Cool Plastic Minis, NOT from WOTC???


Miniatures

Liberty's Edge

I've recently gotten into getting the pre painted plastic minis from WOTC. I'm not necessarily into spending big bucks just to get a Rare (the ol' Pokemon approach to minis ...) but I do like having cool plastic figures to use in my games.

Does anyone know if any other company is making similar plastic, pre painted minis that work with the WOTC ones (i.e. scale is the same, size and proportions are similar etc)

I was actually paging through one of my order issues of Dragon, and I saw ads for Ral Partha, Reaper, Grendedier etc. and I started wondering if any of them are still around and if so, if they got into the plastic mini market. I remember Ral Partha made GREAT metal figures back in the day ...

Thanks!


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Marc Radle 81 wrote:

I've recently gotten into getting the pre painted plastic minis from WOTC. I'm not necessarily into spending big bucks just to get a Rare (the ol' Pokemon approach to minis ...) but I do like having cool plastic figures to use in my games.

Does anyone know if any other company is making similar plastic, pre painted minis that work with the WOTC ones (i.e. scale is the same, size and proportions are similar etc)

I was actually paging through one of my order issues of Dragon, and I saw ads for Ral Partha, Reaper, Grendedier etc. and I started wondering if any of them are still around and if so, if they got into the plastic mini market. I remember Ral Partha made GREAT metal figures back in the day ...

Thanks!

I can answer that. Reaper has recently started a brand new line of non-random prepainted plastic miniatures called "Legendary Encounters." You can get them from Paizo here. The scale is the same. I've gotten at least one of each so far.

I, too, remember Ral Partha and they made great stuff. I don't *think* they're still around. But I'd say their spirit lives on at Reaper.

Reaper has plans to expand this line in the near future to include: Goblins, Kobolds, a Good Knight, an Evil Knight, an Elf Archer, a Dwarf with Axe, a female Ranger, a female-six-armed Demoness, a succubus, a Bathalian (*cough* Mindflayer *cough*), a War Dog, a giant worm, a zombie, a ghost, a Gnoll Archer, a Gnoll Warrior, an Ettin...and probably a couple more that I've forgotten. They look really cool.

So far, apart from the random WOTC minis, I'm not aware of anyone else doing prepainted plastic. I'm hoping Reaper has a huge success with their line, because then maybe we'll see even more offerings from them and maybe others...

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Ral Partha is gone, though many of their figures are now available from IronWind Metals. Grenadier is gone, and I think most of their molds reverted to the sculptors; in any case, the ones that are still available are now scattered about some, and many are no longer to be found.

Reaper is still around, and they do have a small line of pre-paints, some of which are quite nice. (I'm pretty sure Paizo carries their full line.)

You should also take a look at the Rackham figures, which are very nice. They are going entirely to pre-painted plastic for their stuff. I don't know whether Paizo is planning to carry the new line. (Much of the stuff here seems to be the discontinued metal minis.)

The Exchange

Marc Radle 81 wrote:
I've recently gotten into getting the pre painted plastic minis from WOTC. I'm not necessarily into spending big bucks just to get a Rare (the ol' Pokemon approach to minis ...) but I do like having cool plastic figures to use in my games.

I suggest you use ebay to buy WotC D&D Miniature sets. If you wait a few months after the release of a new set, you can buy the common and uncommon sets cheap. Commons (usually 12 per set)are practically the price of shipping. Uncommons (usually 24 per set) are relatively cheap, maybe $10-$20 for 24. Usually this will get you what you need for every type of encounter. OK, you will never get a Beholder or Dragon, but you can substitute some other large figure.

Also if you just want to substitute some wierd looking figures, buy old lots of WizKids Games MageKnight. I buy some just bacause they have some interesting 'monsters'.


Other alternatives include Mage Knight and HeroClix...

Duncan beat me to the punch! :)


Marc Radle 81 wrote:

I've recently gotten into getting the pre painted plastic minis from WOTC. I'm not necessarily into spending big bucks just to get a Rare (the ol' Pokemon approach to minis ...) but I do like having cool plastic figures to use in my games.

Does anyone know if any other company is making similar plastic, pre painted minis that work with the WOTC ones (i.e. scale is the same, size and proportions are similar etc)

I was actually paging through one of my order issues of Dragon, and I saw ads for Ral Partha, Reaper, Grendedier etc. and I started wondering if any of them are still around and if so, if they got into the plastic mini market. I remember Ral Partha made GREAT metal figures back in the day ...

