Wednesday 18 December 2013

New Resistance Veteran Heads and Sprues on sale plus special offers!

Statuesque Miniatures is pleased to announce the release of the a couple more accessory sprues for the Resistance Fighter range.

The Veteran Heads sprue can be used to give more individuality and character to your Resistance Fighter force. As with all the head sprues, these heads can be used on any figure in the Reistance Fighter range and a fully poseable.

The Resistance Fighter Veteran Head sprue is priced at £1.90. Purchase 2-3 sprues for £1.75 each or 4 or more sprues for only £1.60 each!

The Weapons 3 sprue allows the Resistance Fighters access to the latest S.O.E. weapon technology. Featuring three Combi-Rifles with integrated grenade launchers and a deadly flame thrower, this sprue is designed for use with the Resistance Fighters, Resistance Cell Officer and Resistance Recon sets. For greater conversion potential, these weapons have the stocks attached. Simply snip off the stock to use the guns with the Resistance Fighter figures.

The Resistance Fighter Weapons 3 sprue is priced at £2. Puchase 2-3 sprues for £1.85 each or 4 or more sprues for only £1.70 each!

For a limited time only you can get BOTH these sprues FREE when you purchase the Resistance Cell set, saving over 15% on the combined price! This offer will run until January 5th or while stocks last.

Not only that, you can also purchase 5 sets of Beret Heads or 5 sets of Officer Weapons for only £5,  with even more savings for purchasing multiple sets! Again this offer runs until 5th of January or while stocks last.

Finally, Ezmeralda Tyke have come over all Christmasy (she is an elf after all) and can be purchased at a price of only £3! Get her while you can as she is being discontinued once stocks run out.

Friday 13 December 2013

Wizard Adventurer Preview

Here's the Wizard 3D print for my questing warband!

I've already shown the renders for this figure and I think you can see how good the quality of the prints are by comparing these images with the renders. I've also made a couple of minor changes for the cloak since my original blog post.

It's always interesting to see how details that look quite chunky and over-simplified become really nice, crisp detail on the print. That's why I'd prefer not to show renders in preference to photos of prints or castings. Digital sculpting for miniatures in this respect isn't as intuitive as hand sculpting. The sculptor always has too remember the final size of the print and I have to say I see a lot of renders of 3D sculpts that I know are simply not suitable for miniatures manufacture due to excessive, tiny details.

Would anyone be interested in alternative parts for these figures? I'm thinking I could sculpt 'leveled up' parts- the wizard could get a new head and staff, the barbarian a new sword and perhaps a shield in his other hand, the elf a new bow and the dwarf a new axe and shield. Each part could represent a special item found on a quest or an advancement of the character.

p.s. I don't know why Blogger insists on lightening the images!

Tuesday 10 December 2013

Barbarian Adventurer Preview

RAR! Here's the barbarian for my group of fantasy adventurers. This is the 3D print and it will be going off for moulding shortly. The other characters are printed too. I'll get some photos of the wizard taken soon, though the dwarf and elf will have to wait as I can't assemble the prints due to parts being on sprues. These figures will be going on sale after the Pulp Alley and Statuesque Asylum figures, so hopefully around February. He's a big bugger; unashamedly 'heroic scale' and around 33mm tall.

Thursday 5 December 2013

Lillie Poots, aged seven and a quarter

Here are some photos of a figure that I hope to have on sale in the new year. This is the 3D print and she will be going away for moulding tomorrow, along with some other Statuesque figures and the Pulp Alley duo.

Lillie Poots is the heroine of my forthcoming pulp horror range Statuesque Asylum...

She's very small - around 21mm tall. I'm really pleased with how she turned out. I originally started her in Fimo almost two years ago for my old fantasy range, though I'm glad I redid her digitally as she's turned out much better. She's been transplanted from a fantasy world to a pulp horror setting. The Malinquents will also return, though this time as patients at Statuesque Asylum...

She's my favourite figure I've sculpted and I think one of my best!

Wednesday 13 November 2013

Pulp Alley and Resistance Deals on sale NOW!

Statuesque Miniatures is pleased to announce we are now selling the Pulp Alley rulebooks and playing cards. With a European retailer for the games, it is now easier and cheaper for Pulp Alley fans on this side of the Atlantic to get their hands on the printed copies of the game.

