Vitruvian HACKS (Series 2): Lord Vehemous by Boss Fight Studio

Last week I got a new box in from Boss Fight Studio with some figures from the newest wave of Vitruvian HACKS, Series 2. I’m quickly getting backlogged with this line, as I still have plenty of figures from Series 1 to review, but when these showed up they just looked so damn good that I decided to bump a few of them to the head of the line. Today, I’m checking out Lord Vehemous, the self-proclaimed Dragon Cult Warrior Priest.
If you’re new to V-HACKS, Series 2 is all about a fantasy-style theme somewhat inspired by the likes of AD&D and other sword-and-sorcery type franchises, but the characters and designs are all original.

As always, the figures come on a landscape-orientated card with some colorful character art on the front and a “Collect Them All” layout on the back showing the figures from this wave, which I believe is the third, and the previous one. You also get a bio that tells us Lord Vehemous and his followers not only worship dragons, but gain supernatural powers by drinking their blood. F’cking-A hardcore! As you can see from the bubble, this figure comes packed with a ton of extra goodies, so if you’ll give me a minute to get him all geared up, we’ll check him out!

Vehemous sports a half-suit of armor, with full plate from the waist up and a long medieval-style skirt (for lack of a better word) covering his legs and most of his boots. The armor reuses some parts from the Knight of Accord, like the legs, arms and lower torso. He even has the slots on the outside of his thighs to tab in armor pieces, even though he doesn’t come with any. The chest armor, on the other hand, is different, as it features a well-worn, pitted finish and even some nasty looking cracks. Indeed, all the armor is colored to look like it’s old, possibly made out of bone, and has seen better days. I really dig the sculpted detail in the robes and belts, and there are peg holes on his hips to attach some of his gear. The various buckles and studs on the belt are all painted gold.

The optional parts for the armor include a pair of sculpted fur shoulder pads and a matching half-cape, the last of which we’ve seen a few times before, but most recently with the Orc. I say these pieces are optional, but Vehemous does have some pegs sticking out of his shoulders to attach them, so if you don’t equip the shoulders, these look exposed and awkward. Of course, you could always borrow different shoulders from one of your other HACKS figures, as mix-and-match is a big part of the charm here.

The head sculpt is excellent. Vehemous is a distinguished old and gray fellow with a rather nasty scar running down his left eye. They’ve even painted that eye gray to show that the damage isn’t just superficial. I’d say this is easily one of my favorite head sculpts in the entire HACKS line. It really is excellent. It seems a shame to cover it up, but you can do just that thanks to the included helmet…

The helmet is made of soft, pliable plastic and fits over the head quite well. It’s cast in the same color plastic as the rest of the armor, giving it an ancient bone-like finish and the design is just superb. I just love the configuration of the horns and the way the figure’s eyes line up with the eye holes in the helmet. This piece certainly adds a lot of intimidation factor to the figure, while also allowing some display variety. I could easily see picking up a few more Lord Vehemous figures, put the helmets on two of them and just display them behind the unmasked figure as his fellow cultists. Damn, I think I’ve just talked myself out of another forty bucks. But if you really want to go nuts, you have one more noggin option…

And that’s the skull. I’m not sure where or how skeletons fit into the whole Dragon Cult business, but this is a beautiful skull and it sure looks great on the figure. The sculpt is incredibly well detailed for a figure in this scale, but I shouldn’t be surprised as the folks at BFS have been sculpting these skulls plenty of times and have had a lot of practice. The skull is cast in a creepy yellowish-green and features some wash to bring out all the little details. Seeing as how the skull still features the red gash running down over the left eye, I’m guessing this is some kind of magical transformation. Alright, so we’ve looked at the figure and the heads, let’s check out the accessories.

For starters, Vehemous comes with this cool book, no doubt an ancient tome dealing with dragon lore and spells that you can do with the blood of the Great Wyrms. I’m pretty sure this is a repaint of the book included with Felonious from Wave 2, but I haven’t opened or reviewed that figure yet, and he’s out of bounds for comparison until I do. Sorry, but thems the rules! Either way, the book features a blue binding with a leather-like texture as well as sculpted gold fixtures and an ornamental piece on the front cover. As a reformed antiquarian book collector, I really dig this accessory a lot. It even has a sculpted chain that you can use to attach it to his belt. Of course, knowledge is power, but nothing beats cold hard steel, so let’s move on to some of Vehemous’ many weapons.

You can’t go wrong with a sword and dagger and Vehemous comes with both, each in their own scabbard and sheath, and each with pegs to attach them to his belt. The scabbard and sheath are a bit on the chunky side, but I’m willing to forgive that in this scale. Both are painted blue to match the shirt that peeks through the armor, you get some sculpted brown “leather” straps and the throats and tips are painted gold. The blades fit in well and can be drawn without much effort. I like that the peg hole for the dagger is angled a bit to the back so I can have him wear it horizontally. The gold hilts are matched (or “en suite” as they say) with pointed pommels and simple cross guards. Both have sculpted ribbed grips painted blue. The blades have a nice silver paint finish and Vehemous comes with two pairs of hands to hold them, one pair is hinged to angle forward and the other to bend side-to-side.

Next up, Vehemous comes with this bitchin’ spiked flail. The handle has sculpted “leather” wrappings and a pretty sharp spike capping off the end. The spiked ball hangs from a chain with gold painted loops securing it at both ends. I’m a sucker for a good flail, and I’m actually surprised that the Vitruvian HACKS 4-inch line beat the Mythic Legions 6-inch line, by doing a flail first. And they did a damn fine job with it.

Lastly, you get a spiked mace with a really long handle, making it look more like a staff than a practical weapon. Not that you couldn’t do some crazy damage with this thing if you were to swing it at the busy-body knights who show up to crash your Dragon Blood Rituals. The spiked ball looks like the same one used for the flail, and the shaft is white with some gold fixtures.

The best compliment I can pay an action figure line is to say that every time I open one, I want to buy another. That’s high praise, especially when we’re talking about 4-inch figures that run me about $25 each. I’ve been suitably impressed with Vitruvian HACKS ever since the first Kickstarter, but damn, Lord Vehemous really ups the ante. This figure is a 4-inches of masterpiece. This is an example of a fantastic original character design that has been executed it brilliantly, and the generous dose of extras and accessories make him a well-rounded package. Next week, I’m going to commit to going back and reviewing another figure from Series 1, before pressing on with more of the Series 2 figures.

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