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Scale Comparison Photos

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The purpose of this thread is to gather in one place all the visual answers to the oft recurring question, “How big is Reaper miniature __ __ __ __ __ ?”


That question comes up about once a week; but always about different models. This thread is meant to serve as a place for those foolish kind souls who decide to answer in detail with a photograph to post their work. 



Guidelines for such photographs


“...Posed in front of an inch or centimeter grid, and / or with a ruler laid out in front of, above, or behind them, and / or next to other Miniatures for comparison...” Comparison pics are the most useful because the numerical height of a model doesn't always tell you how bulky it is, or how exaggerated the features might be. Common objects like paint dropper bottles, figure bases, and specific Miniatures like Sir Forscale (76543) can acquaint the viewer with size of a new Mini, especially while standing on a grid. The best comparison shots are like police line-ups: several miniatures side-by-side in front of an easily-read scale.


@Pingo @redambrosia and @lowlylowlycook contributed most of the wording in the preceding paragraph (which I edited a bit).



Links to previous efforts 


(... this space reserved for links to other posts with photos that may be scattered around the forums ...)



Edited by TGP
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First Up: [14260] The Overlord Faction Wyvern




All shots in this series are against a one inch grid made by Fiskars®.



Sir Forscale (in metal) included for comparison.  



Wingspan check. Sir Forscale has kindly pointed his sword the other way.



Standing nose-to-nose with a tape measure. 


Also included are: a US quarter, three 25mm round figure bases (one empty, one with a Reaper Ice Toad [03464], one with a Chaos conversion), and Kagunk The Ogre [03162] on a 50mm square base. 

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20 hours ago, Mothsniper said:

Will the scale slightly differ from sculptor to sculptor? 


I am not sure how to answer this, mostly because I only use the word "scale" the way that an engineer, architect, or draftsman would. It has a very specific meaning.


Sculptors create things to chosen sizes.

The sizes are usually selected by who they are sculpting for.


(Check out the spoilered info in my signature to learn some things about scales.)

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The Young Forest Dragon - 03350


(Most of this was posted in another thread but since the images are already stored on the forum I thought I would add it here.)


I have modified the standard catalog picture below. This is an example of how the little wedge shapes (Bryangles) are used to gauge the height of a model:


The key is knowing that they are 12.7mm (half-an-inch) apart.


Use one as the center point of a circle. Then use the other to find the edge of a circle. Once drawn, that circle is useful to measure with and judge size.



  • The circles are the same diameter as a 1 inch round RPG base (standing up on edge).
  • The long yellow line is the table surface.
  • The short yellow lines are half an inch apart.
  • The long red line that grazes her wing is about 58 or 59mm above the table surface.

Each circle is one inch in diameter. Two inches is ~51mm; three inches is 76.2mm.



It may help to see the object providing the wedges. The base of it is placed at the same distance from the camera as the middle of the model. Normally it is always cropped away right at the edge of the frame, leaving only the wedges showing. But, it makes a rare appearance here:



...on Jason Wiebe's metal Jabberwocky, 60056.

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On 8/8/2020 at 3:24 AM, Mothsniper said:

Will the scale slightly differ from sculptor to sculptor? 


Yes, no, maybe?   I'll tackle this one.


Scale and mini size are a very difficult thing to get right as a sculptor, because every company has a standard size that they want their minis to be, more or less.  Pretty much all of us work for multiple companies, and so must meet the scale requirements of each of our clients.  This also gets interesting when you realize that miniature scales have been changing gradually over the last 25 years, so that a sculpt by a sculptor done in 1995 for Reaper is likely to be considerably smaller than a similar sculpt done by that sculptor in 2020. This scale creep directly correlates to the explosion of painting as a hobby.  As more people wanted to paint minis to a high standard, they began buying the minis that were slightly larger and easier to paint.  As such, mini companies were given incentive to nudge the sizes up a bit.


Humans and Human-like Minis:

Typically, a current Reaper human mini will range from 30 to 35 mm from the bottom of the feet to the top of the head (90's version probably would be more in the 27 to 32 mm range). This range should reflect the difference in height that humans have; humans should not all be the same height and build after all.  Most other manufacturers I work with use these sizes as well.  I still have one that wants figures sculpted on the 25mm to the eye scale, which is the typical 1980's--1990's sizes.


For races other than human, we need to adjust based on this scale.


Monsters and Creatures:

These get tricky. First, you have the sizes described for the creature in the various game systems.  Typically today, we equate 6 mm = 1 foot though some companies still use 5 mm = 1 foot. 


The other factor is base size.  For instance, some games like D&D state that a given generic class size like Medium, must fit on a certain size base.  In this case, a size M creature in D&D must fit on a 25 mm base, even if it's description says that it is bigger than that.  For example, a 7 foot tall humanoid (38 to 43 mm, depending) will have a hard time standing on a 25 mm base in any sort of dynamic pose.  That is why a lot of Reaper's gnoll minis have feet that hang off the edges of a 25 mm base.  You either have a dynamic, good-looking mini that will sell but hangs off the base a bit, or a boring sculpt standing straight that fits the base. 


This is compounded by long, thin creatures like snakes and dragons.  The iron cobra in D&D is a 10' long snake that must fit on a 5' base.  So that is why you almost always see snakes coiled in some way.  This is the same reason that a lot of the M sized dragons are depicted in miniature as rearing up; they are too long to fit on a 25mm base with all 4 feet on the ground if sculpted to the description. 


Sculpting Style:

Finally, you have an issue of mass, and this is where the style a sculptor uses comes into play.  A human sculpted by someone like Tre Manor will look larger than one by Bobby Jackson, even though the two are the same height, simply because of the art style of the two sculptors is very different.  Tre tends toward more massive sculpts, and Bobby's are more refined and delicate; neither is wrong and both are awesome. 

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