More Denizens of the Rusty Dragon

Friday, October 16, 2015

The next set of Pathfinder Battles prepainted miniatures is getting closer and closer, and I've still got such sights to show you! This week I want to focus on previews of three figures from The Rusty Dragon Inn set!

The Rusty Dragon Inn is loosely themed around the types of characters and creatures you might find in a tavern in the Pathfinder world. That's meant a fair number of "NPC types" as well as urban adversaries. This week we've got a nice mix of both creature types.

First up this week is the Vampire Spawn, a sort of lesser vampire created by a real vampire as a servitor. Stats for Vampire Spawn appear on page 271 of the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary. These nighttime creatures make for a chilling urban ambush, so we've put the Vampire Spawn at the common rarity to make sure your vampire villains can build up a whole gang of them. The Vampire Spawn is a Medium figure. It's also the final common figure of the set. From this point forward, everything I reveal will be either uncommon or rare.

I'll probably never get sick of miniatures of rich people in nice clothes, and The Rusty Dragon's Aristocrat is the latest to come down the line. The Aristocrat's fine staff makes him a good proxy for a wizard or cleric, and I think his style runs the line between good and evil, making him an excellent option of a stylish hero or villain. The Aristocrat is a Medium, uncommon figure.

Here we have the insidious Ghoul Monarch, from page 87 of the Pathfinder RPG Monster Codex. This CR 12 beast was originally slated at rare due to his high degree of challenge at the table, but in production we realized that his simple design and relatively basic paint scheme would be better at uncommon, leaving the rare figures for truly unique or challenging sculpts. I think that works fine. While three of these guys on your table might not make sense as “monarchs,” they work great for any kind of spellcasting ghoul adversary. The Ghoul Monarch is a Medium figure.

That's it for this week. Swing by this space in seven days for another look at more minis from The Rusty Dragon Inn!

Erik Mona
Publisher

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Tags: Pathfinder Battles Rusty Dragon Inn

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The Aristocrat is indeed a fine addition to the city denizens.

I'm really happy about the entire band of ghouls, the spell aster rounds out the group nicely.


All 3 are solid picks! And I'm sure the aristocrat will be popular; he looks very versatile.

Shadow Lodge

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I think the somewhat uniform colour scheme of the vampires hair and skin colour means he may well rely on the quality of the final paint to really shine, but if wizkids can do it I think it's a great spawn, especially at the common rarity.

Man do I love that aristocrat, and like you I don't think il tire of rich people in nice clothes (of course if I was one I'd like them even more!). I can see so many uses for this. More than ever this set is going to need those faces to be spot on.

Ghoul monarch is fantastic. Don't care that he's uncommon, I can see me using 2/3 in an encounter. The face is menacing, the skin looks to have a very cool texture and he screams ghoul. This is a great set for me since ghouls are by far one of my favourite undead. Since this is the fourth ghoul I'm assuming that all for the ghouls and bugbears in the set now?

Man am I excited for is set.

Erik, has there been any word on the future possibilities of the lines. I've read. On another forum huges may be a ow about s'more sets like the evolution ones, and rethinks on those?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

That aristocrat looks to me like he would make a fine PC Investigator.

Liberty's Edge

I am loving all of the new minis that you guys keep bringing out. Rusty Inn looks like something to invest in. I did have a question about something slightly off topic, Mr. Mona.

I truly enjoyed the Dragon Evolution sets and was wondering if Paizo will be continuing with them or if you have decided to either stop making them or pause? An answer would go a long way in determining my needs of miniatures in the coming months.

Thank you.


I have also been wondering about the fate of Pathfinder Battles Huge miniatures. Have asked several times in several places and still no response. :(

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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The Aristocrats!

Dark Archive

The Minis Maniac wrote:
I have also been wondering about the fate of Pathfinder Battles Huge miniatures. Have asked several times in several places and still no response. :(

I have waited a long time for more huge minis from Paizo/Wizkids but none came since Rise of the Runelords and the Reign of Winter Encounter Pack.

So i started buying dinosaurs and animals from companies like Schleich, Papo and Safari for huge, gargantuan and colossal creatures and they fit mostly exactly into the squares of a battlemap especially the huges.
You can even put most (like the small Triceratops from Schleich) on a huge base from the Bestiary Boxes.

