However, I’ve decided to do something different with this post as I’ve had a couple of comments about folk being interested in getting some He-Man miniatures. So I thought I’d use these three as a guide to the different sources of miniatures for Masters of the Universe. Hopefully, some of you might find this helpful.
Source 1: Quest Miniatures
Tri-Klops is from Quest Miniatures and as such is based firmly on the Filmation cartoon. I initially thought the pose was a bit odd, but I have to admit that once painted and based at an angle, it works well. What I’m most pleased with about him is that I initially messed up his skin by being sloppy with other colours, but my attempt to remedy my mistakes actually ended up with me improving the flesh beyond what it was before.
Quest Miniatures are the most obvious way to get into this peculiarly niche area of gaming as they are the only company currently producing a range of MotU specific miniatures. Quest currently have 14 different miniatures available, including almost all the major characters you remember. As the sculpts are based firmly on the Filmation cartoon, this makes them easy to paint, and the poses are dynamic. It’s worth noting that the most recent additions to the range (Clawful and Moss-Man) were not done by the same sculptor and so there’s a bit of a difference there.
They are towards the smaller end of 28mm which puts them in the same scale as most traditional miniature companies but they look small next to bulky GW stuff.
In terms of price, they are reasonable. Even when I got hit by customs charges on my first order, the final cost was still much less per figure than I had been paying for BMG minis.
Pros: consistent range, generally excellent sculpts, reasonable price, convenient
Cons: change in sculptor, possible customs charges in UK, no She-Ra characters
Source 2: Custom Sculpts
Clawful is a fantastic model that blends the design of the original toy with some of the features of the 2002 version, whilst still keeping the traditional size of the character. It hasn’t to be said that the spikes and depth of the recesses ade this a bit of a pain to base-coat, but the model is so good, washes did a lot of work for me. As he’s based on the toy, I went for my take on the toy’s colour scheme.
Since Quest launched their range, a little cottage industry has grown up of sculptors producing miniatures which may or may not be designed with MotU gaming in mind.
Some of these miniatures have been done to fit with other games (my Trap-Jaw comes from a sculptor trying to bring variations of MotU characters into Necromunda), some are reinterpretations of characters (like Clawful), and some are direct representations of Filmation or 2002 characters (e.g. Hordak).
As such, the variety of purposes and sculptors means that there is a significant variation of scale and style available from different sources, for example Ram-Man and Fisto are much larger than other models I own, so this is something you should check that you’re happy with before buying.
On top of this, the cost can be quite high. This is due to covering costs with only a limited production run. However, the custom sculpts I’ve bought have been almost universally excellent, and I feel well worth what I’ve paid for them.
As time has gone on, the miniatures that have started to appear have become increasingly eclectic as people look for characters that there is a market for. I imagine this will continue.
Pros: high quality sculpts, eclectic range, interesting takes on characters, some She-Ra characters
Cons: price, scale and style variations, you need to track them down
Source 3: Searching Existing Ranges
Screeech is the same model as Zoar, with the same flaws, but it works. I’ve deviated from the colour scheme of the toy to give him a metallic beak and claws as a nod to the fact that in the Filmation cartoons, Screeech was actually mechanical.
I have to say that I really enjoy scouring miniature ranges to find models that, with minimal conversion work, could work as MotU characters. This does mean that you neve quite get an exact representation of a character, but instead aim at ‘close enough’. However, it also means that you can end up with some really obscure characters and creatures...Wolf-Bats for example.
So far, my most productive source of suitable models has been Hydra Miniatures, but I’ve also had success with Reaper, Killer B, and Crooked Dice, and there are plenty of others I’ve got plans for. You’ll also be surprised what you can root out of your bits box.
It is time consuming, and you do need to research characters before looking. Also, be aware that once you’ve created a proxy, if someone produces that character, you may end up with the desire to replace it down the line - something I’m currently experiencing with Merman.
Pros: obscure characters, affordable, thrill of the hunt
Cons: not quite right, duplication, some conversion required, time consuming, variable quality
So there you have it. There are other options available that I don’t have experience of like Heroforge, but I find that prohibitively expensive for fairly clunky models. Also, some kind folk have started creating vehicles for 3D printing, but that’s not something I’ve explored yet.
Hopefully, my ramblings may be of use to somebody. If not, so be it. I’m enjoying waffling. Another three onto the painted tally is also having a positive effect.
There’s just one more batch of MotU miniatures to do this month before I need to start hunting again, and these will focus on making the Evil Horde a bit more like a horde - although still stretching the term.