Black Friday Sale!

Get your own Modular Wargaming and RPG Terrain System at our E-shop!

2016/11/21

Journal #14 - Reviewing and Moving on!

"Really impressive work ! Great packaging !" (P., Hong Kong)
"Top notch product - I'll be ordering more!" (N.A., USA)
"The opening of Awesome" (M.S., USA)
"The tiles are exactly what I had hoped for" (G.Q., UK)
"The pieces are fabulous and better than I could have hoped. Well worth the money and then some!" (A.L., USA)
"I am in absolute rapture with it. [...] It is worth the wait" (B.W., USA)
"Is the Pedion Battlefield system the best thing to ever come out of the Hellenic Republic? Probably yes" (B.W., UK)
"F@@@ing Awesome!" (S.N., NOR)

Wow, it has been a long time since an update in this Blog. I am constantly working, creating more and more Terrain for the Kickstarter backers and the rest of Pedion clients. And what a response! However, I wanted to take a short break and share some thoughts on how Pedion has fared, as well as about the things that are in the works.

Like what you see? read on..


The -very- Good

All in all, I do count the whole venture as a success. After less than a year and a half from running the Kickstarter, Pedion has been established as an terrain and scenics provider in the world of tabletop gaming. The final product meets and even exceeds expectations, as it is evident by the comments of people receiving it - some of which I included above. I think it says a lot when people get their stuff and place orders for more, even if they know they have to wait. But the real success lies in how happy this whole effort has made me, been in contact with so many folks who really enjoy my hard work, many of whom I have ended up to call friends!

I feel that Pedion is earning its place at the niche of the gaming industry, as a high-end terrain product, a modular solution for when you want something looking good without affecting gameplay, robust, modular and easily stored away - and you don't have the time and/or aptitude for making it yourself. In terms of affordability, I strongly believe that while the prices are not very low, they are more than fair. The amount of work involved and the attention to detail and quality we try to pay to each handcrafted set is excessive, and may not be fully reflected in the price.

The -not so- Bad

While things are going well, it does not mean they run smoothly or as we had planned. The greatest issue are the delays in delivering orders, which actually derive from initial optimistic calculations on production times and costs. And yes, there is also the serious issue of extreme cash devaluation due to Brexit, but disasters happen, and I'll not throw the towel for something like this. What matters is make things even better.

Do not get me wrong; we started delivering before the promised deadline, and not many Kickstarters have almost finished with pledges 1.5 year later. But we are still delivering, we work overtime, costs pile up. The main lesson (production-wise) I have had to digest was that our terrain is still a hand-crafted, detail oriented product, and thus it needs extra time. It is not a mass produced book sent to a printer, or a series of miniatures cast overseas; the whole process is run in-house. And I want to keep it this way, for I have yet to find a better way to keep the quality and service at the high standards we have achieved.

The silver lining is that we have improved our techniques, based on our experiences so far. We strive to hit the sweet spot where we apply standardized methods (construction, casting, assembly, base painting) to achieve uniform quality and faster production, while still having to work by hand and treat each tile uniquely, like a small work of art. I believe that now we are finally achieving this, and so can make more solid future plans.

What is Coming!

I feel that we have -at last- reached a spot where Pedion can expand even more. While the production of all previous orders continues full throttle, we plan for a series of new products, complementing our existing line. As I have stated before, it is not the intention of Pedion terrain to try and compete with established terrain companies by offering similar products, if only pre-painted. On the contrary, we will implement designs which will literary bring something new to your table.

The new lines will uphold the main Pedion principles, as stated about two years ago in the very first article here: full modularity, multiple different configurations, assembled /disassembled in seconds, beautifully handpainted, stored in minimum spaces, lightweight and durable. Also, they will "work" with present and future products.

Taking into account the lessons learned by our first Kickstarter, production will now be handled in a more focused way. There will not be a huge Kickstarter like the one before, where lots of themes, styles, designs and options were unlocked and made available (driving us crazy trying to handle all requests). On the contrary, there will be multiple, focused campaigns, each for a specific series of products. This way we will be able to focus production on certain items, deliver and move on.

So, what's to come?

