As a gamer, I am always on the lookout for wacky toys that make interesting and fun additions to my miniatures collection.


Today:  NINJAS!


In the AD&D game, the ninja is a highly
trained spy who is expert in matters of intrusion,
sabotage, and elimination. He is part of
a tight-knit clan whose profession and goals
he shares. Some ninja are generalists, equally
at home in matters of stealth and combat.
Some are specialists, becoming adept at social
skills, magic, or interaction with nature.


I recently came across these nifty ninja miniatures at the DuBois, PA Pat Catan’s craft store. They were $1.00 for 18 Ninjas in the party favor section. The bag features plastic red and black ninjas in various poses. The miniatures are a little big for 28mm games, but that’s okay because thet are WACKY MINIATURES. Remember, Gary Gygax first created his Dungeons & Dragons monsters using plastic toys bought at his local corner grocery store.






Salves, Ointments and Balms


Playing characters guzzle potions, snatch up magical swords, collect rings, and use magical scrolls with regular frequency during their adventures. However, every once in awhile, the playing characters may encounter some strange liquids, pastes, and lotions that are completely out of the norm. Just be careful what you start smearing on your skin, I mean who wants to use a lich’s hand lotion, anyway?


This glass jar, 3 inches in diameter, contains 1d4 + 1 doses of a thick mixture that smells faintly of aloe. The jar and its contents weigh 1/2 pound. As an action, one dose of the ointment can be swallowed or applied to the skin. The creature that receives it regains 2d8 + 2 hit points, ceases to be poisoned, and is cured of any disease.


This glass jar looks just like Keoghtom’s Ointment, however it smells like garlic rather than aloe. As an action, one dose of the liniment can be splattered on a victim with a successful melee attack. The target is immediately inflicted with the effects of the following spell effects: Contagion, and Slow. Also the victim acquires the Poisoned Condition.


Typically found in 1d4 pots inside a fine wooden box with a brush (weighing 1 pound in total), these pigments allow you to create three-dimensional objects by painting them in two dimensions. The paint flows from the brush to form the desired object as you concentrate on its image.

Each pot of paint is sufficient to cover 1,000 square feet of a surface, which lets you create inanimate objects or terrain features—such as a door, a pit, flowers, trees, cells, rooms, or weapons—that are up to 10,000 cubic feet. It takes 10 minutes to cover 100 square feet.

When you complete the painting, the object or terrain feature depicted becomes a real, nonmagical object. Thus, painting a door on a wall creates an actual door that can be opened to whatever is beyond. Painting a pit on a floor creates a real pit, and its depth counts against the total area of objects you create.

Nothing created by the pigments can have a value greater than 25 gp. If you paint an object of greater value (such as a diamond or a pile of gold), the object looks authentic, but close inspection reveals it is made from paste, bone, or some other worthless material.

If you paint a form of energy such as fire or lightning, the energy appears but dissipates as soon as you complete the painting, doing no harm to anything.


This small brown bottle contains one dose of 3 ounces of oil that contains a mixture of: mineral oil, beef fat, red pepper, turpentine, and camphor. When the oil is consumed, the drinker immediately becomes sick to the stomach, takes 1d4+4 damage, and becomes impaired by the Paralyzed condition. This item is based on the traditional folk remedy called “Rattlesnake Oil” or simply “Snake Oil.”




If you missed Step #1, you can find it here. I am making some inexpensive scatter terrain to be used when we sit down to play the next part of  Tomb of Annihilation. I decided to make some jungle trees, and I’m sharing the process here on the blog.


So with all the bases glued together and dry, it was time to line them up and start painting.


I decided to use Liquitex Basics Acrylic Color “Raw Umber” for the base color. Why? Well, the reasons aren’t that strategic. First of all, the tube is getting old and I want to use up the paint. I bought is awhile ago at a craft store that was clearing all of their Liquitex paint from stock. Secondly, it is a dark color and great for a base. And thirdly, it has a higher viscosity than many of my other paints so it’s nice to use when painting a material like wood.



I slapped the paint to the bases, making sure the coverage was good. The wood will suck up some of the paint so you might have to do a second coat. Make sure to go back after the bases are dry to paint the sides. I didn’t worry about painting the bottoms of the bases, but if you want to do so … go for it.



Although the Raw Umber is only a base coat, I like the muddy look to it.



While I was waiting for the paint to dry, I decided to mix up some homemade flock. There is all kinds of flock available on the market right now made of all kinds of cool materials. However, I like to just make my own from upcycled materials. So my flock is made of two parts: coffee grounds and cilantro leaves. I like the earthy smell that the terrain has when I use these kinds of materials. I only tend to use homemade flock on terrain, using the “fancy” store-bought flock on my miniatures.



Using a star wars spoon, I pierced the Maxwell House MAX K-cup and scooped out the coffee grounds. I allowed the grounds to dry for about an hour before mixing in the cilantro leaves.  You don’t have to use a Star Wars spoon for this step, but you should. 🙂



Afterwards, I mixed the materials together in a spare plastic dish. I chose one that my wife won’t miss for the time being. Wives can be weird about their kitchen wares being used for important things like terrain making. Go figure. 😉



Now my flock is ready to rock.



The next step is to highlight the bases and apply the flocking materials.





Hooked Armor

This leather armor is festooned with multiple hooks and cleats. These gripping protrusions grant the wearer a +5 bonus on Dex checks when climbing. This armor grants a +3 armor bonus to AC. Max Dex Bonus is +4.

Mechanus Gear Armor

This heavy armor is composed of multiple
gears, cogs, plates, and other metal mechanical contraptions.
It grants an armor bonus superior to all other armors,
but it reduces the wearer’s speed more than other types of
heavy armor do. Armor Bonus is +8 and Max Dex bonus is +0.

Sectioned Armor

The owner of this specially constructed
masterwork full plate can remove several of the
large plate sections from it, reducing it to medium or
light armor, so that he or she can sleep more comfortably
or move more freely while retaining some of the armor’s
defensive bonus. AC bonus is +8 and max Dex bonus is +0.




I wanted to make some inexpensive scatter terrain for when we play through the next part of Tomb of Annihilation, so I bought a package of Quantumchaos Media‘s Palm Tree Picks Cake & Cupcake Toppers from Amazon. I decided to buy these particular trees because of the price. I wasn’t going for realism with them. I also grabbed some Craftwood wooden circles and wheels from the local Pat Catan’s craft store, and sat down to get started.



The toppers have wide bottoms that I found would not fit into the wooden wheels that I bought. Therefore, I had to snip the flat ends off of the trees. No big deal.



I sorted out the Craftwood wooden pieces and then glued them together using some Elmer’s School Glue. The larger wooden circle will serve as a base for stability. The wheel is simply being used as the base of the tree allowing the hole to hold the cup cake topper in place.



With all the bases glued, I allowed them to dry for a little awhile before starting the painting phase.