Home Forums General General Small scale basing, to base or not to base?

Viewing 18 posts - 1 through 18 (of 18 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #15796
    Angel Barracks
    Moderator

    I put forward the case for basing:

    In this scale when troops are on a 2mm thick base (many people use 2mm MDF , or even tiddlywinks) not basing vehicles can result in ‘people’ standing taller than a vehicle that should be taller than them, such as a tank.
    So by basing vehicles you increase them by the same height (2mm) as the infantry and thus maintain the illusion of scale.
    Not basing just makes vehicles look shorter than they should be.

    Take a look here at the difference between a based an unbased figure.
    It is quite an increase in height.

    So if the unbased figure looks in scale when placed next to an unbased vehicle, it stands to reason that a based figure looks too big when placed next to an unbased vehicle.
    The figure appears 33% taller, or more accurately (I think anyway) as we are used to based figures, the vehicle looks 33% smaller…

    This disparity is furthered by the fact that miniatures of infantry in 6mm are not right anyway.
    Let us assume that 1mm = 1 foot.

    On this basis it is fairly easy to get a vehicle to be the right size.

    However infantry can be the right height but not the right width.
    6mm infantry always look too big when placed next to a proper scale vehicle.
    I have just measured my forearm and it is just over 4″ wide.
    Which is 1/3rd of a foot.
    So using the assumption that 1mm = 1 foot, the arms on a 6mm figure should be about 0.33mm wide.
    This is simply not possible.
    I have just measured some of my 6mm troops and they are about 3mm wide at the shoulders, this equates to 3 feet wide.
    I am not aware of many people that are 3 foot wide.
    This would mean the average person could not fit through a normal interior house door without turning sideways.

    So we have the situation where in order to make 1/300th figures robust they must be bigger in ‘chunkiness’ than their vehicle counterparts which can be the right size, as they are essentially just chunks of lead and they can be 0.33mm smaller without compromising sturdiness.

    As such infantry already look bigger than they should next to a vehicle, so basing the vehicles helps to redress the balance a bit.

    That was a bit of a waffle, but hopefully you get what I am trying to say!

    Base up people!

    #15814
    Don Glewwe
    Participant

    I agree that things should match up (ie: based infantry looks better next to based vehicles), but am also a ‘no-plinth’ fan, so I base my (WW2)infantry on .030″ plasticard to minimize the height distortion and leave the vehicles unbased.

    https://brawlfactory.net/

    #15815
    Paint it Pink
    Participant

    I base infantry on the thinnest base practical, which depends on scale, but is usually a low denomination coin.  Thinner is better, and I only base vehicles if they aren’t stable, which is mostly mecha.  Overall I prefer less basing not more, so always leave vehicles unbased.

    One is good, more is better
    http://panther6actual.blogspot.co.uk/
    http://ashleyrpollard.blogspot.co.uk/

    #15816
    Angel Barracks
    Moderator

    Overall I prefer less basing not more, so always leave vehicles unbased.

    Is that because, a nice vehicle base with grass and stones looks arse when moved onto a road?

    #15817
    willz
    Participant

    The main reason I base figures and vehicles is to protect them.  Certainly helps to protect 20mm plastic tanks, vehicles and figures which are not robust enough to survive the rigors of transportation and war-gaming if left un-based.  Whilst metal figures are stronger if not based the paint tends to chip off them.  The overall effect of an army I feel looks better when based, to me they just look right but again the main reason is protection.

    I do appreciate that some rules have certain base size that may not tie in with the why in which you have based your figures but as war-gamers there is always solutions to be found.  Re-base, adjust rules, ignore the base size, do not buy the rules, have several armies different base sizes.

    Yes I agree with the people who say that a nice scenic based vehicle do not look right on the road, it’s a trade off for me, protection is the priority.  Some of my vehicle’s bases are just earth coloured, so the argument could go that they look bad off road, again a trade off.

     

    #15818
    Angel Barracks
    Moderator

    I do appreciate that some rules have certain base size that may not tie in with the why in which you have based your figures but as war-gamers there is always solutions to be found. Re-base, adjust rules, ignore the base size, do not buy the rules, have several armies different base sizes.