1. First Expansion - the Pedion Urban Range

We will start with expanding and standardizing our existing product line of "Urban" Tiles. While people can already order tiles with road configurations unlocked during the Kickstarter, our next project will take this a step further.
We want to present full 2'x3', 3'x3' and 4'x4 Sets of tiles where you can configure your roads in any way and use them as a beautiful background for Buildings. People can already "create" such sets by combining road and tile textures of our Modular Battlefields. However, these have a more "outdoors" look and feel, so we will introduce four (4) specific Themes for Urban environments:

  • Cobblestone Roads with Dirt Open Spaces 
  • Cobblestone Roads with Cobbled Open Spaces (a mostly Fantasy/Medieval/European theme)
  • Asphalt Roads with Pavements and Cobbled Open Spaces (a Modern theme)
  • Hex Roads with Hex Open Spaces (a Sci-Fi theme)


Example of the intended Cobblestone Roads/Dirt Spaces Urban design (3'x3' Set, W.I.P.)

Same 3'x3' Set, with added scenics to give context; a beautiful rural town materializing
(Paper buildings from the Fat Dragon and Dave Graham ranges, Miniatures painted by Anne Yeomans)


During the campaign, we hope to unlock variant urban designs like town squares, road roundabouts and parking places. Another unlock would be different elevation options, with slopes, uphill roads, steps... and there are even some thoughts on town docks... Finally, we want to introduce as part of this campaign, special "transition" tiles, which will allow you to combine two different themes n the same table, or pair your older Sets with the Urban ones.

This will be the first new Kickstarter campaign,and it will be sooner than you think - we aim for early January 2017 so stay tuned!

2. Second Expansion - the Pedion Indoors Range

This will be Pedion's approach to a Dungeon System. Do we need another one? In my mind yes, if it is not copying the excellent Dwarven Forge designs but strives to cover different needs. Keeping this in mind, we designed a system of interconnecting walls and floors in true Pedion spirit.

Our usual tiles will be the floors, textured and hand painted, at 30cm x 30cm squares. And your walls will allow any kind of design you like.
This Range will follow (and enrich the Urban range) and it is past the design phase, as we have created a number of moulds already.

An early prototype for the basic Set


3. Third Expansion - the Beach Landings Range

This is a more "boutique" expansion for our current Battlefields range. It aims to introduce a full trenches and fortification series of tiles, along with full solutions of Sets recreating WWI and WWII landing sites. The range is intended to combine existing designs (our excellent coastlines) with new ones (high rises, earthworks) for people who want to represent Normandy or Pacific Island engagements.
This Range is still in design phase, although I have begun setting up the first D-Day prototypes!


This is all for now. I hope that I have (re)kindled your interest and that you will accompany me and Pedion in the great things to come!

Good gaming,
George



2016/07/01

Making even better River and Swamp tiles!

It has been a long time between blog posts, but it is for a good cause: fulfilling orders! In this update I wanted to share our beautiful Swamp add-on, as well as our improved method on River tiles.

New 6'x4' Sets avaialble for preorder in the eshop

While you are visiting the eshop, check out the new, more affordable 6'x4' Sets we introduced!
The new, impressive 6'x4' River Crossing table! 
All you need in a 6'x4' table: 5 Hills, 2 forests, 2 crops, a long road -
and at what a price! The new Standard 6x4 set

Swamp Power!

Check a finished version Pedion's resin Swamp add-on for the Pond tile, although it can easily be used as stand alone! I'm really happy with the liquid mud result.

The resin prepainted Swamp add-on for the full pond tile

Changing the look of your Pond


Production Improvements

It took some time, and some delay on river tile sets, but I think we nailed it in greatly improving the production method of river tiles. We designed precision molds where we cast only the river side parts of the river in resin. Then the rest of the tile is composed by regular tile parts, ie polystyrene, and it is based on PVC bases. The challenge was on creating 0.5mm  precise resin parts and also deciding on a valid compound material to attach resin and polystyrene while preserving elasticity. After much trial and error, our first v2.0 river tiles are on their way :) The new method requires less resin, allowing for 3x faster casting time, and as a side effect it produces more lightweight and less fragile tiles. So, we will now be producing sets even faster!

the new, multi-part method for river tiles
It allows for a huge number of river tiles produces in 3 or 4 castings
The final product is identical to our resin tiles

This was not our only improvement; I was not 100% happy with the behavior of PVC glue and the grass mat covering of tiles in the face of extreme humidity. People were noticing a wrapping effect on tile edges (although it was easily mended by putting on some weight). After trying and rejecting a myriad of solutions, we finally nailed it by selecting a gluing agent devoid of water: low expansion polyurethane. This is a demanding procedure, which does not "forgive" misplacement like regular glues do, but now you will be getting even better Green Spring tiles.