Pulp Alley is a pulp-themed miniatures game, with all the rules you need to bring dashing heroes, dastardly villains, and pulse-pounding action to your gaming tabletop. Pulp Alley captures the fast-paced excitement of classic cliffhanger serials and pulp magazines to more modern action/adventure stories. Designed primarily as a multi-player miniatures game, each Pulp Alley scenario is jammed full of villains, unexpected perils, and plenty of two-fisted action.

The Pulp Alley rulebooks and cards are in-stock, though we are waiting on protective sleeves so there will be a couple of days delay before orders are sent.

The Pulp Alley Rulebook is £11.50 (UK price), the Perilous Island expansion and scenario book £12.50 and the Pulp Alley Fortune Deck £10.00.

Until Monday 2nd December or while stocks last, you can purchase all three items for a  Special Offer reduced price of only £30, saving over 10%.

Please note, there is a small surcharge for orders outside the UK, due to postal costs. Please remember to click the appropriate surcharge on the product page or your order may be delayed.

Next up is the release of the improved Female Resistance Fighters. The Female Resistance Fighter Redux set is priced at £11. Purchase two sets for £10 each; three or more sets for only £9 each!

With redone, improved heads and weapons, the Female Resistance Fighter Redux allows me a more flexible base to further expand the range in future, as well as allowing me to offer even better deals.

Speaking of which, you can now purchase the 8-figure Resistance Cell set, comprising of the Female Resistance Fighter Redux, Resistance Fighter Cell Officers and Resistance Recon Team.

Until Monday 2nd December, this set is priced at only £24, saving £5 over buying the items separately. Purchase two cells for £23 each; three or more for only £22 per set! 

Not only that, you'll also get a FREE Resistance Fighter Beret Head sprue and a FREE Resistance Fighter Officer Weapons sprue if you purchase two or more Resistance Cells.

There's more! The three-figure Resistance Specialists set comprises of Rosa, Lila and Eva of the Resistance, and is priced at only £13. Purchase two sets for £12 each; three or more for only £11 each!

Until Monday 2nd December,you'll also get a FREE Resistance Fighter Beret Head sprue if you purchase two or more Resistance Specialists sets.

Finally, the original Female Resistance Fighters are now available individually, allowing you to tailor your Cell to your exact requirements. Stock on these items are currently low but they will be restocked in the future.

Monday 28 October 2013

Statuesque ventures down Pulp Alley

Statuesque Miniatures is pleased to announce we will soon be stocking the Pulp Alley rulebooks and playing cards. With a European retailer for the games, it will be easier and cheaper for Pulp Alley fans on this side of the Atlantic to get their hands on the printed copies of the game.

What is Pulp Alley?

Pulp Alley is a pulp-themed miniatures game, with all the rules you need to bring dashing heroes, dastardly villains, and pulse-pounding action to your gaming tabletop.

Pulp Alley captures the fast-paced excitement of classic cliffhanger serials and pulp magazines to more modern action/adventure stories. Designed primarily as a multi-player miniatures game, each Pulp Alley scenario is jammed full of villains, unexpected perils, and plenty of two-fisted action.

Pulp Alley’s unique and innovative rules offer players a thrill-packed and engaging experience –
  • Pulp Alley plays at the pulse-pounding pace of your favorite pulps and serials.
  • Characters are easy to create and customize, making each league unique.
  • Players never need to consult charts during a scenario. The action is on the tabletop – not in a rulebook.
  • Control of the Initiative is based on events as they occur during the scenario rather than an arbitrary die-roll.
  • Fights are fast-paced and simultaneously dangerous for both characters, instead of the old I-shoot-then-you-shoot sequence.
  • Perils and challenges are unpredictable and offer multiple paths to success.
  • Scenarios are plot-driven, encouraging action, and offering an array of different rewards.
  • Through campaigns and experience your characters can increase their skills and develop new abilities.
In addition to the Pulp Alley Rulebook, we will also stock the Perilous Island expansion and the Pulp Alley Fortune Cards:

Perilous Island is one-part thrilling campaign and one-part exciting expansion. The book includes rules for creating and playing one-character leagues, new perks, 11 new scenarios, 5 new Fortune Cards, and new weird abilities.

