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Austrailan Diver

Cleanthes's page

489 posts. Alias of Scott LaBarge.


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The thing I like about this thread (and others like it) is that it shows very clearly that contestants (and judges) are being invited not just to put their RPG design skills on display, but their professionalism skills too. The point is repeatedly getting made that what other professionals in the RPG world value in a potential colleague is not just raw creative ability, solid writing skills, and rules mastery, but maturity, good judgment, and decency. I wish this was a lesson that got taught more widely, in a lot of contexts outside the RPG world too!

One small quality quibble; I got a Justice Ironbriar in hand today for the first time, and I was a bit disappointed with the painting on the face. I realize that as a Pathfinder elf, he's supposed to have bigger pupils than a human, but since there was no other paint at all marking out the eyes, just blobs of black, it made him look a little on the derpy side. Something to watch out for. (And it's possible I just was unlucky to get one that was painted with less skill than the average. I know from my own minis painting how hard eyes can be.)

I think in Henry James' Portrait of a Lady one of his characters says something along the lines of "wealth is not required to be a collector, patience is." If you're willing to wait, just about everything rolls around eventually ;-)

Yay! This is great news. I've already ordered a few. I was particularly glad to see the Kalavakus repaint; I've been seeing them show up for sale on Ebay for insane amounts, and this is a much better deal for a very cool mini.
Will the other promo minis from the Kickstarter ever get released for sale?

Modify memory. Bard spell, 4th level.

And maybe this gives us a hint what might be up:

Konami's new D&D slot machine

Maybe they were handing these out as swag at a gambling trade show?

Ok, here are a couple shots:

Main picture

Bottom of mini

I looked again at the Wrath of Ashardalon unpainted mini, and it has the same base, though obviously this one is black, and also has a small number stamped on it in white numerals (not visible in the photo) that the unpainted one lacks. It looks to me like the sort of paint job you'd expect from Wizards; good enough, but not so good that it looks like it was done by someone with real skill, so that makes me think it's a legit promo repaint. I just wish I knew where it came from, and why the wrapper has a big KONAMI stamped on it in red. Weird....

I've got one already, though it's in with my sleeping wife. I'll see if I can't find time to snap some pictures tomorrow.

Yeah, this is definitely not an Ashardalon mini from the board game that's been painted by someone as a one-off. The base is different, and it's clearly an unpainted black plastic base, not the red plastic of the board game version. It really looks just like the Giants of Legend paint job, on a different base. I don't know what to think. I was able to buy both the ones I've seen on Ebay for a song, and I'm confident I can resell them for way more than I paid, so I'm not worried about that. But I'd still like to know what the heck they are! In particular, I'd like to know whether these are a recent release, or something that came out back in the day that I just never ran across before.


I generally consider myself pretty knowledgeable about the world of prepainted fantasy minis, but I ran across one this week that has me stumped. On Ebay I've now stumbled onto two copies of a mini that's clearly the sculpt of the Huge Red Dragon from WotC's Giants of Legend set, and it's painted just like that mini too, but on the bottom it's stamped "Ashardalon, Red Dragon", and the set symbol is the same as for the Wrath of Ashardalon board game (a little White Plume Mountain). The plastic bag for the mini has Konami written on it, too. I'm just wondering whether any other mini collector out there has seen this thing before, and knows anything about its provenance. Anybody?

And on second reading, that last post sounds whiny. (Note to myself: don't post to forum boards when you've been traveling all day.) And of course it's Thanksgiving weekend, and Erik probably has more important things to do than tend to our minis obsession.
So on a happier note, let me say that I've seen a fair number of the new Lost Coast minis in hand, and I'm very happy with them! In a total of 17 boosters I've opened so far, only one mini (a Small Air Elemental) was damaged, and it was an easy fix. I haven't noticed any paint disasters, though humanoids still seem to be at the low end of the painters' scale of execution. I'm a specially big fan of the Hill Giant, the Troll, and the Boggards, both of which are a lot of fun.
There's still some minis I haven't landed yet, and speaking of which, I pulled a couple of extra Lamashtus, so if anyone is looking for a trade, drop me a PM. (Is there a website out there now that serves the purpose that Maxminis used to as a trading center? It would be useful to have that sort of site around again.)