E-shop open for business - take advantage of the low British Pound rates!

Although we are very close on creating a stock of basic 3x3 and 4x4 core sets to sell on retail, we will also take preorders as usual with a 2-month waiting time to deliver.

This is a great chance for everyone of you interested in expanding your collection in our regular prices. And, for non-UK residents, it is a great time to take advantage of the extremely low GBP conversion rates and save 20% or more.

It has been an ...interesting June.

Good gaming all!

George

2015/10/13

Journal #13 - oh, those beautiful new tiles!

Much is happening in Pedion-verse, which I would really like to share! But what I really want to do with this blog post is to show off -without a shred of shame- the newly created beautiful pictures of Tile Types unlocked as Stretch Goals during the Kickstarter. But some business first...

No, this is not a real Greek beach, is Pedion Coastline tile... more below ;)

Pledge Manager (and extra pre-orders) are Live; lock your stuff!

You will pleased to know that the pledge management system is up and running, and all backers have received an invite to lock their pledges. Almost half of them have actually gone and finalized their rewards already, so we are moving on! The Pledge Manager is set-up as part of the Pedion e-shop. This has another advantage: not only can backers add more last minute stuff to their pledges, but people who missed the Kickstarter have their (last) chance to pre-order Pedion Battlefield Sets! The Pledge manager will be open up to the end of the month, so not much time left to take advantage of Kickstarter prices and shipping.

New, Unlocked versions of Tile Types

As many may know, we unlocked an awful large number of new themes, tile types and combinations during the Kickstarter Campaign. Because of the hectic rhythm of those days, we managed to create prototypes for only a few of them -those of the first Stretch Goals reached- like Green Grass Ponds, Craters etc. However, there were a LOT more stuff made available, mostly as extra options to the existing tile types, which we did not manage to show during the campaign but only to describe it.

While we were mass-preparing tiles for the backers' orders, we also made sure that these unlocked options were implemented. We wanted to have a picture of at least some of the new options available for the Pledge Manager, so the backers could have a better idea and base their choice in what they saw and not what they read.

Another cool fact about the tiles/add-ons you will see below is that they are not mock-ups or prototypes - they are backer stuff. So, here are some images to see for yourselves, and we are very proud of how they are turning out!

Frozen option for the "Pond" tile: a special liquid glass option for the Winter themed boards with a pond included. The pond is complete cast in epoxy resin.

The Frozen Pond tile (winter theme, liquid glass)



River with floating ice pieces: Staying in the Winter theme, another option of displaying the river surface was to add floating ice pieces. The idea is not to have a completely frozen river, but to show how cold it is, and perhaps assign some wargame attribute to the ice pieces (perhaps making the river passable?). Notice the darker blue/black of the winter water.


The ice floating pieces are cast in white/blue transparent resin



Two river tiles joined. The upper tile represents a "Ford" tile, with a winter dirt road reaching the riversides. The "square" shapes showing on the river banks are magnetic hardoints for trees, walls, bridges, buildings etc

Now, to our pride and joy, the Coastline tile types. Coastline/Riversides were requested by the backers and unlocked close to the end. The Straight, Concave and Convex tiles will be of two types (2 different molds). The delta and the open water of one type (molds in progress). The tiles you see below are cast in resin or resin and liquid glass for the respective version. Also, the "water" tile sides also connect magnetically (we did not want to have to apply constant pressure on the tile corner by clipping velcro). Also, ALL the sloped beach part is Magnetic, so players can snap walls, bunkers, artillery or anything else on them.