The Pulp Alley Fortune Cards are premium 310gsm plastic coated (linen) playing cards. Each deck also comes with a sturdy plastic case – worthy of protecting your Pulp Alley cards. In addition to the basic 45 Fortune cards and 5 Reward cards, the deck includes 2 blank Fortune cards and 2 blank Reward cards. These blank cards may be used for replacements, designing your own cards, red-herrings, and so on.

Why Pulp Alley?

The main reason we want to stock Pulp Alley is quite simple - it's a great game. However, it also fits will the style of characters I've been creating for Statuesque Miniatures. From Foxy and her Kill-Team to Rosa and the Resistance girls, in my head they're all larger than life, heroic characters from a dodgy B-movie, and Pulp Alley is perfect for capturing that on the tabletop. Pulp Alley is not limited to portraying pulp-era games set in the '30s and '40s, it's prefect for anything from sci-fi to fantasy - any setting where the characters are heroic, the plot improbable and the action cinematic!

Want to know more?

If you're tempted by Pulp Alley, but want to try out the rules first, the Quick Start rules are available to download from Wargames Vault.

In addition, you can find great support and information from Dave and Mila -the father and daughter team behind Pulp Alley- on their Pulp Alley Forum. They are also active on the Lead Adventure Forum, where many players are already enjoying Pulp Alley games and are posting their leagues, game reports and reviews of the game.

What about Pulp Alley miniatures?

The great thing about Pulp Alley is  that you can play it with whatever miniatures you like. However, watch this space for an exciting collaboration  between Statuesque Miniatures and Pulp Alley...

To Be Continued!

Friday 30 August 2013

Lets flog some stock! 15% off selected items

I've a bit of overstock to clear, so how about a sale? Use the code SEPT at the checkout to get 15% off the Sale Items. This offer ends on Monday the 15th of September.

CLICK HERE to go to the Sale Items page.

The products included in the sale are Ezmeralda Tyke, Resistance Beret Heads, Resistance Officer Weapons and Resistance Gasmask Heads.

In other news, the prints for Mei-Lin and the Hong Kong Killer Fembots finally went off for mastering this week. The original Mei-Lin is very low on stock before she goes out of production, as is Inigo Wilde. If you want them, better grab them now as I don't know when they'll ever be available again!

Friday 23 August 2013

Digital Miniatures Manufacture - it's not just pressing buttons...

Update: I have decided to update this post with the name of the company that supplied the poor quality prints: I'm doing this so as not to cast doubt on companies that may offer similar services. I feel what is written below is a fair review of the service and product supplied by Maxmini and a fair comparison with the Envisiontec Perfactory prints.

Update 2: In light of my criticism of Maxmini's quality control, I thought it appropriate to show the initial castings I received from them. When I have the chance, I will add photos of all the replacement castings.

Update 3 12/09/2013: Perhaps not surprisingly, Maxmini do not feel inclined to issue a partial refund, finally replying after 3 weeks and 3 emails. Their reasoning for this is the damage done by this blog post to their 'brand image' . They state 'after you decided to write such a post you already have your payment for "loss". It is satisfaction'. They assert I should have waited for the matter to be resolved before writing such a blog post, ignoring the fact that the main subject of the post is the defective replacements sent out following the first batch of defective parts - they had their chance. I cannot be held responsible for any negative effect on Maxmini's brand: they are responsible for that, firstly when they sent such obviously faulty and incorrect parts, but more damningly when they repeated the quality control failure with the replacements.

Update 4: Okay, okay. Final update. I added a comparison of some of the first castings next to the replacements, just to highlight the level of quality control and why I didn't feel obliged to wait for the third attempt...

Update 5 13/09/2013: Now it's the final update! Maxmini have now issued a refund for the fault parts. Apparently steps have also been taken to avoid a similar situation in future.

It's over a year now since I had my first digitally sculpted figures printed, moulded, cast and put on sale. Obviously, I was a traditional sculptor prior to going digital, so I think I hit the ground running in regards to knowing what exaggerations and level of detail I had to sculpt to in order for the detail to be viable for the final casting. Still, I've learned a lot in the past year and keep striving to make each figure better than the last.

