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Reaper's Bones Miniature Figures Review

Article by Paul Nortness

You have spent countless hours painting your miniature and spent even more time creating your dungeon for your heroes to explore, but what about creatures to inhabit the dungeon? With all this time and money invested, do you really want to have little cardboard tokens wandering your halls?

No way! But spending five to ten dollars per monster gets really expensive. Well the folks at Reaper Miniatures have answered the call and recently released a new line called "Bones".

The Bones line of miniatures are made from "Space Age" polymers rather than the traditional lead free pewter or white metal. The great thing is you get the same great detail you would from metal miniatures in Reaper's line, but at a fraction of the cost. For example, the Purple Worm miniature in the picture cost me $2.99. The same miniature in metal is $27.49! Quite a difference.

reaper miniatures bones

As you can see from this Cave Troll, the detail is excellent. The polymer material is smooth and very tough. Even though it is very tough and resistant to bending, the material is also pretty soft. It is very easy to cut through the material to reposition an arm or swap out weapons, etc. Reaper also boasts that this material is ready to paint without the need of a surface primer right out of the box.

reaper miniatures bones 1

I tested this out on the Purple Worm with Citadel paints and had some problem getting the paint to stick in places. I rinsed off the paint and gave the Worm a bath in some luke warm water with liquid soap and came back to the work bench. My second test yielded better results but I still had some problems.

reaper miniatures bones 2

What happens is the paint will "reverse" puddle, it will actually pull away from the surface in spots. You can see several white dots where there should be paint in the picture. I have seen this before in plastic models. This tends to be the result of traces of mold release agent left on the surface. I gave the model another really good scrub with soap and had better results. To be fair, Reaper does say on their website the polymer has been "Engineered for use with Reaper MSP paints". If you do chose to use a primer, I tested Krylon on some sprue bits and the material reacted fine. Whenever painting a new material like this it is always best to test it on a bit of sprue. Being a soft plastic, these miniatures will respond to heat. Any mishapen sword or spear can be straightened by putting the miniature in hot water.

reaper miniatures bones 3

These miniatures are also much lighter than standard metal figures. Being made from plastic, they lack the nice heavy feeling a metal figure has. They also lack that distinct stinging feeling left on your big toe when your miniature drops on it. As mentioned before, the miniature figures are incredibly tough and if they bounce off your big toe you won't have to hold your breath hoping it doesn't shatter into pieces. My gaming group meets in my garage with hard cement floors. We have a player in our group that breaks at least one of his miniatures each session when he drops them onto the floor. These miniatures were made for guys like him.

Currently, there are twelve figures in the Bones line. Reaper has already stated that they will be increasing that number and have an "ambitious roadmap" for future releases. I would strongly recommend this line of miniatures to anyone interested in figure painting, beginner or long time enthusiasts alike. With a price range between $1.99 for single model packages and $4.99 for multiple models (the Skeleton Spear Men and Orc Archers contain 3 figures each), you can populate your dungeon with all sorts of creepy monsters without breaking the bank. You can purchase Bones miniatures directly from Reaper Miniatures or look for them at your favorite gaming shop.

Have fun and happy gaming!

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