Builder's Masterclass - March 2020

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Welcome back to Builder’s Masterclass, where we show you how to utilize some of our very versatile pieces in creative ways to enhance your next epic build!

Now that many of you have your hands on some of the new Caverns Deep sets, class 103 will focus on… wilderness terrain, aka Dreadhollow Forest. In this lesson, we will show off the compatibility of the wilderness with the City Builder System. Although the wilderness tiles are based around large 6” tiles (with 3” half-tiles), and the City pieces are based on the more traditional 2” base unit, these systems are more compatible than you may think. Of course you can always build a city that sits next to a forest, or a fortified castle with the wilderness just beyond its gates, but it’s also not hard to integrate the two environments more closely; three 2” units add up to one 6” unit, and for areas where you want to put a single 4x4 house adjacent to forest tiles at ground level, or add a garden or park within the city, you can use adaptable pieces such as the CBS 1x2 sidewalk tiles to fill in any empty space. For this masterclass, however, I want to blend the two environments even further and create scenes where a small settlement exists in the middle of the woods.

One way to achieve this is by using CBS houses as freestanding/scatter elements on top of the forest floor. Build out a small community in the wild world, get away from the city crowds, turn over a new leaf and live amongst the druids and the animal folk! My first build features a relaxing forest lifestyle community with small houses placed freestanding on flat 3x6 (or 3x3) forest tiles, surrounded by heavier forest tiles. It’s inspired by the game Animal Crossing, which seemed to be popular with the folks who joined the Twitch chat for the early morning PAX Build Part 2 stream that I did with Nate on 2/24.

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In my next example, I have also used a scatter-based approach to integrating CBS and forest, but I guess this community didn't do so well. Nature finds new life in the abandoned man-made as the wilderness reclaims a ruined town. The lone figure standing on the end of the dock may be a single survivor reminiscing about his old life, or maybe just an overworked assassin restoring his peace of mind in this now tranquil spot. Using the ruined CBS houses, you can create quite a variety of picturesque forest settings. Trees growing up through the remnants of collapsing houses can make for especially memorable scenes. This build was based on a livestream speed build I did at the end of the Caverns Deep! Kickstarter.

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The third example is… Treehouses! You can build out an elven treetop village using the tree trunks to hold upside down Stump Patches (small and large) as supports for single City Builder houses. I’ve added some Castle Builder long ladders, as well as the suspension bridge from Caverns Deep to connect the houses together – I’ve sandwiched the suspension bridge pegs between the wall and the floor of each house to hold it in place. Just a heads up though - as this sort of innovative design can be a bit unstable, if you want to play in such a build, I’d advise using some temporary adhesive such as sticky tack to help keep everything in place.

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Well, this wraps it up for this Builder’s Masterclass. See you in the ness lesson. Class dismissed!