    Agreed, nothing is set in stone unless you do competition gaming I guess.
    My basing post is just me waffling on about stuff really, certainly not a demand that you all play games the one true way, my way!

    mwhuahahahaha

    #15819
    willz
    Participant

    <div class=”d4p-bbt-quote-title”>William Harley wrote:</div>
    I do appreciate that some rules have certain base size that may not tie in with the why in which you have based your figures but as war-gamers there is always solutions to be found. Re-base, adjust rules, ignore the base size, do not buy the rules, have several armies different base sizes.

    Agreed, nothing is set in stone unless you do competition gaming I guess. My basing post is just me waffling on about stuff really, certainly not a demand that you all play games the one true way, my way! mwhuahahahaha

    ARRRRRRRHHHHHHH Competition gaming, I would rather play golf (Golf being a waste of a good walk).

    #15825
    willz
    Participant

    Dooh Just noticed a spelling mistake in the last post and I managed to copy it.

    #15826
    willz
    Participant

    Agreed, nothing is set in stone unless you do competition gaming I guess. My basing post is just me waffling on about stuff really, certainly not a demand that you all play games the one true way, my way! mwhuahahahaha

    It never come across as anything other than a good topic to chat about.

    #15844
    Mr. Average
    Participant

    I have personally been leaning more and more towards basing as a universal standard in all scales below 15mm.  Definitely, in 3mm scale it’s indispensable.  But in 6mm scale, even vehicles, I feel, seem a little more “complete” on a nicely-finished base.  My big dilemma is group-basing for infantry.  I have a load of new figures I meant to base individually, but am thinking instead of squad basing, just because it feels more visually appealing to me for some reason.  It’s hard to define, just an innate inclination. on my part, I guess.

    #15856
    Cameronian
    Participant

    Use a clear (as in see-through) basing material of your chosen thickness perhaps and of course don’t decorate it?

    'The time has come" The walrus said. "To talk of many things: Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax--Of cabbages--and kings--And why the sea is boiling hot--And whether pigs have wings."

    #15858
    Don Glewwe
    Participant

    “…a good topic to chat about.”

    Which includes tangents that threaten to hijack the thread, doesn’t it?  ; )  so…

    A (possible) factor to consider would be the impact of the bases on gameplay (eg: the interaction of the mini with the terrain, movement, or firing ranges). If a stand represents the area covered by a unit (in ground scale) then there’s no problem, but if in a 1:1 game having a figure/vehicle occupying a larger area could lead to interference with the game?

    It could perhaps be judged on the basis of “What are you modeling: the battle, or the individual figure/vehicle?”  If both can be done with the same mini, great.  For the (majority of?) cases that don’t satisfy both objectives, the solution chosen is just a reflection of personal taste/priority, and thus unassailable (but not free from criticism on the internet!).

     

    https://brawlfactory.net/

    #15859
    Angel Barracks
    Moderator

    Use a clear (as in see-through) basing material of your chosen thickness perhaps and of course don’t decorate it?

    I have yet to see a clear base that is clear in use.
    I have not bought any, but looking at various images online the ones I have seen either have, smudges/smears on them, as skin is naturally oily; reflections on them and highlights that make them quite visible or have bits of loose flock on them which appears to float above the ground under the base.
    That is my reasoning for not going down that route at any rate.

    It could perhaps be judged on the basis of “What are you modeling: the battle, or the individual figure/vehicle?” If both can be done with the same mini, great. For the (majority of?) cases that don’t satisfy both objectives, the solution chosen is just a reflection of personal taste/priority, and thus unassailable (but not free from criticism on the internet!).

    Indeedy, I play 1:1 which is why my bases are small.
    I did do some 6mm FWC and the bases there were bigger and allowed some diorama style bits of detail.

    #15861
    willz
    Participant

    Use a clear (as in see-through) basing material of your chosen thickness perhaps and of course don’t decorate it?

    I have never thought of clear bases for vehicles but it’s worth a ponder, cheers for that idea George.

    #15862
    Don Glewwe
    Participant

    “…clear bases for vehicles…”

    Dunno…if the objective is protection of the mini (ie: handled by the base) I imagine that the glossy/glaring and/or ‘hovering’ appearance of a thick base would be more objectionable than a flocked one?

