Pete aka The Masked MinstrelAustralia
Within the last week I had learned that Chadwick Boseman, the brilliant actor who brought the Black Panther to life on screen to me, had passed away from cancer.
I find I am still coming to terms with it.
Black Panther was never one of my top favorite heroes but I loved his presence in the MCU, you couldn't improve on what he did.
It was just so awesome, he was just so awesome.
It was a real blow to me, first I thought it had to be fake like when there was fake news going around about The Rock dying.
Then the realization hit me that it was true and the sadness has lingered because all too often such vibrant talent is taken away from us all too soon.
And he was only one year older than I am.
I will never be able to look at the Black Panther character again without automatically connecting him to Mr Boseman, and for the good of it as he truly left his mark.
Just breaks my heart seeing all those children performing little displays of their action figures in respect to someone they loved and admired so dearly.
Rest in Power, Mr Chadwick Boseman, you will be greatly missed.
BTW - I only ever saw him in one other movie, Gods of Egypt and I thought he was awesome in that too.
A blog where I talk about my gaming in the Marvel Multiverse!
03 Sep 2020
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24 Aug 2020
Jordan Roberts on the Marvel Crisis Protocol Facebook page posted this conversion and it is just amazing, jaw-droppingly so.
I've seen some nice conversions but calling this just 'nice' is so underselling.
It really dials up GhostSpider/Spider-Gwen up to 11 exactly how this awesome game deserves.
So special Shout Out to Jordan, you really made something beautiful here that captures the character so perfectly.
I am inspired to copy this, though it was an expensive conversion requiring three separate minis I believe, two GhostSpiders and a Malifaux one.
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09 Aug 2020
Things have been nice and Marvel'y.
The Wife and I tend to binge MCU movies often, our favorites being Infinity War and Endgame - love those movies, sure they differ from the comics but I like to think of them as their own entity and worthy of admiration on their own feet.
We had a three-player game recently of Marvel: Crisis Protocol with my father playing ALL WILL BE METAL, The Ultron Ultimate Encounter.
DAD - Ultimate Encounter Ultron
WIFE - Captain America, Captain Marvel, Winter Soldier, Vision
Me - Starlord with Power Stone, Rocket, Groot, Gamora, Nebula
It was a pretty brutal game, playing with the A.I can do some damage to you but having a human mind behind Ultron and directing his attacks is just sheer nasty.
He really singles out threats and neutralizes them as opposed to making attacks of opportunity at whoever happens to be in the wrong place at that particular time as he does via the A.I.
And I could not be more excited for this game!
Daredevil, Bullseye, Kingpin, Ghost-Spider, The X-men!
Some very promising new releases have been spoiled and it looks like a great time to be a marvel fan.
All I can hope is they will bring in Adam Warlock one day!
Thanos was kinda a given, particularly after his massive involvement in the MCU.
I was a fan of the Infinity Gauntlet story back in around 2005 when I was collecting Marvel Heroclix: Infinity Challenge – Premiere Editionand got Thanos in a random pack.
He was such a powerful character and I wanted to learn more about him, so a hardcore comic and toy friend lent me his Infinity Gauntlet collection and I have been hooked ever since!
It is so awesome that Thanos himself comes with almost everything you need for his Ultimate Encounter THE INFINITY GAUNTLET scenario.
It looks pretty brutal too!
Of course, I can't wait for Thanos to take his part in Marvel Champions: The Card Game, but I can see why they are holding off since most other villains pale in comparison to him.
I had a recent play of Marvel Champions, trying out Captain America for the first time, he was an interesting play but I definitely love playing Spiderman or Ironman instead.
But I will give him another shot later, I still haven't and won't tire of my two above favorites.
The other Marvel Gaming I have done recently over the last 30+ days is the app game MARVEL S.T.R.I.K.E FORCE which is quite addictive.
I've never spent $$ on an app game before but I wanted Thanos and his Black Order so badly I paid the cash for the bump up.
Kinda reckless I know, but I am enjoying this game.
It reminds me of old school final fantasy combat.
- [+] Dice rolls
09 Jul 2020
Marvel Champions by FFG really surprised me and caught me off guard.
Mainly because I am a miniatures guy, I LOVE miniatures in fact I am probably addicted or at least very obsessed with them.