All I know is, I was traveling all day today (Friday), wondering if there was a new preview of the next set's minis, and looking forward to it, only to get home at midnight and find nothing new :(
Hoping that soon we find out what the next set will be (my bet: something Kingmaker/River Kingdoms related -- well, maybe my hope?) and also get word that the promo minis are getting released LIKE NOW!!!

>> Hugs for Bill!!!! <<

This might be a great adventure for all I know, but..."Valley of the Brain Collectors"? Was Bert I. Gordon your guest editor that week? Gotta say, that's the goofiest module title I think I've ever seen you lot produce. It would be hard to tell my wife I was running "Valley of the Brain Collectors" and keep a straight face.
And I say this, of course, with nothing but love in my heart, for Paizo, Bert I. Gordon, Mike Shel, and the brain collectors themselves, whom I am sure wouldn't need to collect so many brains if they got more hugs.

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Any chance we can get an update on when the season's promo minis are due to hit the store?

I'm REALLY looking forward to this set! Can't wait for the release, and to start seeing pictures of the next set!

There are some great ideas in here, thanks!

What I'm imagining is a set-up where the party would be working as mercenaries for a country at war with a neighbor, where both countries are predominantly human and there's not one side that's clearly morally superior. (If you're familiar with the anime Berserk, I'm imagining something kind of like that, although without the darker demonic elements of that story.) My intention would be to send the party on various missions, some of them involving traditional battles, some of them more covert, where they'd get put in some ticklish moral situations, end up sucked into difficult political maneuvering, and have to make hard choices. And ultimately, they'd uncover puppetmasters manipulating both sides as part of larger schemes. I'm thinking the River Kingdoms might be a good spot for this sort of thing, although it might be possible to cook up something interesting with Galt too.

I'm thinking of working up my own series of adventures, which I'd like to set in Golarion, and I'd like it to involve playing a group of mercenaries who have been hired to fight on one side of a relatively conventional (medieval/renaissance era) war. Where in Golarion is such a war most likely to be found?

I love the Wangering Giant!!!

@Kryx, what sorts of attacks or situations did Kirthfinder suggest would cause "critical dazzling"? That's interesting. Though I think I could still be content with dazzled staying pretty minor (just not a piddly -1).

I've never been happy with the "dazzled" status, which seems to me it does so little it might as well not exist. A -1 to hit and to sight-based Perception checks? Wooooo.
My suggestion: have it give a miss chance instead. Could be as small as a 10% chance, but that would be potentially worth bothering with. I'd also make it stack with other effects that give a miss chance, like blur or concealment in obscuring mist.
If ever Pathfinder 2.0 comes out, I at least would like to see this change, and I'm thinking of house-ruling it in the meantime. What do other people think? Am I missing some game design consideration that would make this a bad idea?

I've looked into this myself, and I think all the options I've ever encountered have already been listed. You could, however, approach your DM about creating a new spell, and there are rules for that process. Costs some gp and time, and you'd have to make some Spellcraft checks, but once you've got your spell, you can use it over and over again. Myself, I'd imagine a 2nd-level spell that lets you see 60' through mist/fog/etc for 1 min/level. Once the spell was invented, you could even get it put into a wand, and then cast it on the whole party when you need it.

The Elf Archer is going to be a hit, I'm confident. A great mini for anyone who wants to be Shalelu without being Shalelu. I don't think the picture is bad, either; it's easy to get a sense of the mini. And in my experience, female elf/half-elf archers are a very popular character choice. Want to do me a favor as a seller? Make a promo version that's brunette.

Agreed. Most WotC drow minis are not exciting paint jobs, though there were rare nice ones like the Champion of Eilistraee (which had a lovely, very dynamic sculpt.)

If nothing else, it would be good to get some driders, since Pathfinder driders look so different from the old WotC ones.
But I'd still rather have shocker lizards first :-p

I'd bet changes aren't possible at this point. If they're releasing this set in November, I'd bet the minis are pretty much made and boxed, and they'll be starting to move them around soon if they haven't already. But this is just speculation on my part.

Any word on when the season's promo minis are going to hit the Paizo web store?

Some cool stuff here! I remember fighting Gogmurt, and what a pain in the butt he was, so that's cool. And the green hag looks like she's going to be a big step ahead of the one Wizkids just did for WotC. (Plus, she also looks like she could proxy for an interesting undead, since there aren't many prepainted undead females out there.) The leaping boggard also looks fun, though he definitely looks like one you have to see in hand to really appreciate.

