Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Dungeons of Dread Case #1

OK, the new boosters are strange....unfamiliar...dare I say it? Less phallic.

In the first pull I got an Oni. Very nice, and a much better paint job than the one in the gallery. The Elf Archer was a terrible paint job. If I keep a bunch of these, they will all have to be repainted, but I can't tell if there is no detail on the face or if all detail is obscurred by the paint they used. The Drow Spiderguard is good, but mostly because there is almost no paint on it at all. The Iron Defender looks a lot more like a dog in armor than a mechanical dog. Meh. The Magma Brute...well, its hard to get excited about a miniature that even I could sculpt. The Troglodyte Bonecrusher is worthless. It is stupid, ugly, and the only thing that keeps it from being considered a poor paint job is the almost complete lack of paint. If I use this at all, it will be as some form of evolved rock lizard, certainly not as a troglodyte. Ick. The Chillborn, however, is extremely nicely painted for a common. I'm glad this is a common, I'll be using these frosty undead in my campaign for certain. The Defiant Rake might be a nice figure if it had any real detail and wasn't painted with Testor's Model Paint.

Second Pull: Deathjump Spider is excellent, but partially because they didn't bother to do more than put a light wash on it. I will be using these for Retrievers, as they are in an almost identical pose to the 1st Edition artwork. The Shadow Demon is nice, but I'm starting to get a little bored with the clear plastic minis. Runecarved Eidolon...Worst Rare Ever. Cleric of Pelor is good, nice pose, shiny armor. Goblin Picador is alright, for a goblin, but the paint is awful and very thick, obscuring most of the detail on the face. Spectral Panther is dumb. And strangely metallic. Giant Centipede is cool, but what is with these weird paints? I know it is a common, but how much time and effort would it have taken to do the legs in black so they stand out against the bright orange belly? Make the time up with the time you saved by not really painting the Troglodyte Bonecrusher. Which I now have two of and don't even want one.

Third Pull: Grick sucks, not to put too fine a point on it, especially compared to the old one. The colors used are too bright and the pose is awful. I guess I will use these blue ones as males, and have them be much fewer in number than the more common green females. Meaning, this is the only one I'm going to keep. The rest go to eBay. The Hook Horror is kind of nice, though now I have to find a reason for my existing Ral Parthas and the Hook Horror from the previous edition. I am not crazy about the metallic paints in this set. Warforged Infiltrator is an interesting mini, and also interesting concept. Shadowhunter Bat is nice, but I don't really care for the tail...why would any creature, especially a flying one, have a tail that is thicker and more massive than it's own body? Vampire Spawn is another example of what seems to be the hallmark of this set...miminal paint jobs without detail. The Orc Raider is even less impressive than the image in the gallery. It has little detail, sloppy paint job, and the sculpt is uninspired. With so many orcs already done in previous sets, why offer something so...Meh? Mind Flayer Scourge is another unimpressive Rare. Hardly any paint, what paint there is is sloppy, and one of the points on his collar is broken. This is going to take some cleaning up and repair before I use him. The Kobold Archer is the tallest kobold yet, and not very well painted.

Fourth Pull: The Warrior Wight is really a nice miniature. Eye of Flame is a nice variation on the Beholder. The Dwarf Warlord is a nice sculpt, ruined by the paint job...why does he look like a Duergar? Halfling Paladin is OK, but again, not a great sculpt and bigger than we've seen halflings before, with little detail on the paint.

Fifth Pull: More metalic paint on the Bralani...whatever a Bralani is. I think the Archons are about as dumb as the new concept for the Angels. The Ice Archon isn't going to change my mind. I was very pleasantly suprised by the Bugbear Headreaver. Nice detail and very well painted. The Drow Wand Mage is a nice sculpt, but will need to have some paint to touch it up.

Sixth Pull: Tiefling Warlock is a nice mini, but terrible paint job. The Gargoyle is a good miniature, and I'll probably use it as a Malebranche. The Immolith is good, if weird. I think I will use him for Kossuth...I think that is the name...one of the Forgotten Realms dieties of fire. I had been using the giant fire elemental, but this thing looks more "god-like" to me. The Bulette is probably my least favorite version of the Bulette. I much prefer the Ral Partha one of old, which is about half the size. So, I guess, now I have a Medium, Large, and Huge version of the Bulette. One question, though...why is this bulette metallic gold wherever it doesn't look like an elephant? The Gnoll Marauder is an OK sculpt, but why do we need a new gnoll, and why do we need one painted this poorly? Even so, I might end up keeping all the ones I pull, because this gnoll sculpt works the best for gnoll guards out of all the sets so far.

