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Basing vehicles?

 Post subject: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 12:12 am 
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Just curious how many people base their vehicles, and how they do it. I bought some 1.5mm plasticard sheets with the intention of cutting custom rectangular bases out of them. I'm toying with either 25mm x 35mm, 25mm x 40mm, or 30mm x 40mm for my tanks. A thought I had: is basing purely for aesthetic purposes, or is it possible to gain a competitive advantage (or disadvantage) from it? I'm probaby going to using the Epic Armageddon ruleset.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 12:55 am 
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I don't usually bother basing vehicles. I'm making an exception for my Skitarius force, as I have Titans, walkers and a couple of large, multipart vehicles that need basing for stability, and it would look weird to have a mix of based and unbased.

I've gone all oval bases -- 35 x 15 for infantry and small walkers, 40 x 20 for chimedons and large walkers, 75 x 50 for most of my Ordinati Minorus.

I'm using 1.5mm plywood from Litko for the smaller stuff, and 3mm MDF for the war engines.

It is my understanding that vehicle basing has no effect on ranged combat or FF assaults -- ranges are still measured from/to the models.

If for no reason other than simple practicality, I would treat the base edge as the edge of the model for CC purposes but I can't see any way to manipulate this for advantage.

The big base below is actually 100 x 60, I believe. It's a hefty model.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 1:16 am 
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You measure to the model, so no advantages either way. I use Evergreen tile/sidewalk sheets, 1/8th inch gives you enouh options.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 3:12 am 
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Thanks gents! I think I'll go ahead with the 30mm x 40mm bases.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 10:13 am 
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Personally I base everything, apart from some decades-old models that I haven't got around to adding bases to:

Image

This is for a mix of aesthetic consistency, making it easier to add magnets for storage/transport, helping protect the model and any protruding guns/rams/antennas etc, and consistency of measuring*.

*As a minor tangent, Dave is entirely correct that the EA default if you don't agree on something else is that you measure from model to model, but this includes measuring to individual infantry models on bases and is very much something to discuss during the five minute warm-up. For what it's worth, I've never come across anyone who wants to measure to the nearest infantry model instead of their bases, and if vehicles are based I find it more consistent to use their bases too.

In practical terms the trade-off is much like it is for infantry on different size bases - you can spread the formation out a bit further if vehicles are on bases, but at the cost of being less able to manoeuvre through terrain gaps and occasionally struggling to get as many units into base contact or into firefight range.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 11:23 am 
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IJW Wartrader wrote:
*As a minor tangent, Dave is entirely correct that the EA default if you don't agree on something else is that you measure from model to model, but this includes measuring to individual infantry models on bases and is very much something to discuss during the five minute warm-up. For what it's worth, I've never come across anyone who wants to measure to the nearest infantry model instead of their bases, and if vehicles are based I find it more consistent to use their bases too.


I don't base vehicles except for fragile walkers for EA for this reason (+ im very lazy). Following the above means measuring from infantry, which is fiddley. If vehicles are on a base i'd expect to measure to their base if that's what's happening with Inf. Fine if it's agreed another way at start of game, but shouldn't be assumed imo.

… on the other hands AT battle titans on huge bases create a different problem, as measuring from the base on there seems very exploitable, as the can bridge over so much of the table.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 1:41 pm 
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I base everything for several reasons. 1 it adds strength and longevity to the model. 2. they're display as much as gaming pieces so I try and make little thematic vignettes with each formation.

The seattle crew all hit the easy button on ours using FoW bases. Basic AV and walkers would fit a small base perfect (chimera, rhino, sentinels). Medium was used for heavy tanks (Land Raiders, Malcadors). Finally the SHT all went on Large bases.

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I think they work pretty well for this scenario and do give a pretty unified look to armies on the table

Dave wrote:
You measure to the model, so no advantages either way.

True but it's also fairly common to see groups that use basing conventions to give the finger to that rule as well, from my experience. When you consider that GW and forumware (and now printing) didn't always have good scaling to each other, using a common base worked around those standardization issues and smoothed out modeling differences. I mean have you put a 3rd edition chimera next to an otter armored transport? They don't even look like they come from the same scaled game.

