Burgle Bros. Platforms

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burgle bros tower
The Burgle Bros. gang posing at the front door. (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)

We’re big fans of cooperative games here at Dad Kingdom. One of the more recent additions to the ol’ game collection is Burgle Bros. designed by Tim Fowers. It’s an immersive heist game for 1-4 players, where crooks navigate through a 2 or 3 story building (made up of beautiful tiles); all while avoiding security, finding stairs and most importantly cracking safes and grabbing loot! I love the theme and the gameplay mechanics are very innovative.

If you haven’t heard of Burgle Bros., check out these comprehensive reviews from Rahdo Runs Through and Shut Up & Sit Down.

The game is perfectly fine on a flat table, but playing Burgle Bros. in 3D adds to the already top-notch immersion. Towers like this one on Etsy can be bought or made at home. But, I took a different approach for a few reasons. First, I’m an architect and I wanted to feature the building’s exterior. The other towers I’ve seen out there strike me as architecture-less skeletons. Second, I didn’t like how the height of other custom towers forced players to literally stand up from the table for significant portions of the game. Third, I like that my platforms require zero assembly and can be stacked and displayed on a shelf (as shown to the right). Last but not least, I can be clumsy at times and could easy imagine a scenario where I’d be reaching between tower floors and knock over one of the vertical towers.


equitable atlanta
The Equitable building in Atlanta, GA. (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)

So, my inspiration just happens to be the building I work in on a daily basis. The Equitable building (right) in downtown Atlanta is an international-style metal-clad skyscraper built in the late 1960s. To me, it has a Chicago bank vibe and seems perfect for a game that’s all about robbing banks or offices and is deeply rooted in classic heist movies from 15-30 years ago.

I’ll get more into the process I went through to make the platforms later. Basically, I just snapped some photographs of the exterior of the building, printed them out and pasted them to some black foam-core boxes of varying heights. I’m happy with the results and I think that they add an exciting physicality to an already fun game.

And, without further ado, here are some pictures of the final product. If you like what you see and you’re a fan of Burgle Bros. scroll further down for some instructions on how to make your own platforms. Also, feel free to ask any questions in the comments section.


burgle bros platforms
The game platforms arranged in a row. (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)
burgle bros entrance
The Burgle Bros. gang is doing reconnaissance. (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)
burgle bros platforms
The Burgle Bros. game platforms. (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)
burgle bros exit
The Burgle Bros. gang has almost escaped. (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)

Now that you’ve seen the finished product, time for a little process…


burgle bros
Unfinished platforms. (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)

It’s all pretty simple and can be made from a 3-pack of 16″ x 20″ foam core that costs less than $10. I started by cutting an 11″ square from each sheet of foam core. (An 11.5″ square might be better for chubby fingers. 11″ doesn’t leave much room between tiles.) Then, I finished the boxes by wrapping them on all 4 sides. The first platform is flat with only a 0.5″ perimeter trim. I added a bump for a “front door” but that’s entirely optional. The second platform is 3.5″ and the tallest is 5″. I left a quarter-inch lip on all three for the appearance of an “exterior wall.”

Next, I glued some Midwest micro-lumber (.0416″x.0416″) in a rough grid pattern to keep the game tiles looking neat and tidy. Of course I left room for the wood sticks that represent walls in the game. Of note, none of the tiles are surrounded by micro-lumber on all four sides so that it’s easier to flip them.

burgle bros tower 1
Finished platform close-up. (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)

Needless to say, the random tiny sticks (upper right) didn’t look great IMO. So, I painted the whole top surface – sticks included – with a dark slate grey paint (lower right). Much more uniform and visually appealing.

All done. Let me know what you think and follow us on social media! Finally, if you own Burgle Bros. and you want some groovy heist music for ambiance, check out my “Burgling” Spotify playlist – a mixture of Ocean’s 11 & 12, Mission: Impossible and Caravan Palace (Electro-Swing).

If you want to copy my building exterior, click on the jpegs below for full resolution. You could either print them on a large-format color printer, or do what I did; Chop the image into left and right halves, then print it on 4×6 and 5×7 photo prints at home or a local store.

Burgle Bros. Platform Image 1
Burgle Bros. Platform Image 1 (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)
Burgle Bros. Platform Image 2
Burgle Bros. Platform Image 2 (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)
Dad Kingdom was not paid for this article, nor was any free promotional product received. Dad Kingdom earns revenue through AdSense advertising and also receives a small commission percentage from purchases made through Amazon links. For details, read About Dad Kingdom.