Seventh Pull: The Wyvern...This is so similar to the previous wyvern in pose that I'm at a loss to explain why they would resculpt it...or why the would paint it metallic olive drab. Shadeknight is interesting, and it might be cool to take a second one and paint it up so that you could have both a visible and invisible version of this as a character. Dwarf Sheildmaiden is a prtty good sculpt, except for the impression that she is has a pretty severe hump...but the paint is just as bad as the rest of the set. Why does her red hair turn to gold where it is braided? The Rakshasa Baron is really nice. No complaints at all, here. Everfrost Ranger is also very good, no complaints only compliments.

Eighth Pull: Dire Wolf...like we need another Dire Wolf...I guess dire creatures in 2.0 no longer have spiked bones sticking out of their bodies and lack the "prehistoric" cast that the old sets had. What can I say, another black mini they didn't have to paint anything on but eyes and teeth. Meh.

Ninth Pull: The Vrock is a great sculpt, so much better than the one in Archfiends. Also well painted.

Tenth Pull: Young Red Dragon is not as impressive as previous red dragons, but there isn't much wrong with it, other than the wings extending further than the base so it doesn't sit flat on the table. I'm glad to see that dragons are going by age category rather than size, that's how we did it back in 2E.

Eleventh Pull: Skeletal Tomb Guardian is a nice sculpt, but this would have been a much better Uncommon than a Rare.

Twelfth Pull: Howling Hag is interesting, if a little cartoony. The Human Fighter is also a pretty nice sculpt, but the paint is again uninspired. Might be nice to do up several variations on the paint job. Glad I don't care about collecting any more, so I don't have to preserve the original paint jobs on any of these things. The Ascendant Hellsword is also nice, but I don't like the Darth Maul double bladed sword.

So, that's it, my first case.

Still hoping for:
2 Angel of Valor 30 B/C Good 8 R
5 Young Silver Dragon 62 C Good 8 R
7 Death Knight 65 B Evil 13 R
24 Champion of Baphomet 66 C/W Evil 13 R
25 Balhannoth 53 U Evil 13 R
28 Vampire Vizier 51 U Evil 11 R
30 Lamia 98 U/W Evil 12 R
38 Ettin Jack-of-Irons 71 B/C -- 10 R
40 Griffon 22 B/W -- 7 R
44 Emerald Orb Wizard 33 C/U -- 9 R
46 Spectral Magelord 26 C/U -- 7 R
55 Fen Hydra 93 U/W -- 12 R



Blogger Shandar the Ashen said...

Checking the stats, the Deathjump spider isn't as close a match for a Retriever as I'd thought. Retrievers are 12' tall and this isn't that big. Looks like I'll just have to make up a new spider for this to be, but jumping will be part of its combat description.

I'm inventing some good stats for the Chillborn Zombie, too. Riffing off the Sea Zombie from 2E Ravenloft.

Looking at the Wyvern, I'm wondering if they realized how closely the WOTC one resembles Reaper's Bile? Well, if you're going to imiate, best to imitate something good.

10:34 AM  
Blogger BB Shockwave said...

Just to add a few comments:

-Shadowhunter bat, although by a different name I think, existed in one of the 2E monster manuals. It was a tameable underdark bat, and it attacks with its tail. Only after finding this out did I keep the mini myself, because otherwise it really doesn't look good.

- Bralani: It is one of the Eldarins, Celestials of the elves but they dropped the "Eldarin" affix. I like this mini, though WOTC already did a Bralani Eldarin once. With the Ghaele in Dangerous delves, we only need a Firre to complete this branch. I hope one day they decide to bring back the Guardinals as well so we can get good minis of those.

And the retreiver is huge, indeed. I think the new Bebilith mini will be a good proxy for it. Speaking as a zoologist though, the deathjump spider doesn't look like a giant jumping spider at all, I wish they added the 4 huge eyes that make jumping spiders so distinct (and adorable).

5:03 AM  

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