In my past I have gone crazy over some card games but honestly they weren't as intense a love as miniatures and probably a band-aid to staunch the miniature-less gameplay of certain IPs.
If I couldn't get miniatures, at least I could get cards.
The very first card game I can recall was making up my own version of Friday the 13th based on Friday the 13th Part 6 - Jason Lives.
There is a scene were two camp councillors are bored and one suggests a card game where you take the Jack of Spades as Jason and shuffle him into the deck into piles representing cabins, with the object to find out which cabin Jason was in.
Basically I ran with whatever rules I could glean from the movie and made up the rest, though it wasn't exactly complicated.
I can tell that was early in my life because I was big into the horror splatter movies while I lived up north and then at the age of 15 moved down south to the city.
Moving to the city was a key point in life because lots of avenues suddenly opened up to me, games stores and music stores notably.
The group I played AD&D with didn't get into the new craze that was Magic: The Gathering, instead we opted for TSR's Spellfire Card Game.
No one did any deckbuilding, we just played with our entire collections ever game.
I still have my collection of Spellfire cards... somewhere.
That appealed because of the direct correlation to DragonLance, Dark Sun, GreyHawk, Ravenloft and Forgotten Realms - it was simply a no brainer why we loved it.
I do regret not getting the collectors guides for it.
Years past, drifted away from old friends and made new friends and new card game likes, Dragonball Z CCG which was kinda fun for the beat'em action.
We had a little house rule that when you played a card you had to announce it just like announcing a signature attack in anime
While I felt drawn to certain IP's I didn't buy heavily into a card game until World of Warcraft TCG.
I was massively addicted to the online MMO so this naturally fell to course, especially as I could get card loots for the online game.
I have scored about 4 mounts from the TCG, plus a plethora of useables and toys.
While being honest I didn't really enjoy the WoW TCG that much as liked the idea of it, it felt kinda slow to play with lots of ramp-up time needed.
Same with the Raids they released, loved the idea of them, but never really enjoyed them to play.
That didn't stop me buying cases upon cases of sealed card boxes.
Looking back I think one thing that I notably didn't enjoy about this game was that your hero didn't feel very heroic as most of the effectiveness seemed to come from your army of allies by your side.
10+ Years later and we are looking at Marvel Champions.
I think this is almost everything I didn't know I wanted in a card game.
My wife is very sickly and so she is never up for gaming with me as she needs her rest, so playing Solo has become the norm and very enjoyable for me.
I hear the game handles better with two players, or playing two-handed controlling two heroes with their decks as it evens out an spikes that may occur with solo play and random luck, but I love the immersion of being that solo super hero.
It makes me feel I am playing a 30 min episode of their cartoon from the 90's - If I win I get the happy closure, and if I lose then it ends on a cliffhanger waiting for resolution in a following episode.
Being able to 'be' Spiderman is a huge thing for me, Marvel Legendary didn't scratch that itch at all because while you may include spidey in the deck he never felt like he was mine.
If at all I felt like a S.H.I.E.L.D Controller trying to co-ordinate firefighting around the city, which is nowhere as fun.
Whereas when I'm playing as Spidey, I get a little jolt in my heart when I pull off timely Swinging Web Kick that turns the tide.
While Spiderman is my favorite hands down, I confess to having been having lots of fun with the Iron Man deck.
It's just so satisfying to gather all his upgraded tech and see what he can do.
Had my first play with the Thor hero at 5am because I couldn't sleep and just had a blast.
I've played against all Villains except Wrecking Crew so far but only with 80% of the games being Spiderman, and nearly the rest as Iron Man.
While I have a curiosity about the other heroes, I am very content playing my fave Spidey.
I really think this could be my Game Of The Year, and it doesn't even have miniatures!
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Tonight to celebrate getting (most of) my collection painted I played a solo game of Ultron's Ultimate Encounter 'All Will Be Metal'
Again, Ultron is ravaging the city and seeking to annihilate all human life and this time its The Avengers and The Guardians of the Galaxy here to save the day!
In the center of the board is a refuge point where rescued civilians can be taken by the Crisis Team to score points, four points around that are the Doomsday Machine consoles that Ultron uses to control his death machine - it can do things like empowering Ultron, Destroy Terrain and exposing hiding civilians, and lay down a barrage in the center of the board.
