Mythic Legions (Advent of Decay): Snagg by The Four Horsemen

I’ve been focusing on some of the new stuff for my first Advent of Decay reviews. So, I started with a female knight and vampire, and then showed off an Elf. Now it’s time to touch on what is easily my most anticipated addition to the Mythic Legions lineup… The Goblins! Hell, YEAH! I totally freaked out when T4H first showed off these deranged little beauties, and I knew right away that I would be getting all of them. It was impossible for me to decide which one to start with, so I just picked one at random. Let’s have a look at Snagg!

And isn’t that just one of the best Goblin names ever? Snagg! Even better, Snagg’s bio tells us that he’s a devious thief. And with his green face and blue sock cap, he kind of reminds me of Zarak, The Half-Orc Assassin from LJN’s old Advanced Dungeons & Dragons line. Not only is that not a bad thing, but I kind of demand a repaint as homage.

The Goblins are about the same height as the Dwarves, but they have a much leaner build. And like the Dwarves, they’re designed so they can borrow parts from the full-sized humans and elves. For example, Snagg has a completely repainted version of the belt and hip armor piece that we saw last week on the Elf Legion Builder. He also uses the wrist bracers that we’ll see on the Elves in future reviews. The body is rounded out with a simple set of plate armor for the torso and armored legs. I’d say that it’s a hodge-podge look that works well for a Goblin, but to be honest, I think all the pieces go together perfectly.

The paint here is excellent, particularly on the belt piece. The prominent disc belt-buckle, the individual rivets on the leather scales are painted in a rich copper. The plates on the tops of the hip-armor are mismatched with one side copper and the other a gun-metal blue. The brown belt has a great textured leather-like look to it and you get some fine silver paintwork on the buckles. Other highlights of the paint include the worn copper color of the leg armor, the metallic blue stones embedded in his arm bracers, and the heavily tarnished finish of his chest armor. Even the tiny buckles on his wrist bracers and leg armor are all neatly painted silver.

And that brings me to the head sculpt, and oh boy is it fantastic! Snagg features a cartoonishly pronounced nose and chin, balanced by the long, swept-back pointed ears. He sports a devilish grin, showing his tiny sharp teeth and two prominent fangs rising up from his bottom jaw. Two beady yellow eyes gaze out from under the stitched blue cap.

Snagg comes with a mismatched pair of shoulder armor, no doubt stolen from the dead on some battlefield. The right shoulder is pretty ornate with some blue panels that manage to match his cap, as if it’s a sad little attempt he made to accessorize. The left shoulder, on the other hand, is a simple, segmented piece with signs of rust setting in. I dig the idea behind these pieces being scavenged, but I may actually prefer him sans shoulder armor.

For a little guy, Snagg comes with quite the arsenal of weapons, which includes a standard cruciform sword, a two-hander, a dagger, and a rustic cleaver made by attaching blades to a piece of stag horn. With the exception of the last piece, I’ve seen all of these weapons before, and I love that all of these weapons are mismatched, again probably all taken from looting and thievery, as they look way too clean and shiny to have been owned by him for long. To carry his weapons, Snagg comes with two of the standard brown belts, allowing for one to be worn on the waist, and the other as a cross strap. Let’s take a quick look at each of his weapons…

The dagger is a repaint of the one that came with Lucretia, now with an entirely gold hilt. I really like the design of this one and the paint job does a good job of setting it apart. I actually had to double check Lucretia’s to make sure it was the same mold. It looks like it would be an excellent parrying dagger as well as serviceable for all the backstabbing that Snagg probably does.

The one-handed sword is the classic cruciform type we’ve seen over and over again in this line. I’m a big fan of the no-nonsense design of this piece and I’m always happy to get another. Oddly, this one is painted all in silver, which is something that T4H usually reserve for the Legion Builder figures, but I think it still looks fine. I would have liked it more if it had a rusty finish, like we’ve seen with some of the Orc weapons, but like I said, maybe he stole it.

The two-handed sword is very familiar from the previous series of Mythic Legions. I tend to refer to this one as a “Tolkien Sword,” because it reminds me of a design I saw of Glamdring once. Either way, I really dig the way the blade swells slightly toward the edge and the stylized crossguard, copper wrapped grip, and skull-crusher pommel are both nice touches. On the other hand, this sword looks totally out of place with Snagg. It’s really big compared to his height and he looks a little awkward wielding it. It just furthers the idea in my mind that he stole it somewhere and just carries it around to make a statement.

