These are Latex textured battlemats dubbed Terra-Flex by their creators. These caught my eye in particular because they can be rolled up like a poster and therefore take up very little storage room. Lack of storage space is a particular issue for my gaming club, so i thought that these would make an ideal alternative to the bog standard green gaming mat.
There are 4 types of mat available, and the samples i was sent are of the Broken Blacktop variant. It comes in a dark grey colour and is heavily textured, but the beauty of these mats is that they are fully paintable.
Vostroyan with cityscape base:
Now, depending on how you paint them, the paint job shouldn't crack when rolled up for storage. Now by paint job i think they mean you shouldn't be throwing your best Golden Daemon standard of painting at it, but a few light coats of spray paint instead!
Below is the result of two light coats of Army Painters Desert Yellow primer. Paint seems to adhere to the mat really well, and once it had fully dried, i rolled up the sample in a tight roll to see what would happen to the paint. I was pleased to see that there was no cracking or flaking of the paintwork. Pass!
An Elysian Drop Trooper with Desert Base:
As the paint adhered really well to the mat, i wanted to see how far i could go with the paint job. I washed a small section of my desert mat with Devlan Mud and then drybrushed some Kommando Khaki over the top. I didn't go nuts with the painting, but i just wanted to see how much extra depth i could add if i wanted to.
Elysian on the newly painted section:
Again i was pleased to see that the paint took well to the surface, and no cracking or flaking was seen once the mat was rolled up.
Finally i wanted to check its overall durability! With no scientific of clever method of doing this, i just pulled it apart! I gave it a good stretch, tried to tear the edges with my hands and just chucked it about a bit! Again i didn't go TOO nuts, I just gave it a good enough kicking to simulate club level wear and tear! There was some slight warping on the extreme edges of the mat from the tear attempts, but aside from that, the mat was undamaged! Another pass!
There is only one downside to this mat: PRICE! Now if you live in the States its not to bad. If you live in the UK like me, then the price of postage is nearly as much as another 6 x 4 battlemat!!! A total spend for one of these mats to ship to the UK would put you back £57.30! Now they're good, but are they THAT good?? I'm not so sure!
In conclusion: great mat, great product, naff price. If the postage to the UK was more reasonable, then i may be more inclined to get one, but it is still around £35 for the mat alone. Common Zuzzy, give your cousins across the pond some more thought and you might tap into a lucrative market! But for the time being, i think I'll be giving it a miss!