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Top 10 STL Campaigns: 3D Printing Just Keeps Getting Bigger

Top 5 Most Funded STL Campaigns

With all of the increases in shipping and manufacturing, it’s no surprise more people are turning their workshops into their own personal miniature factories. 3D sculptors have heeded the call, and STL campaigns have seriously taken off. Check out current top grossing campaigns of 2022 below to see what I mean.

Printable Stuff for Gamers and Painters: Ukraine Fundraiser – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $440,220

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This project will renew your faith in humanity. Ukrainian and Kharkiv resident Sergy Sobol, along with friend and collaborator Caleb Goodson, created this campaign as a fundraiser. All proceeds went to providing food for Ukrainians displaced by war. And it warms my heart to see how the nerd community showed up in force.

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Campaign rewards of course featured products from Sobol and Goodson’s own companies. Backers received premium bases from their shared venture, Solgood Creations, as well as 5e vampire hunter content from Caleb Goodson’s 3dartdigital line.

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But what’ll really get the happy tears flowing is the list of creators who donated their designs to this project. All of the big names were there: Archvillain, Bestiarum, Loot Studios, Titan-Forge, Asgard Rising. All told, over 4 dozen companies donated terrain, miniatures, and even music to the campaign. Aether Studios even created a special miniaturized version of Kharkiv’s Mirror Stream Fountain. This meant that even the base pledge received over 1,000 STL files!

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Let it be known. When the call goes out, us nerds will answer.

AdapTable – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $392,518

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I’m looking at your table and, please don’t take this the wrong way, but it’s missing something. I can’t quite put my finger on it…WAIT! I know! It needs…another table!
This is basically the concept behind AdapTable, the second highest grossing gaming STL campaign of 2022. AdapTable allows game hosts to create miniature modular tables of varying sizes, via a Lego-esque system of pegs and slots, to keep your game components safe from the ravages of spilled drinks and dribbled salsa. The tables can also be securely stacked on top of each other for an easy switch between boards and battle maps.

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Now, technically this one was a bit of a stretch as an STL campaign. The main components didn’t have to printed and were shipped directly to buyers. However, there were several unlocked stretch goals which let discerning makers print much fancier table legs for their AdapTables. Backers were able to choose from a sci-fi pylon, a Grecian ionic column, or Ulrik the Barbarian, hoisting your table aloft with his steely thews. The designers also shared a file containing specs on the AdapTable’s honeycombed make-up so that backers can tinker and tweak their tables as much as they want.

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Airship Campaigns – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $356,268

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It’s 2022 and so naturally one of the hottest things in gaming is…zeppelins? I know, I’m just as surprised as you are. But I submit as evidence games like Dockfighters and campaign settings like Galefire, both released in the last year. And now that this 5e campaign featuring airships has cracked the top 5 STL campaigns of the year, I think we have to make it official.

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Airship Campaigns from Arcane Minis is a follow up to their “Skies of Sordane” campaign, and is set in the self-same world. This second campaign built on the success of the first by including a hardcover campaign book in addition to the numerous digital contents. These include 6 high-resolution maps of magical airships and 70+ STL files.

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Unlike the first campaign which focused on STL’s of huge airships, this campaign focused on providing players with the numerous flying monstrosities they’re likely to encounter. Of course you’ll find dragons and flying dinosaurs, but Airship Campaigns dug deep to distinguish its bestiary from other campaign settings. There are the giant, flittinh slaughter bugs known as Exonids, graceful and predatory winged mantas, and the mysterious serpentine Noklura, just for starters. With so much content, backers should have no problem getting their own Airship Campaigns off the ground.

Townbuilder Unlimited – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $314,662

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I want to apologize right now to my DM group. I have failed you. Apparently instead of just hand-drawing maps, I could have been custom building entire towns and dungeons for you. Hopefully you can look deep into your hearts and find the capacity to forgive this third-rate storyteller for not creating the fully immersive world you deserve.

Fortunately for other gaming groups, over 6,000 better DMs that actually care about their gaming group backed this campaign. The idea behind the campaign was to take an easy-to-use dungeon design engine utilizing pre-made STL files that could then be printed to create your custom dungeon. Think Dungeon Alchemist but instead of just being on a computer, you can actually bring it to life on your table.

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The Basic version of the program included STL walls and floors made from either stone or timber (fachwerk) with shingle roofing. Backers who upgraded to the Premium version also received Sewers & Caves, Druidic Circles, a Ruined version of the base set, plus access to collaborations and stretch goals.

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Considering the amount raised, there were a lot of stretch goals! Including an outhouse which, when paired with the recently-released Outhouse Mimic miniature, could lead to some fun tabletop shenanigans. As for the collaborations, the aforementioned Skies of Sordane got some 3D sky ports. There was also mention of a Fog tile which, honestly, I would really like to see since I’m not sure how that would work. Guess for now I’ll just stick to drawing wavy lines.

Uncharted Lands: Book & STL Collection – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $303,092

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Anyone who is in the 3D printing world knows the name Danny Herrero. The founder of 3D Printed Tabletop and social media wunderkind is all over the 3D printing scene these days, keeping mini makers up to date with all the latest news and assisting newcomers to the hobby. He’s also the founder of The Lost Adventures Co. which creates 5e compatible content to go along with all of those beautiful minis.