Do I measure from the weapon barrel on my baneblade? Ok sure then what if it's modeled turned to the left then? So instead we use the center front between the tracks? Great but my vindicators have elevation on the z axis so that makes wonkiness as they're diagonal to the plane of the table. and etc and etc

Yes all these things are easily accounted for in the 5 minute warmup and in no way stop a fun game, but it's part of the weakness of EA where the game had a siding scale for distance and abstractness for ranges and model size (such as area terrain and weapon ranges), except with actual models and their physical placement. BONKERS I say ;D

[game design rant]
Using a base helped push the point that this isn't WYSIWYG but a game token, no different functionally from using a cardboard chit would be. It's just pretty one but no more important than a chit for gameplay. edit: I eventually ended up doing all my EA testing using butcher paper and paper proxies eventually because models don't matter in the end

Being all engineers at MS, pushing the abstraction style of play even further, somethign that started with area terrain conventions from EUK events, into using standard sized bases and the base itself as the demarcation for the abstract concept of a "unit" being in a general area of a battlefield, spoke to our brains. I mean I can at least applaud 2nd/NetEpic/and now ID for attempting to make the game play in a literalist style where the range of the bolters carried by marines are physically in scale with the model (problem in those games came then with titan and artillery which in all honesty should just be range = infinity, but they at least gave lip service to being cogent)

That being said, when I have played with "literalists" I have 0 issues using TLOS and the models themselves. Just I feel this is a place where JJ got it wrong from a design stand point.

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Last edited by jimmyzimms on Thu May 06, 2021 2:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 2:20 pm 
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IJW Wartrader wrote:
*As a minor tangent, Dave is entirely correct that the EA default if you don't agree on something else is that you measure from model to model, but this includes measuring to individual infantry models on bases and is very much something to discuss during the five minute warm-up. For what it's worth, I've never come across anyone who wants to measure to the nearest infantry model instead of their bases, and if vehicles are based I find it more consistent to use their bases too.


Ah that's a good point. 30mm x 40mm bases for tanks seems a bit overkill now, considering how much larger the bases are than the vehicles. Good thing I've only cut a single test piece from the plasticard!

jimmyzimms wrote:
I base everything for several reasons. 1 it adds strength and longevity to the model. 2. they're display as much as gaming pieces so I try and make little thematic vignettes with each formation.

The seattle crew all hit the easy button on ours using FoW bases. Basic AV and walkers would fit a small base perfect (chimera, rhino, sentinels). Medium was used for heavy tanks (Land Raiders, Malcadors). Finally the SHT all went on Large bases.


The Flames of War bases look great, I wish I'd thought of that! I might cut my bases to match their size. I was measuring out 25mm x 35mm at one point, the small FoW bases are 25mm x 32mm so it's not much of a difference there.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 2:48 pm 
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I use laser cut acrylic or ply 1.5mm high bases myself in maybe 20 off different shapes and sizes between my various armies. e.g. I like oval bases for Eldar, Tau and Tyranids as it fits their character more in my opinion. I like to keep the height the same 1.5mm the old epic bases were as I dislike the look of epic models bases on 40k height bases or the like.

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I tend to measure to the base or model if it sticks over the edge of the base (whichever is closer) but I wouldn't worry to much about basing for advantage. In practice there are minor advantages and minor disadvantages to a model on a larger base and overall it doesn't make much difference and is just up to individual's aesthetic preferences.


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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 3:00 pm 
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I really like your oval bases GlynG!

I have a whole set of MDF bases in Hex shape for my as of yet unstarted Necron army. The interlocking shapes I think will visually fit a theme. Just like your ovals fit the eldar theme and look.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2021 9:25 am 
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Based on what i have seen on the net i would say that around one third or fourth of the people base their vehicles.

In the club i play usually with we only have bases on vehicles that really need it due to fragility (FW or 3d printed), for stability (some Walkers and Skimmers, even though i personally still have my Stompas without bases as they are plastic so they fall a lot less than what it would seem they should be doing), or in those few cases where we consider it looks good (Eldar and Tau tanks with round bases (we think that rectangles look particularly awful on tanks)) but we always try that the base does not stick out of the miniature, to keep things small and Epic.

From a game stand point we are against it mostly because is a pain having to mount units on top of the bases of the adversary vehicles just to get to CC, that's why most of the times is the vehicle the one that sticks out of the base, even if just a little.

I keep my miniatures in foam so i do not have issues with protecting them and i do not need of magnets, but that's for now.
I am collecting those plastic boxes where screws and the like come in as they have the perfect height for most GW miniatures an some other companies ones (they are too low for Vanguard ones) and I value highly reducing the space they use so i can transport them around easily (i go everywhere walking). Foam will protect them at the sides, but at the lid i cannot use it so i was planning on using magnets, and that could change my approach on bases too.