Coast tile, Straight beach, type I, Green theme, Painted Version



Coast tile, Concave beach, type I, Green theme, Painted Version

The straight and concave tiles connected

Coast tile, Convex beach, type II, Green theme, Liquid Glass Version
another view of the beautiful liquid glass version



Urban Road Tiles: about midway during the campaign, a stretch goal unlocked which is a personal favorite. Now you can get a series of tiles to create a board of an urban environment, ready for man-made structures like buildings, ruins, factories, sandbags etc. Skirmish games become more and more popular and with urban tile options you could get the basis for a neighborhood, be it a fantasy village, a modern town or a futuristic off-planet settlement. Backers had already seen our cobblestone/dirt road version, now we present two variations of the many available: a scifi straight road tile, and a 28mm modern crossroads tile.



Urban Straight road tile: 7cm, light blue "plastisteel" surface, Caution line sides, light grey "plastisteel" tile texture, FULLY magnetic

X Crossroads Urban tile, 14cm road, Asphalt, 28mm scale pedestrian stripes, Magnetic sidewalks, Sandstone tile texture

Variant River Flows: Along with the more exotic, scifi themes for our boards, unlocked two new "river" flows, lava and green toxic... stuff! These fillings can also be applied to fill craters, ponds or even "seas"/"lakes". Check them on Grey waste and Red planet tiles. The Red planet tile has a more alien look with special minerals. Again, the square shapes are actual magnetic hardpoints.



Lava flow on regular Grey Wastes theme, painted version

Green toxic river, painted version

Sci-Fi Crystal Formations: even better than minerals, backers can now order MAGNETIC crystals which give a very scifi look on their boards. If they look realistic, it's because they are fully based on real Jade formations. They are cast in transparent coloured resin, at various shapes.



purple crystal

green crystal

"clear" crystal

cobalt blue crystal

I have even more stuff to show you, especially the new Elevation change System we developed; but it will have to wait till my next blog post. If you liked the new stuff and the images, please share the word with people interested and -of course- get yourselves some in the eshop!

Good gaming all,

George

2015/09/14

Journal #12 - or, My Foray into Castings

Well, it has been a busy month... (yes, that's an understatement). But the Pedion Terrain adventure continues evolving! While getting ready to launch the Pledge Management interface later this month, I have been creating a number of molds to allow faster and accurate reproduction of tile features. So, in this post, I would like to share some of this procedure with you...

Molding Pedion

Much of the work done and presented so far on these pages is actually prototyping; terrain features and add-ons hand-produced and designed. However, to really enter a streamlined production of multiple boards, I needed to take these a step further. Therefore, I have had to create molds of the main features which are repeatedly found on the tiles, or are magnetically connected as add-ons.

This is not a simple process; that is, to select the best and cost-effective way to reproduce various features. One of the first parameters is that reproduction by casting can actually replace hand made articles, both in quality and in cost. You see, I really can sculpt hills, rocks, tree bases etc in a short time and from low-cost and extremely lightweight mediums. So the castings should be "worth" as much.

Also, the creation of molds is a big investment. The success of the Kickstarter campaign and the number of orders was such that provided the funds needed for such molds - but not on an industrial, tens-of-thousands copies level. So, I selected the more robust and small-industry solution of creating my own professional silicon molds for resin copies. For this I used the exceptional Dow Corning's 3481, for multiple resin copy production.

Then came the selection of casting materials. For the Sci-Fi crystals, I had to choose a clear resin that could be dyed, and have good UV resistances; My choice so far goes to polyester epoxies. As for creating copies of modular add-ons, I went with two-part epoxy resin, mixed with additional powder for lowering the specific weight of the final medium. Also, I started making the molds "hollow", so that the final castings would be lighter. On fixed features, sometimes I use gypsum instead of resin, due to ease of use. However, since the tiles must have high resistances, I use the special Giluform mix that acts like Hydrocal but with significantly increased hardiness.