THE GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
StarLord with Power Infinity Gem
Ultron on Hard Mode (rolling 4 base dice for the Doomsday Machine)
After initial deployment The Avengers spring into action with Captain America, Winter Soldier and Vision moving up to claim one Doomsday Console and moving up on the next
However, Ultron beats them to it and claims that console, then turns his wrath upon Vision who was caught offguard and unable to phase. Vision is almost stunned and injured.
Groot and Rocket move up to support The Avengers while Nebula rushes a console, then I discovered a turn later that Nebula is an assassin and cannot contest or interact with objectives, but knowing that Ultron would eventually come for this console she waits patiently for her prey.
Ultron wades into The Avengers and unleashes his rage, both Bucky and Cap are hurled back by this vicious attack.
Gamora chases down the far console as StarLord opens fire and misses Ultron.
Ultron, who is now atop the building turns his attentions to Gamora who deftly avoids him while Captain Marvel takes advantage of his focused attention to slip up and attack Ultron from behind....
But Ultron is ready for her trick, as he passes by on his way to the ground he hits her so hard she is dazed and injured.
However StarLord and Rocket are ready and catch Ultron in overlapping fields of fire and damage him enough to corrupt his firmware twice!
Ultron moves to attack Gamora and Nebula as they defend their console, while Winter Soldier shoots Ultron in the back
Captain Marvel moves in as do the other members of the Crisis Team.
No good deed goes unpunished as Ultron takes offense to being attacked from behind!
Ultron wades into the defenders of the first console, Groot throws himself in front of Rocket to protect him but both Groot and Winter Soldier are dazed and injured
The Doomsday Machine has been systematically destroying terrain destroys even more leaving civilians vulnerable and exposed, Ultron moves to hunt down one of these hapless survivors and takes a swipe at StarLord in passing.
Nebula springs on Ultron out of nowhere!
StarLord cooly whirls on Ultron at his back and unleashes his Element Gun at Full Auto which finally destroys Ultron.
Endgame shot of the board.
This was a fun game yet again, I kinda gamed Ultron to do more than just run corner to corner after consoles, things changed up a bit when his Doomsday Machine destroyed terrain and revealed Civilian Tokens as he is more focused on hunting them whether they are held by a player or just out in the open.
Looking forward to playing this with a human player controlling Ultron, they would be far more vicious.
- [+] Dice rolls
15 Jun 2020
Having spent time over the last few days assembling some minis, then spray painting both the mini white and its base grey separately I decided it was time to get down to business and actually put paint on some models.
I started with the Hulk who came out kinda splotchy, but I figure if I give it another coat of green it should even it out more smooth.
In all, it took me just around 8 hours
Now I only have five more figures to assemble and paint left to go!
Spiderman (a little paint rubbed off his face as I was applying the brush on matt varnish)
Vision, old school colors
Corvus Glaive (love how the Contrast Black Templar worked)
Proxima Midnight (the gold isn't contrast paint)
Rocket (gun isn't Contrast Paint)
Hulk (blurry, I will one day learn how to photo minis)
Ebony Maw (Might redo the flesh, its too dark)
Groot (I am Groot! His varnish can dried heavily)
Captain America (In varnishing a little paint came off his shield)
Black Widow (again love the contrast Black paint)
Starlord (love how vibrant the colors came out)
Drax (His tattoos suck, in the end I just smeared the paint on instead of trying to stay in the lines)
Nebula (really surprised how she came out, she was the only time I mixed contrast paints for the lighter blue of her skin)
Black Dwarf (varnish still drying but pooled a bit heavy like Groot)
Ultron (will have to highlight the silver as its not Contrast and doesn't look as good as the others, needs that extra step)
Winter Soldier (love the flesh tone from light Guilliman Flesh)
Iron Man (can't really see but I undercoated with Mithral Silver so that the armor is shiny, looks better in person)
Captain Marvel (
- [+] Dice rolls
Ok, I was having lunch thinking about this game and this idea came to me.
Gonna use this as a white board for my ideas.
