måndag 3 augusti 2015

Basius 2 review

Another Kickstarter pledge that finally arrived. Kickstarter is a bit like getting Christmas or birthday presents -- sometimes it takes so long that you have forgot that you backed the project in the first place. Even if you do remember you are not sure exactly what you plegdged for, how much money did you sink into the project and what options did you finally choose? Exactly like opening Christmas presents, you sort of know what you wished for but not exactly what you are getting. And since it was so long ago that you paid for your pledge, it feels like you are getting the stuff for free...

"BASIUS 2 - Deluxe Miniature Wargame Base Stamp Pad System" is the full name, and as it implies it's a sort of stamp that you can use to imprint a detailed texture onto a base using green stuff. It sounds more complicated than it is, at least in theory. The Stamps themselves are big chunky squares of resin, textured on both sides.

The two pads used to impress the texture. As you can tell by my glasses in the picture they are big.

As I alluded to in the first paragraph the project was delayed after funding, of course. It ended in October 2014 with expected delivery february this year. So what's a few months, half a year even, when it comes to Kickstarters? It's practically on time. Well, yes and no. This project wasn't as delayed as some other projects I've backed, but the same as them, they were a victim of their own success. Originally asking for a mere £3000 the Kickstarter brought in £66,870 from well over 800 backers. In the end Wargames Bakery had to ask Mantic to pack and ship out the pledges to everyone.

To use the stamps just mix up a blob of Green Stuff and grab some bases -- plastic, mdf or coins.
The two stamps I bought were Victoriana and Urban. They are double sided and the Victoriana has some nice cobblestone roads with pavement and some rubble on one side, while the other side has a railroad track, a platform, a small section of beach and waves. It was the cobblestones I was mainly after, but I figured the reverse side could also come in handy. The Urban pad had a lot of city-fight rubble including broken floorboards, corrugated metal and tank tracks on one side, while the other had a similar layout to the Victoriana cobblestones, but with modern tarmac or cement road with modern pavements.

Spread out the green stuff on your bases, leave them for a little while and wet the surface before pressing.
However, when I chose my stamps I was planning to use them for Shadows of Brimstone and perhaps Mars Attacks, but during the delay I started to use clear plastic bases instead, so the bases would fit on all kinds of boards (Shadows of Brimstone has several different realms with their own beatiful boards). So now I'm thinking that perhaps some of the fantasy or sci-fi stamps would have been more useful instead. Still, the cobblestones will be useful, both for bases and various terrain items.

Press the bases against whichever part of the stamp appeals to you.

Be sure not to press the Queen into the mold. She wouldn't like that.
And gently remove the bases... ah crap, Houston we have a problem! How did this happen???

These were a little bit better, but still the Green Stuff didn't want to let go of the stamp in some places.
So my first attempt were a failure. Out of seven bases only one was servicable, and bits of Green Stuff got stuck in the molds. Some of the bases could have been useable if they hadn't been so hard to remove from the stamps that I ended up smoshing a lot of the details on the edges when prying them out. A quick check on the Kickstarter page led me to three conclusions.

  1. I didn't let the Green Stuff set long enough before pressing into the stamps.
  2. I let the bases sit in the stamps too long before removing them.
  3. Instead of just wetting the Green Stuff with water I should use something better.
Luckily the Green Stuff hadn't hardened yet, so I smoothed out the failed bases and smeared dishwasher detergent on them instead of water. This time I briefly pressed them against the stamp before removing them.

Hooray! Second attempt was successful!
...and after waiting 24 hours I trimmed the excess off the edges.
Second attempt went much better, probably because the Green Stuff had set properly by this time, and also because the detergent stopped it from sticking to the mold. I also managed to get almost all of the Green Stuff residue out of the stamps so I didn't ruin them. Will try some larger bases next time. It should be possible to do small sections of road too.

If you want to buy your own, they will be available from Wargames Bakery as soon as all backers have received theirs.

I have a hard time scoring them though, because I'm not sure how much use I will get out of them and they did cost quite a bit (£54 including postage) although I do not know how much they will cost for non-backers. They sure are useful and I have seen some great work from other people using Basius stamps. Let's just say I have ordered more Green Stuff.

9 kommentarer:

  1. I've wondered how well these stamps work as I do all my own bases using Super Sculpey and there's a definite limit to what I'm capable of sculpting on my own. Once you got your method down it seemed to work out well for you. If you make enough bases, over time, the stamps should pay for themselves.

    1. Considering the limits of what I am able to sculpt, one of these will pay for itself the first time I use it!
      I am looking forward to seeing what you can do with these before I order one myself, Laffe.

    2. Yeah, they are useful, no doubt. I just would have got something other than the Urban stamp had I ordered them today.

    3. Anne, it would be interesting to read about how you use Super Sculpey for your bases.

  2. Hello my Dear Leif ^^

    I've received my Basius stuffs last week and I rewied it :

    To avoid troubles, they said that we must wet GS AND the pad... But in my case, only wet GS would be sufficient...

    I'll try a little tips given bay a friend of mine : instead of water, using a lip-stick before stamping... It seems to be more efficient indeed ^^

    I've stocked lot of GS too : I bought a 91 cm box few weeks ago for my "Industrial" and "Sanctuary" pads ^^


    1. Lip-stick, maybe I can borrow my wife's. Or do you mean lip-balm, without the colour?
      I read your blog, the Sanctuary pad looks very good. It was one of the pads I was interested in.

    2. Yes I speak about lip-balm (in France, when shops use the english language, they say "lip-stick" TT).

      If you want, I can send you some sanctuary bases stamped ^^ Just send me your bases and some GS !!


  3. That looks great!
    I'm with you on using clear bases now, so I'm rather glad I didn't jump on this Kickstarter, though.

    1. I'll be using clear bases for everything that will be used in a board game with a printed board. For traditional wargames I will be using regular bases, and I think I will be using a lot of GS bases for my WW2 troops.


Wayland games

Wayland Games