I hope you make your next Fort save. For disease, 2 in a row usually does it :-)

In a lot of ways, I worry more about what goes on at Wizkids than I do about what goes on at Paizo. I'm confident that you in particular, Erik, are a gamer a lot like me in the relevant respects, and you want awesome pre-paints in hand as much as I do. And everything I've read here every week tells me that you have similar standards for quality and aesthetics. (I can say the same about Mr. Wertz, I think.) But I find Wizkids a great deal more opaque and less responsive, and I have less confidence in their willingness/ability to reliably turn out good product. The material they turned out for WotC just confirmed my worries about them. Part of me just wishes you had a different company making your minis, but I have no idea who that might be. (Though if Reaper were turning out pre-painted Bones, I know which company I'd recommend. Customer service and Heart-of-the-Gamer wise, to me the guys at Reaper are to minis what Paizo is to fantasy RPG's.)
Fwiw, I didn't read your statement about the original Kyra as a slam on the minis that have come since. I was holding the original Beginner Box minis in hand just this week and thinking that a couple of them are pretty middle-of-the-pack (no stinkers, though.) But Kyra just pops, in a way that few other pre-paints have. I've often wondered what made that mini so special and why it's been so hard to hit that standard since. I don't know, maybe Sarenrae took a hand ;-)

I'm all for more iconics, but I have some doubts about the digital sculpts. I know that Wizkids' minis for Wizards of the Coast were digital sculpts, and honestly I wasn't terribly impressed with the results. Something with them just seems -- off. I don't know, maybe they fall into the uncanny valley. And if you're familiar with the Heroclix line, they seem to be recycling poses from that line, too. So I'm watching with an open mind, but I hope this doesn't become a door to a decline in quality, whether of sculpts, painting, or both.

I've had this happen before and puzzled over it, but it happened again tonight when I played, and I'd like to know how other GM's handle it. It could be a situation where the bad guys manage to capture a PC or NPC and put a knife to his throat, or reversed, so the PC's have a knife to the throat of someone they've captured. If it comes to the point where either the captive wants to break free or the captor decides to slit the throat of the captive, how do you handle the mechanics?

Does it matter whether the captor or captive tries to act first? Is an initiative check in order, with any modifiers applied? If the captor can go first, does he roll a normal attack, or should it be considered a coup-de-grace? What if he decides to do non-lethal damage, any changes? How do the grapple rules fit in here? I can imagine multiple ways of doing this, and I'd like to hear what other people would do. Thanks!

@ Rambler: Did you super glue them together? I'd think that would keep them together very well.

You're right, Cat: that flying stick doesn't come flush with the base in the way it has for earlier sets. I wonder if that's an indication they're moving towards the do-it-yourself flight bases. I'd be happy if that's the case.

Huge fan of the Sniper, who looks very stylish. I like Pazuzu too. The cougar will be great for RotR, but I agree that Gogmurt would be even better.
Also, re: flight sticks, I think that WotC was smart to have them detached in their new minis set, so the customer needs to do the assembly at home. I really think that's the best way to do it, since it's less likely to get broken in transit, and the customer can decide whether to glue it together permanently or break it down for storage (which might let them store more compactly.) As far as I can see, Paizo is still getting MUCH nicer sculpts and paint jobs from Wizkids than WotC is, but that was one thing Wizards are doing better.

ShadowChemosh wrote:

The Feiya news is great to hear. Guess I need to keep my case subscription. =)

I did want to speak up and say please don't do any more farm animals. I play Pathfinder not farmsvile. I have no use for minis that won't get used for combat. If I ever need such farm animals I can pick up dozens at a toy store for a buck.

I guess other people want them for some reason but seeing a pig in this set really made me think hard about keeping my subscription.

No offense, but I disagree. For one thing, a lot of these animals see use as familiars, so for that reason alone there's a place for them, even in combat. But if nothing else, their sales should be an indication of their popularity, and from what I have seen, there's substantial demand out there for the little critters. You're totally entitled to your preferences, though! And nothing that Erik (or anyone making selection calls) might do is going to please everybody. (Except for a Froghemoth, Erik. Everybody wants a froghemoth. Even my mom would want a froghemoth, if she knew what a froghemoth is.)

