Review: Mierce Miniatures Mantichora
Back in the summer I was tempted by a pre-order on Mierce Miniatures for the new Mantichora, from their Darklands range. This huge beast finally arrived last week and I was really keen to review it and a few other bits over the next week or so. I ordered this Mantichora with the rider which I will come back to in future, which is why I ordered the model with a saddle.
Here’s all the components, after cleaning them up. There’s very few mold lines, but there are a number of supports/gates to snip off and the tidy around. None of this was difficult or left any issues on the model if you have experience of working with resin. This resin by the way is excellent, detailed but also strong and easy to work with in terms of clean up, gluing and even bending to shape with hot water – more on this below.
The grid the parts are arrayed over a 1cm grid so you can get an initial sense of size.
Here’s the first shot of our beast all built, front facing in all its glory. So a few things to note here. I wanted to base my Mantichora for use in Kings of War. Its pretty huge, so clearly a prime candidate for the Titan class of creatures in the game, which means 75mm square base. I was pleased to be able to fit the monster onto this base with a bit of careful positioning, however the model comes with a scenic round base which I couldn’t use. This meant the feet weren’t designed to lie completely flat. To ensure a good solid pose and connection to the base, I constructed the main body and legs and started filling the (minor) gaps between them with green stuff. Once this was reasonably finished, I dipped the legs into boiling water then when bendy, pressed the whole miniature down onto a flat surface firmly till it cooled. Now all the feet are perfectly flat.
Here’s the side shots, you can see from this that the head is slightly titled to one side and also that the rider sits in front of the wings, which is an interesting contrast some other monsters and a consideration when looking at rider models, especially as I have plans to be able to swap them around between armies/monsters.
I still have some greenstuff work to do on the various joins, but I wanted to get this blog up. The gaps really aren’t bad, but these huge models are worth the extra effort to do all the fine detail jobs you might skip on smaller and more numerous models. There was a slight bubble at the top of one leg you can see here I’ve nearly finished filling, it was the only imperfection I found on the whole model.
Now to the reason behind picking up this model. Starting way back in 4th edition Warhammer Fantasy Battle there were a lot of monsters that any army could use, so I started a collection, a beastiary if you will, of creatures that hopefully I could field in many armies, sometimes with riders. Whilst those days are long behind me, I do still like the idea of having the classic monsters on my shelves and on the table top when opportunity arises. Kings of War has a lot of monsters that whilst not in every army, are in typically more than one. So I’ve been slowly picking up iconic beasts as the fancy takes me. I picked up the fantastic citadel Cockatrice, that Trish Morrison sculpted, recently and when Mantic created a new take on the Chimera for Kings of War V3, I had to get one. This Mantichora, or Manticore as I will inevitably call it, ticks another beast from my Eye Spy list – and look how he compares to the mighty Mantic Chimera. Both are worthy entrants, but I think the Manticore is now alpha male in our mutant pride.
Here’s another size comparison shot, with more of the monsters I am using in my Varangar army, oddly the (small) giant is now a cavern dweller (Reaper), on a 50mm base and the worm (Reaper) is an acting giant on a 75mm. The manticore is suitably cowed by the “giant” worm, at least in terms of height (I suspect that stinger may even things up in a fight) but my cavern dweller looks seriously outmatched here.
Here’s some other denizens of my shelves in a line up for general size impressions. From left to right then, an earth elemental (Mantic), a Blood Warrior (GW), an evil knight (Game of Thrones, CMON), a ghoul (mantic), a viking (Gripping Beast), a skeleton (Mantic), a Salamander (Mantic) and a werewolf (Mantic). The Manticore dominates all of them, as I would expect.
So the title bout then…
The Reaper Bones Blacktooth Ripper, a T-rex by another name for most intents and purposes, is a big model by any measure. Its certainly got size and jaw breadth on its size, but is it too slow and earth bound to beat the flying, deadly whipstrike tail wielding Manticore? Its hard to say for sure, but the Manticore is an impressively sized, fantastically realised and very well produced model, I’d recommend it.