THE INVASION OF NEW YORK CITY - Cosmic Encounter
The Invasion Force consists of
4 Chitauri Death Squads - A mob of standard troopers (65mm round template)
2 Chitauri Chariots - Fast moving troops (65mm oval template)
1 Chitauri Leviathan - slow and powerful huge monsters (150mm oval template)
The templates are used instead of miniatures
Chitauri Death Squad
Physical - 2
Energy - 2
Mystic - 2
Range M, Power 4 Energy, Cost 0
Physical - 3
Energy - 3
Mystic - 3
Range 5, Power 3 Energy, Cost 0
Physical - 5
Energy - 5
Mystic - 5
Range 2, Power 8 Physical, Cost 0
Although the Enemy Invaders tokens represent sometimes multiple enemies, they are treated like a single character except they do not get dazed and instead are immediately defeated on taking all their damage.
They also do not get power tokens.
When the Cosmic Threat Player takes a turn, they can also activate 3 Enemy Invader Tokens.
While the Cosmic Threat Player has control of the Portal Objective, they can bring back a destroyed Enemy Invader Token instead of activating one token.
Place 4 Exterminis Consoles near the four corners of the battle area, these are capture points for the Cosmic Threat Player.
They represent that players control over New York City and should have some benefit if they control more than the Defenders.
Maybe +1 to Attack Dice made by enemy units, inc Loki.
Cosmic Encounter Rules
This scenario follows the rules set for Cosmic Encounters.
The Crisis Team activates three characters, then the Cosmic Threat Activates, but can also activate 3 Enemy Invader Tokens in addition.
On the Cosmic Encounters table side is the Priority / Home Base Token which represents the Emitter creating the portal above that is allowing the Chitauri to attack New York City.
Objectives for the Crisis Team to win:
- Defeat Loki
- Capture the Portal
- Defeat 4 of the Invasion Tokens
EDIT: Badly created tokens for the Invaders now soon to some playtesting, the only problem is that I don't currently own Loki...
Even though I was thinking of making a custom card for him, I am not familiar with how he currently plays.
- [+] Dice rolls
Well, my goodies arrived!
With only a single shipping error where they forgot to send me Venom, so I've gotten onto them and just waiting their reply.
Spent a couple of days doing some prep on the Black Order who arrived early, basically just assembly then rattle can grey for the bases and white for the minis then gluing together and touching up in preparation for the Contrast paints that I bought specially for this.
Got to set up and have my first play thru of this system, and I like it!
ALL WILL BE METAL
In this scenario, The Crisis Team players must battle Ultron, Master of Metal while evacuating civilians from the city. If they can Daze Ultron five times, his firmware will break down and he will be forced to retreat. Additionally, delaying his Doomsday Device long enough to rescue the terrified citizens will complete their objective of saving the populace from the mad machine!
Every playthrough video of this encounter, played with the A.I activation chart or not, was always a victory points scramble.
Now I am certain I did something wrong with the scoring and will have to check the rules again, but half of my Crisis Team were extremely set up for sheer aggression - The Black Order, or Children of Thanos.
So my initial strategy for this game was to go pure offense with the Black Order and let the 'superheroes' be typical heroes and deal with civilians and the Doomsday Machine.
The Black Order
Black Dwarf, Proxima Midnight, Corvus Glaive, Ebony Maw
Spiderman, Captain America, Captain Marvel, Black Widow
The Cosmic Threat
Ultron, Master of Metal
The Table set up and deployment
The Black Order took a central position to maximize their offense while The Avengers split to cover more ground and hunt down consoles of the Doomsday Machine.
In chess the pawns go first....
The Black Order sits back and allows their temporary allies of The Avengers to do the predicted hero thing, Black Widow and Spiderman capturing the two closest consoles and then rushing off after the two far ones while Captain America moves up and rescues a civilian hiding in the dumpster.
Ultron descends from the roof of the Petrol Station and lays into Spiderman with his metallic claws, nearly dazing him already.
The Black Order launch their attack.
Proxima Midnight and Corvus Glaive blast out with their weapons barely phasing Ultron until the Ebony Maw uses his telekinetic prowess to hurl the newstand at him.
Ultron rushes across the board towards the console that Captain America guards and angles the Avenger with a brutal attack.
Black Dwarf and Captain Marvel enter the fray, the Black Dwarf fluffing a huge attack roll but Captain Marvel doing damage, enough to cause the first Daze to Ultron I think.
Ultron lashes out in fury at both Black Dwarf and Captain America who are too close to him.
