Back in late march I found these officially licensed, pre-primed Dungeons & Dragons miniatures – in huge variety! I picked up a bunch of different ones; they’re of decent detail level quality and they are pre-primed with Vallejo paint and ready-to-paint out of the box! I picked a pretty easy to paint model on which to test & started painting within moments of cracking open the box.
Here’s what they look like in the box:
When I opened the box & inspected them (for quality, the feel of the primer, and to closely inspect the detail), I was overall very impressed… the plastic feels nice. It’s flexible, but not “bendy”. The detail is average but quite acceptable – especially for the baddies (like these gargoyles), where they’re likely only going to be making cameo appearances while the players come through and cut them down.
The primer is well applied, even, and not obscuring details — at least on the models I’ve picked up and looked closely at so far. They come with bases of appropriate size to match the Monster Manual size categories, but they’re nice and thin so as not to elevate the models above where they should be.
My one complaint? The mold lines are not trimmed — it’s clearly a machine-job all around, and it’s clearest in this lack of mold line removal. Again, this is just a minor complaint. It isn’t a huge deal for bad guys that aren’t showcase models. If you feel so inclined you can EASILY shave/file off these lines (they were very minor on these two gargoyles), but then you’ll have to re-prime the areas shaved.
I didn’t bother shaving the lines on these. I pulled them out of the package and just started painting — how they’re intended. And I feel like they came out acceptably well! It was also a quick paint job. Open package, quick drybrush of the dark stone color, added the bone color on the horns, claws, & wingtips, and then another quick drybrush of lighter stone. Added the eye details, glued it to the base, glued some rocks down, and called them “done”.
From start to finish — ripping open the package to taking the “finished” photos, they took MAYBE an hour in total. And some of that was waiting for the drying of glue or previous paint layers. All in all, it was very quick! Clearly, it’s not my BEST work, but it’s not meant to be. It was meant to get a couple baddies painted up quickly! And in that, they do their job quite admirably.
These are a great value! Quality models, primed and ready-to-paint, at a reasonable price — officially licensed so you get Displacer Beasts, Mind Flayers, Rust Monsters, and other D&D-only things that closely match the Monster Manual in look & feel. The primer bites well and has even coverage — I wish I had started painting on these models. You don’t have to do any prep other than “glue it to the base”. The only drawbacks are that if you want it to look REALLY good there is prep-work involved — mold lines and re-priming, and the overall detail of the models are lower than some other model types (GW, Reaper, other independent model companies, etc.).
They’re definitely worth buying, especially if you are just looking for some cameo monsters or NPCs and enjoy the painting but not the other work involved in the miniature painting hobby. In fact – I would hand one of these models to someone curious about miniature painting! When I first started I was overwhelmed — This is an intimidating hobby! Some of the beautiful work out there, and the depth at which you can go when preparing, modeling, customizing, and painting is just mind-boggling. So for someone new or curious, I would and set them down with one of these cool pre-painted D&D models and some paint and so go to town! Slap some paint on & have some fun bringing a mini to life! I feel like these could get more people into the miniature painting hobby from the D&D sphere.
What do you think? Have you tried these D&D models yet?