Tripping the Light Fantasy Plastics

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Tripping the Light Fantasy Plastics

Postby Primarch on Fri Mar 02, 2018 9:29 am

If you're old enough, you may well remember a time when GW was the only maker of Fantasy minis in plastic around. These days though it seems like there are a lot more options out there. I guess that with the tooling costs of plastic sprues coming down (though still way beyond the means of a lot of mini companies), a few manufacturers have taken the plunge and produced some fantasy figures in plastic.

Of course, GW remains king of the massively awesome centerpiece models (that new Morathi sculpt for example), but there are more and more fantasy minis being released in sweet, sweet plastic crack form.

I'm sure everyone knows Mantic, who seem to be aiming for the "Just like GW, but cheaper" section of the market.

Reaper is another big player who do some very characterful minis for peanuts with their flexible Bones range. While they are mainly aiming at the RPG market, they have a huge range of unique models available and their big stuff (Dragons, Giants etc) are really, really nice.

But there are other companies around doing plastic fantasy figures if you take a peak at what's available.

Avatars of War started out doing hero figures, but they now offer a few boxes of dwarves and chaos warriors. They are a little more pricey per figure than most of the other makers I'll mention below, but they seem to have the same level of chunky, heroic proportions that GW sculpts in.

North Star Miniatures, the company supporting Frostgrave has been churning out boxes of plastics at a fair rate and has more coming. As well as the Frostgrave figures (human soldiers, cultists, barbarians and Gnolls), they have minis for Ghost Archipelago (Sindbad style pirates and Snakemen) and their own line of fantasy figures on the way (Elves, Dwarves and Goblins). You'd probably still want to supplement the ranges with some monsters, but they seem to be aiming for playable fantasy armies in the near future.

Shieldwolf Miniatures does Orcs and female Barbarians in plastic. They have some Warrior Nuns (including a set with guns!!.) on the way as well. They have a good selection of resin figures available to flesh out your armies too.

Fireforge Games does human figures, mainly for historicals (early-mid medieval and crusades), but they also have some Pegasus Knights and a set of Bretonian-esque fantasy cavalry.

Of course, if you're looking for a human army, Perrys, Gripping Beast, and Conquest do a variety of plastic models suitable for gaming with.

If anyone knows of any more, please feel free to post below.

In the space of only a few years, we have gone from having only one real option to having a plethora. Unfortunately fantasy gaming seems to have died a death since GW nuked the Old World and WFB.

There are options though. Mantic has Kings of War, Osprey has Dragon Rampant, Pikey has his WarPike/Hail Pikey set of rules and there is always Old/Middle/New/Neo-classical Hammer if people are in the mood for digging through their old books.

I managed to get in a game of Dragon Rampant in January with Yellowstreak and it seemed to play pretty well, plus it doesn't really require a lot of figures. I already have one force available for it and once I get done with my Battle of Fulford forces at the end of this month, I'm going to try and get a second force done, which I will then (fingers crossed) expand up to a full scale army for Warpike etc.

So, is there any love out there for Fantasy Armies, be they plastic or otherwise? Anyone tempted to start a new army or willing to dig out an older one to try a game for old times sake?
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Re: Tripping the Light Fantasy Plastics

Postby The Other Dave on Fri Mar 02, 2018 12:24 pm

FFG's Runewars might be worth mentioning, although the models are strongly tied to the game in question and you'd be paying for a lot of game widgets you wouldn't need if you just wanted the models. All the same, they've got a nice chunky WoW-ish aesthetic. Plus the game mechanics are pretty intriguing, but I think I've learned my lesson about buying game systems just for the sake of intriguing rules and cool models. :D

I would like an excuse to get my goblins out in the world again, though. One actually hears good things about AoS these days - they've hammered it back into a more or less robust, workable rules system after the release disaster - but to the idea of moving around 100-odd goblins individually, I say fie! People seem to dig Kings of War too, and I got a free rulebook a while ago with something or other I ordered. I'd certainly be willing to give Dragon Rampant a try, but the thing I always liked about my goblin horde was it being, well, a horde.
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Re: Tripping the Light Fantasy Plastics

Postby Primarch on Fri Mar 02, 2018 12:59 pm

The Other Dave wrote:I'd certainly be willing to give Dragon Rampant a try, but the thing I always liked about my goblin horde was it being, well, a horde.


You can use it as a horde in DR as well. The rules dictate the unit's strength, with a nominally 1:1 ratio of Unit Strength : Models. However, it suggests that you can adjust that ratio as you see fit, so long as you bear in mind that the models no longer represent the actual size of the unit. For example, I fielded 13 Halflings in a strength 6 unit when I played with no problems. :D
Prims Painty Points > +924.5
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Finished Minis in 2016 (as of Nov 30): 369 + 2 Tables of Terrain
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Re: Tripping the Light Fantasy Plastics

Postby The Other Dave on Fri Mar 02, 2018 1:25 pm

13! 13 is not a horde! :o

Yeah, YellowStreak has pointed the same thing out to me. But even going 1:4 and 24 models for a strength 6 unit (which is, as I understand it, more or less the average unit strength) it's just not the same as a solid block of 50 goblins, you know? Not to mention there's something unsatisfying about having no actual rules effect from having more models - a strength 6 unit is a strength 6 unit (barring skills or disadvantages or what have you) however many models you choose to represent them. So 1 giant and 24 goblins would be effectively the same "thing," which is just a little bit more abstract than I'm looking for I guess. I mean, I hear the game is fun and I'll certainly be happy to play it, but I don't think it'll scratch my "fill the field with a horde of blue crazies" itch.
Miniatures painted in 2018:
28mm: 91 infantry, 6 vehicles, 2 buildings, assorted other terrain-y bits
Currently focusing on: 40K, Shadespire, Age of Sigmar?, Malifaux
My twitter is pretty hobby-heavy: vivanagoya
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Re: Tripping the Light Fantasy Plastics

Postby Simon W on Sun Apr 01, 2018 5:18 am

The guys in ‘Broken Bayonets’, the KL group, are saying lots of nice things about a range of plastic fantasy miniatures called Oathsmark. Nice-looking goblins and I think they do dwarves as well. 30 figures a box.
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Re: Tripping the Light Fantasy Plastics

Postby Primarch on Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:52 pm

Simon W wrote:The guys in ‘Broken Bayonets’, the KL group, are saying lots of nice things about a range of plastic fantasy miniatures called Oathsmark. Nice-looking goblins and I think they do dwarves as well. 30 figures a box.

The Oathmark range is available from Northstar Miniatures, the same company as Frostgrave. They also have Elves on the way. The minis are all fairly generic looking, (compared to GW), but that's not necessarily a bad thing.
Prims Painty Points > +924.5
Finished Minis in 2014: 510.....Finished Minis in 2015: 300
Finished Minis in 2016 (as of Nov 30): 369 + 2 Tables of Terrain
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