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Using Pipe Cleaners to Mark Figures

One of the most common problems in 4E is marking figures with status effects.  A single creature can be marked, bloodied, slowed, dazed, have ongoing fire damage...the list goes on.  Different groups have different ways of handling this, perhaps none as elegant as Alea Tools' magnetic markers, or Kiko's status stickers. Plastic rings from pop bottles seem a very popular choice, being free (assuming you drink pop) and coming in a variety of colors.  I've tried these and they certainly work, though I wanted the ability to adjust for different figures' shapes and sizes.  So I tried colored paper clips but they were too annoying to mangle into the right shape.

However, pipe cleaners are spectacular for this!
  • They are cheap, yet are very durable
  • They come in a variety of colors
  • They are lightweight and won't topple a figure or interfere in movement
  • You can cut, bend, twist or loop them to fit any figure's size or shape
We keep a stack of each color handy, pre-bent in a default U shape, which can simply be dropped on top of most figures where it will rest on an elbow crook or torso.  And if there's a weirdly shaped figure, we just loop the pipe cleaner around it so it will stay on - takes a few seconds tops.

Hands-down the most convenient, essential tool we use in our games.


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