I was also thinking of using transparent acrylic crystal like Brumbauer did, as it gives the unit a base i can customize and it is hard to see it so it does not impact the visuals. As a bonus is one less thing to paint.
http://brumbaer.de/images/epic/knights/Knights002.jpg

jimmyzimms wrote:

Do I measure from the weapon barrel on my baneblade? Ok sure then what if it's modeled turned to the left then? So instead we use the center front between the tracks? Great but my vindicators have elevation on the z axis so that makes wonkiness as they're diagonal to the plane of the table. and etc and etc


I think we solved around here that issue well by measuring and checking if each weapon can see from any point of the model for all of its weapons at once, or if the unit can be seen, not counting weapons, wings, antennas and the like. That way we save time by measuring only once and that kind of issues you write about.

We also measure from any part of the base on INF units and not from the guy with the heavy weapon, for the same reasons.
[/quote]

jimmyzimms wrote:
[game design rant]
Using a base helped push the point that this isn't WYSIWYG but a game token, no different functionally from using a cardboard chit would be. It's just pretty one but no more important than a chit for gameplay. edit: I eventually ended up doing all my EA testing using butcher paper and paper proxies eventually because models don't matter in the end

Being all engineers at MS, pushing the abstraction style of play even further, somethign that started with area terrain conventions from EUK events, into using standard sized bases and the base itself as the demarcation for the abstract concept of a "unit" being in a general area of a battlefield, spoke to our brains. I mean I can at least applaud 2nd/NetEpic/and now ID for attempting to make the game play in a literalist style where the range of the bolters carried by marines are physically in scale with the model (problem in those games came then with titan and artillery which in all honesty should just be range = infinity, but they at least gave lip service to being cogent)

That being said, when I have played with "literalists" I have 0 issues using TLOS and the models themselves. Just I feel this is a place where JJ got it wrong from a design stand point.


Interesting point. I do not think it is that necessary as most models being used are quite bulky but it is something to consider. Almost anything that speeds up games is welcome.

Maybe would be interesting to promote a standardization of bases, now that 3d printing is throwing the little standardization we had completely out of the window, with each person with its own bases and scale in miniatures (i have been seeing this last two years several persons with 40x40 bases for infantry and from 5 to 11mm scale printed miniatures).

IJW Wartrader wrote:

*As a minor tangent, Dave is entirely correct that the EA default if you don't agree on something else is that you measure from model to model, but this includes measuring to individual infantry models on bases and is very much something to discuss during the five minute warm-up. For what it's worth, I've never come across anyone who wants to measure to the nearest infantry model instead of their bases, and if vehicles are based I find it more consistent to use their bases too.

In practical terms the trade-off is much like it is for infantry on different size bases - you can spread the formation out a bit further if vehicles are on bases, but at the cost of being less able to manoeuvre through terrain gaps and occasionally struggling to get as many units into base contact or into firefight range.


Or having to use more movement for going around corners, having it easier going back to the Blitz, having a bigger effective ZOC area, having it harder to withdraw further enough from the enemy, or having more issues at putting lots at 10-15 range for FF or clipping, specially if the adversary is smart and has limited approaching room with support formations. I know of people where the bases spread around half a cm out of the LV-AV so that tends to be more noticeable, as those five millimeters usually mean the unit cover double the area.

It doesn't pose an advantage but changes how the units are used. It's just different.

About the measuring, to not complicate things we measure from the base on INF, Dreadnoughts and Titans (those huge bases) units and from the model on the rest not counting weapons, wings, antennas and the like.

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Last edited by Abetillo on Fri May 07, 2021 5:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2021 11:34 am 
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Abetillo wrote:
From a game stand point we are against it mostly because is a pain having to mount units on top of the bases of the adversary vehicles just to get to CC, that's why most of the times is the vehicle the one that sticks out of the base.

I think I'm missing something - if there is a base involved then base contact means being in contact with the base. Why would you need to put units on top of an enemy base?

Do you do that with larger models that came supplied with bases, like Titans or War Walkers?

This is partly what I was referring to when I mentioned consistency - if bases are involved, using the base for everything removes a bunch of weird edge-cases. For example if you measure to the nearest infantry model on a base for range, you can be close enough to reach base contact with a 15cm move, but not be within 15cm range.

EDIT: in extreme cases like the old metal Reavers on their standard 60mm bases, you can end up with 2-3cm difference between base-to-base distance and model-to-model distance.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2021 4:34 pm 
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IJW Wartrader wrote:
I think I'm missing something - if there is a base involved then base contact means being in contact with the base. Why would you need to put units on top of an enemy base?