But that still does not account for Elementals or the Frogemoth or Remorhaz.
I don´t understand the reluctance to make these minis.
Only because very obscure huges were selected before and did not sell no new ones are being made.
Make 2 packs with one huge elemental and pair it with something more obscure for $40 and it sells.

I would still buy huge creature minis from Paizo even if i already have some if they made them.

Dark Archive

I like all three very much even if i would have prefered the female vampire from the Bestiary but i guess we get that eventually.

Eric, i noticed we have only 3 small minis revealed so far.
With only 7 more minis to be revealed - 3 of them dressing pieces - this seems to be the set with the fewest small minis so far.
Reign of Winter had 7 smalls,
The Lost Coast had 8 smalls and
Dungeons Deephad 9 smalls.

Is this a new trend that will continue or just the case for this set?
I imagine small minis are harder to make because of sculpt details and painting and a lot of people seem to prefer a medium mini to a small one.

Thx for a great preview (again).


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Of the over 40 minis that have been previewed in this set so far, I only see 1 or 2 that I haven't thought of a quick use for in game. The selections are great.

I'm really looking forward to seeing this set in hand and am hopeful it releases in December.


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Marco Massoudi wrote:

I don´t understand the reluctance to make these minis.

Only because very obscure huges were selected before and did not sell no new ones are being made.
Make 2 packs with one huge elemental and pair it with something more obscure for $40 and it sells.

I would still buy huge creature minis from Paizo even if i already have some if they made them.

I suspect the reason they didn't sell well is because of the price.

People can't help comparing RPG minis with mass produced toys and, as such, they come off as very expensive. The RotRL solution was great as far as I was concerned (the price isn't really an issue for me) but there were a lot of complaints about the exorbitant cost of a case. Similarly with the two-pack - I take your point about the figures being obscure, but bear in mind that whereas you saw that as a negative, it's a big positive for me. I much prefer huge minis to be the rarer things - I'm not convinced that two elementals would have sold considerably better (even if they might have been a bit more popular).

There are undoubtedly people who will pay a lot for huge minis, but there have to be a lot of them in order for it to be viable. I'm guessing that the casual collector looks at "those two huges versus these eight regular minis" and finds the latter has much more utility.

It's hard to know what proportion of the market are collectors and what proportion are more casual purchasers, but I think the casual buyer is probably considerably more price-sensitive than those of us who buy them in bulk.


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Steve Geddes wrote:
I suspect the reason they didn't sell well is because of the price.

There are so many people constantly asking for huge minis, I'm uncertain if this was fully the deciding factor. I'm only speculating, as are others that the demise of the huges was due to the Reign of Winter set and its less appealing minis. (Don't get me wrong, I did like the 2 minis but unless I run Reign of Winter they will likely never see any use.) There are many huges out there that are in demand, and are generic enough that they will appeal to a wider fanbase.

Here's what I think would work:
- Make a set of 6 huges with 2 rarities (2 rare, 4 commmon)
- Package these in the same size boxes as the current sets -- these minis would not be visible. This would mean that buying a brick (8 boxes), would get you 2 rares, and 6 commons. This would also mean that WizKids would not have to do much to change their current packaging format.
- For the first set I would recommend something like: 4 elementals (fire, earth, air and water), 1 dragon, 1 giant. These would be a pretty generic spread of minis that should gain a lot of attention. Essentially, if this format worked, then it would always showcase a huge dragon as 1 of the rares. (However if there are plans to bring back the dragon evolution line, then another mini could take that place).

There are still many people buying cases of minis, so I do believe there are people that will not bat an eye at the cost of these minis (we know that Paizo will do their best to keep it reasonable).


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Perhaps. I mean don't get me wrong, I'd love to see some readily available huge minis (and beyond!)

I just remember the comments when RotRL came out - it seems to me there is a significant slice of the market for whom price is an issue. Going to a randomised model may well turn some people off as well.

Fingers crossed I'm wrong - but I'm cognizant of the fact that what the fans say they'll support isn't always born out when it comes time to spending actual money. (That's a general comment about the behaviour of the market, not a comment about any individual here).


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Kor - Orc Scrollkeeper wrote:

Here's what I think would work:

- Make a set of 6 huges with 2 rarities (2 rare, 4 commmon)
- Package these in the same size boxes as the current sets -- these minis would not be visible. This would mean that buying a brick (8 boxes), would get you 2 rares, and 6 commons. This would also mean that WizKids would not have to do much to change their current packaging format.

