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Having just gotten my box recently, I've noticed there are a lot of minis that I wasn't particularly excited about in the Pledge Manager that really make an impression in person.

 

I'm still working on the odyssey of assembling/gluing so I haven't seen half of the stuff yet anyway, but I've already noticed some minis that really stick out to me.  Numbered for simplicity, but in no particular order:

 

1. Valfuryx

I got all the dragons, but was easily most excited for Shav (and am impressed with her as well!).  But Valfuryx was one I really just got to complete the set- but on seeing it in person, it's my second favorite right behind Shav!  Love just how big and chunky this dragon is- definitely not quite how I had pictured it, but in a good way!

 

2. Yog Sothoth

I'm a big Cosmic Horror/Lovecraft fan, but I figured Yog would be more of an underwhelming mini along the lines of Kaiju Chaos (probably just because of how close they were in the PM).  Happy to see this wasn't the case at all!  Yog Sothoth is much more imposing than I expected, and will make for a great final encounter in my current 5E campaign as the villain attempts his apotheosis to "godhood".

 

3. Ape Temple

I was really excited for all the terrain, but I had assumed this temple would be kind of a flimsy facade.  Turns out, it's a solid, thick hunk of plastic!  Obviously it's still a facade (I assume it would be... difficult... to sculpt an entire dungeon out of a single piece of plastic 😆) but it will make for a great set piece for an encounter before entering a jungle or mountain dungeon.

 

I'm sure I'll add to this as I continue to glue (didn't have much time this weekend as I was moving into our new house and building a fence) but I'd also love to know what your sleeper hits are!  What stuff did you end up liking far more than anticipated?

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Love those "sleeper hits" - they're one of the best parts of these Kickstarters for me.

 

I think the non-fantasy "Chronoscope" expansions and add-ons tend to work out that way for me:  I don't really think too much of them when they appear in the Kickstarters, but I get them anyway, telling myself I'll just auction the ones I don't think I'll want off later, but when they finally ship out and arrive, I warm up to them really fast, and I don't think I've ever gotten rid of any of these minis, where the fantasy stuff I give away as gifts or auction off all the time.  The new Chronoscope expansion looks like it will continue that trend.

 

Weirdly (to me), the "High Rollers" (Bones IV?) were a surprise hit with my gamer friends and family - I didn't really notice them during the Kickstarter they appeared in, and didn't think anything of it when I gave them out randomly to the new painters in the group, but those were the first minis to get painted, and everyone seemed to have a lot of fun painting them.  The High Rollers seem like they are perfect for first-timer painters, being relatively easy to work with and something that can be given as much or as little detail as the first-timers are comfortable with.  I'll go out on a limb and suggest that a set of  these guys, paired with a basic set of popular paint colours,would make an excellent learn-to-paint kit!

 

I've not gotten my Bones rewards yet (hopefully they'll ship out soon), but that Bones V "Dungeon Dwellers" expansion looks a lot like a "sleeper hit", to me:  it's not a particularly flashy set, there's no real tight theme to it, and most of us who've backed Bones Kickstarters before or who have otherwise been collecting minis a long time have a lot of those sorts of figures already, but I think that for first-time backers without any minis, the "Dungeon Dwellers" set is a fantastic bargain of a way to grab a nice curated "starter set" of great minis quickly:  it's like a complete miniature low-level dungeon-crawl in a box, complete with a party of popular adventurer archetypes included in the bargain.  I got a couple of these to give away as gifts.

 

Similarly, the new learn-to-paint kit isn't very flashy and contains a lot of duplicate minis, but looks like it'll make a fantastic gift for new painters and so on.  It's maybe not a very exciting-looking on-screen from the Kickstarter page and updates, but I have a feeling that when i see it in person, I'll really regret that there was nothing like it back when I first got into this hobby.  I kinda wish I'd gotten another kit or two for more gifts!

 

There are so many minis in this Kickstarter, I keep forgetting exactly what all was produced, and what I chose for rewards, so I bet I'll be seeing a lot of new minis in person that I never noticed before during the Kickstarter.  I wonder which of those items will turn out to be "sleeper hits" for me when the rewards finally do arrive?

