Friday, September 19, 2014

Neoprene Naval Gaming Mat

 My old naval gaming mats were felt and just never did all that great.  Ships would snap when moving across and sometimes it just wouldn't lay right.  I've seen a kickstarter for a pre-printed land gaming mat made from Neoprene (the stuff used to make mouse pads and diving suits) and thought it might be a good option.  A bit of google-fu and I found an online seller, Foamorder.com, and ordered some 3mm think neoprene.  It comes in large rolls - mine was 51 inches wide and rover 12 feet long for a very reasonable price (approx. $60.00).  Foamorder's service was very fast and I recommend them

 One side covered in royal blue and the other in a black fabric.  The Neoprene is 3mm thick so it's nice and heavy when laying out on the table.

 Citting to fit my 8 foot by 4 foot gaming table was very easy.  I do recommend using a good pair of scissors to cut the neoprene.  A standard box cutter just doesn't work that well.  The material is easy to work with if you cut slowly.


 As indicated earlier, one side of the neoprene is blue for naval gaming and the other is black for space gaming - X-Wing anyone?

 I'm hoping to host a game in the next few months so after getting the mat ready a set up a test game.  The first picture shows a combine French and Spanish fleet sailing past a British port to intercept a convoy.  The French fleet consists of 1 second rate, 3 third rates and 2 frigates.  Their Spanish allies have 1 first rate and 2 third rates.

Here's the British fleet, which is escorting two merchant ships (at the tail of each ship line).  The goal for the Brits will be to get those merchants to the port.   The British fleet consists of 1 first rate, 4 third rates, 1 small third rate, 2 frigates and the two merchants.
 Seems like the port is far away!  There will be some experimenting with the initial ship placement and starting wind direction.

A close up of the port - it was a fun little terrain project.  I'm not sure how powerful to make the batteries in the fort that guards the entrance to the harbor - hence the play testing!

I really like the neoprene matt - it lays very flat, is easy to move ships across and deadens dice rolling (less dice going going off the table).

10 comments:

Michael Mills said...

That's a great idea! I might have to give it a try myself. The fort/port is jolly good too and something I really must get round to completing myself...

styx said...

A great idea, I was busting my chops to buy the nice mats for a gaming event in Feb 2015,this offers a nice and way cheaper solution to get some more table covers done.

styx said...

Hrm, so that would make two 4x6 covers for $30 each....going to give this a try! I will spread one of my other mats over and get the shape measured and marked with a white pencil and cut!

Paul oftheManCave said...

You clever chap- that looks splendid!
Your harbour in the corner looks fantastic too

Phil said...

Excellent, a great idea!

Dave S. said...

That looks nice. Do you think the blue fabric would take a little spray paint (or something else) to break up the solid color?

A Miniatures Hobby Room said...

Great looking setup, and your little port looks right at home.

Stefan (aka. Monty) said...

A splendid idea and good looking as well.
To my mind a goos solution!

A Miniatures Hobby Room said...

BTW Miles, were you aware that Armand (Tango) put your post here over on TMP? I bet it generated a lot of site hits for you.

Have you ever thought of sticking a barracks or other building inside your fort?

jmilesr said...

I did see that Tango reposted my gaming mat - I've been "Tango'd" a few times and always felt it was a nice complement.

I don't get over to TMP too much as it's become a somewhat unfriendly spot on the internet