...

This is partly what I was referring to when I mentioned consistency - if bases are involved, using the base for everything removes a bunch of weird edge-cases. For example if you measure to the nearest infantry model on a base for range, you can be close enough to reach base contact with a 15cm move, but not be within 15cm range..

THIS. 100% THIS. Exactly why went with standardized bases in the Seattle players group. The base was what mattered from a mechanical perspective. Are you in cover? Does it touch the base of the cover (area terrain was used as well)? LOS? Can I draw a line Base-2-Base without obstruction? Range? Shortest line between base edges. 0 inconsistency and no questions slowing play. Got even faster once we added a laser.

It's a house rule but one that was way more elegant IMHO than RAW. JJ got a lot right with EA but there's aspects of the design that are showing their age.

It only worked though having effectively standard bases in total area however and lots of Wheaton's Law.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2021 5:26 pm 
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In our case we rarely get into any discussion about that, maybe one small per several games, and we never needed a laser, but i think that has to do more with using area terrain, with infinite height or with the method of using the highest element on the area terrain for measuring its height. That's the best house rule i've ever used in my opinion.

Wheaton Law's help a lot too, yeah. ;D

jimmyzimms wrote:
It's a house rule but one that was way more elegant IMHO than RAW. JJ got a lot right with EA but there's aspects of the design that are showing their age.

More than the age i think that some parts are a bit vague, like when talking about hills in 1.9. There is parts where i wonder if JJ is not expecting for people to have certain knowledge or house rules beforehand.

IJW Wartrader wrote:
Abetillo wrote:
From a game stand point we are against it mostly because is a pain having to mount units on top of the bases of the adversary vehicles just to get to CC, that's why most of the times is the vehicle the one that sticks out of the base.

I think I'm missing something - if there is a base involved then base contact means being in contact with the base. Why would you need to put units on top of an enemy base?

About the mounting on the base on vehicles, it is because we ignore its existence on vehicles probably because there were none on official publications with one (save a Baneblade and Stompas once from what i remember) and as it gives people a bit of free reign on bases if they take one (it is less of an issue with LV and Dreadnoughts' bases), and measure from vehicle model to vehicle model. As we only count the hull of the model for that there is no issues happening. Where you talking here about the issues pointed out before by Jimmyzimms with the Baneblade example? Any others?

IJW Wartrader wrote:
Do you do that with larger models that came supplied with bases, like Titans or War Walkers?

IJW Wartrader wrote:
EDIT: in extreme cases like the old metal Reavers on their standard 60mm bases, you can end up with 2-3cm difference between base-to-base distance and model-to-model distance.

Yeah, i know. It also happens with other Titans with the official bases. I just did not mention Titans because we barely use them so i forgot :D (now the previous post is edited to reflect this). Truth to be told i am the only one in the club that uses them, but when we do we measure to the base due to the fact you are pointing out.

Which War Walkers are you talking here? Knights and 4th Ed. Stompas, or smaller like Eldar War Walkers and Dreadnoughts? I do not remember on 2nd Ed. Knights but i think that 4th Ed. Stompas came with one.

IJW Wartrader wrote:
This is partly what I was referring to when I mentioned consistency - if bases are involved, using the base for everything removes a bunch of weird edge-cases. For example if you measure to the nearest infantry model on a base for range, you can be close enough to reach base contact with a 15cm move, but not be within 15cm range.

I am guessing that you are talking here about using the base for one thing and the miniature for the other for the same unit.
What we do is using only the base or only the miniature for everything for that unit, depending if it is INF (and Titans if we ever take one ::) ) (base) or anything else (model).

With Dreadnoughts/Sentinels and Vypers/Speeders/Koptas/Tetras/... , it is not as simple: it if there is a base from the base if not from the model, as some here uses bases for them and others not, like what happened in the WD.
I suppose we do it this way because some of these really need the bases to stand up and none of us use bases bigger than the model itself with these units if we ever use one, so it doesn't matter both visually and gameplay wise. If someone here begun using huge bases or 8-10mm miniatures like i have seen in some places we would reconsider it, i think.

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 Post subject: Re: Basing vehicles?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2021 6:17 pm 
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Complex quoting on this forum is a bit messy, so...

Putting bases on top of enemy bases - OK, but that sounds like you're making life much harder for yourself than needed!

War Walkers - I meant Eldar War Walkers, but it also applies to all the other models like Knights, Greater Daemons, Primarchs etc. that came with standard slottabases, and anything on a flying base like Gyrocopters, Silver Towers etc.

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