Until recently, I had used a single 3D print bureau,, who have provided excellent service and great prints. The specific printer used is a Envisiontec Perfactory machine, printing a temperature resistant resin. One of the quirks of this method and material is the support structure attached to the figure during the printing process. This has to be removed and leaves little pegs that need cleaning off with a sharp scalpel, perhaps some areas need to be fixed with putty. It is probably a wee bit more involved than cleaning mould lines on a metal or resin figure, which makes me glad I used to sculpt figures by hand - I can easily do what is required. No 3D printing process is entirely free of hand finishing if best results are required.

For a recent batch of files, I tried out an alternative print bureau, In contrast to the company I used previously, whom I believe mostly work in the jewelry industry, Maxmini3D is specifically targeted at miniatures manufacture.

Firstly, I should say the quote from Maxmini3D was significantly lower than what I had been used to with my usual bureau. I will admit this worried me, though I did not voice my concerns.

3D prints are created by building up layers. The taller the part is in it's z axis, the longer it will take to print and therefore the greater the price. However, the z-axis layer depth is usually greater than x/y resolution. This means if you were to print a sphere, there would be some slight 'contour lines' on the top and bottom of the sphere, but not on the sides. These contours tend to show on shallow curved surfaces nearing the horizontal. It's part of the 3D printing deal and something I fix by hand on the physical print - it can be scrapped off as you would remove a mould line.

Because the contours appear on the top and bottom surfaces, I've found it best for figures to be printed in a 'standing' position, as the final casting would be assembled. That way, any contours only appear on the top and bottom of a figure, a smaller area than the sides of the figure. It also allows greater depth and definition in a face and figure details - if you were to slice your nose into horizontal slices, there would be more slices than if you sliced your nose into vertical slices... Therefore there is more defined detail if the head is printed where the z-axis is the height of the head.

So getting back to the quote, that is why the Maxmini3D quote was cheaper than I was used to - they printed the figures lying flat on their backs and the heads likewise. It saved time and saved me money, but at the expense of quality. I had supplied the figure orientated in an upright position as I hoped they would be printed. It was the printer's decision to save some time and money. However, I'm actually glad I didn't insist on the parts being printed vertically, which I'll get to later.

Now, whereas my previous prints have been resin, Maxmini3D prints in wax. This has the advantage that the support material is not physically attached to the print; it can be removed without leaving the tabs and imperfections you would get with a Perfactory resin print. This is the reason I was interested in trying new processes. However, wax prints do not suit my moulding methods, nor those of the rest of the miniatures industry, so Maxmini3D provide resin casts of the prints. This is included in the price. Sounds like a good deal, no?

Well, it would be if the resin casts were accurate, well-made representations of the files I provided to the printers. I would not expect any distortion or squashed detail and I would expect minimal mould lines and complete parts. My expectations were not met.

Below is a photograph of two of the replacement parts sent by the Maxmini, alongside a print supplied by Timo Laumann. These were made from the same file. I left the support tabs on the Perfactory (orange) print so it is a fair comparison. Admittedly, I was sent several cast of each part, but as they are all poor quality, that doesn't help much.

L-R: Maxmini resin cast of wax print, Timo Laumann Perfactory Resin Print, Maxmini resin cast of wax print.

The photograph doesn't quite show the startling difference in definition and detail depth. It really is striking in the hand. But as I explained, some of that is probably to be expected due to the orientation of the prints when they were being made. You get what you pay for in this case. What I really do object to it the level of distortion in the face. I don't know at what stage this occurred - perhaps the wax print was squashed - but it is totally unacceptable. Just look at her face on the left and right casts! That is not even close to what I sculpted.

It seems the pegs attaching the parts to the sprue have also been thickened by Maxmini3D. This has resulted in the gun barrels ends no longer being straight. I assume this was done due to avoid breakage during the printing and moulding for the resin casts. However, I specifically asked if the files as they were supplied were suitable for the company's needs. I was told they were. If they had asked me, I could have thickened the pegs myself and would have done it properly. As supplied, the casts are not suitable for my needs.

There are other bizarre examples of distortion, too. Several of the 'helmets' are no longer symmetrical, with visor slits at different heights on either side. I cannot fathom how this happened. Certainly not due to a misaligned mould - the mould line does not bisect the visor slits!

Left: Some of the first batch of castings. Note the distorted faces and broken parts.
Right: Some of the replacement castings. Note the distorted faces and crudely 'fixed' parts.

