3D Print This New Game & Get Ready to Rough-and-Tumble with Orcs & Dwarves


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main3When I was a kid, my friends and I whiled away many thunderstorm-filled afternoons and late weekend nights cross-legged on the carpet, playing a variety of board games and eating every snack in the house with glee. Each of us had a collection of games at our house, held within dog-eared boxes–many of them rendered useless due to missing pieces caused by our lack of diligence when being ordered to clean up. Our parents were afforded many quiet hours—and lots of fun too as they often joined in—with marathons enjoyed via every game that the Kmart down the street had to offer.

But the times indeed are changing, as we all are quite aware. Just the simplest things today–like looking for a good board game—can become a transformative, educational, and empowering experience. In years past on a rainy day when our parents were trying to keep us busy, the suggestion was, “Go pick out a game and play with your brother and sister.” Now, it’s turned into “Try looking on Thingiverse, figure out what kind of game pieces you want, and start 3D printing so you’ll have it for the weekend.”

fedd7b3d64f12e2620f7e0c6921d4505_originalThat’s not always perfect for every scenario; for instance, my youngest son was headed to the library over the weekend to play a checkers tournament with friends from school. He had to take an entire game set with him. Time was of the essence and he had no patience for a big project with ornate pieces (as much as I would have enjoyed this). Looking online, he discovered we could head down the street and purchase a fairly portable set for $7. So, it’s good to examine your options—and you don’t always have to 3D print just for the sake of doing so. The idea is not to make your life harder.

Chess sets, however, are a wonderful way to challenge yourself and end up with an amazing set, as there are so many cool designs one can make—nearly venturing into art forms. And with the Rough-and-Tumble chess board game, tradition is definitely thrown out the window all around as orcs and dwarves face each other in an inn’s brawl. Clearly this is no ordinary game of chess–and, indeed, the rules aren’t quite the same, either, and neither is the hexagonal board.

Encouraging everyone to employ the technology of the future, the Cross Lances team of Florence, Italy—made up of three dedicated artists–has created this game with the 3D printer in mind. Seeking avid game players, they offer everything you’ll need with digital delivery. Rough-and-Tumble is also now available on Kickstarter, as the team hopes to raise €1,200 ($1,335 USD) by March 21st.

Not only do you have several options for making the pieces, but if you enjoy collecting 3D models or painting miniatures, the Rough-and-Tumble chess set offers a great opportunity—not to mention that you can use the high-quality sculptures as proxies if you are missing pieces in other games.

The pieces can be printed out in 28mm, 32mm, or larger. The game allows for innovations, strategy, and a lot of challenge as you choose your team. So, what’s your pleasure? Will you be with the orcs or the dwarves?

“…each faction will offer different powers and mechanics–what faction you are going to use and which one is the best, is exclusively up to you!” states the team on Kickstarter.

“Why all of this should bother the 3D world? Here is the small news–Crosslance Studio offers the possibility to print the game at home. The game is completely digital delivered, from the map to the rules and miniatures, 3D sculptured and very rich of particulars.”

You can also purchase add-ons to unlock game modes. Paper miniatures are available too, with 2D files ready to be cut, assembled, and used in play. This is meant to accommodate those who cannot or are not planning to order the 3D printed miniatures. Every backer will receive a comic book as a reward, and those who pledge as little as $22 will receive the full game, rules, map, and the digital sculptures of one of the two factions of your choice. At $33 you receive everything, but with both factions. As the rewards pile up, if you spend what’s still a nominal sum at $56, you will receive everything that will be unlocked in the project. Shipping is set for May.

The benefits here? As outlined by Cross Lances, this is a great opportunity to test a new 3D printer, and you have the option then of 3D printing as many of these excellent models as you want—both for yourself and for your friends. They also point out that if you are using a service bureau, you can purchase the file and then resell your printed miniatures, pocketing some cash on the side.

“You can decide to print them in any dimension–nothing will stop you from using them as 30 centimeter garden gnomes,” states the team.

mainThe pieces are quite impressive, and you should already have an advantage over your battling friends just as they see your prowess with new technology. While it’s simple of terms of limited movement based on hexagonal boxes, you will have to employ strategy and resourcefulness to win. You can also 3D print the high resolution map in whatever size you choose.

So, let loose with the 3D printing–and soon the battling shall commence! Are you thinking about backing this campaign? Discuss in the 3D Printed Rough-and-Tumble Chess Set forum over at


A comic book is included with every reward.





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