Uncharted Lands is an additional expansion to the first Lost Adventures Kickstarter, and there’s a lot of ambition on display here. The first Lost Adventures featured 1 adventure with minis and terrain to fully create said adventure come game night. By comparison, Uncharted Lands featured 10 adventures and, naturally, a LOT more minis. The accompanying 210+ page hardcover book also came packed with new monsters, races, classes, locales, and NPCs.

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While conceptually this is nothing new, the success lies in its quality. Each of the fantastical locations is fully realized in its lore. What’s more, that lore is reflected in the minis. And speaking of minis, they look even better than the Lost Adventures set. At the speed with which Lost Adventures is growing and improving, I wouldn’t be surprised if another, even better Kickstarter campaign was already in the works.

My Personal Top 5 STL Campaigns

Every one of those top 5 earners got to where they are by having a solid product, and they all deserve their success. But Kickstarter is a big place that’s full of hidden gems, and a campaign’s earnings at the closing bell aren’t a full measure of its quality. While these next campaigns didn’t crack the top 5 for amount earned, they still deserve special recognition for quality and creativity.

Puzzles and Props – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $173,095

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So you just defeated the mind flayer cerebromancer. The whole fight you were forced to grit your teeth in frustration as he healed from your best shots over and over. Roughly looting the body (hey, he had it coming), you notice what you suspect is a Ring of Regeneration on one of his rubbery fingers. You cast Detect Magic and, sure enough, that ring lights up like a mag light. Just as you start to write Ring of Regeneration on your character sheet…your DM hands you an actual Ring of Regeneration and your brain melts out of your ear, finishing what the mind flayer started.

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Ok, so it’s not an actual Ring of Regeneration. I mean, don’t take up snake juggling expecting it to keep you safe. But the props from the Puzzles and Props Kickstarter by The Printing Goes Ever On look real enough that you could mistake them for the genuine article.

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While featuring a few STL props in a campaign isn’t new, giving backers over 100 premium quality props is definitely a first. Pretty much everything you can imagine is here: circlets, rings, torques, wands, daggers, figurines, orbs, and even a moustache. I’m assuming the wearer gets +2 to all Manliness checks?

Orc Tusklands – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $109,978

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Ask any DM, and they’ll tell you they can always use more orcs and goblins. This entire set looks like an homage to the old Warcraft II real-time strategy game which is, quite frankly, it’s biggest selling point to me. As the name implies, backers received over 30 unique orc miniatures with elaborate structures constructed using only the largest and sharpest tusks available.

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But a good horde needs diversity. That’s why the set also included plenty of goblins, ogres, and trolls to give a war party some depth. There’re also a number of mounts that only an orc could love. I mean, even orcs sometimes like to ride in style. Backers could add Tusk Titans (an elephant with MORE TUSKS), Orkoths (a uniquely orcish mount but yeah, it has tusks) and Goblin Hounds to their order for full orcish cavalry. And is it just me, or do those Goblin Hounds look like they might be a decent Squig replacement? Just sayin’.

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Asgard Rising: Niflheim – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $80,829

I know, I’ve already written about this one before. But it’s just so good! For those not caught up on their Norse mythology, Niflheim was the dark realm of the dead where those without the good sense to die in battle ended up. So you can probably guess what the focus of this set is. Skeletons rise from their graves dressed for war and looking to redeem themselves. And nobody does skeletons like Asgard Rising.

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The base pledge included almost 50 skeletal warriors, mounted and on foot. And that’s not including bonus models like the undead wyvern, hellhounds, and demons. It also included scenery fit for the dreariest necropolis yet still dripping with Norse stylings. And their Hill Giant is one of my favorite miniatures of all time.

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Heresy Girls 2.0 – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $66,668

Pin up girls these are not. Every one of these sci-fi warrior women is designed for one thing: combat. My 40k days are long behind me, but if I was still playing, you can bet that some of these figures would find their way into my armies. In terms of detail, these minis could easily go toe-to-toe with the biggest names in war gaming.

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Unlike the previous campaigns that included a base set with the ability to purchase add-ons, this campaign was entirely a la carte. Backers pledged a set amount of money, including a discounted price, and then got to choose whichever minis fit their fancy. Prices typically ranged from €7 – €15, so a mid-level €42 pledge could go a pretty long way. But more importantly, you only pay for the minis you want.

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MagiCrate: The 3D Printed Modular GM Box – Kickstarter >>>

⦁ Total Raised: $44,755

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If you want get on your DM’s good side, get them one of these for DM Day. And for those of you who don’t believe DM Day is a real thing, it’s on March 4. Look it up. I’ll wait.

Now that you’ve got your calendar marked for next year, let’s look at why MagiCrate is a DM’s best friend. Like a Bag of Holding, this little box holds far more than you would expect from its simple and angular exterior.

First off, it’s a DM screen. Easy to see, most DM screens are fairly rectangular. Oh, but it’s also a dice tower. And minis storage. And an initiative tracker. And a creature health tracker, a dice box, even a miniature grid board in case you need one on the go. Basically it does everything short of writing the adventure for you! But where would be the fun in that?

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Don’t Worry…

If you saw something you liked, most of these campaigns still have late pledges available. To make sure you’re not late to the party again, though, check back in a couple of weeks when I’ll be previewing 5 upcoming STL campaigns worth tracking.

by Zane Messina

The Forest Creatures STL Files| Now on Kickstarter >>>

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