Home Forums Terrain and Scenery Varying figure and terrain scales

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    How many people here scale down a bit with terrain? It’s an ongoing and evergreen debate of the Pendraken fora. I prefer to use 6mm buildings with 10mm figures, preferring a settlement to contain a few more structures, but my party is by no means the only voice heard in the argument.


    I only game in 15mm , so all my terrain is in 15mm. Problem solved.


    While I game mostly in 25mm my buildings are usually smaller.  Both 20mms and 15mms look better on the battlefield.



    Depending on the scale of battle I do both 6mm and 10mm buildings with 10mm and 3mm and 6mm with 6mm figures.

    The tree of Life is self pruning.

    Norm S

    In most respects, I think you can borrow from two similar scales and go by foot print instead of what the scale is called. So for 10mm I will use large 6mm buildings, any 10mm building and small 15’s. For example for my city / Stalingrad type buildings, I have both 10mm and also the 15mm ruined office blocks in MDF from Warbases.

    for 28mm, in which terrain can be a problem for storage, I use small foot 28mm buildings and 20mm buildings from railway suppliers.

    Keith Barker

    I use TotalBattleMiniatures big battalions houses.


    These are not true 6mm / 10mm but have a reduced footprint. Thus you get a much better village effect with the reduced footprint.

    I have tried using true-to-scale models but these look too big on the tabletop (IMHO) and one house must represent a whole village (e.g. from Timecast who have really nice models to exact scale).


    • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by Keith Barker.

    Hmmmm tricky.
    I only play skirmish so use the same scale and 1:1 representation.
    If I were to to do large battle again I am not sure if I would use smaller scale buildings to get more in the same footprint, (which appeals) or the correct scale buildings so they are in keeping with the scale and have that 1 building represent a town… or what.

    I can see the reasoning behind each approach and again like so much about this hobby, there is no right or wrong, just what is preferable for your own enjoyment.

    I suspect I would use a smaller scale and thus have more buildings in the same footprint, IF it worked out cheaper.
    So if playing 15mm and I could buy 1 x 15mm building for £10.00 or 3 x 10mm for £10.00, I would probably choose the 10mm as it would look a bit more built up and not cost any more.



    When playing skirmish games, I try to use in-scale buildings and terrain. For big battle games, I am currently experimenting with using buildings closer to the ground scale rather than the figure scale by using the Brigade Models 1:1000 buildings with my 6mm WW1 and WW2 armies. Using smaller buildings makes it easier to conform to the size of built-up area templates in CD:ToB, as well as making it easier to leave space for the figures rather than having to remove the buildings so that the figures fit into the BUA. I’m tempted to start using large 6mm buildings with my 15mm armies for big battles too. I think it could be quite aesthetically pleasing.

    Never argue with an idiot. They'll only drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.



    I use Faller Ho / 1/87 scale buildings when using my 25/28mm WAS /SYW armies I like the look and style plus the smaller foot print.  Though I don’t go down a scale when gaming 20mm WW2?, maybe a its style over substance thing?  I am a firm believer that smaller scale buildings works well for certain wargames, like said smaller foot print, style over substance, standard built up area template, cost effective, storage.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by willz.
    General Slade

    I generally prefer the buildings to be the same scale as the figures.  I use 15mm figures and would prefer a town to be represented by three or four 15mm buildings than lots of 10mm or 6mm ones.  The only problem comes when you want to represent an iconic building that played an important role, like La Haye Sainte at Waterloo.  If you used a 15mm version of that it would have far to big a footprint.  However, I would still prefer to have a 15mm building of a smaller size (the doors and windows are 15mm but the length of the walls is reduced) than a more accurate model in 10mm or 6mm.


    Stephen Tunmore

    At the wargames club I attend a  number of members deal with this in different ways. On our refught of Waterloo, in 28mm, the scale of La Haie Sante is 28mm, (for doors and windows), but its overall footprint is reduced as it would take up too much space.

    A 15mm player uses buildings of a lower scale, ie 10mm again as their footprint is too big and there is negligable difference in aesthetics.


    I’m onboard with the general thinking at that under-scaling buildings for tactical and grand tactical games is a good idea. Building footprints become out-of-wack very fast, and under-scaling helps mitigate this some.

    I’ve even gone a step further in the scale mixup. In scenarios that feature both cities, suburbs, and rural areas, I scale my urban city centers larger, and the suburbs and rural areas smaller. This provides a natural visual effect of the city rising above its suburbs.

    You can see the impact of this in these two games:

    Battle of Smolensk at Little Wars 2016

    Battle of Smolensk at Historicon 2016


    The Bandit

    Mr. Average

    I don’t have images to support it, but generally speaking buildings seem to look good at about half the size of the game figures, especially if you’re trying to represent a nice mass of built area, like a CBD of a city. In real life it’s easy to underestimate the size of buildings, I’ve found – they’re really huge, especially in actual urban areas.

    Stephen Tunmore

    I find the ranges of weapons from the rules determines things a bit as well. If a unit cant even fire the length of a building its looks a bit strange, (although in reality a model building may well represent a group of buildings or a village. Maybe buildings more in keeping with the figure scale is more suited to skirmish games?

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