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77262 Vrock Demon (Bones plastic), converted

 

2016-01-13-reaper-77262-vrock-ikrpg-grif

 

In our current Iron Kingdoms Unleashed campaign, for a rare change, I get to be a PC (and suddenly NOT have extensive knowledge of what in the world is going on anymore -- how alarming!), while one of the players takes over as GM.  I'm still hosting and providing the minis, and since I don't write the script, and the GM isn't afraid of using proxies rather than just sticking to what minis are already there to go ... well, we're using lots of proxies.  However, if it looks like a character or critter is going to stick around for more than one session, I've been trying to make sure there's something more appropriate to go on the table.

 

In this case, we had a situation where the party was attacked by two Rotterhorn Griffons ... and we actually managed to capture them rather than kill them.  (This was very useful to the party, as certain members of the party are able to train certain animals as "warbeasts" -- kind of like, say, Pokemon, except that your new pets aren't as cute, they don't conveniently store away in little red-and-white Pokeballs, and there's the lingering chance that you might lose control and your beloved battle-pet could very well eat you, your other pets, and/or your friends, depending on the situation, its temperament, and how you've been treating it.)

 

Well, the GM happens to have one model of an Unleashed/Hordes style griffon that I painted up.  There's a very distinctive look, and base size is very important.  For one thing, an alarming number of "beasts" in the Iron Kingdoms universe are humanoid in form, and it's hinted that they might actually have rudimentary language.  Surely the fact that even wild specimens of these so-called "beasts" come clad in loincloths most of the time suggests at least some minimum level of sophistication (or at least modesty).  So, my Bones Griffon (77157) that I painted and based up earlier doesn't quite cut it as a representation -- we don't have THOSE kinds of griffons in the world of Iron Kingdoms, apparently.

 

Fortunately, I had a Vrock (77262) in my Kickstarter box, and it's remarkably close to the size of the Rotterhorn Griffon model, very bird-like, and has a generally humanoid form.  The tail is different, but I don't think too much attention is paid to that anyway, and the GM didn't mind at all that I converted all the Warpwolves to have brushy, more wolf-like tails rather than the weird spiky rat-tails that they're usually depicted with.  It was also buck-naked, but it didn't take much effort to use a bit of putty for a rudimentary loincloth.

 

I popped off the vulture head (it was a separate, glued-on piece), and I used some Instant Mold in two parts to get an impression of the Hordes Rotterhorn Griffon head. That is, I heated up some Instant Mold via the boil-some-water-in-a-mug-in-the-microwave method, applied it to one side, used a stylus to jab some indentations into the facing surface, then stuck the whole thing in the freezer ... then pulled it back out, heated up the water again, mushed-up some more Instant Mold, and applied it to make the second half.  The result, once both sides cooled and I separated them, was a two-part push-mold open on the back side, that I could use to roughly apply a more griffon-like head to the Vrock body.  I wouldn't try to copy a WHOLE BODY this way, as that would be an awful lot of trouble and putty, there's definite detail loss, seams are inevitably extreme, and the putty tends to be very brittle and not to hold up well at thinner stress points -- whereas the griffon head alone is fairly compact and solid and hence (to my estimate) worth the trouble.  The slight distortion to the head proportions (it's a flexible mold, after all) just serves to give it a slightly different "expression" from the original griffon.  Additional putty was required to gap-fill and texture in some more feathers.

 

I tried to paint it to look fairly similar to the Rotterhorn Griffon on the box, but ran into a problem when doing some decorative patterns on the tips of feathers for a little more visual interest (and less uniform gray): The wings of the Vrock are NOT symmetrical.  Now, one might say that this is fairly obvious, given the dynamic pose of the Vrock, and one wing is raised higher than the other, but what I mean is, if I pick five feathers in a row on one wing to paint the details on, I cannot find a corresponding group of five feathers in the same row on the other side to detail the same way.  The rows don't line up the same way.  If you're just painting this very basic colors and dry-brushing or applying a wash to bring out the texture details, that's fine, but for any feather schemes that call for bands or other such details on the individual feathers, it's a bit off.

 

So ... I had to "wing it" a bit.  ;)  Honestly, of all the things our players comment on, I don't expect it's a detail any of them are likely to notice or care about, so it's not a serious complaint about the mini.  (And, after all, it's supposed to be a Vrock Demon -- a creature of chaos, right? -- so, if anything, asymmetry is probably entirely in keeping with the idea.  :)  )

 

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