2004 Iraq; A New Mat(s) and an Excuse

For some reason I have always had it in my head mouse-pad material gaming mats were the default option for wargaming play surfaces (I am guessing this bias comes from playing WH40K early on). Until recently I ran across a couple of posts online that showed off a cloth mat with styrofoam underneath to give the surface some defilade… I was hooked! My research led me to Cigar Box Battle Mats and Geek Villain, both offering some different and some same-ish options.

They had mats for everything I wanted except for a desert theme for my Iraq project. I wanted a landscape that was desert with patches of vegetation, a unique look. A nice printed mat would really complete that project so I was feeling pretty bummed. Giving one last scroll through the options, I gave a second look at a Cigar Box mat called Rattlesnake Ranch, bingo!

Picture of Iraq, outside Tel Afar
Rattlesnake Ranch from Cigar Box Battle Mats

Since the mats arrived a few weeks ago, I have become a massive fan. The ability to change the ground elevation is a big deal in a war fighting sense. I love how both companies supply the mats in a 6×4 “Plus” size, leaving you enough fabric to cover the hills and while still maintaining the 6×4 foot board size. The print dpi/detail is fantastic, compared to my mouse-pad mats they are significantly better detailed. One issue I did run into was one of the mats ended up being a lot darker than I was seeing it on the website, not a big deal but something I will avoid next time by doing a little more research.

Anyways… you know what happens when you get a new toy, an excuse to play! Luckily I was able to get a game in this weekend to see how it looked! Here are some pictures of our Force on Force game with new mat;

While the dark marks are a tad too out of place for my liking, the mat ends up fitting in really well and finishes the project off nicely. Thanks for tuning in, take care!



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