Hey, wait a minute. Four commons for Six boosters means Two of those commons aren't really common at all... At least not if every case contains the same minis.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Berk the Black wrote:
Kor - Orc Scrollkeeper wrote:

Here's what I think would work:

- Make a set of 6 huges with 2 rarities (2 rare, 4 commmon)
- Package these in the same size boxes as the current sets -- these minis would not be visible. This would mean that buying a brick (8 boxes), would get you 2 rares, and 6 commons. This would also mean that WizKids would not have to do much to change their current packaging format.
Hey, wait a minute. Four commons for Six boosters means Two of those commons aren't really common at all... At least not if every case contains the same minis.

Well, yes and no :) Statistically, there would be 1.5 commons out on the market for every 1 rare. If you wanted to buy the minis strictly as singles then more of the common figures would be available, than there would be rares. (Given my suggested minis, 1 case buyer might get 2 earth elementals and 2 air elementals, so in theory another case buyer would get 2 water elementals and 2 fire elementals.)

I know if they were to attempt a "huge set" they would need to keep it a small assortment, as the consumer's price will ultimately play a factor due to the higher expense of making a huge miniature.

To make it work into WizKids' current product offering format, the set has to take into account the format of 8 boosters per brick. I think that trying to do a set that would fit a 16 booster format (i.e. 6 commons and 4 rares or 4 commons and 8 rares) would be more ideal, but the cost to get the whole set would be quite significant and as WizKids would likely consider this an "experiment", it would best to stay on the side of caution.

Of course those are all just random thoughts with no real knowledge of business decisions behind such an endeavor :)


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Steve Geddes wrote:
I just remember the comments when RotRL came out - it seems to me there is a significant slice of the market for whom price is an issue. Going to a randomised model may well turn some people off as well.

Unfortunately the randomized model is a more successful model, and helps to clear retailer inventory quicker. It also allows the producer to have rare minis that cost significantly more to produce (they have more complexity/components/assembly involved and with more paint steps applied) in which they can spread the extra cost across the entire line. (Although admittedly in my 6 minis set suggestion, I'm not sure the small size of the set would fully allow for this).

Steve Geddes wrote:
Fingers crossed I'm wrong - but I'm cognizant of the fact that what the fans say they'll support isn't always born out when it comes time to spending actual money.

Very true!

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Kor - Orc Scrollkeeper wrote:
There are so many people constantly asking for huge minis, I'm uncertain if this was fully the deciding factor.

If there's one thing that my many years in the industry have taught me, it's that there is often a huge gap between what people ask for and what actually sells well when you offer it. (See also: art books, posters, and T-shirts in colors other than black.)

But ultimately, Paizo doesn't control this—in general, WizKids determines what kinds of products to produce, then we offer suggestions for the specifics. We do frequently ask for them to consider new categories (and old ones too), and they occasionally say yes, but we simply don't get to dictate that they Make Huges Now.


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Vic Wertz wrote:

If there's one thing that my many years in the industry have taught me, it's that there is often a huge gap between what people ask for and what actually sells well when you offer it. (See also: art books and T-shirts in colors other than black.)

But ultimately, Paizo doesn't control this—in general, WizKids determines what kinds of products to produce, then we offer suggestions for the specifics. We do frequently ask for them to consider new categories (and old ones too), and they occasionally say yes, but we simply don't get to dictate that they Make Huges Now.

Thank you for the insight into part of the business relationship between Paizo and WizKids. Many of us often speculate on the aspects of what we believe that relationship to be. This relationship appears to offer a good balance between relying on their business experience of what sells and with Paizo choosing minis that promote and enhance its Pathfinder product brand.

Paizo (and specifically Erik) have demonstrated a great ability to work within the framework that WizKids have given them to make the best pre-painted miniatures on the market and with a focus on appealing to as broad of a market as possible (which is a difficult task).

I sincerely hope that we "huge mini supporters" are not a vocal minority but your point is well taken -- and here's hoping that someday in a WizKids meeting, Paizo can say "Please Consider Making Huges Soon" :)

Liberty's Edge

Vic, does this mean that neither you nor Erik can answer my question about the dragon evolution sets? I would have to speak with WizKids?

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

I can just tell you that Erik would be thrilled to do them if and when WizKids determines that doing more is a good idea.

Liberty's Edge

Thank you.

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