Crafting

Gelatinous Cube

Gelatinous_Cube

I must say this is one of the most intriguing monsters in D&D. Most kids and even adults like jello. So, why not take something so likable and turn it into something sinister and sneaky? The fact that this jelly boy is crawling at you and can gobble you to digest is creepy enough.

It’s also one of the first items I crafted and it was so much fun. The process is simple but it needs patience and be careful since we’ll be using a hot glue gun.

Let’s craft one!

Now, we can go the fancy way and cast this in resin. That would be expensive and messy in my opinion. There are a lot cheaper options. Here is how I did mine.

  • Clear plastic sheet
  • Hot glue

I grabbed a report cover and made a plus shape on it. I suggest you use a utility knife rather than a pen because the final product will be clear and it might reveal the pen marks. The process is similar to making a shape like the way you unravel a cube on a piece of paper. However, instead of six squares we are going to use five 2 inch squares. The middle square should share its edges with each other square. So, once you have the outline as a plus sign you can gently score the edges of the middle square because that’s where we are going to fold the other squares onto the middle one. It’s time to cut out the shape and fold the side squares. You should now be looking at a cube with 5 sides. Once again, we don’t want to make a complete cube even though it’s a gelatinous cube because we’ll feed it from the bottom (ew!) when we are finished.

The tricky part is when you have to glue all those edges to their neighbour edge. As you connect each edge and the cube forms its shape it’s going to be difficult to reach the inner parts so you may want to put glue on all edges half way starting from the inner sections. Once half of the edges have been glued you can quickly do the rest and attach the edges. I actually did one edge at a time but it was a bit difficult to stick the glue gun into the cube especially near the end. Using a smaller glue gun would help. Let the piece cool a bit before you tackle the next steps.

Does it look jelly enough?

You may want to leave it as it is but let’s take it a step further. This is where things might get frustrating. We’d like to put swirls of hot glue on each surface but as you approach the  edges you just glued you’ll notice that the new batch will melt the seams so be careful and do in steps. Ideally, you will start from the middle and make spirals but feel free to draw irregular shapes. You may also notice that hot glue will fill the gaps so leave enough gaps because the glue will settle a bit. I’m also assuming you are doing this while holding the surface flat. Let’s say you are painting the floor instead of a wall.

Wait long enough for each surface to cool off then tackle the next one. Luckily, hot glue takes 15-20 seconds to harden but since you put more and more hot glue the residual heat builds up so be patient. Here is what I had after the process.

Gellatinous Cube Sated

Gellatinous Cube!

What if my Gelatinous Cube gets sick?

According to Forgotten Realms Wikia our cube is “… a transparent ooze composed of mindless, gelatinous matter in the shape of a cube”. Also, its skin color is described as clear but let’s imagine it’s a living creature and it can get sick. Why not add some snot color? Maybe all that human and other monster gunk finally painted the inner walls of our cube. Before you cut the clear plastic you can paint it with diluted yellow or green or a mix of two. Use your imagination and pick any color you want. The hot glue on the surface will be translucent enough to reveal the color. Speaking of which, there are quality and cheap hot glue sticks out there. Some will dry clean and some will look cloudy after cooling down. If you hold a hot glue stick to a source of light you can see if it’s cloudy or clear. That will define the end result. If yours is cloudy then it might be more difficult to see what’s inside the cube or the color you painted on the sides.

Next Steps

Hot glue doesn’t stick to parchment paper. Maybe I’ll try to make a cube shape out of coffee stir sticks and cover its inner surface with parchment paper. Then, it might be possible to pour hot glue in this hollow cube mould. After it’s dried out it should be a very dense hot glue block. Since I don’t want to waste that much hot glue, after all it’s one of the things I need to buy regularly, it might be wise to do this small scale. A cube as small as one inch per edge should be enough, maybe it’s a baby Gelatinous Cube!

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