But enough of talking; let me show you some pictures of the stuff I have been making!
Sci-Fi Crystal Formations in various colourings; you can estimate their size by comparing to the 28mm Space Wolf, the 20mm Sherwood Archer and the 15mm Alien terror
Especially for the Sci-Fi Crystal formations I did not sculpt the originals myself, but selected a more realistic approach: I used real Quartz Formations and Quartz "Needles" which I combined into several futuristic shapes; and boy, are these stones pricey. But I am extremely pleased with the result as now Pedion can sport a great variety of good looking and "realistic" Sci-Fi crystals, which of course have a magnet embedded into the polyester!

The Crystal molds

Check the dark blue and Cobalt blue colourings...



Two other pieces I will be needing great quantities of are tree bases and rocks for the broken terrain and forest tiles. In the pictures you can see the rocks made from Giluform, while the tree bases are made from resin (for durability) with embedded magnets.



Finally, I moved on to larger pieces. The first challenge I tackled was the add-on hill pieces, the ones you get when you order a hill tile. For those of you who do not remember, you can use this add-on piece either on the first hill to create a second level, or as a stand-alone hill someplace else on the battlefield. These pieces needed to be made from resin (to withstand lots of handling), to be hollow in order to be lightweight, and to be sturdy so they won't cave in when you put miniatures on them.

The hollow Hill molds

Resin copy of extra hill piece for Hill Tile #1
Resin copy of extra hill piece for Hill Tile #2
Underneath view of extra hill for Hill tile #2; hollow with 3 embedded magnets

And my molding efforts continue: the larger hill pieces, sidewalks for urban roads, large rocks for badland tiles, even whole tile sections for the coastlines. I hope to have more photos soon.


Good gaming,

George


2015/08/19

Journal #11 - Last chance to pre-order Pedion!

Hello All!  I tried to take a couple of days off amidst the Greek summer heat. But now it's time for some Pedion Terrain news!

Only TWO DAYS LEFT to Pre-Order!


Get your terrain at http://pedion.ecwid.com/

I have to start with the more urgent business: in case you are already a backer and wanted to add some more things on your pledge right now, or you like Pedion Battlefields and missed the Kickstarter, there are only two days left on the pre-order extension through the eshop.

After the 21st of August 2015, I'll bring the pre-orders down and focus on producing the orders I have gathered so far (lots of backers have send their spreadsheets). Also, I have to prepare the final Pledge Management, which will probably go live on mid-September, and for which I was thinking of using the eshop interface instead of solution like Backerkit.

...and the Production is On!


Most materials are already in house and we have started preparing, gluing and painting the tile bases in mass quantities.

Lots of people asked about the narrow seam showing between the tiles, which is mostly created from the protruding 1mm magnets. So I improved the base tile design by creating depression into the tile sides to socket the magnets.

The small alcoves are created en mass and then the whole column of 200 tiles is spray painted with the base side tile colour depending on the theme: deep green for Spring grass, sand yellow for desert, light grey for snow etc.

About a hundred Spring Green tiles mass painted on the sides; notice the small alcoves for inserting the magnets

The only hiccup so far is a small delay on magnet delivery. Magnets are the only part that we import, from the UK; but the latest batch was designated as unfit for air mail by the UK customs (?!) and is transferred by ground mail, so I expect them to arrive during this week.

Check the impressive SciFi Modular Pedion PrintTiles


Though it does not regard the Modular Battlefields per se, this is Pedion related and we are very proud of it!

Pedion PrintTiles, our innovative modular gaming mat system, was used to form 4'x4' tables to exhibit the new HALO Fleet Battles game at Claymore 2015. The base 3x3 board was expanded with extra planet- and nebula-themed tiles (something you could not have done with traditional mats).
On top you will see the beautiful 3D terrain pieces like Asteroids and Gas Clouds from Dave and Anne Yeomans, and of course the new Halo miniatures!







Also, for the RPG buffs among you, check our modular Stone Floor 1" square grid PrintTiles in 4x4 layout:



Don't forget that you can already order the PrintTiles from our eshop!

So, enjoy the rest of your summer, tell your friends to pre-order, and -of course- good gaming!
George

2015/07/26

Journal #10 - the post-Kickstarter Effect, and how you can still pre-order!

Wow. What An Adventure!
It took me some time to return to this blog - and this was due to the many things to be done after the end of Kickstarter . Also, I guess that you may have already seen that the Kickstarter Campaign was a huge success: 267% Funded, 185 Backers, all Stretch Goals unlocked! However, I would like to express some of the things I felt, and give you a glimpse in what is happening in Pedion-verse.