 

Edited by YronimosW
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The 'sleeper hit' for me was Brinewind extras. This was a power up, that was about half as expensive as an  expansion set. It easily matches the value of the Brinewind expansion. I had got one based on the photos on the pledge manager. But I think I underestimated the size of everything by a considerable degree. The small boat has oars but is about the size of a small sloop or ketch. The cargo is larger than I thought it would be. In the game Rangers of Shadow Deep there is a scenario that requires a small boat and some stacks of cargo. This set of scatter terrain and a small boat is just about a perfect fit. The small boat is also a perfect fit for the D&D module Treasure Hunt. It even has a cargo bundle that looks like a body wrapped in cloth. When I ran that game (Treasure Hunt) in the past, I used a mummy figure as the body on a funeral barge. This will be an improvement. The small wagon is also a surprise benefit for me. It is larger than I thought it would be from the pictures on the pledge manager. And there are 3 scenarios in Rangers of Shadow Deep that need a wagon.

If this set of miniatures terrain comes back, I strongly encourage anyone playing Rangers or any nautical themed miniatures game to pick up a set

 

    buckyball

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6 hours ago, buckyball said:

Brinewind extras. This was a power up

No it wasn’t. It was unlocked at 3:00 PM on the last day of the campaign. See update #76. 
 

I suspect many did underestimate its value. I don’t have my shipment yet, but I ordered 4 copies of the set, because it’s contents will be insanely useful. 
 

IMO, the biggest sleeper hit was Shadows of Ravenhome. An insane amount of very useful terrain for a mere $14.

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Definitely agreed about the terrain for Shadows of Ravenhome and Brinewind Extras.  Really, all the terrain in general.  As someone who's just stuck his feet into crafting some rough larger scale terrain (city walls, barricades, big blocks for a configurable tower, etc), having these smaller accent pieces will really up my game.

 

@YronimosW Dungeon Dwellers was pretty neat!  I may definitely had a big smile on my face when I pulled out that owlbear (even though I already have the Wizkids one and three 3D printed ones).  

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My rewards are now in the mail, hooray!   :)   I'm sure I'll run into some surprise sleepers when I unpack and sort everything, but in glancing over the renders and other illustrations again, I think I really saw Krampus for the first time - what a cool figure!  I'll have to make up an excuse to make regular use of him... my version of a bugbear or something!

 

And based on the pictures so far, I can agree completely on the Brinewind Extras and Shadows of Ravenhome, and I'll add (to only a slightly lesser extent) the Charnel Pits of the Ghoul-Queen and the Dwarf King's Crypt for a lot of useful-looking terrain bits and figures in a relatively inexpensive set.

 

I regret not giving in to the temptation to grab all the "encounter" sets - the three that I didn't get, the Encounter at Gallowgard, Spiders of Emrith Kul, and The bridge-Troll's Toll, look like they include some handy terrain as well (I can imagine that troll-bridge in particular will get a lot of use with gamers- who doesn't like a tense fight on a bridge, over a dangerous river, or a bottomless chasm, or over lava or fire?)  But, I've only got so much space, I already have more minis than I can sanely justify owning, and I had (and have) a budget to stick to....

Edited by YronimosW
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Two big boxes of Reaper Bones goodies rolled in today, I've only opened one of them (I think the other is "just" the ship), and sorted everything out, and got a look at all the stuff I'd forgotten over the last year or two of Kickstarter development, or just simply didn't quite realize I was getting into.  So, here's the stuff that stands out as surprise hits for me:

  • Dungeon Dwellers:  I'll re-second what @cawatrooper said about the Dungeon Dwellers owlbear:  it put a big grin on my face, too, when I opened the box and found it at the top of the box.  I've got a couple owlbear minis by now from a couple different sources, but this one is easily my favorite!  The whole Dungeon Dwellers expansion was even better than I expected:  those are some of my favorite "generic" adventurers, the evil warlock and vampiress fantastic, the troll and ogre are some of the best ones I've seen from Reaper yet, these are my favorite orcs from Reaper, and everything else in there was just about as good, not a single thing I could complain about.  I hope this one sells really well for Reaper, and inspires "sequel" expansions - I've said it before, but it bears repeating that this boxed set makes a great gift and starter set for new dungeon keepers.  Also, that brings me to the Dungeon Dweller set's dragon:
  • Smaller dragons:  I don't normally get excited about Reaper's dragons as a tabletop gamer:  they've always look like gorgeous models for painting and display, but usually way too big for my general-purpose low-level gaming (while the wyrmlings were just a bit too small!)  These "bite-sized" Bones V dragons are exactly what I've been looking for!
  • Expansions and Encounters:  As mentioned by @buckyball and @ksbsnowowl mentioned, the Brinewind extras, Shdows of Ravenhome, and other expansions and encounters really were chock-full of great terrain bits and miniatures - the preview art really didn't quite convey just how much Bones goodies got crammed into those boxes!  The Dwarven crypt set included several fantastic dwarf warriors (plus a handful of dwarf wights and ghosts) plus a lot of excellent terrain bits, the Charnel Pit set has some great ghoul cultists and a couple other great minis plus the excellent setpiece terrain, the Ravenhome set has some great vampiresses and vampire hunters and useful setpiece terrain, the Brinewind set has all that useful scatter terrain, etc.  The terrain setpiece for each set by itself would have been useful and a good value, but including the useful monster minis and scatter terrain are a great added value and really bring the setpieces to life for tabletop gaming.  I'd be surprised if these aren't fan favorites from this Kickstarter, and I hope Reaper keeps coming up with more like this!
  • Villagers and henchmen:  I've been a big fan of Reaper's Bones townsfolk since KS1, but between the Bones V big villager set, the two henchmen/women sets, the handful of villager/NPC types in the core set, and the Brinewind expansion's pirate villagers, Bones V has provided the best selection of NPC characters yet!  This big villager set may be a bit "static and dull" for some mini collectors and gamers, but I think all the figures look great as nondescript NPCs, yet they still have a lot of character for such a small scale, perfect for the RPG tabletop without overshadowing adventurers during those bar-fights, ambushes in the city streets, and other town encounters.  (Short of running from dragons or something, how much more of an action pose would most of us need for such encounters, anyway? ;) )
  • Chronoscope:  It's maybe "cheating" to mention this again, but I don't think I realized just how big this Chronoscope set really was - the box says "over 30 miniatures", it had to have been closer to 40, plus a big terrain piece (the trailer), and a big monster (the shoggoth).  This product line is usually geared toward sci-fi and modern gaming, but this one is especially so: a bit tougher to handwave most of these figures as fantasy characters, but for those of us into sci-fi, weird west, post-apocalyptic, and steampunk minis, there's a lot of value for the price of this set.  My favorite figure in this set is the "not-Dejah Thoris" Martian princess, and I'd love to see more of this Dying Mars "schizotech" planetary-fantasy sort of thing!  The "not-Terminators" turned out much better in person than they looked in the renders or mockups during the Kickstarter, and are a surprise hit for me.  The two Lovecraft monsters are also great stuff, and the set has some of the best-looking Bones zombie-apocalypse survivors and steampunk characters yet.  (A few of these characters were resculpted from earlier Kickstarters, and the improvement really shows!)
  • Undead Giant:  I don't know if this figure counts as a "sleeper hit" - I have no doubt a lot of backers have been raving about this figure all along - but I really didn't notice the undead giant until I actually saw him.  He's now one of my favorite giants, and might end up being my go-to all-purpose giant!
  • Kid Adventurers:  These are even better than I expected!  I predict my sister and her group are going to really like these characters (I picked up an extra set as a gift for them), and I bet it'll be a hit for the young animal companions alone, if not for the kid characters besides.  These will make great NPCs and sidekicks/apprentices (and can convincingly double as gnomes or halflings, for those who can't find a use for them as kids!)
  • Amory Terrain:  I have a feeling most these armory terrain bits from the core set will end up selling like hotcakes:  the suits of armor are great scatter terrain and diorama decor (I'm surprised nobody's already done this!  Actually, Reaper should probably have packaged the suits of armor in this set in pairs...), and the weapons racks with separate weapons are brilliant (looks like "weapons sprues" have been a popular request ever since they appeared in an earlier Kickstarter then vanished - these are the next best thing!)
  • Balding Rogue:  Can anything from a "Fan Favorites" set really count as a "sleeper hit"? I don't know, but if anything in this set could count, it would easily be the Balding Rogue, which was requested by one of the backers in so many inventive and different ways, it practically became a meme during the Kickstarter.  But weirdly, the Balding Rogue turned out to be one of the best figures in this expansion set, and I get the impression I'm not the only backer who was impressed with this one.  Bravo to the artists and sculptors who made this figure!  Some similarly interesting atypical characters and unconventional beauties would go to the Brinewind doxies (the half-orc doxy is a particular standout), the "big-boned" henchwoman warrior (I remember a lot of compliments for her in the KS comments when she was revealed in renders), the Charnel Pit set's fan-disservice Ghoul Queen, and the "curvy" over-the-hill townswoman smoking a pipe:  maybe these won't be popular for player-character models for tabletop gaming (I would do it, but I'm kind of a weird role-player), but as a tabletop DM, I'm already thinking up ways to use these as NPCs:  their stories practically write themselves!

