Crafting Swamp Pools For RPGs & Wargames

This is my first crafting guide and i’m hope you’re going to love it. This article is going to explain how to create some awesome looking swamp pools using cheap materials (except for the water resin, but you can replace it for cheaper epoxy resin).

Materials Required

  • Foam board.
  • PVA glue.
  • Acrylic caulk.
  • Cheap acrylic paint, light blue, dark blue, brown, light brown and black.
  • Mix of sand, poly filler, pva glue and small rocks/ballast.
  • Realistic water resin or layers of mod podge instead.
  • Sponge foliage flock (optional).
  • Grass tufts (optional).

Preparing The Swamp Bases

To start we will prepare a few bases for the swamp pools using foam board. Cut out a series of shapes similar to the picture below. Then using a sharp exacto knife bevel the edges of the foam board.

img_3360 img_3361

After you have finished the bases, lay down a bead of acrylic caulk about 1cm from the edge of the base. Then using either your finger or a modelling tool, scrape the outer edge of the caulk towards the edge of the foam board, so that you have a gentle slope as in the picture below.


Leave the bases to dry over night and make sure that the acrylic caulk is fully set before continuing.

Texturing The Swamp Bases

Next we need to add some texture to the base. Make a mixture of PVA, sand, polyfiller and small rocks. Layer this new mixture over the outer ridges of the swamp bases.


After the texture has dried, paint the whole thing with black. Water it down a little bit if you find it difficult to get into the cracks.

Painting The Swamp Pools

After the black paint has dried, paint the outer section of the base and any additional pieces you have added.


Paint the inner sections of the swamps with a dark blue and before it fully dries, stipple on a lighter blue around the outside edge of the pool and blend it into the darker colour.


When the paint is dry, take a light brown and drybrush over the darker brown areas of the pools.


Detailing The Swamp Pools

After everything has dried, hot glue on any additional details you wish to add to the pools, some reeds, small rocks, crates and barrels. Using PVA add some foliage onto the outer edges and grass tufts.

On the outer edges of the swamp pools glue on some green flock to create a nice contrast with the swamp pools.


Pouring The Realistic Water Effects

Once you are happy with the swamp pools the final part is to pour in the water effects, it’s best to leave this to the end to make sure no flock lands into the water as it’s setting. You should end up with a final product looking like the image below.


I hope enjoyed this quick tutorial and can’t wait to share more of my projects with you!