use glossy paper for counters and card stock for the maps. Both are easily obtainable, while not necessarily cheap they make the game look great. Have a printer or office supply place do the printing and get the professional look if you’ve got the loot and trust the place.
Now cut out the counters (more on this in the next article). Spray the adhesive and glue the counters to the poster board. Spray adhesive takes no drying time so go ahead and start cutting. If the counters are double sided, spray the back of the counter and affix the back side to the counter. Trim any white boarder off the map boards as needed. Use an extra amount of glue with the maps and glue them to the cardboard. Cut out and invite your friends over threatening them with defeat at this great new game you just made.–Enjoy