Proxima Midnight hurls herself at Ultron along with the Black Dwarf while Ebony Maw lashes at Ultron with his insidious voice.
Ultron charges off after the console near the Black Widow and dazes her easily and retakes control of the console.
The next part is a blur.
Ultron works his way cross-crossing the battle field after hunting down from one console to another, his Doomsday Machine is systematically destroying terrain and leaving vulnerable civilians bereft of hiding places.
The Avengers are too slow to rescue these civilians and The Black Order doesn't care about them so they fall victim to the Doomsday Machine.
Fueled with lots of power from the hurt, big attacks are made on both sides.
The Crisis Teams are in bad shape with almost half of them flipped to their injured state.
Ultron has taken about 4 Daze tokens now from the combined assault of both The Black Order and now The Avengers who see the only way to win is to stop Ultron regardless of the damage.
Previously wounded by Captain Marvel, married couple Proxima Night and Corvus Glaive perform an assassination on Ultron that finishes him.
This was a fun scenario to play, I wasn't expecting to like this that much (which was still a lot) from the videos I watched.
Those videos all were about winning by scenario conditions by saving civilians, which while cool isn't as outright fun and trying to take down a big really tough guy with lots of smaller guys.
That was my initial worry about these 'raid boss fights' and I am happily proven wrong and this fight was pretty dirty and gritty as I hoped.
This scenario would be REALLY brutal with a player controlling Ultron and doing the most logical things for victory, as the A.I had Ultron just zipping around the board and absent-mindedly attacking who was convenient at the time.
I played this on Hard Mode by the way.
It will be interesting to try this again without The Black Order, those guys are damn powerful and nasty.
I am looking forward to more Cosmic Encounters like this, the Hulk one is very interesting as it almost seems like a raid reversal where the Hulk has to Daze and Dunk gamma poisoned heroes into gamma shelters.
That scenario is definitely more combat orientated.
In the past, notably for the World of Warcraft Miniatures Game, I have written my own Boss Encounters that I thought were pretty decent, maybe after I get more familiar with the Marvel Crisis Protocol system I could write some of my own?
- [+] Dice rolls
11 Jun 2020
In the Comics:
"In the name of death! In the name of sorrow! In the name of chaos and war! In the name of Thanos! HUNT AND KILL!"
- Proxima Midnight
Proxima Midnight was a servant of Thanos who she had served for an unknown number of years. She used to serve in Thanos' Butcher Squadron, an elite team that carried out barbaric acts of murder that Thanos ordered carried out without question.
Years later, Proxima Midnight was a member of Thanos' Black Order, and one of the best combatants of the Mad Titan's army.
In the MCU:
"He'll die alone. As will you."
―Proxima Midnight to Scarlet Witch
Proxima Midnight was Thanos' adoptive daughter and a member of the Black Order. She joined her father in his quest for the six Infinity Stones, initially attacked the Statesman with her brothers and helped to kill the Asgardians aboard and retrieve the Space Stone. She later attacked Vision and Scarlet Witch, almost killing them until the arrival of Captain America, Falcon and Black Widow. She was forced to flee when Widow wounded Corvus Glaive before returning to fight in the Battle of Wakanda. She fought and nearly killed both Okoye and Black Widow before Scarlet Witch used her telekinesis to throw her to the path of a Thresher, killing her.
A past version of her from 2014 was brought into the future by Nebula, where she participated in the Battle of Earth, although she was killed by Iron Man.
This is a character I was not familiar with until Avengers: Infinity War, despite being a big Thanos fan.
However, I really enjoyed the character in the movies.
Here is a stock photo of how the miniature looks.
But after seeing her in action in the movies, her speed and aggression, I knew I wanted to improve on her and give her something better than just standing on a rock.
It was a simple matter of drilling her foot and the rock to pin with a small piece of brass rod to reinforce the joint, but other than that there was nothing else done.
Amazing the change in the figure, I love the aggression in her pose now!
I intend to paint her up sorta a cross between her comic appearance and her movie appearance.
Black clothes, gold metallic left arm and spear like in the comic but do her face more like in the movie.
Man my contrast paints can't get here fast enough, but I am figuring that if I'm not painting rank and file figures and each figure is unique, I really should be putting the time to make them masterpieces.