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19 thoughts on “Burgle Bros. Platforms”

  1. Loved your Burgling soundtrack, I made a YouTube port. Some of the OST from Ocean’s 13 and MI:3 weren’t available. Added video game heist soundtracks. Link: youtube.com/playlist?list=PLolZD-syckJAdKggUw7Vp5hDV3HzctR5l

    • I appreciate the notion, but I don’t think it’s really worth it. I don’t have the means or equipment to mass-produce it efficiently. They’d be hard to ship too. Plus, I’ve made the jpegs available for free, so anybody can paste the images onto some foam core boxes.

  2. I love it, great job. Do you think it can be built by anyone? The micro lumber spacing has me concerned. How would you allow for sleeved cards? Probably doesn’t change in this situation I would think? Also, I would take your suggestion on going larger for ease of flipping, the whole spacing has me overwhelmed. I have a TBI so technical stuff like that is to stressful. The game is bad enough but a cognitive trainer and fun if not taken seriously. One more, promise, how do they stack if bottom one has the bump doors? Thanks so much. If you don’t play anymore I will purchase so it doesn’t take up shelf space. 😀

    • Thanks. I think almost anyone could build one. Try building it without the micro lumber guides first, then you could always add them later. I only added it because I’m OCD about the tiles aligning perfectly. I used the actual game tiles to space the micro lumber. On my shelf, I don’t display the “bottom” floor. I flip it upside on the top with the “door” facing the wall, so it just looks like a roof (if that makes any sense). But, you could always eliminate that door bump. I still enjoy it and use the platforms a lot!

      • Yeah, makes sense. I think it will help me, just laying 3 levels flat I don’t get but layered or different heights like yours I visualize. I will use your marks as a template so I know where to leave space and mark by using tiles like suggested. I can always leave the doors off and just add a external piece so it looks cool but be easier to build. If I get done I’ll post. Really like the split levels, its different and not cramped like tower, just need to think of a lighting idea.

  3. nice job… gonna make mine this weekend.. I was thinking you could make the top floor @ 11.5″ square and the lower floors @ 11″ square. then the lower floors could nest inside the upper floor when stored.. you could actually store the entire game inside the upper floor, too. 🙂

    • Definitely, George. I considered that! Ultimately, I decided I wanted to stack them for shelf display (like the image near the top of the post).

  4. Was there a particular design pattern for how you placed your micro lumber, that is, beyond not completly enclosing any space o 4 sides?

  5. Love the project but have one question. The levels stack for storage so how does the 2nd level stack on the first? the building front, from the pictures,looks as if the front is part of the box or does it just mount on the front of the box

    • Steve: When it’s on my shelf, I obviously have the 2nd and 3rd levels stacked. Then, I have the first level upside down as a thin black “roof,” with the “door bump” pointing down out of sight. If you want them to stack perfectly, you’ll have to omit the door protruding on the first level.

  6. How did you glue the micro lumber to the foam so that it was strong and not messy looking? Did you use hot glue and just apply it with a toothpick? Great design!

    • Good question Craig. Typically, I’ll make a small puddle of white glue on a piece of scrap material. Then, swipe the micro-lumber across that. After applying the micro-lumber to the foam core, if there is any mess or excess glue, I’ll just wipe it away with a straight edge or another piece of scrap while the glue is still wet.

  7. What is the best way to glue each level to their sides while leaving the 0.25” lip at the top? I know this may be easy but I just would like to tackle this with the least amount of stress since building isn’t my thing. I didn’t know if you glue two sides together and then add the floor with the quarter inch lip or if you glue all 4 sides and then add the floor. Any explanation would be appreciated.
    Also do you think Elmer’s glue will hold or do you recommend something else?

    • Hi Jay. Like George said below, build it upside-down and use some scrap foamcore (1-2 layers) as a spacer to create the edge lip. White glue should work, and it’ll need some force to hold it in place while the 4 walls dry. Good luck!

  8. Elmer’s glue will work fine. Use seeing pins to keep the walls in place while the glue dries.

    To control the spacing for the lip, i glued the 4 walls first to make a box. then I flipped it over so the roof is on the bottom and used a scrap piece (s) of foam core as spacer so you can’t push the roof flush to your work surface.


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