TERRAINO™ exists as an inexpensive yet full-featured alternative to traditional D&D terrain.
TERRAINO™ is a craftable, DIY system of interlocking pieces that can be used to build three-dimensional buildings, dungeons and other tabletop terrain for Dungeons & Dragons and other tabletop games including Pathfinder and Warhammer 40K. TERRAINO™ is inexpensive - the primary material used is Readi-Board® brand foam board*, sold nationwide by Dollar Tree as well as online as Readi-Board®. TERRAINO™ is craftable by almost anyone using simple techniques and a small set of tools: a hot glue gun, ruler and utility knife.
There is a unique feeling of “being there” that only truly 3D buildings and terrain can provide but that’s not to say that there aren’t times when flat terrain tiles, a battlemat or just theater of the mind aren’t perfect. TERRAINO™ is not meant to replace those systems. It’s intended to supplement them by providing the option of truly 3D terrain that you build once and reuse forever.
The nuts & bolts of the TERRAINO™ system
TERRAINO™ building blocks
There are three categories of basic TERRAINO™ pieces: walls, wall connectors and floor tiles. Floor tiles are the gridded horizontal surfaces that act as the base and floors of TERRAINO™ structures. Walls and wall connectors sit on top of floor tiles with wall connectors used to connect wall sections together.
Other manuals in the TERRAINO™ Construction Manual series introduce additional pieces such as roofs, pocket walls, and modular floor tiles as well as clip-ons such as crenelations and decorators such as flags.
Templates and tools
Human error in cutting and measuring is inevitable. That’s why we build templates. They ensure that, even though each of the components will inevitably be cut slightly off, they’ll be close enough and connect to other TERRAINO™ pieces. Templates also speed up production of TERRAINO™ since you won’t have to measure each piece.
Along with templates, we use custom tools such as the grid tile jig shown above that make it simple to craft accurate and great looking grid tiles.
The fundamental measurements that inform all the other measurements in the TERRAINO™ system are the thickness of a sheet of Readi-Board®, which is 3/16 of an inch, and the size of the base of an average tabletop miniature figure, which is 1 inch in diameter.
These two measurements lead us to a grid square size of 1.5 inches. Yes, it’s a little larger than the standard grid square size used in most tabletop games of 1 or 1.25 inches but that size provides a lot of benefits. First, it allows you to construct hallways as narrow as 1 grid square wide that still enable you to place a mini with a 1 inch base in it. It also makes for more physical space in smaller rooms for placing miniatures and props.
The happy accident of these two measurements - foam board that is 3/16” thick and 1.5” grid squares - is that the other items in the system have nice, easy measurements. For instance, 1 inch is the width of a one grid square wide wall section as well as the width of straight connectors and cross connectors.
TERRAINO™ pieces interlock with each other using tongue and groove connections. This gives the TERRAINO® pieces some structural rigidity that enables building multi-story structures.
It also enables moving entire TERRAINO™ builds on and off your gaming table - something most other terrain systems cannot do.
The TERRAINO™ system is open source for non-commercial use. Feel free to make it your own! Thought of a TERRAINO™ piece you want but doesn’t exist yet? Simply pick one of the existing TERRAINO™ pieces and modify it to your liking. For instance, if you want to make an otherworldly portal, simply start with the pieces to build a 10 foot wide wall and cut out the middle to add your portal. Since all the walls, connectors and grid tiles are standardized, your unique creation will plug right into the rest of the system!
Start your TERRAINO™ journey risk free with the TERRAINO™ Quickstart and Dungeon Basics Manuals. They are the two essential manuals in the TERRAINO™ system and teach you how to build all the core TERRAINO™ pieces including floors, walls, archways and doors. Like all the construction manuals in the TERRAINO™ system, they come with a 14 day, hassle free moneyback guarantee. That means if TERRAINO™ isn't for you, you'll get your money back. No questions asked.
* Since some countries don’t have access to Readi-Board® brand foamboard,
alternatives are continually being updated on the TERRAINO™ Discord.