After broken machines and Covid delays, one really kind email and a trip from Washington to Kansas, a very dusty package arrived at my door. The Mimic’s Grid from Cursed Crypt is here! It was certainly worth the wait.
For those that haven’t been following from Twitter and Loot Optional, the Mimic’s Grid is an adaptable game tile for games. These 10×10 grids allow you to build rooms on the fly with magnetic elements, build up your encounter with minis, monsters, 2D or 3D elements, or even draw directly on the surface with any type of marker. Yes, any type of marker.
Cursed Crypt has also partnered with artists to create a series of 2D maps, scenes, and elements for you to use in your campaign which are also magnetic so they snap to your grid boards.
I backed this project in July 2019 and it has been the Kickstarter I’ve been anticipating the most. The idea of being able to take them wherever our group wants to play, have a map that stays on your boards for a few weeks and still be able to wipe them clean, build up scenes by putting magnets on my own minis and terrain, and the fact that Sirius wouldn’t be able to swat minis off the map if they’re held there by magnets…it was really appealing to me.
Granted, due to Covid, we won’t be able to really test them here at home or in the wild/gaming bar until we are all safely through the pandemic, but I wanted to give my initial thoughts and reactions as I unpacked the goodies.
There are two things I greatly underestimated with my Mimic’s Grid pledge: just how much would be coming and how heavy it would be. Magnetic sheets can quickly add up in weight. I had upped my pledge to get 9 boards which also gets a bit heavy. The boards on their own really aren’t that heavy, but the more you have the more weight you’re carrying.
The bag they designed surprised me with how rugged and well made it is. It doesn’t feel flimsy or like it will give out after a few uses. It really feels like it can handle all the weight if you put all of your Mimic’s Grid goodies in it. 9 Boards fits easily in there along with the map sets I picked up.
With everything that came with it, I was faced with the problem of “How do I keep this all together/store these pieces without losing them?” There are many little pieces for scenery that could easily get misplaced. I’ve resorted to ziplock sandwich bags for the little bits inside of ziplock freezer bags with the larger pieces. It’s not pretty, but they’re together and can slide into the bag behind the tiles.
For the most part, popping out the magnetic scenery was pretty easy and a little therapeutic. The pieces that have intricate details, tiny turns and small outcroppings, are the trouble spots where the material can easily tear. At these spots, I feel like it would be better to just have those sections rounded with some white space instead of trying to follow the design perfectly. It would cut down on any potential tearing of the magnets or the artwork. These were definitely the areas I struggled with on my own purchases.
Everything looks great and works pretty well. The art work is great. The dungeon creator art that Cursed Crypt created is fun. And in doing a marker test, everything does indeed come off. Yes, even the Sharpie came off. With a little spritz of cleaning spray it wiped right off.
The only thing I’m not fully happy with is the smaller the pieces, like the chests, crates, rocks, and trees, the weaker the magnet. They don’t layer very well with other magnet sheets and easily shift around. They’re perfect on their own if you’re using them to populate a hand drawn map, but if you’re placing them around one of the magnetic maps, be prepared for them to slide around or off your board completely.
I’m not sure how you would really combat that except for possibly having a stronger magnetic sheet to print all the smaller items on. The layered floors of the tavern stay together much easier, but again, the more layers, they less strong the magnets become, but since these are bigger, they is more space for the magnet to grab hold of what’s below it, making it a bit stronger since its spread out.
I did notice that the wet erase marker has a tendency to fade or break up a bit when you’re writing. If you look at the comparison photo below, you can see what I’m talking about. It’s not a bleed effect, but the ink seems to break up a bit. It may just be a result of the brand new finish on the board and will even out over time, but it isn’t something I’m overly concerned about. The other photo with the markers is truly the photo after I cleaned it all off. Nothing left of the marks. Pretty cool you guys.
Other than one spell effect strip missing a cut (making it 10 feet wide instead of five), Mimic’s Grid was exactly what I was envisioning and was indeed worth backing. Their team is wonderful to interact with and you can tell they put a lot of thought and work in to this. I’m excited to see what else they come out with for the grid in the future. You can check out all my unboxing photos below.
And any tips on storage for all my little bits and bobs with this? I’m open for suggestions. Seriously, someone needs to come organize my table top collection because it may be getting out of hand.