Do It Yourself D&D: How One Team Created a Universe You Can 3D Print at Home

Resin 3D printing is a bit of magic. You send a design to the machine, watch the build platform descend into a puddle of goo, and then, hours later, a model appears seemingly out of nowhere. Even after countless impressions, the giddy thrill of that revelation doesn’t go away. It’s what I always dreamed of as a kid: the ability to print literal toys.

Except, these days, the D&D community has taken that dream further: instead of leaving it to individual miniatures, they create entire miniatures. worlds for us. broadcast and play (opens in a new tab) is one of the groups leading that charge, having grown from a single person dabbling with the best 3D printers to a company creating entire universes of content.

DIY realities

Cast n Play undead ogre

Each Cast n Play pack comes with a variety of creatures, terrain, and accessories. (Image credit: Cast n Play)

However, it was not easy to navigate at first. Alex Zaragoza’s first 3D printer arrived broken. As a second-hand machine he bought on eBay in 2015, it was, in his own words, “really bad”: the parts didn’t fit together properly and he had to glue them together. But still, he was impressed by what he could do. Although he gave up the ghost less than a year later, Alex (then a 3D artist in the video game industry) had gotten the bug. So when a friend offered him a resin printer that they no longer had room for, he jumped at the chance. Fast-forward a few years and Alex is now in charge of more than a dozen employees and a company that draws monthly subscribers for about 40 fantasy miniatures every four weeks. They’re also wrapping up their latest and, judging by over $156,000 raised so far, successful crowdfunding campaign ‘Terrain Essentials Vol II: Interiors (opens in a new tab)‘ with numerous accessories for your game table.

Clearly there are people looking for something like this because I don’t know how else they would find this shop I made last night.

Alex Zaragoza, co-founder and director

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