Patreon, Kickstarter, Direct Sales, & Kindness
Patreon is one of the 4 major ways for Terrain and Miniature makers to get funding for their work. The other I see, are Kickstarter , Direct Sales through a website, and donations through Thingiverse. I’ll touch a bit on the other ones, but this page is mainly for Patreon campaigns that I am aware of. I am sure this page will be updated as time goes on. I already help fund a number of Patrons and in researching this article, I actually discovered several others I didn’t know about.
Getting the word out is as important as creating great terrain or miniatures. Patreon is a great way to help promote your work as well as give incentives to your patrons (or customers) to support you and get the word out. Most of the designers on this list have pieces on multiple sites. Many host sites where they sell terrain, or sell through another site like drivethrurpg, Gambody, or Wargame Vault.
You can find direct links to makers in The Directory.
Here is the list of Patreon campaigns I am aware of. If any are missing, please email me.
- Masterwork Tools: Masterwork tools was the first Patreon I funded. This is a fantasy friendly Patreon that produces some amazing terrain, that he releases on Thingiverse. He’s also done some miniatures.
- Terrain 4 Print: I have backed him on Kickstarter in the past, and he has started this Patreon campaign that pretty much covers all kinds of terrain. He’s done fantasy ruins, hills, sci-fi terrain and Star Wars Legion terrain. He covers a little bit of everything.
- Duncan Shadow Louca: Duncan is well known for his character creations. He also releases terrain pieces that are spectacular. I’ve yet to print any of his characters, but I have printed several terrain pieces.
- mz4250: Miguel is well known for his character creations as well, though for his, he is making all the monsters in the D&D Monster Manuals. He’s already released a TON of miniatures and continues to make more awesome models at a breakneck pace.
- Imperial Terrain: Imperial Terrain is kind of the go-to place for Star Wars Legion terrain. He creates awesome models that he sells the STL files and fully printed pieces. While most of his stuff fits the cleaner lines of classic Star Wars, with a little work they can look grungy for most any sci-fi terrain need.
- DungeonPrint Studio: This is both software and terrain files. The main reason I backed it, was for the terrific mapping capabilities, allowing me to build up dungeons virtually to find out what pieces I need. They also offer free sets of terrain that the community votes on which is really nice.
- Black Scrolls Games: This is another miniatures modeler. He makes some cool monster miniatures that you can print at home.
- Ill Gotten Games: Ill Gotten Games is well-known and prolific in the modeling terrain and miniatures community. He has funded numerous Kickstarters and released loads of models for free. From Miniatures to Terrain, to creating full-blown fully printable games, Ill Gotten Games does it all.
- Hayland Terrain: Hayland Terrain is the newest Patreon I am aware of. Another great modeler, he makes tiles for all genres, terrain, and even parts for Gaslands.
- FreddyND: Freddy makes custom Gaming miniatures. He is making monsters and sets of miniatures like his “Monster Hunter” miniatures.
- Capsule Chibi: Bringing 3D printed Chibi characters to your 3D printer. This includes dungeon tiles, vehicles as well as the cute Chibi miniatures, as far as I can tell.
Currently, I back 6 of these campaigns. They seem to cost from $1 to $10 with added tiers above those for special rewards. Personally, I have always viewed Patreon as a “low-cost” way to support modelers. It seems beyond $5 starts to get steep to me. It’s a site that makes its money based on a high volume at low cost. With all of these new campaigns, differentiation may become a deciding factor as well as price.