Just in time for the Holidays, Gothic Ruins
It is a great time to be a wargame accessory maker, from game mats, to terrain, to objective markers tons of companies occupy an ever growing 3rd party space in our community. This has been made possible by liberated supply chains, sinking costs of 3-D printers, and laser cut technology. The vast array of choice wargamers have seen seems to be coalescing around the MDF laser cut items, which are durable, plentiful, and an easy to ship product. This has left large resin, foam, or plastic terrain kits lagging behind, so when I saw a GameMat release sets of pre-painted resin terrain I was intrigued.
I reached out to GameMat and they were more than happy to send me a set Gothic Ruins, so here is a throwback review of product that stands out in a sea of laser cut terrain.
First off you can buy the Gothic Ruins a few different ways. You can buy just Gothic Walls, a Gothic Temple, Gothic Set 2 (Small), or Gothic Ruins Set (Large). This is a bit of flexibly to get what you want, but not the amount of customizing many terrain competitors provide. Gothic Ruins come packaged in a pre-cut styrofoam that leaves you with a lot of styrofoam flakes you have to pick off the terrain, but the minor annoyance assures the product arrives intact. There is no assembly when it comes to the Gothic Ruins. You can though glue in the removable windows parts, but it is best to just tack them in, so you can play and move them around as needed.
The Gothic Ruins are framed by a pretty stiff foam, it is tough and can easily handle the bums and bruises you can expect this terrain to get. The paint on the ruins is very simple; having a black, grey, and white dry brushing looking technique across the entire range. The machine paint job does the job and leaves no reason you can’t go over the ruins with additional detailing yourself, especially the window bits.
As for the scale of the terrain, it is pretty substantial, but the smaller pieces tend to feel a bit off compared to the larger ones, this still doesn’t stop the set from feeling totally inhabitable in any Warhammer game. The Gothic Ruins really work well together, they are interchangeable creating different ruin spaces, each piece can go with another, and you really get the sense various pieces come from the same broken structures. This is where you can also use the smaller Gothic Walls to fill in gaps and to create unique ruin settings especially for narrative play.
Often even great terrain, like Game Workshop terrain can focus more on looks than function, leaving your models in very wobbly situations. As for the Gothic Ruins each platform provides enough space and room to place your models, with the exception of the largest pieces ground levels, where you will find broken rubble, making it difficult to balance your models easily. The majority Gothic Ruin pieces are best used as glorified walls with your models hiding behind on whatever flat game board you use.
My only real complaint with the Gothic Ruins is how thin the resin is used on the upper level platforms, this is a big contrast to the rest of the terrain, I can easily see over time these parts breaking off if you are not careful. Tying the entire Gothic Ruins together is a good battle mat to go with it. The Forgotten Realm Battle Mat fantastically brings the Gothic Ruin terrain together, the lighter color contrast works really well as does the pebble roads. The Gothic Ruins themselves fit nicely in the patchy grass spaces creating a complete look.
The only thing I wouldn’t recommend you get from the Gothic Ruin set is the Gothic Temple this out place piece of terrain, just doesn’t fit with the rest of the product. The size seems really off and the gold paint accents actually cheapen the whole thing, it really should be a Gothic courtyard, by just removing the ruin little sanctum portion of the temple. The good thing is this piece of terrain isn’t part of the larger sets so you can easily ignore it.
Below is a few images I took of the Gothic Ruin set I got, as well as video review I did for the product. Either way, if you are tired of laser cut wood terrain and want something that doesn’t require painting or assembly this set is really fantastic and will actually fill up any game board.
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