4Ground’s Japanese shogunate buildings

4groundI just ordered myself a Christmas present for my 28mm samurai project – a pair of wooden Shogunate houses from 4Ground.

I’ve never really been tempted by pre-cut MDF model buildings before, because to my eye they tend to look rather like what they are – simple plywood kits with obvious lugs holding them together.

However, I’ve got to say these ones do look good. Japanese houses, with their simple frame and panel construction, seem to be perfectly suited for this medium.


The information on the 4Ground website also shows they’ve done a lot of homework in order to get these models to be architecturally accurate.

According to the site, one of the houses (shown above) is a ‘home to a Komae family of smallholders. This lowland Minka (vernacular built) dwelling is made from Kyoro-Gumi wooden post-framing, with both partial plastered bamboo panels and timber boarded panels’.

The other house (shown below) is ‘a lowland home to a Honbyakushō (literally-First Farmer) family’.  It has ‘ two Hi-en Engawa (full length verandas), one each side, both with Naga-ita (wood planking) roofing.  The cottage itself has a Buki (thatched) Kirizuma roof, and the mune-jimai (ridge cover) is the relatively common Oki-chi.’ 


From the pics on their site (reproduced here), it looks like these are very well detailed models, both inside and out. I can’t wait to get my hands on them.

Oh, one other thing – full marks to a company that automatically takes VAT off for non-UK customers at the online ordering point. I was most pleasantly surprised by the final price.

7 thoughts on “4Ground’s Japanese shogunate buildings

    1. I’ve normally found you have to ask for the VAT to be removed. Well, that’s certainly been the case for the couple or so UK firms I’ve dealt with. This is the first time I’ve come across a site that does it automatically.

  1. They do look good! My son and I have built a number of their wagon models and they look good assembled. The model parts fit together with very tight clearances, barely needing glue. Great for the bigger pieces, but made me nervous with the smaller ones and my son. They all turned out well though.
    Be sure to let us see these completed and thanks for posting.

    1. Well, your experience with building these kits sounds promising for my forthcoming first go.

      And, yes, I’ll definitely do a posting on these houses once they’ve arrived and I’ve had a chance to put them together.

  2. I loved these from the moment 4Ground first posted these. Now if only I was playing a setting they would fit (yes, I know Ronin would be a game that would require few minis, but that same thought is what got me into the SAGA quicksand ;-))’

  3. It will be interesting to follow your thoughts on this, as it might go a long way toward overcoming my personal “prejudice” against laser-cut MDF as well.

    Thicker resin walls wouldn’t suit the genre anyway, as you have stated. Looking forward to seeing the finished result.

I hope I've given you something to think about - please do leave a comment with your thoughts or reactions.

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