Gary and the great 3D printer

Gary and the great 3D printer

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I’m puttin’ on my top hat . . .

My No. 1 hope for the future is that top hats make a comeback.

So Gary actually found a template online and printed an X-Wing token holder. And, in fairness, it’s really great. It holds everything you need, and the quality is impressive. It’s well crafted, sturdy, and honestly the kind of accessory a sucker like me would pay good money for. But while I love the open source nature of 3D printing – the template for the token holder is freely available online – on a consumer level, the technology is not quite there yet. The token holder took five hours to print. That’s not to take away from 3D printing. The technology is literally revolutionary, and the possibilities are game changing in any number of fields. But a 3D printer in every house is still a few years away. Hopefully not too long, though. I could totally print an ace top hat.

In other news, details of Rob Daviau’s Seafall are beginning to emerge, and like a map slowly being unravelled, it paints a more and more fascinating picture of the game it will be. Seafall is the third ‘Legacy’ game that Daviau has produced, and it sounds like it could be the most exciting of them all. Which is saying something, given Pandemic Legacy sits on the no. 1 spot on Board Game Geek, a spot occupied exclusively by Twilight Struggle for as long as I have been playing board games.

We had intended to get Pandemic Legacy but after leaving it too late, we were unable to secure a copy at Christmas. Perhaps that’s just as well, given our Risk Legacy campaign has stalled indefinitely. That doesn’t mean we don’t intend on getting Pandemic Legacy. Pandemic remains one of our all time favourite games, so our only hesitancy is managing to play the whole campaign in a reasonable time. That’s best achieved when Aileen finishes college in September. The problem there is that Seafall is due out on August, and I may literally explode with excitement if I don’t get to play it straight away. Below are some excerpts taken from a recent article on Polygon:

“But where Risk: Legacy and Pandemic: Legacy were written to resemble summer action-thrillers in their pacing, Daviau said SeaFall more closely resembles the size and scale of the epic Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Bundled with each copy of the game will be the Captains’ Booke, a kind of choose your own adventure journal. Whenever players trigger certain in-game events — called Milestones — they’ll read large sections of this book that will move the game’s narrative forward … It has 430 entries”

Seafall seems to be a sprawling, swashbuckling, seafaring, adventure where players can choose to trade, explore or fight their way to victory. As you play, both a map and a narrative are teased out, and a world and it’s history are created. Based on what I have heard so far, there is pretty much nothing I don’t like about this game. But we found getting through Risk Legacy to be more or less similar to herding cats into a unicorn pen, so it’s likely going to be a choice between Pandemic or Seafall as a campaign game. That’s a tough decision I don’t want to have to make. And to top it all off, Pandemic Legacy Season Two is apparently already a work in progress…

23 Comments on Gary and the great 3D printer
  • Dexter Ó Thuithear

    The time to print something is what puts people off so much. I built a 3D printer last year and got some use out of it, but the number of failed prints, time, and inconsistency means mold making is still a better option for a lot of what I want need to do.
    I’ve been tempted to use it to make master tokens and templates, and make molds of them for casting in acrylic, but then it’s still cheaper to just buy a set…

    • I wasn’t even aware that inconsistency and failed prints were an issue with 3D printing. In that case molds would certainly seem to be the better solution. Or time travel, of course.
      (fun fact: A 3D printer is actually an essential tool in the manufacture of a time machine)

      • Dexter Ó Thuithear

        Oh I have more failed prints than finished ones. Nothing worse than coming back to a print and seeing it failed and after 4 hours. We’re a long way from plug and play…

        Laser cutters, though. Now that’s still tempting to me…

        • Laser cutters are super super super expensive, aren’t they? Or am I thinking of the right thing?

          • Dexter Ó Thuithear

            Oh god yes. The one I was looking at was quite small, and shipping alone on it was about a grand.

          • woof! That’s the one I was thinking of then. I guess you’d need to be making money from it for that to be viable. eep.
            In other news, actually considering going to store tournament in the Gathering in March.
            My will is weak.

          • Dexter Ó Thuithear

            I just took the day off to make it. My will is also weak. Someone is trying to convince me to enter the big 500 person Open in the UK in June, too. I can only hope my will holds out on that.

          • Is that on at the UK Games Expo? We wanted to make it to that (the Expo, not X-Wing specifically) but can’t afford it this year. Hopefully next year, I’d love to get to a board game con that big.

