Monday, 23 March 2020

Heritor from Hero Forge

This figure has a bit of a story attached to it. At the end of last year, I decided I would reconstitute my Ghost Archipelago warband. At the time I originally made it, I was really struggling with painting (because of a lack of glasses) and thus I was unhappy with some of the paint jobs. Also, some of the figures just didn’t excite me. So, I salvaged a couple, and then set off to recruit a new crew. One, the Stargazer, I’ve shown off already.

Well, all Ghost Archipelago warbands begin with the Heritor. I had gotten pretty attached to the concept of Cassandra (a.k.a. Big Red), but the figure just didn’t have the size and bulk I wanted. I looked everywhere for a suitable replacement, but couldn’t find anything. Then a friend suggested I check out Hero Forge.

I must admit, I’ve been curious about Hero Forge for a while. If you haven’t heard of them, it is basically a service where you can design your own figure, by picking various races, clothing, weapons, poses, ect., and then get it 3D printed. My friend even sent me a ‘quick build’ of my proposed figure. Well, I had a little play with the system, and found it very easy to use. There really is loads of choice, and if you want to dig deep into it, you can make all kinds of subtle changes to a design.

Now, there is one big drawback – it is pricey. For a single figure you are talking between $20 - $30… There’s no way I’d build a warband that way, but for a one off figure, and as an experiment, I thought it was worth the risk. In fact, I was so curious about how changing the posing on the figure would affect the printing that I ordered two copies of my Heritor in different poses. (An extravagance I slightly regretted, but turned out to be very thankful for, as shall be seen).

It took a little over two weeks for the figures to arrive, but when I opened up the box, they looked great! The detail was a little shallow in places, but probably better than most plastics. With the figure you see painted here, I honestly couldn’t have said that it wasn’t sculpted from the ground up. The other figure, which was in a crouched pose, was also good, although the way the leather straps hung over her skirt looked just slightly unnatural. Still, I would rate both figures as good. Anyway, I preferred her standing up straight, and striding forward, as it made her look more powerful.

I ordered the figures in ‘premium plastic’, which had the feel of normal plastic – but, as it turns out is a bit more brittle. The figure came on an integral base, but I wanted it on a GW base, so I cut/broke it off and re-glued it.

I took a lot of time painting this figure. For the most part this was an enjoyable process, just trying to do my best work. I must admit, the leather skirt-straps were a pain as the detail was shallow there, but most of the rest of the detail was sharp and fun to work with.

After several painting sessions, I had happily completed her. The next morning I blue-tacked her to some cardboard and took her outside to spray with sealer. Unfortunately, a gust of wind caught the cardboard, flipped it in the air, and landed figure-side down on the concrete. For a moment, I thought she had escaped unscathed. Then I realized that her warhammer was gone, neatly snapped off both above and below her hand (kind of astounding really).

After the anger and sadness passed, I started looking for ways to fix her. I couldn’t find the missing bit of hammer…then I realized I had an exact duplicate on the other figure I had ordered. So, I carefully cut off my newly-painted Heritor’s hand, and replaced it with the one from the other figure holding still holding the hammer. The wrist was too thin to risk pinning so, it was all glue and greenstuff. Thankfully, the surgery was a success. She now has a heavy ‘cuff’ on that wrist, but it’s not too noticeable.

So, Cassandra is back, ready to lead a new crew into the Ghost Archipelago. Overall, I’m happy with my Hero Forge experience. It’s expensive, and the material isn’t as good for painting as metal, but if you’ve got a clear mental picture of a figure you want, for an RPG character, or for the hero to lead your miniature warband, it might be worth giving it a try.



2 comments:

  1. Cool! She is a tall and mighty looking leader.

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  2. I hear that one of the best ways to get a Hero Forge miniature is to order the digital .stl file and have a 3D printing company such as Impact Miniatures print it for you. You'll get a product with the detail of the premium plastic, in a more resilient material, for cheaper and faster than if you order it directly from Hero Forge itself.

    So I hear, anyway. I'm lucky enough to have access to a resin 3D printer, so I haven't explored this avenue myself.

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