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Not just Ogres Live in swamps


Bit of an odd thing to be fixated on at the moment, or just to be fixated on period, but at the current time that is exactly what I am. It stems from a long held wish to have a Goblin Army for Kings of War, just recently the means to make this Goblin Horde a reality has been realised, so despite delays from Work, a house move and a myriad of other external factors the Goblin project has been set in motion. The Goblins have their own background as Swamp Goblins and the planned diorama bases are to be swamp themed. This is turn spawned the idea of having a themed table for the Swamp Goblins to defend as their home. All this requires the building of swamps, something that I have had very little experience of doing so far in my wargaming career. This was a situation that need to be rectified and quickly.

Step one

My previous swamp bases had been converted pond that I had used sand/gravel to divide into smaller pondlets and then painted the base green with a coat of gloss varnish over the top, this was crude but effective, especially as the swamps needed to be robust enough to survive the rigours of the wargames club tables. These two ex ponds represented the first generation of this new Swampy project, time to up the game a bit. Time to hit the Youtube channels for some inspiration. Back when I was playing Warhammer and building water features I spent a lot of time mixing two part epoxy resins to pour into carefully constructed channels to simulate rivers and ponds , then the ready to pour Woodlands scenic water effect resin came out but it was expensive and out of my reach at the time. Fast forward 10 years and I find out that the pourable resin is now a lot cheaper and easier to use but that there are now coloured options available. This is awesome (I realise that most of you are reading this going “well Duh !” but I am from a previous era of wargaming and only just getting back into the stream so to speak, I still can’t believe how many Youtube channels there are for terrain) and I rushed out and bought the Swamp effects from AK to try and use(I also bought the Pacific Blue , Ice effects and Snow products to try out for a Northern Alliance themed basing style but that will be a separate article I think) Once I had the Swamp effect I decided to try the techniques out on some scenery items before I started building Horde bases for the Swamp Goblins. This would have the effect of supplying me with some basic terrain for my collection and the start of the swamp themed table all in one, I have some jolly good ideas sometimes.

I had some spare bases plus another pond that was semi finished. I used a sand and gravel mix to divide up the pond into smaller pools and replicated the effect on the other spare bases, once this was dry I painted with Burnt Umber and drybrushed with honey brown and desert sand to produce the below effect

Step two.

The bases were then flocked with a mid tone (Javis Heath Green) Flock over clear PVA , this was applied to look like the vegetation on the “raised” areas between the water.

Step 3

Once dry I went back to apply some foam scatter (Javis Meadow Mix) which is a bigger texture to represent more lush undergrowth , this was applied to the edge of the water area and under banks where water would pool and the richer vegetation might grow.

Step 4

Once this was dry I applied some random clumps of foam foliage to represent some low scrub. This was left to dry and then the whole was sealed with a spray of watered down PVA and left to dry again before the next stage.

Step 5

This is where the story really starts! once the sealing solution was dry on the Swamps I got to play with the Swamp effect, I have used it before in small amounts on a couple of test bases and I have seen it on a number of Youtube videos , however it is still a leap of faith to put what looks like pale green custard onto the base in the hope that it will dry to look like swamp water. As you can see from the pictures it looks quite dramatic when it is first applied but I knew I had to have faith in the product. I applied it by dappling it on using a cheap childrens plastic bristled paint brush from a pound shop , it goes on well and is easy to clean the gunk off afterwards.

Step 6

Well the leap of faith paid off , the water effect has dried to a nice swampy looking water effect and the swamps look the part , I may go back over the edges of the water and tidy up the margins using more flock effects but these will have to wait until my next batch of flock arrives …….. until then , here are the finished( for now) articles

The making of these swamps has given me some practise in the techniques I will be using for the swamp bases and has also given me a multitude of ideas of extra things to do and add to make the swamp bases for the Goblins a lot more than just “a base”.

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1 Comment

Jon Gunns
Jon Gunns
Aug 08, 2023

Goblins! Have you seen the light at last? By the way, if you have a swamp, you have to fence half of it off for Donkey.

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