Whether you’re storming a fortress, sneaking into a keep, or ambushing some ornery goblins, a good battlemap is a great addition to any game.
In this article we’ll explore 3 different ways to implement and improve battlemaps and layout in your tabletop games.
What if you could combine the awesome power of Lego with your tabletop game? What if I told you that you can do it for cheap?
Lego Xtra is what you’re looking for: a diverse array of high detail placemats that look good enough to immerse your players. Throw these down on the gaming table and dust off your old legos for a complete gaming experience.
It also comes in many other varieties, my particular favorite being the sea set which is just perfect for sea to land encounters.
A good dry-erase compatible battlemat is a great addition to any game. We can’t speak highly enough of the Melee Mats brand: we’ve been using them in our regular gaming group for years and you wouldn’t even know it.
Even after rigorous use, the mats clean up nicely and without much effort. So far, every dry erase marker we’ve tested has worked without issue and erased without leaving a permanent mark.
These mats are great for traveling as well: just roll or fold them up as needed. They unroll just fine and you’ll be playing in no time. Pro-tip: alternate the way you roll the mat to prevent the curved edges effect after prolonged use.
It’s difficult to beat the speed of setup and sheer ease of use you get from a dry-erase battlemap, but we encourage you to test it out for yourself and tell us what us think!
Finally, as if the mats weren’t a great deal by themselves, they also come in a dungeon stone style: a perfect fit for those trap-laden dungeon delves.
One of the more clever battlemat solutions we’ve seen is the Master’s Atlas Battlemap array: a collection of different sized, double-sided dungeon tiles that can be marked with dry-erase markers.
What we love about this is that it presents opportunities for intrigue and immersion that you just can’t build out with traditional battlemats. Interactive puzzles, rotating rooms, surprise reveals by flipping a tile, etc…
This mat’s simple design becomes a roadmap to dungeon creativity all on its own.
Lastly, the piecemeal design means that it travels and sets up well, fitting seamlessly into gaming spaces of any size and backpacks/boxes/containers as needed. This makes it an ideal choice for DMs on the go.
You can’t go wrong with any of these solutions. If you have a lot of legos lying around, you can’t do better that the Lego Xtra setup, but the other options are battle tested and will be more amenable to most groups.
Let us know what you use at your table, leave a comment below and tell us what’s been working for you!