          • Dexter Ó Thuithear

            Yeah, that’s the one. I was tempted. I still slightly am, but work constraints mean the days and times I can travel make it both horribly inconvenient, and pretty expensive. There’s some shiny pieces of swag for participating and advancing through the stages, but I’m not sure it’s quite enough to be worth it. The whole event does look fantastic though.

  • Ben Thorp

    Pandemic Legacy is also very near the top of my list to buy. But, likewise, it’s finding the time to play that is the issue – up to 24 games is likely to take a year 🙁 Unless I can get my wife seriously interested in it…..

    Also – yes to top hats, although I would settle for bowler hats, which are also awesome.

    Lastly (and completely off topic for this cartoon), I’ve now seen 2 boardgame Kickstarters where you “pay for shipping after the campaign finishes”, which I’m hoping is not going to become a trend….

    • I fully support and endorse all manner of hats, including bowler. Especially bowler, in fact. That’s a kind of hat a man doesn’t see everyday, which is nothing short of a shame.
      That seems a bit iffy, adding on shipping after the Kickstarter. Is there a fair indication of what the shipping is? I’ve seen a few annoying and disappointing Kickstarters recently. My enthusiasm for the Walking Dead miniatures game 100% disappeared after I saw their KS, which is pretty much an A-Z of what I don’t like to see in Kickstarters. That and what appears to be some quality vs price issues in the game as well.

      • Ben Thorp

        I promise that should we ever meet, I will wear either a top or bowler hat. 🙂

        Argo was one of the projects I saw ( ) – they give actual shipping costs. The other (can’t remember off the top of my head) gave approximate dimensions and weight to help you make an estimate.

        I would presume that part of the reason is to prevent KS getting a cut of the shipping money. But I still don’t like it.

        • It’s definitely not a good trend, no. Especially if they are in any way vague about what those costs might end up being.
          Also, I will 100% hold you to that hat promise.

      • Chris Laudermilk

        Thanks to the Steampunk movement bowlers are having a tiny bit of a comeback. I own 2 myself, though I usually go for the pub cap.

        • Wooh! More hat talk. I am genuinely excited by this. Pub cap is a good look, too. But certainly in the hat equivalent of rock paper scissors, I believe a bowler hat would win.

  • Which template did you use? I googled “X-Wing Token Holder” and man oh man are there lots out there.

    • I’ll check with Gary and post the link here as soon as he gets back to me. I tried putting up a picture just now but Disqus didn’t like it. I’ll pop a picture on twitter later on as well.

    • This is the link to the token holder Gary printed:
      The site actually has a huge and exciting range of X-Wing related stuff.

  • Senno

    I have a beautiful Borsalino that I wear everywhere. And if you’re doing 3d printing – than man would that be perfect for better organisation for your games. Better than foamcore even.

    • Now That sounds like a mighty dapper accessory. They make some seriously stylish hats.
      Foamcore inserts are awesome, but I always feel quite expensive for what they are. I tried searchimg for foam to make some myself, though, and foam is surprisingly and annoyingly expensive.

  • Drew

    I cannot wait for Fantasy Flight to take over the world! That future sounds great… And i’ll get to wear a spiffy top hat! What’s not to like? How does Fantasy Flight take over? Or is that a secret for a future comic?

    • If I had to guess how Fantasy Flight take over (and I do, because future Colin won’t tell me, and he’s drinking all the tea) it would be by doing exactly what they are doing now. A slow creep of more and more licenses and producing more and more brilliant games based on them. It’ll happen without us even noticing…

  • Rose the Hedgehog

    There a bunch of items that I would love to have printed on a 3D printer, but since we don’t have one, I’m not willing to pay for it on Shapeways. I’d really like a Splendor organizer, for instance:

    Regarding hats, both my wife and I love fedoras and own several. I also own one bowler from my grandfather, but I like the shape of the fedora more. Unfortunately, fedoras are not as commonplace a head item in Boston as in NY, so we don’t wear them as much anymore. 🙁 I tried on a top hat once, and I thought I looked good in it, but I don’t have enough opportunities to wear one. My primary summertime workweek hat (for walking to/from work or between buildings) is a newsies cap. Hmmmm…. I might have to visit Gorin Brothers and buy myself another soon. 🙂