The quality of the resin castings also leaves something to be desired. I struggled to find any casts that did not feature heavy, ragged mould lines. In addition, all the initial castings I received did not even feature complete base tabs. They just hadn't been filled with resin. Finally, one of the head sprues had been broken at the print stage and instead of reprinting the part, they had crudely attached the heads to another sprue and moulded that. To their credit, Maxmini3D sent replacement casts and a reprinted, remoulded head sprue [edit: my mistake, the sprue was not reprinted, the broken heads were simply stuck back on with superglue...]. Well done on that, but the replacements are still obviously useless.

The initial castings supplied by Maxmini. Note that none of the base tabs are filled completely and how the detached heads have been attached to a second sprue. I supply files as I expect them to be printed - this is not optional!

Sadly, all this has taken nearly four weeks, delaying the next set of releases and ultimately costing me more in terms of cash flow than just the cost of some bad prints. I have requested a part refund on the distorted, useless parts. Note I've not asked for a full refund as I accept you get what you pay for - cheap prints will always be poor quality, but I cannot accept distorted parts. We shall see how far that gets. This is why I say I'm glad I didn't insist on the parts being printed vertically. If I had they would have cost me far more and while the detail may have been slightly better (I'm not convinced it would have ever matched the Perfactory print), the distortion and bad resin casts would still have meant the parts were useless.

But I have had the parts reprinted by my original printer and now they shall go off for master moulding on Monday. In future, I think I shall stick to what I know. I have a very good, reliable print bureau and likewise a very good, reliable moulding and casting company.

Statuesque Miniatures shall continue to sell the high quality figures my customers have come to expect. Of the companies using substandard print bureaus, I cannot say likewise.

Wednesday 14 August 2013

And then there were three - A Wizard joins the warband

Here he is along with Lowri Lowrisson and the Nameless Elf. As yet, the wizard doesn't have a name either...

I had a lot of fun working on this figure. Considering a wizard of this type is such a common archetype, I couldn't find any wizard miniatures that satisfied me - so I had to make one myself!

He's got the classic wizardly, adventuring accoutrements; nothing too fancy, nothing too 'concept art', just a good, solid, gnarly looking wizard.

I'm really pleased with how he's turned out. As before, I'll keep tinkering with bits and pieces before it's time to go to print.

I've now got to get stuck in to the Barbarian. It'll take a bit longer to finish as he's still in the basic body staged but I'm looking forward to it. I've also got a hankering to sculpt a Halfling henchman with a lantern to compliment the four heroes.

Monday 12 August 2013

The Nameless Elf

I've just finished work on the Elf for my warband. Again, like his comrade Lowri Lowrisson, I didn't want to reinvent the genre but to sculpt exactly what I wanted in an adventuring elf. He's currently nameless as I've yet to come up with an Elf name I like, but now that I've written it, I kind of like the sound of 'The Nameless Elf'...

For me, an important part of this project is that I don't want the clothing or equipment to appear 'over-designed'. I want simple, classic design done well, not extravagant, over-the-top, 'concept art' style figures. Nothing wrong with those but that's not what I'm after with these figures. Hopefully the pose, character and sculpted forms of the figure will be the focus, rather than a zany new concept.

This figure wasn't as straight forward to work on as Lowri; the need to avoid too extreme undercuts and keep the figure as few parts as possible meant there was some thought required on how too achieve this. Midway through the process I also found myself becoming too involved in fine detail and design. I had to remind myself of the aims of the project and keep it simple and bold. In the end though, I'm happy with the figure and how he ties in with the style of Lowri the dwarf. An elf perhaps doesn't allow the same freedom to exaggerate and caricature as a dwarf but I think I've hit the right balance. I need to get pictures of them together but the file sizes are currently massive and my computer grinds to a halt when I try to combine the two figures on one canvas.

Work is well underway on the Wizard, which I've really been enjoying sculpting. Hopefully I'll have pictures to show soon. I've also made some minor changes to Lowri, mainly to allow the shield to be a separate part. You can find the photos on the Statuesque Miniatures Facebook page.

