a pursuit of fruitless endeavors and endless refinements

Walking Dead Wednesday: Vanity Affair

The New Year is upon us and I thought I’d start up my Walking Dead Wednesdays again.  I don’t think I’ll be running these every week but we’ll see.  I’m hoping this will push me to get through my backlog of Walking Dead minis to paint up.

Adding to my minis, I decided to cut way ahead in line and paint up a very new addition to my Walking Dead minis: Me!

Well sort of me. More like the best aspects of me crammed into a 3D printed miniature form.  I saw on Facebook that some Walking Dead fans were creating their own minis based on whatever they wanted via the custom minis service Hero Forge.

Hero Forge was originally conceived as a custom minis creation site for roleplayers so they could make a completely customized version of their beloved character. After faring well, it expanded into other genres and their “modern” line has led several Walking Dead enthusiasts to create themselves or other custom miniatures for the game.  After seeing some of the results, I decided to give it a try as well.

As you can see from my first image, the proportions of the minis work very well for Walking Dead.  The details aren’t as dynamic (no tight crotches!) and the limbs seem to be thinner or more realistic and less cartoony.

I had to prime the model as the white plastic made it almost impossible to see any detail.  Here you can see your standard 3D printing with some typical artifacts.  These are loaded up on Hero Forge’s website, then finalized and sent to Shapeways to print the final and ship the miniature to the customer.  I chose the regular plastic level but I do wonder how much better the print would have been had I upgraded.  The site says these are SLA printed but they look like extrusion to me.

Especially from this angle. Maybe that is also SLA and not Extrusion (as I am definitely no expert) but either way, that is pretty painful to look at. Luckily, it isn’t too bad at table length.  Hopefully it clears up a bit after I paint.  My crappy craft paints will serve me well as they overly coat the model and hide these “details.”

So painting didn’t hide the striation lines too much it’s definitely better than what it was before.

I was hesitant to wash this model as I didn’t want the dark wash to settle in the ugly modelling lines so I thinned it down a lot and applied a light coat. Overall, I’m happy to see the model on the table all painted up but I would definitely push for the better printing quality.  It makes for an expensive single model but it is a vanity item so one should expect a bit of a premium for it.  I look forward to using it with the custom character creation rules and running through several of the solo scenarios.


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  1. Russ Spears

    I’ve got some friends that went the Hero Forge route for their D&D game and they seem happy – but the printing artifacts bother me too much to try it out myself. I’d heard that if it’s printed with the right type of plastic (?) you can soak the mini in something like nail polish remover and it’s supposed to help smooth things out. The person that told me this is just as likely to be trolling me, though.

    Christian enters the world of Walking Dead soon! Don’t overpower those custom stats (or do, sometimes that can be more fun). I bet that’s someone who can put Glenn in his place.

    • Christian

      Interesting about the nail polish remover. A friend of mine has a 3D printer and he said there is a heat knife that you can run down the mini to smooth out the layered ridges. I’m not sure if it works on all plastics but he said it helps on his printed minis.

      I had made up stats a long time ago before the game was released (but the Beta rules were available to KS backers). I’ll have to dig them out again. They are likely “overpowered” when compared directly to me but otherwise normal 🙂

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