A dream come true


Pedion was never an "arts and crafts" project; from the first moment I dared to hope that lots of people may be interested in trying my idea for a battlefield terrain system. I commenced the Kickstarter campaign with a relatively modest goal, representing a production level of multiple terrain boards. The original goal would allow me to be sure that there was something worth going after. But the final sum, over 35K British pounds, is a different level all-together. It represents a dream I did not dare speak aloud: that Pedion can actually enter the market and stay for a long while. And I cannot express my gratitude and joy that people are giving me this chance.
My wonderful backers helped make true a dream, and I feel humbled from their trust and support, as well as from the responsibility this entails.

Also, people may have notices that I was (and am) a very active Kickstarter backer. But the thrill and the community feeling when you are the creator has stunned me; I feel I have made friendships that will last the rest of my natural life, and all because of this...

Missed the Kickstarter? You can still pre-order through PayPal till the 21st of August


Lots of people got to our campaign late, or not in time at all, and have asked for a chance to pre-order a Pedion set. Though the ability to add things will be available on the final Pledge Management system, I took the time and installed a full pre-order service running on our e-shop. Not every option you have had during Kickstarter is there yet, but I'll try and include as many as possible.


You can still be a Kickstarter backer, through PayPal or Wire Transfer, at http://pedion.ecwid.com

There you can choose rewards, add-ons and upgrades in the same prices and spirit as if the Kickstarter campaign was still on, and you just add them to your order, paying by PayPal. This will be available only for a limited time, only until the 21st of August 2015, since we must close all orders and start final production. Therefore, in case you want to add something or upgrade your rewards, try http://pedion.ecwid.com/

The pre-order system is not meant to substitute the Kickstarter; its purpose is for any last minute add-ons, or for people who missed the Kickstarter for a few days. There is also another purpose for it: the recent troubles of capital controls in Greece did not allow any of our Greek backers to pay (their credit cards were locked for buying abroad). But things are looking good now, and I wanted to give  people in Greece the chance to finally pledge by wire tranfer. However, I have to be fair to the original backers, so it is less than a month left for pre-orders to stop.


And the real work starts


We did not take any days off after the Kickstarter ended, so the project is already underway. Right now we are transferring materials and equipment to the production site. New equipment is being ordered and employees' selection is finalized. The last two weeks we are conducting a full renovation on the 75 sq.m. (750 sq.ft.) space that will act as our main production workshop - flooring, wall selves, work benches, tools, appliances are now in place. On the same time, the first materials are pouring in, like polystyrene, magnets and model trees. Though not very complimenting, here are two snapshots of two of the rooms with workbenches:
Can you see those bags of model trees on the high self?



We also installed a professional air-pump for two-person simultaneous spray painting. For the modelers among you, think "airbrush" but for mass production. So I had to carry the monster below for two floors to faster and better basecoat the tiles :)

Wouldn't you love such an airbrush?
On the same time, I am setting-up the production procedures. In reference to the preliminary order spreadsheets I am getting from the backers, I'll check the feasibility of mold methods again, and start designing them.


Pedion at Claymore 2015


For those of you planning to visit Scotland's premier wargaming event in Edinburgh next weekend, there will be some Pedion presence! There will not be an actual booth; I am too busy setting up things here. However, we have the pleasure of providing a huge (12'x4') Space Gaming Mat (modular of course!) to no other space fleet battle than the one demonstrating the latest SciFi Wargame, HALO! Yes, the new, exciting game from Spartan in the Halo Universe, called HALO Fleet Battles, will be exhibited in Claymore, and we will be providing the scifi PrintTiles for the epic board.

Check it out, and have a chat with +David Yeomans, who will be providing the excellent terrain like asteroids and Gas clouds. In case you have not seen out PrintTiles, you can check them out here: https://pedion.ecwid.com/#!/Pedion-PrintTiles/c/13054089/offset=0&sort=normal

As you can see, everything is moving along! So have a great summer, and a wonderful GenCon (for those attending it!). Good gaming all!

George