I was going to run Waterdeep - Dragon Heist a while back—It didn’t end up happening (probably start later this year), but along the way, while prepping for the adventure, I thought it would be cool to create a 3D-ish version of the area around the Yawning Portal, or the important sections of the Docks Ward. (I was also thinking it would be cool to build out a couple areas of Ankh Morpork).
I bought a $6 bag of replacement Monopoly houses, painted them with primer black and then did a zenithal highlight with Citadel’s very dramatic “Wraith Bone”, which is just what it sounds like, sort of a pale warm white. Magnets were the key. I’ve been using a 12x18 inch steel board to hold down maps and dungeon cards, with magnetic “push pins” to mark adventurers and monsters. So, I glued magnets into each of the buildings, printed a batch of larger, more detailed houses and buildings on the resin printer, and now I have the ability to construct some pretty interesting maps.
Our intrepid heros are standing around at the edge of Phandalin (middle, top) while bottom, left, a gnoll battle team is about to cause some trouble for the town's inhabitants:
Playing with the lighting: