The rest is history........
Growing up in a small town, I actually didn't start gaming until I was introduced to Space Hulk my freshman year of college. But then, shortly after that, my roommate moved back home and I didn't have anyone to game with nor was I aware that such a large culture already existed. It wasn't until a few years later in 2000 when Wizards of the Coast took on the Star Wars license and started producing the roleplaying books and the miniature line. Having grown up around Star Wars and being a fan, I was hooked.
From that day on I began my adventure of constructing gaming terrain to bring my stories to life on the gaming table. Having always had a desire to do something artistic for a career, this was my chance to pursue that creative aspect I so missed. And why just settle for a 2 dimensional map when you can make it so much cooler in 3D.
Anybody who knows me will confirm that I always go big. While it can make for storage and space issues, I just can't seem to settle for a small gaming table. So, over the years, I essentially would build up tables and then sell them off or donate them to the local gaming stores to make room for the next new and improved project.
I scoured the web for inspiration , tutorials and ideas to enhance and improve my designs. Then one day, lo and behold, I came across Stephan's Dwarven Forge Sci-Fi sets. I just had to have these so I sold off various collectibles I had acquired over the previous few years to free up cash to buy up as much Dwarven Forge as I could. I was so excited when it arrived, the modularity of it was great and while it did take time to set up storage was pretty reasonable as well.
But still my creative side wasn't satisfied; the Dwarven Forge pieces were beautiful but there just wasn't enough variety. Although I totally understand the production costs and limitations to mass produce I personally needed more variety so I kept working on projects and looking for additional ways to dress up the gaming table and then finally, I found Hirst Arts. Bruce had created something unique and amazing unlike anything I had come across. A way to combine various designed pieces to make beautiful terrain complete with step by step instructions if you needed help. So, the next step of my terrain building began.
Over the years I created massive build outs of cities to complement my groups Star Wars roleplaying campaign and miniature skirmishes. I sold off pieces here and there to make various improvements or room for others. Over time, I found needs for additional unique tiles or pieces that weren't available, so I started sculpting custom pieces and taught myself how to create molds through various forms of trial and error. As I continued to build out designs to complement the various projects I've made with Hirst Arts, I started to garnish interest from other enthusiasts. It was then that I decided there was enough demand to expand my assortment and offer my personal work for sale to others. At that point 4BOT-Industries was born.
In regard to the molds available for sale, every piece I make is typically made to utilize in some form or another in conjunction with Hirst Arts and Dwarven Forge. I believe in trying to make everything compatible and usable together, otherwise it just doesn't make sense. I also personally prefer to have variety in my layouts so as you visit my store you may see several molds available with a variety of tiles that go together. This simply is my personal preference to limit repetition and if I'm making it for myself, I figure I might as well make available for others to enjoy as well.
Over the years, I've had several friends tell me how I should make more fantasy terrain or play D&D and my response has always been, "there is a fine line between obsession and hoarding" I'm trying to avoid the latter. My personal preference has always been Sci-Fi, however I do like to push the realms with crossover into fantasy and modern as much as possible while still keeping it interesting so as I continue to add designs and build the 4BOT-Industries line that is what you can come to expect. I always welcome feedback, creative input and inspirational ideas so please feel free to reach out to me via the contact page if you have anything to add or any questions.
As the next leg of my terrain building adventure begins, while I have never met either of them in person, I would like to personally thank my inspirational mentors, Stephan Pokorny (Dwarven Forge) and Bruce Hirst (Hirst Arts). Your innovative, creative and pioneering approach to gaming terrain has helped me so much along the way.