The Basic Desert Technique - Very few places, even in the desert, are truly "flat."
Though the majority of any desert board will be 1/2" hexes (TM1), wadis and dunes
provide cover for unarmoured vehicles and personnel units. Choose a light tan, nearly
beige, interior latex paint for your base. The other supplies you will need will
be a large bottle of a rust red-brown acrylic or latex paint, white glue, and a
light green ground foam. GHQ also offers sage colored ground foam just for desert
Paint the top and the edges of the hex with your light tan/beige interior latex
paint. Allow to dry thoroughly.
Using a large, soft hobby brush, dot some red-brown paint onto the hex. Dip the
brush in water, and clean most of the paint off.
Use the water to smear and wash the dots into blurry stains on the hex top. There
should not be any hard red-brown edges. Allow to dry.
Add clumps of grass. Place random dots of white glue and pat green foam onto them.
Remove excess foam. The hex is finished.
Palm trees can be made with our TMA1 and TMA2 tree kits. Detailed instructions are
provided in each pack.
Wadis and Dunes - Wadis (dry stream beds) are made using ¼" hexes (TM2). As the
surrounding areas are sand, any rainfall that enters the wadi erodes the banks in
a very jagged pattern. Only GHQ's terrain system provides a simple, effective way
to model this important feature. Remember to occasionally create a scooped bank
where vehicles can enter and exit the wadi. In most places, the walls are impassable
terrain for wheeled transport. Use the "scrap" you cut from the wadi hexes to make
Cut wadi bank pieces as you would a stream. Use a sharp #11 hobby knife to "notch"
the erosion into each bank. Glue to base 1/4" hex.
Add a slurry of Durham Water Putty to the floor of the wadi. Use a butter knife
blade to "drag" erosion grooves in the putty as shown.
Paint tan and allow to dry. Then apply the "blotches" to the upper surface and a
wash in the erosion at the base of the wadi. Add bushes.
Create dunes by gluing the pieces cut from the wadi bank hex to a 1/2" (TM1) hex.
Smooth the upper edges with knife and sandpaper, and finish.
Use TM3 hexes to make higher hills and escarpments. Your fingernail makes a good
tool for creating rough, rocky hillsides.