Thanks!

Look for sites online that sell individual D&D minis, that way you can pick the ones you want. There are also sites that sell (mage knight/horror clix/hero clix) minis individually, those are often good buys as well. I would also keep an eye out to local toy stores/departments. Occasionally you can find items that can work. For example, you should never buy a D&D dinosaur, there are enough dinosaurs for kids that you can find one that will be close enough to the right size. Cavemen work great for giants.

Liberty's Edge

If you don't mind doing a little bit of work, you can pick up a lot of good D&D appropriate minis at your local dollar store. I picked up a few of those packs of assorted dinosaurs, bugs and reptiles and came out with a good bunch of creatures for summoning spells. All I had to do was glue them to a 25mm base and they were good enough for no PC creatures. They could even be repainted if you have the gumption (I don't).

And yes, Legendary Encounters are cool. I can't wait till the purple worm comes out. I'll need some for my AoW campaign >:)


Doug Sundseth wrote:
You should also take a look at the Rackham figures, which are very nice.

Here is a link.


Hi guys...
I was just wondering if the minis are made by little chineese slave kids or not?
I mean the are cheap AND hand painted and made in china...
I feel kind of bad buying the little minis and I was wondering if someone could help by showing me that they are actually machine made in the US by highly paid people who donate 1/4 of their wages to needy citizens.

Or something...

All I imagine is hundreds of little chineese salve kids hunched over tables covered in poison glue and paints and our minis...

Sovereign Court

Here are the answers for your mini needs.

WotC. Go to ebay after a set release and buy 5xeach common, 3xeach uncommon. You will amass a large army very quickly.

I hold to this because I used to be a Mini painter and after spending 10-20 hours on 1 mini I wouldn't let my players use them. Then WotC brought us the "Rare chase" method of minis. This works to the DMs advantage. Usually kobolds and goblins are commons and those collectors out there rare chasin sell them off dirt cheap because they have billions. Usually you can get a common set for 5 bucks + S/H (5 more bucks) so get 5xcommon sets (5x16 minis) for 25 bucks + combined shipping. Add in a few uncommon sets to get more variaty faster.

Uber Army FTW.

Liberty's Edge

Great info - thanks everyone! I'm looking at Reaper's and Rackham's web site now. Very nice!

Slight threadjack below (although, I get a little leeway since I started the tread, right :)...

How, if at all, do you guys mark your plastic minis? I'm thinking I might want to mark them on the underside of the bases because:
A - I don't want my minis to get mixed up with other people's on the table, and
B - when you have a number of identical figures on the table (5 Orc spear men or whatever) you need to be able to differentiate them, so numbers or letters would be helpful.

I'm thinking some kind of permanent marker would work well, although black marker on a black base may not show up well.

Any thoughts?

Dark Archive

Looking forward to the Reaper Minis version of the Ettin and of the Marilith... eerrrr, female Demon.
The DDM version of them are embarassing.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Marc Radle 81 wrote:
How, if at all, do you guys mark your plastic minis?

Two possibilities: Either a sticker with some marking (this is the scheme that MageKnight and MechWarrior use) or a paint marker in gold or silver (which will show up just fine against black plastic).

Sczarni

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber
Doug Sundseth wrote:
Marc Radle 81 wrote:
How, if at all, do you guys mark your plastic minis?

Two possibilities: Either a sticker with some marking (this is the scheme that MageKnight and MechWarrior use) or a paint marker in gold or silver (which will show up just fine against black plastic).

I've used White out.... if you later feel like selling them, you have to scrape it off, but ti doesn't damage the base

Sovereign Court

Marc Radle 81 wrote:

Great info - thanks everyone! I'm looking at Reaper's and Rackham's web site now. Very nice!

Slight threadjack below (although, I get a little leeway since I started the tread, right :)...

How, if at all, do you guys mark your plastic minis? I'm thinking I might want to mark them on the underside of the bases because:
A - I don't want my minis to get mixed up with other people's on the table, and
B - when you have a number of identical figures on the table (5 Orc spear men or whatever) you need to be able to differentiate them, so numbers or letters would be helpful.

I'm thinking some kind of permanent marker would work well, although black marker on a black base may not show up well.

Any thoughts?

Teh Uber Marker.

or

You can do "Repaints" on the WotC ones, just use a clear coat on them afterwords. Heck, just paint there bases different colors. If you get the few orcs from each set you can have 50+ orcs that look different anyway. Same thing with kobolds, goblins, gnolls...

