In this instructable I will show you how to make a cheap reusable battle map for D&D or Pathfinder or any game that could use a battle map with grid lines. Dungeons and Dragons is my favorite RPG. I have been playing it since I was 7 or 8 years old. It wasn't until recently that we started using battle maps, tites, minis, etc in our campaigns and adventures. Battle maps really add to the experience for the players but they can be expensive to buy. If you have a tight budget you can always make a simple one that is reusable! :) If I can make it, you can make it, let's get started!
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Follow the easy steps below or watch the short video tutorial or do both. :)
Step 1: Items/Tools
For this simple reusable battle map you will need:
- wrapping paper with cut lines
- large piece of vinyl
- erasable markers
- paper towel or eraser
Step 2: Wrapping Paper and Vinyl
Battle maps are essentially grid lined papers that you can place your miniature characters on which provide for spacial awareness. They further bring your players into the game and immerse them in the experience that is role playing. But they can be expensive to buy. You can buy specific dice paper which is tan in color with dark green lines on it, but a role of that can be 8 to 10 bucks, just by itself. You can buy already pre-made battle maps but those can run 20 to 30 bucks depending on what you buy. We are going to use normal cheap wrapping paper. You can get a roll of 25 feet for like 3 dollars, who knows you probably have some scraps laying around, don't throw them out! On the back it will have cut lines or your grid lines, isn't that awesome? Now you can draw on these if you want and make permanent maps, or you can also get a piece of vinyl from the fabric store a 3 foot by 4 foot square will probably run you 3 to 4 dollars. Place the vinyl over the top of your wrapping paper and voila! A reusable battle map. You may want to tape down the corners of the vinyl to help it lay down flat.
Step 3: Draw and Erase
Now you can draw on the vinyl with erasable markers and then see the grid lines underneath. The grid lines are a little hard to see in these images, but they are there. Then you can place your minis on top and have your battle. When you are done you can erase the lines of your cavern, dungeon, etc. And then draw a new one for your next encounter. So all together for the paper, vinyl, and erasable markers, you will spend around 10 to 12 dollars total. No too bad at all. :) Good luck and happy gaming!
Step 4: Video Tutorial
Now watch those steps in action by checking out my video tutorial.