15 June 2015

Little people: Random thoughts on WizKids minis

Getting my wallet out...
I am bit late getting into the D&D/Pathfinder plastic painted miniatures. I never bought any during the Wizards run of them, and my first set I began to buy on a regular basis was the Pathfinder Battles: Legends of Golarion. These were to augment my Pathfinder Bestiary Box Set of cardboard figure flats, one of the best deals for enhancing your fantasy combat. There are several more boxes of these flats, one for each bestiary book, and special pawn sets dedicated to Paizo's adventure paths giving you special creatures and NPCs you will meet in the campaigns.

I also have bought a bunch of the We Be Goblins singles for some future massive goblin attack it is calling for, and the Pathfinder Battles Iconic Heroes, boxes 1-3 (actually, I ordered box 1 from Paizo's web store and am waiting and waiting. I have never found Paizo to be the fastest shipper around. It was sold out everywhere else, so what could I do? There is a store on Amazon selling a new box for seventy dollars, three times retail, and wants fourteen bucks shipping for a one-third pound box. Rip off!).  I just bought my first Dungeons Deep box, the new Pathfinder release I am really jazzed about. My wife also has two special boxes, the White Dragon Evolution and the Red Dragon Evolution sets. She does love dragons.

Drizzt is a bad mother- shut your mouth!
From the new D&D miniatures I have the Icons of the Realms Starter Set with its six figures, and a bunch of boxes of the Icons of the Realms: Tyranny of the Dragons set (though I never did get my Mindflayer- damn you random packing).

For a complete look at all the sets, with rarity and photos, check out the Pre-Painted Plastic Mini's Gallery. It even has future releases on it and checklists for collecting. It has the new D&D and Pathfinder sets produced by Wizkids. It also lists other sets, like D&D Attack Wing, Mage Knight and the Star Trek games.

I am very excited about the new Pathfinder set. Dungeons Deep has several figs usable in other genres, mainly horror. The Mi-go, Elder Thing and Yithian are perfect for Call of Cthulhu, as is the gibbering mouther mouth horror, which though not Cthulhu, fits in well. There is also a Chupacabra that is useful for Conspiracy X or Delta Green. It also includes a few dungeon dressing items: bubbling cauldron, burning brazier*, iron maiden, and a sarcophagus. Also, there is a mimic in that classic "the chest is gonna eat you" pose, along with a matching closed chest to fool everyone. I will be buying these up over the next couple of months.

Mi-go, you go, we all go.
One of the things I love about these minis is they are pre-painted, because I am a pretty middling painter. Recently the output is looking pretty good. The Pathfinder Battles Iconics Heroes boxes are all really good. Excellent detail and very good paint jobs. My first box of Dungeons Deep all the figs look fantastic, especially the very cool Clockwork Golum. I would say most of the figures are above average to very good.

Then, out of nowhere, some of them are just okay, and their is no rhyme or reason why this one figure here and another way over there succumb to this. I know WizKids, who produces the minis for both games, uses computer sculpting so detail should be good. I am not sure how they get painted, and maybe that is where it falls apart. Luckily, there are way more good than bad.

I wish that WizKids would make a horror set, with creatures and types of human heroes both 1920s and modern. Maybe they could license Call of Cthulhu. I am not holding my breath though. Only fantasy seems to get the mini loving.

* Back in high school I was part of the RPG club, and once a week we would stay after school and play in a classroom while the hosting teacher did her weekly grade and attendance paperwork. One day our DM described the room contained a "burning brassiere." The teacher looked up and said, "that's a brazier. Unless they just walked into a women's lib meeting in the '60s."

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