    If it’s just a matter of keeping a figure upright, this photo (not mine: nicked from Pulp Alley…hope that’s not too bad a cyber-boo-boo?) does a good job of showing how a subtle clear base looks better (imo) than a flocked plinth:

    Image

    https://brawlfactory.net/

    #15871
    Steve Johnson
    Participant

    I use 0.50mm styrene for my 6mm figures, which minimises any height ‘distortion’. For 10mm and above I base on either 1.50mm ABS/Styrene sheet or 1 pence and 2 pence coins.

    #15875

    Well, I have tried pretty much everything, starting with precut 1mm plastic bases, moving to steel washers and then steel precut bases, then do-it-yourself plastic bases, moving back to painted (but not flocked) pre-made plastic bases before finally settling on my 1.5 mm posterboard scheme, which I love.

    Here are its pluses.

    1) Unlike steel and plastic, it takes and holds paint marvelously well and doesn’t chip, ever.

    2) It is much, much cheaper than pre-made bases.

    3) It is very light.

    4) It can be easily cut to any size and shape which you may desire.

    5) It can be easily picked up without touching the miniature.

    6) Unlike steel, it doesn’t rust.

    Its only drawback, as far as I can see, is that it isn’t magnetic. But that’s not an issue because 3mm is so small and light. Pack your figs in a plano box, stuff some foam above it, and Bobbie’s yer mamma’s bubba. Another potential benefit of steel bases is that they give some heft to 3mm figs. But I have never found that to be a problem.

    Note that my bases are, at most, 3omm x 15mm. Most are 20mm x 12,5mm. There is thus little chance they will warp. If you make 3 inch x 3 inch bases with posterboard, that might not be true. I would probably use plastic or steel in that case.

    Originally, I thought 1.5mm might be too thick for this scale, but I think it actually looks BETTER than thin metal because it further helps delineate the miniature on the board.

    The trick is to paint the base a dark soil color that combines with the backing color of your mat or terrain scheme. Then you flock a lighter color and paint your minis to contrast with the flock.

    For my sci-fi collection and 3mm Napoleonics, I paint the bases terracotta swirled when still wet with papaya. Then I partially flock the base with yellow flocking and — very sparsely — place a few clumps of light green corse flock as bushes, here and there. For the Napoleonics, I use this to distinguish battalions (i.e. First battalion stands get one big clump, second battalion gets two smaller, etc).

    I am entirely pleased with this scheme, which is more than I can say for they others.

    For woodlands/green/temperate, I think I’d go chocolate paint, swirled with tan, light green flocking and dark green bushes.

    Three things I can’t stress enough, however:

    1) Paint light and bright (never use black as a base — mid grey at most).

    2) Flock and base in contrast to your paint scheme.

    3) Use flocking sparingly! Too much or too many types and your figures will be lost in the basing noise.

    My favorite and most successfully based figures so far are my People’s Revolutionary Army figs, which are light green on yellow and terracotta bases. IMHO, these look a treat on the table:

    When doing moderns or WWII,  you obviously can’t go the “Circus wagon” route (as PhD Leadhead uncharitably calls it. You can and should, however, paint twice as light as you think you should. For olive green, I’d base white and WASH olive. This is the easy way to bring out the details on O8’s fantastic figs.

    Another way to go is to paint darker, but neon highlight. So you paint an olive green, but highlight the edges two shades lighter and yellower. This takes patience and a steady hand or it looks crap. Washing over white and dot and slashing details is the best way to go if you’re in a hurry, IMHO.

    If you are beginning, buy one pack extra of your favorite vehicle and practice on it until you get the scheme and touch you like. It’s cheap and will save you a lot of grief later. Please trust my experience on this one.

    If you f*** up, chant this mantra: “It’s only 3mm. A pack costs half of what one 28mm figure does. Fuck it.” Strip ’em or, hell, just toss them or give them to children to play with and start over.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #15942
    Splod
    Participant

    I base all my armour, from 6mm up to 20mm.

    For 6mm I base all my figures on 30mm steel washers, there’s something about the regular size between a tank base and an infantry base that makes me happy.

    For 15mm & 20mm I use 1.5mm plasticard cut to shape. It makes sure the vehicles aren’t tiny next to infantry figures, and helps tie the armour in with the rest of the infantry for a force.

Viewing 18 posts - 1 through 18 (of 18 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.