Once you build a big enough collection ppl wont need to bring minis with them.

I don't allow personal minis for the sake of mixing theres and mine. I also don't allow players to use outside minis because I own all the DnD miniatures created to date (The plastic WotC ones) and I don't allow metal minis because of my irreplaceable gaming surface (R.I.P. Tact-Tiles).

Liberty's Edge

Speaking of Repaints ... how many of you have done this to the WOTC plastic minis? Is it pretty easy? Any particular kind or brand of paint? What kind of clear coat?

I've wanted to try this for some time ...


Murkmoldiev wrote:

Hi guys...

I was just wondering if the minis are made by little chineese slave kids or not?
I mean the are cheap AND hand painted and made in china...
I feel kind of bad buying the little minis and I was wondering if someone could help by showing me that they are actually machine made in the US by highly paid people who donate 1/4 of their wages to needy citizens.

Or something...

All I imagine is hundreds of little chineese salve kids hunched over tables covered in poison glue and paints and our minis...

As far as I am aware these miniatures are not hand painted but machine painted, with possible by hand touch ups for the rares.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Marc Radle 81 wrote:

How, if at all, do you guys mark your plastic minis? I'm thinking I might want to mark them on the underside of the bases because:

A - I don't want my minis to get mixed up with other people's on the table, and
B - when you have a number of identical figures on the table (5 Orc spear men or whatever) you need to be able to differentiate them, so numbers or letters would be helpful.

I'm thinking some kind of permanent marker would work well, although black marker on a black base may not show up well.

Any thoughts?

I paint a little watered down Elmer's glue on the base and sprinkle some fine sand onto the glue. It's easy to identify what's mine. It's cheap. And it looks nice.

Scarab Sages

Marc Radle 81 wrote:
Speaking of Repaints ... how many of you have done this to the WOTC plastic minis? Is it pretty easy? Any particular kind or brand of paint? What kind of clear coat?

I have, on a couple, but I don't do it as a rule.

Just on one that I wanted as a PC, and some that had a totally heinous paint-job that I couldn't stand to look at. I've also hacked off and replaced bendy weapons, cut off a few mould lines, but generally only if they are really severe.

Regular Citadel Acrylics did the trick. Not too watery, or it won't stick. Sometimes just rubbing a bit of black into the armour crevices works wonders.

Note that the Good factions, for some reason, tend to be far less robust, less detailed, and IMO less well-painted than the Evil, so you may not be able to rely as much on following the contours of the sculpt, and so may have to add details free-hand. But that doesn't bother me, since I am mostly after villains/monster types, so don't care about the PC-types, unless they are of some unusual race-class-weapon combo.

Dwarf with axe? Who cares?
Elf with bow? Pfeh.


Pravus wrote:
Murkmoldiev wrote:

Hi guys...

I was just wondering if the minis are made by little chineese slave kids or not?
I mean the are cheap AND hand painted and made in china...
I feel kind of bad buying the little minis and I was wondering if someone could help by showing me that they are actually machine made in the US by highly paid people who donate 1/4 of their wages to needy citizens.

Or something...

All I imagine is hundreds of little chineese salve kids hunched over tables covered in poison glue and paints and our minis...

As far as I am aware these miniatures are not hand painted but machine painted, with possible by hand touch ups for the rares.

Anyone have any more data on this?

Are they indeed machine painted and not slave kid painted?

The Exchange Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 6

Murkmoldiev wrote:

Anyone have any more data on this?

Are they indeed machine painted and not slave kid painted?

Hand painted, machine assisted. Like most things of that nature. So yes, human beings work on the miniatures, machines do too.


Murkmoldiev wrote:
Pravus wrote:
Murkmoldiev wrote:

Hi guys...

I was just wondering if the minis are made by little chineese slave kids or not?
I mean the are cheap AND hand painted and made in china...
I feel kind of bad buying the little minis and I was wondering if someone could help by showing me that they are actually machine made in the US by highly paid people who donate 1/4 of their wages to needy citizens.

Or something...

All I imagine is hundreds of little chineese salve kids hunched over tables covered in poison glue and paints and our minis...

As far as I am aware these miniatures are not hand painted but machine painted, with possible by hand touch ups for the rares.

Anyone have any more data on this?

Are they indeed machine painted and not slave kid painted?

Finding real data seems pretty difficult. I've been doing a google search on this for an hour now and have not really come up with a good site dealing with the topic.