Tuesday 23 July 2013

Statuesque Fantasy Reboot

I've just finished off the first figure in the new Statuesque Fantasy range. In contrast to Ezmeralda Tyke, this new range will be very differently styled to my sci-fi figures. I really like Ezmeralda as a figure - I think she is among my best work - but due to her size, proportions and delicate features, she doesn't actually work with any of my favourite fantasy figures from other manufacturers. I realised after making her I prefer a chunkier, more caricatured figure in that genre. As such, I have never completed her gang of Malinquents. I also didn't really have a strong enough design for the other characters so she remained alone. She'll be going out of production when current stock sells out. There are a variety of reasons for this, but the positive is I can reboot the Statuesque Fantasy range to a style that will match my fantasy collection!

Anyway, on with the new figure... Lowri Lowrisson, Dwarf Adventurer!

Yup, it's a dwarf. I make no claims to be reinventing the fantasy genre; I want a band of warriors in the classic Heroquest or Warhammer Quest mould, and no-one makes figures that are exactly what I want so I'm making them myself! The plan is for a dwarf (check), a wizard (in a pointy hat), an elf (with a bow) and a barbarian (ridiculously muscled). The other figures are all in progress and share Lowri the Dwarf's caricatured style and exaggerated proportions.

Lowri stands 21mm to the top of his helmet. He'll be quite a chunky little figure, with a large head with exaggerated features and large hands and feet. I think the body design I gave him, where his hips are wider than his shoulders, gives him a nice planted look and avoids the 'barrel' look of some dwarf figures. Please note his knees! ;)

It will take some time to get him on sale as it would probably make sense to release all four adventurers at the same time. I just wanted to share, as I'm quite please with how he's turned out!

What of the Malinquents then? They're likely to appear in another form entirely in the other new genre I'm exploring at the moment...

Thursday 11 July 2013

Resistance Recon Team and TV News Crew Available Now

In the rush to get the latest releases on sale (and to get outside to enjoy the sun!) I neglected to update the blog. There really was a lot to do - checking and bagging all the stock that arrived that morning amongst other mundane things - and it really was very, very sunny... Anyway, on to the new releases!

First up of the new releases are Tallulah Caine and her trusty cameraman Carter. These figures are something of an update of the news TV news team I sculpted for the Frothers Unite sculpting competition in 2009. They were only available briefly in the winners set and since then I've been asked a number of times what happened to them, so I thought I better finally sculpt some replacements!

Tallulah Caine and Carter are priced at £8.00 for the set and as usual there are discounts for multiple purchases. Head over to the shop to pick up your news team!

Next is the release of the Resistance Recon Team. As will all figures in the Resistance Fighter range, these figures feature separate heads allowing you to use any head from the range. Additionally, the accessories they hold in their left hands - a pair of binoculars and a radio handset - can be used on either figure. To top it all off, the weapon arms are also interchangeable and fully compatible with the Cell Officer Weapons Sprue and the Resistance Cell Officers!

The Resistance Recon Team is priced at £9. Purchase two sets for £8 each and three or more sets for only £7 each! In addition each purchase of the Resistance Recon Team placed up to and including the 31st of July will receive a FREE Cell Officer Weapons Sprue!

Prior to the new release, I changed the shop product page so customers can  now choose between 30mm, round-lipped, plastic bases and 25mm, chamfered edge, plastic bases. The choice can be made using a drop down menu under the Add to Cart button, as shown below. I've noticed nobody is actually choosing the 25mm bases so I wandered if the change had been noticed. It's no problem if everybody wants 30mm bases, but I'd just expected more people to choose the smaller base!

Finally, of the five figures that are to be discontinued once current stock has sold, Kitzie Rama is now out of production. Additionally, stock of Inigo Wilde is low and stock of Havana Gray is very low. Head over to the shop to grab them while you can!

That's it for this month, I think. Remember to keep an eye on our Facebook page and Twitter account for the latest news from the Statuesque Asylum!

Saturday 22 June 2013

Tallulah Caine, ace TV New reporter

“This is Tallulah Caine reporting for KPTV News, from the Occupied Zones.”

Ace TV news reporter Tallulah Caine and her trusty cameraman Carter have been in the Occupied Zones for many months, bringing stories from all sides of the struggle straight into homes around the world. She has reported on vicious fighting, the horrendous conditions for those living in the Occupied Zones and the political machinations of the parties involved. Now, however, she believes she has the scoop that will change her career – and possibly the world - forever...

Coming soon from Statuesque Miniatures! More photos on the Facebook page.