HOW DID WILDBOT3D GET STARTED?
I got into 3d printing in 2017 with a $145 3d printer from ebay. Over the next year, I learned how to use it and upgraded it until there was very little of the original machine left. When I realized I had gone as far as I could with that printer, I decided to build a better one. Fast forward to January 2019, I had built this awesome 3d printer (which I named "The Wildbot") but rarely used it. Not wanting all my work to go to waste, I started looking for ways to put it to work. Pretty soon, I landed on selling 3d printed stuff on Etsy. I had played D&D years before and enjoyed it but no longer knew anyone that played so I decided to sell things in the TTRPG niche as a way to at least be a part of the community.
HOW MANY MACHINES DID YOU START WITH, AND HOW MANY DO YOU HAVE NOW?
I started with just the Wildbot, the 3d printer I designed and built myself. I now have ten printers. 8 Ender 3's, the Wildbot, and E3D's Toolchanger.
WHAT IS THE CREATIVE PROCESS LIKE WHEN YOU DESIGN A NEW PRODUCT?
My mind is more technical than creative. I can't design miniatures or terrain like most folks selling 3d printed items for tabletop games so I focus on solving problems. Tracking conditions was a big problem. A few people were selling condition rings but they only sold them in sets of one each and all in the same color. My first thought was that each condition needed to be a different color and that you'd need more of some and less of others. So I thought about how common the different conditions and effects were and what colors they should be. My original set of condition markers included 64 rings. But I added the most requested conditions as I went. To cover the ones that got requested occasionally but not enough to add them to the set, I added wildcards "Magic Effect" and "Physical Effect". I also designed the Enlarged ring to fit around a 1" miniature base but cover four grid squares because I always thought that one was really hard to visualize and keep up threatened squares for AoO's and such.
I’VE SEEN A LOT OF PEOPLE, MYSELF INCLUDED, RAVING ABOUT YOUR PRODUCTS. FOR THOSE ON SOCIAL MEDIA, WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT HOW IMPRESSED WE ARE?
You can find us on facebook at facebook.com/wildbot3d or instagram @wildbot3d
THE COLOUR SCHEMES FOR THE RINGS ARE JUST FANTASTIC. YOU’VE PRETTY MUCH TAILORED A MATCHING COLOUR TO EACH STATUS OR EFFECT. HOW DIFFICULT WAS THAT PROCESS?
Some were easy. Petrified should be gray, Frightened yellow, and so on. I'm not sure why Concentrating had to be blue, it just seemed like a blue effect. Paralyzed is orange because I had orange on hand and hadn't used it yet. Though I think it makes sense now. I'm pretty proud of Restrained being the color of rope. Also, I think of a Curse as like a magic sickness or poison so a sickly metallic green like bronze worked well.
DO YOU PLAY TABLETOP GAMES AS WELL AS CREATING FANTASTIC GAMING ACCESSORIES?I played D&D in the 3.5e days in my twenties but as me and my friends got older, it got harder to organize gaming sessions and we eventually stopped playing. Part of the reason I chose to sell accessories for tabletop RPG's was so I could still be active in the community.
HOW BIG IS THE WILDBOT3D TEAM?Just me and my Dad. We try to split it up where I work ON the business and he works IN the business. He does most of the post-processing, sorting, and packing. I repair the machines when necessary but mainly focus on product development and marketing.
HAVE YOUR VARIOUS WORK BACKGROUNDS HELPED YOU IN YOUR 3D PRINTING ENTERPRISE?Definitely. 3d printing is a new technology. The machines require quite a bit of tinkering and troubleshooting and my experience as an industrial maintenance technician has been amazingly helpful. I couldn't have designed and built the Wildbot without that experience.
IF YOU COULD BE AN RPG RACE AND CLASS IRL, WHAT WOULD YOU BE?
Rock Gnome, Artificer. I'm not creative at all but am mechanically-inclined (which just means I have a good understanding of physical objects) and good at solving problems. I'm not a big guy but working in construction and industrial maintenance has made me fairly tough and a decade working in a chicken plant makes you fairly resistant to poison/disease.