I strongly suspect that their done with plastic moulds. I saw some plastic moulds for making toy dinosaurs, action figures, dolls and toy cars and I'd think the same production system would be used for WotC plastic miniatures.

I don't have a WotC miniature at hand but it dawns on me that any kind of 'painting' method will just be some kind of surface effect while a mold type system would be about using different coloured plastic throughout the miniature. If you start gouging a common do you chip away paint? or is it just more plastic underneath? If your chipping away paint obvously their painted but if its just more plastic underneath then thats some kind of plastic molding technology.

The Exchange Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 6

Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:


I don't have a WotC miniature at hand but it dawns on me that any kind of 'painting' method will just be some kind of surface effect while a mold type system would be about using different coloured plastic throughout the miniature. If you start gouging a common do you chip away paint? or is it just more plastic underneath? If your chipping away paint obvously their painted but if its just more plastic underneath then thats some kind of plastic molding technology.

If you dig around maximinis.com, you'll find a comfirmation that they are done on some sort of assembling line with both hand-painting and machines involved. WotC doesn't discuss the exact technique, but they acknowledged that the basic idea discussed was in line with the real techniques. The minis are all either black plastic or clear plastic underneath, the color you see is from paint.


Russ Taylor wrote:


If you dig around maximinis.com...

I'm having a hard time doing that as maximinis.com just brings me to a site with a picture of a pretty university student.

That said they probably could do something involving actual painting pretty easily. I'm given to understand you can get a full fledged piece of art work, essentially a good (though not exceptional) oil on canvas painting for about $10 - well maybe not $10 US but if you have 10 Euro's your good to go.

High quality knock offs of Black and Decker Power Drill goes for around $5 etc.


Murkmoldiev wrote:

Hi guys...

I was just wondering if the minis are made by little chineese slave kids or not?

I mean the are cheap AND hand painted and made in china...

...

All I imagine is hundreds of little chineese salve kids hunched over tables covered in poison glue and paints and our minis...

China's child labor laws are fairly strict and hiring adults isn't any more expensive than kids, anyway. Kids do crappy work.

Probably the people painting these are breathing in toxic fumes, though, but the problem here is that even when people are offered safety masks they'll probably take them off anyway. I really do not understand some of the stuff I see over here. Some guys are welding without welder's glass down the street from me now. They're wearing some one dollar sunglasses.

The monthly income of these people isn't very high, but they most certainly do make enough to have a lifestyle about 10 times better than they did 10 years ago. They can buy school supplies, afford a bike or maybe even a scooter, get medical care, have a TV and DVD player with a collection of bootleg discs, and go to a restaurant every few days for a rest from cooking at home.

Kruelaid
(Weihai, Shandong)


Marc Radle 81 wrote:

Speaking of Repaints ... how many of you have done this to the WOTC plastic minis? Is it pretty easy? Any particular kind or brand of paint? What kind of clear coat?

I've wanted to try this for some time ...

Hey Marc

Cool repaints On the right you'll see a listing of D&D miniatures Repeints,dwarven forge etc etc...it's French blog.

Best paint for D&D miniatures Select game colors on the menu tab; I believe they have 72 color set for mini's.

The Exchange Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 6

Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
Russ Taylor wrote:


If you dig around maximinis.com...

I'm having a hard time doing that as maximinis.com just brings me to a site with a picture of a pretty university student.

Sorry, http://maxminis.com/, one too many "i"s. Good place to talk about miniatures, at least the DDM variety.


Kruelaid wrote:


China's child labor laws are fairly strict and hiring adults isn't any more expensive than kids, anyway. Kids do crappy work.

Certainly such laws exist but my understanding is that enforcement can be pretty spotty. Hence this is a concern that is not completely baseless.


well I know that the minis would cost about 1 $ each just to paint if made here... I could probably do 10 an hour
We could get into endless ethical debate over this basically you vote with your wallet an at the end of the day, if you buy Nothing from china you have to live in a log cabin and wear deerskins... well almost...

gotta go , a great deal of slave kid specials is almost over on ebay ! 10c EACH !


On the Ral Partha topic:

Ral Partha were bought out by FASA, and when that bellied up, Ral Partha "apparently" went with it...

BUT NOT QUITE!!!

I recently got my hands on some old Mage Knight Official Collector's Guides and was surprised to see the sculptor for some of the figures listed as (wait for it) Ral Partha (!)

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