 

 

Edited by YronimosW
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As a first time Bones backer, I have to agree with @YronimosW that the Dungeon Dwellers expansion really blew me away. I almost skipped it, and didn't really pay the box much attention when everything arrived; I was too excited about the skeleton pirates in Brinewind! But when I finally started sorting through it, it quickly became my favorite box. There's a great selection of classic "generic" adventurers, the variety of monsters is great, and I really, really like the little pile of treasure. 😁

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I can definitely see where you two are coming from, @veoviscool12 and @YronimosW!

 

I feel like Dungeon Dwellers was, for lack of a better word, the least "shiny" of the expansions by a longshot.  It contains a lot of stuff creatures and archetypes that many collectors (especially DM and GMs) will already have in spades.

 

But there's just something really nice and classic about the contents here.  Like, today I glued some stuff together, including the massive mamlord- way bigger than I expected!  But realistically, I'll probably use him in game once or twice tops.  And while I realize that's far from the true value a mini holds, I think there's a lot to say for how Dungeon Dwellers combines utility with its artful representations.

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On 7/22/2021 at 5:21 AM, ksbsnowowl said:

No it wasn’t. It was unlocked at 3:00 PM on the last day of the campaign. See update #76. 
 

I suspect many did underestimate its value. I don’t have my shipment yet, but I ordered 4 copies of the set, because it’s contents will be insanely useful. 
 

IMO, the biggest sleeper hit was Shadows of Ravenhome. An insane amount of very useful terrain for a mere $14.

 

We were playing our second Ghost Archipelago campaign as the Bones 5 campaign was running, and we never had enough small boats, so I ordered 2 Brinewind Extras immediately. Now, of course, with the pandemic and all, we haven’t actually played Ghost Archipelago since December of 2019, but with the box in my hand, I have a strong urge to see if the guys are interested in another go.  All of the encounters looked good to me as scatter terrain, except the monkey temple, and I’m now sort of wishing that I had ordered that.  As I open and inventory, though, we’ll see how much boiling is going to be needed. I had one Bones 4 piece (mystic circle?) that I could never flatten out.  I realized recently that I should have one more try, then clamp it to a masonite board while epoxying it down.  If that doesn’t do it, it can go.

 

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Definitely, @cawatrooper! That's partly why I'm so impressed with Dungeon Dwellers; I can already tell I'll be plonking down 99% of it regularly.

 

I agree with @YronimosW that it seems poised as a perfect starter collection for newer GMs and players. It pretty much sells itself as a small dungeon in a box! It strikes me as a great companion gift or upgrade to a "Learn to Play D&D" kit. It certainly would have been extremely appealing to me back in 2010 when I first wanted to try D&D and bought a 4E starter set.

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The other big "sleeper hit" for me personally is how much the quality of Bones has improved. The last time I bought Bones minis was in 2016, and my opinion back then was that they were a good mix of detail, durability, and affordability. Bones Black is a huge step up from the 2014ish white Bones that I'm familiar with, and the classic material has been improved so much I couldn't tell at first glance where it was used in the Core set!

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4 hours ago, veoviscool12 said:

Definitely, @cawatrooper! That's partly why I'm so impressed with Dungeon Dwellers; I can already tell I'll be plonking down 99% of it regularly.

 

I agree with @YronimosW that it seems poised as a perfect starter collection for newer GMs and players. It pretty much sells itself as a small dungeon in a box! It strikes me as a great companion gift or upgrade to a "Learn to Play D&D" kit. It certainly would have been extremely appealing to me back in 2010 when I first wanted to try D&D and bought a 4E starter set.


IMO, the Dungeon Dwellers expansion plus the Dwarf King’s Crypt encounter gets you 80% of the way to running The Sunless Citadel and Forge of Fury, both of which were updated to 5e in Tales from the Yawning Portal.

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Everything’s is great and I’m super happy with all of it. Dungeon dwellers is awesome for sure. Arakoth, all the dragons. Digging deep for a sleeper I’ll go with:

 

Minotaur (Greek)

spell effects (versatility)

stag

The Dino croc from dark depths. What a base! I started painting the croc and then got so intimidated by the base it got deferred.

 

 

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11 hours ago, veoviscool12 said:

I agree with @YronimosW that it seems poised as a perfect starter collection for newer GMs and players. It pretty much sells itself as a small dungeon in a box! It strikes me as a great companion gift or upgrade to a "Learn to Play D&D" kit. It certainly would have been extremely appealing to me back in 2010 when I first wanted to try D&D and bought a 4E starter set.

 

Has Reaper indicated any intention to keep stocking and selling the box? I feel like there’s a small (but unserved) market niche for that, as you suggest.

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