I expect this to be very popular news on this thread and around the forums, but I wonder to what extent that's a good predictor of sales. I hope so! I'll watch with interest.
I was expecting to hear people complaining about the cheesecake factor -- Seoni's side boobs, Seelah's armor boobs -- but it's nice not to hear any so far. But I expect it's just a matter of time....

danielc wrote:
Assuming you can see well and assuming your hands don't shake. But if you are like me, the days of painting your own are gone and the costs to pay a painter to paint for you make PPM a much better option. Now we have gone full circle and we are back to begging for PPM that cover what we like. ;-)

Point well taken. And never let it be said that I don't want as wide a range of Pre-paints available as possible!

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If you really want just the right thing and only that, there's always metal minis and a paint set! And it's really not that hard to learn to do a decent paint job, and fairly quickly at that.

I've loved this set so far, but I'd have to say that this is the reveal I've been least excited about. Of the three, I like the priestess the most; the distended belly is very creepy, and I can imagine using her in other contexts as any sort of creepy priestess giving ready to give birth to something Man Was Not Meant to Know. But the alchemist isn't quite working for me; he looks a bit cartoonish to my eye, and from the picture he looks stuck a bit between human and halfling. Maybe he'll look better in hand.
As for Lamashtu, I'm sure she'll have some big fans, but for me it's the sort of mini that will most likely never see the table, both because it'd have to be such a high-level encounter and because she's just not my cup of tea. But I don't begrudge other people some minis they'll love!

I don't care if there's an official Kingmaker set, so long as you keep producing minis I can use in the campaign! I'm running it for two groups, one about 1/2 way through Chapter 1, and the other 75% through Chapter 2, and it's going to be years before we're done (if ever), so there's plenty of time for stuff to come out! Just last night I was regretting having to substitute slurk minis for trollhounds.

I like all 3 minis, but I *LOVE* the Hill Giant! When the first Hill Giant mini got released, I remember thinking, "Aw man, why didn't they use Munguk?" That art is just amazing, and the mini looks like it really nailed it. I'm thrilled to have Conna too (and I bet she looks more female in hand). Keep those lady giants coming!

I'm guessing they would count Reign of Winter as a "people of the North" set they just did.

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Does Paizo collect info from Pathfinder league play about what sorts of characters people are actually playing? It would seem to me that that info would be a good guide concerning what sorts of minis people would most like to have. Also, surely Paizo has its own data on how well different adventure paths have sold. If I were making my release decisions with an eye on the bottom line, I'd do sets for the best selling adventure paths (in which case Kingmaker should be high on the list, I'd think.) I understand, though, that some times the company likes to release a set of minis for a new AP that's just coming out, and then of course you can't know in advance how well it's going to sell. My guess (just a guess!) is that Iron Gods is not going to be one of the top sellers. That doesn't mean I wouldn't love to see a set for it, but I think it would represent an opportunity cost for Paizo. So I'm not so much anti-Iron Gods as much as I am pro-more-popular sets. For instance, if the AP after Iron Gods is going to be giant-centric, I'm confident giant minis (provided they're not too bizarre) will always have a market, and I expect a giant-centric AP is going to appeal to a wide base.

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Personally, I'd like to see Paizo poll players to see what combinations of race/gender/class/weaponry they'd most like to see in PPM. I have no idea how closely my personal preferences would track what's actually in demand.

Erik Mona wrote:

There are more elves coming.

You say it that way, it sounds kind of ominous....

Without having seen any of the monsters for Iron Gods yet, it's hard to speculate too much, but of course we have to imagine there are going to be lots of constructs, yes? Folks may want to take a look at some of the old Mage Knight minis; they had a disproportionate number of various sorts of metal golems (some with fairly steampunk touches) and also an unusual number of fantasy-ish characters with pistols and other firearms. Maybe some of that stuff will turn out to be useable here. There might be a few useful Dreamblade minis as well.

I think Kor makes a good point. More people will want multiples of the Forest Shadow than of the Haughty Avenger. Is the issue the number of paint steps?

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Nice minis! May they have faces to match!
I was thinking maybe Paizo just needs to create a new player race with derpy faces. Then, when you get a bad paint job like that, you're all set. :-p

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