Making Frostgrave Arcane Circles

Once again, Frostgrave‘s Ulterior Motives gaves me another opportunity to make some interesting terrain. This time its Arcane Circles. In this post, I’ll show three different types I made.

The first is the simplest. Its just two circular pieces of XPS foam glued together. A table hot wire cutter makes it super easy to produce these discs, but you can just as easily do it with foamboard and a sharp blade. The two pieces were textured by rolling a piece of scrunched up aluminium foil over them. I etched the runes with a sharp blade, and widened them by running pencil through the cuts. The whole piece received of coat of Mod Podge mixed with black paint. The paint job was a medium grey base followed by a light grey dry brush. Then came a generous black wash, and finally a very light dry brush of cream/off white.

Making Frostgrave Arcane Circles 1Making Frostgrave Arcane Circles 2

Next up is a circle made of individual runic stones, or what I like to call “The Pepperoni Pizza”. I started with a thin, rectangular piece of XPS foam (maybe 1cm x 1cm x 10cm). I then ran a blade haphazardly along the long edges to make it less square. This rod was sliced into roughly 2mm thick pieces, and these pieces were put into a small biscuit tin with a handful of rocks and given a good shake. The grinding with the rocks rounds off the edges and puts a rough texture onto the XPS foam pieces. I then glued the stone pieces to a cardboard base and filled in between the pieces with filler/joint compound. After a coating of Mod Podge and black paint, the stones were painted as usual; medium grey, light grey dry brush, generous black wash, and cream light dry brush. The dirt was painted with a dark brown base, a light brown dry brush, and a black wash. I flocked it all with static grass, grass tufts, and some basing gravel/ballast.

Making Frostgrave Arcane Circles 3Making Frostgrave Arcane Circles 4

Making Frostgrave Arcane Circles 5The last arcane circle was a little more work to construct. Once again I cut out two XPS foam discs with my hot wire cutter. The centre of one disc was carefully cut out with a blade. Another ring piece of XPS foam was produced and a quarter of it sliced off.

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I rolled the two large discs with a Green Stuff World Pavement Roller. I used the blade and pencil technique to etch designs into the small disc and half ring and then rolled them with a ball of aluminium foil. All the pieces were then glued together as shown.




Painting involved the usual black paint and Mod Podge undercoat, a medium grey base coat, and a light grey dry brush. The piece was finished with a generous black wash and a cream dry brush.

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Crudboy's initiation into war gaming was with Battletech way back in high school, where he spent more time creating 'mechs with his friends, and not nearly enough time actually playing the game. Since then, Crudboy has dabbled in so many different tabletop games that he no longer remembers which rule goes with which game. His latest loves include, but aren't confined to, Frostgrave, Gloomhaven, and Gaslands.

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The Monday Knights are a gaming group based in Melbourne Australia.  We are happy to play just about any game at any time.

We meet every Monday night at the Auburn Bowls club in Hawthorn East, Victoria, from 6pm onwards.

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