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Author Topic: I don't like MDF buildings  (Read 4170 times)

Offline Shahbahraz

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #15 on: July 11, 2019, 07:11:11 PM »
I think everything that needed to be said has been said.

I like them, as I don't have the space/facilities to diy the shells, plus MDF is messy and nasty to cut.

But I always treat them as canvases for further work, sometimes it looks good, sometimes I'm not so happy with the result.

What annoys me is when I see copycat nonsense like pre-painted MDF buildings being used straight out of the box, and people thinking that looks good.
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Offline Ultravanillasmurf

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #16 on: July 11, 2019, 07:23:22 PM »
For me, MDF is great for the right kind of buildings.

Some companies products may be rubbish, others push the media beyond either the builder or designers' capabilities.

They do need some post assembly work, covering holes and joins.

Most of the resin buildings I have seen suffer from sand castle mould syndrome.

Again horses for courses
« Last Edit: July 11, 2019, 07:26:49 PM by Ultravanillasmurf »

Offline Nord

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #17 on: July 11, 2019, 07:57:27 PM »
I don't like metal figures with claw shaped or (worse) solid hands that you have to drill a hole through to slot in a weapon. It's a complete pain and it always looks, well, cack-handed. So I don't buy them. Simples.

Offline Blackwolf

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #18 on: July 11, 2019, 10:38:24 PM »
They're like blank canvasses; ready to be tarted up. And when properly done, they can look suitably interesting.

Bare MDF (pre-painted or not) as terrain does fit in nicely with equally bare plastic or metal though...
Seconded...

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Offline Captain Blood

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #19 on: July 12, 2019, 10:02:06 AM »
Am I alone in my feelings?

Nope. I don't like them either.

As SteveBurt says, they work fine for representing structures that were timber in the first place - like Old West buildings. Absolutely perfect.
But when it comes to brickwork, stonework, concrete, tiles, slates etc, it's poor.
And when you get to really organic looking forms and structures like old stone buildings, cottages, mud-brick and adobe houses, then all those hard straight lines and sharp corners look totally wrong for what they're trying to represent.
Then you have the specific shortcomings of the material - lack of surface relief / texture; those horrible 'jigsaw' corners and visible slots in roofs etc; visual aberrations like 2 dimensional crenellations, and the slightly shiny paper surface. And they're not even cheap these days.
I understand MDF buildings can make a good base to work from - although you're potentially paying a lot of money for something you've then got to do a lot of work on. But the reality is that most wargamers don't use them as a base to create something wonderful looking. They just plonk them straight onto the tabletop.

For me, it's just another facet of the same old 'you pays your money and takes your choice' argument. Is wargaming all about the game, the rules, the competition? Or is wargaming all about the modelling, the painting, the figures, the aesthetics? Of course, for most people it's both, and everyone comes down somewhere they're happy with along this continuum (and then go on to add in all those other important wargaming factors like fun, comradeship, the craic, creativity, invention, history, research etc).

I'm firmly at the aesthetic-but-fun extremity of that spectrum. I like my games to look beautiful - like 'proper' wargames you see in the eye candy pages of magazines and rulebooks. That means everything modelled and painted in 3D.
I guess that's why I'm not a fan of 2D printed MDF buildings, 2D printed mats, or printed 2D paper soldiers for that matter. I know that many of these products are now very beautiful and cleverly designed in their own right. But for me, they're just not 'proper'. As ever, it's just a personal preference / choice. Fine to say you love them. Fine to say you don't like them. No-one's saying there's categorically a right answer :)

Offline OSHIROmodels

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #20 on: July 12, 2019, 10:14:39 AM »
they work fine for representing structures that were timber in the first place - like Old West buildings. Absolutely perfect.

I would disagree with that. An occasional wiggly laser score to represent wood grain just doesn't cut it for me.

Offline Rich H

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #21 on: July 12, 2019, 10:25:10 AM »
I would disagree with that. An occasional wiggly laser score to represent wood grain just doesn't cut it for me.
Agreed but I engrave a planked wood texture on my 'wood' but it takes AGES to do.  Looks good though.  I'll see if I haev a pic.

Offline Silent Invader

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #22 on: July 12, 2019, 11:10:33 AM »
I would disagree with that. An occasional wiggly laser score to represent wood grain just doesn't cut it for me.

So it goes against the grain?
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Offline Rich H

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #23 on: July 12, 2019, 11:22:20 AM »
You can see the wood grain engrave on the walls and floors here



Bigger pic
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Offline carlos marighela

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #24 on: July 12, 2019, 11:46:50 AM »
Surely a ‘proper’ wargame would have buildings made from plaster of paris and hills constructed from plasticene, all laid out on green baize, a la Donald Featherstone?
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Offline Daeothar

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #25 on: July 12, 2019, 12:11:37 PM »
So it goes against the grain?

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Offline Captain Blood

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #26 on: July 12, 2019, 12:50:01 PM »
Surely a ‘proper’ wargame would have buildings made from plaster of paris and hills constructed from plasticene, all laid out on green baize, a la Donald Featherstone?

Ah, but 'proper' is in the eye of the beholder. Personal preference, as I said. And the look of what many people would recognise as a 'proper' wargame has certainly evolved over time ;)

The funny thing is though, everyone loves to drool over the eye candy quality terrain and figures now contained in almost every rulebook and magazine. And yet this strange reluctance on the part of many wargamers to admit that this is the standard to aim for. So they privately love it, but publicly declare it unnecessary. Funny thing human nature...

Offline Cait Sidhe

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #27 on: July 12, 2019, 01:04:47 PM »
So they privately love it, but publicly declare it unnecessary. Funny thing human nature...

How are those things mutually exclusive? Sure I would love to have full hand made boards with rivers and cliffs sculpted directly in and handmade buildings built with individual miniature stones. The reality is though I have neither the space to store multiple boards of that type nor the skill or time to achieve any of that so I use flat boards with hills and trees etc plonked down on them as scatter terrain. I've even been known to use *gasp* printed cardstock stuff...  :o

So yes big fancy super realistic terrain and incredibly painted minis are gorgeous and would be great but they are completely unnecessary in order to enjoy playing wargames.

Behold my terrain and weep!


Offline jon_1066

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #28 on: July 12, 2019, 01:09:09 PM »
Rather than unnecessary read un-achievable.

Not everyone has the time or skills to create 3D terrain of rulebook quality.  For me they are useful for quick terrain and a step up from the old cardboard models you used to get in the GW scenario packs.  I also find them quite fun to build and they look OK.  I certainly don't think they are the worst looking part of my wargame set up so they can definitely wait for an upgrade.

Offline Antenociti

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Re: I don't like MDF buildings
« Reply #29 on: July 12, 2019, 01:44:32 PM »
What annoys me is when I see copycat nonsense like pre-painted MDF buildings being used straight out of the box, and people thinking that looks good.

Could you expand upon that by any chance?

We've quite a few pre-painted buildings that customers think look great "straight out of the box" - I would be interested to hear why you think that that isn't really possible?






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