Contrast paint kinda goes against detailed work, but eh, its an experiment I guess and at least I will be able to get all the minis speed painted quickly for tabletop quality.
- [+] Dice rolls
10 Jun 2020
How has my Marvel gaming been going?
Well, last month I played Marvel Champions: The Card Game almost obsessively, quadrupling my typical plays per month.
It's such a sweet little game that I would have almost immediately overlooked because it doesn't have miniatures.
But I am finding the quick set up and tear down times to be a joy and I can play a few games back to back.
In the case of when I started playing Iron Man for the first time, I got about 5 games back to back in next to no time because I kept getting defeated early on.
It took a bit of practice and learning to get used to the Iron Man Aggression deck but it's such fun especially when you get the armor pieces happening.
Not as much this month, I had an order arrive with a whole bunch of clear Katana Card Sleeves and spent a day sleeving my collection of Marvel Champions.
I still haven't sleeved The Wrecking Crew, Ms Marvel or Captain America packs yet (still also waiting on Black Widow, Dr Strange and Hulk expansion packs) and already my box is getting chock full.
Can't wait until my plastic card dividers from Etsy Tesseract Store arrive and I can truly be organized.
This week I have been chomping at the bit waiting for my Marvel: Crisis Protocol deliveries to arrive.
They are as follows:
- Core Box + Hulk + Venom
- Ebony Maw / Black Dwarf + Corvus Glaive / Proxima Midnight + Vision / Winter Soldier
- Starlord + Groot / Rocket + Gamora / Nebula + Drax / Ronan
- Contrast Paints
- Thanos Pre-order from eBay
Just yesterday I had my Ebony Maw and Company arrive and today I made a start on assembling.
The Ebony Maw with custom base effect, just waiting on my Contrast Paints
I have been stalking the Crisis Protocol Facebook pages and taking notes and pics of any really awesome conversions because this game really deserves to be turned up to 11 with maximum effort!
This leads me to my current conundrum.
An epic playing area to capture all the marvel excitement in miniature.
I'm trying to think outside the box here and one thought was an interior of a building to take battle in.
I am no stranger to interiors as part of my history with working with Hirst Arts is that I made terrain with accessible and playable interiors because why not?
The terrain is so damn beautiful and detailed it seems a waste not to have a completely playable interior.
Here is an example of a Yakuza gambling den that I was working on for Oriental RPGs and Anime style gaming.
Sectioned in two pieces (three when finished) to have access to the floors.
So what distinctly Marvel buildings are there.
Well a company called Lumigenesis does an MDF building of the Sanctum Sanctorum, Dr Stranges place on Bleecker Street that you see the Hulk smash through in the intro of Infinity War.
Photo credit to lumigenesis-industries.
While it looks great, my bugbear with it is that it's too small to be a complete playing area.
Looking at it, I know I could recreate the floors in Hirst Arts at a larger scale.
The Walls and other pieces are sort of eluding me, though I could always just use bricks and then smooth them down with plaster like I did for an older Japanese building I made.
Hirst Arts is one option, 3D printing is another.
Also another nice options I have found is 1/48 Doll House stuff.
But another thing that bugs me about an interior battlezone is I can't really incorporate some of the larger sizes of terrain.
I was also thinking on the other hand, that I could make some walls 'breakable' so you could rip a chunk of the wall and throw it at someone, that wouldn't be too hard to do with Hirst Arts.
But then all those cool car models and things go to waste.
I am still brainstorming an epic terrain project for the future, but for now, I think I will just use my 1-foot square tiles I made for Warhammer 40k Cityscape - I made them generic so they aren't particularly grim dark.
My City Tiles, underneath my Death Guard.
Couple this with the terrain included in the Core Box, plus some addition 3D printed buildings for a variety of places and instant battleground.
Nothing special or specific, but it will do for now as I plan something more specific and elaborate.
Some Links to Resources I found:
https://lumigenesis-industries.myshopify.com/products/strang... The Sanctum Sanctorum
New Zealand made battle boards
https://kore.ecwid.com/Modern-Car-Range-c47550402 3D printing STLS
https://haylandterrain.com/collections/modern-3d-printable-f... More STLs
https://corvusgamesterrain.com/collections/modern-urban-post... Even more STLs
- [+] Dice rolls