Only the stag-handled weapon looks like it might have been made for him, and it manages to be both crude and quite beautiful. The sculpt and paint on the stag handle is superb. The clever-like blade has some nasty gashes and scrapes in it and a serrated area near the grip. The back also has a metal piece with spikes sticking out of it. Now this looks like a Goblin weapon!

Snagg also comes with some other assorted bits, which confused me at first. You get a set of antlers, which are the same pieces used to adorn some of the other figures’ helmets. You also get a single piece of black horn. These aren’t compatible with the figure himself, as he doesn’t come with a helmeted head, but I’m chalking these up to being more loot that he’s scavenged. And it’s always nice to have extra pieces to share with my helmeted figures to create more display options.

And so while he may be small, Snagg is probably packing more personality than almost any other Mythic Legions figure I own. He’s also no doubt the first in what will be my serious love affair with the Mythic Legion Goblins. He’s a magnificent little figure with some superb paintwork, and clearly a lot of thought and love went into his demented design. I can’t wait to pit him against some of my brave warriors and have him try to bite their kneecaps off and steal all their shit. I’m really tempted to just keep going with the Goblins for the next month, but I promise I’ll try to be back with something a little different next week.

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Mythic Legions (Advent of Decay): Elf Legion Builder by The Four Horsemen

It’s Week Three of Mythic Legions Wednesdays‘ return and I couldn’t be more excited! I’m not following any particular order in which I open and review these figures, but I’m not going totally random either. Since I already looked at two of the regular figures, I thought this week I’d check out one of the Legion Builders. And since the Elves are introduced in the Advent of Decay series, let’s have a look at the Elf Legion Builder!

I’ll go ahead and show a packaged shot here, because unlike the named characters, the Legion Builders don’t actually have bios, because they’re just nameless soldiers. But you can name if you want to! Oh, go on… name them! The Legion Builders are cheaper than the regular figures because they involve less paint operations, usually on both the figure and the accessories, but as we’ll soon see, that doesn’t make them any less spectacular! And in fact, this Elf in particular doesn’t feel like your typical Legion Builder at all.

Behold the Elven armor of golden splendor! Yes, let’s remind ourselves that this is what the rank-and-file Elf Warriors are wearing and it’s pretty fabulous. In case you didn’t already know, Mythic Legions is all about mixing and matching parts, and here we get a great example of that in Advent of Decay. The torso here is new, but the arms and legs are lifted straight from the armored bucks we saw on Gwendolyn and Lucretia. It works well for the diminutive Elven build as well as the female knights, and even though we already saw those parts in gold on Gwen, I think this combination still makes for a pretty unique look.

And the sculpt here is absolutely beautiful. As always, it’s brimming with detail from the overlapping plates to the tiny rivets and sculpted buckles and straps. I particularly like the discs on the chest and belt. When combined with the coloring and the rather thin armored build, it gives me a little bit of a C-3PO vibe. And the armor sculpt that does just fine showing off its details with nothing but a sumptuous golden finish. And while we’re on the subject of paint, it’s worth noting that the past Knight Legion Builders featured only one color on their armor and no additional paint apps at all, except maybe on a helmet plume. The Elf breaks that trend by adding the green scaled armor below his belt with the individually painted gold rivets. It’s a great touch that breaks up all that gold just enough to make him feel more like one of the regular figures. Of course, the figure also comes with the ubiquitous sword belt and removable shoulder armor. And yup, those are the same shoulders we saw on both Gwen and Lucretia.

The Elf Legion Builder comes with no less than three different heads. He comes out of the package with dark skin, green eyes, and an open faced helmet, complete with nasal guard and a wonderfully organic sculpt to the helmet. The ears are quite prominent, but they stay close to the head, giving him more of a Tolkein-esque Western interpretation, as opposed to the ones we usually see in anime or mangas. There isn’t a lot of sharp detail in the face, but I still like it a lot and he has a bit of a dour but noble expression.

The other option is the lighter skinned head, again with green eyes, and the exact same helmet. Actually, it looks like the whole head sculpt here is identical, with just the lighter skin distinguishing it.

The final option is a completely enclosed helmet, but with green skin showing on the exposed ears. I think it’s likely that this is intended to be the open helmet with a mask on it, but I could be wrong about that. Either way, it’s a real sexy piece of design. I love the organic curves and the darkened visor. All three heads are great choices and they make me wish I had picked up at least one more of these guys to display them on. But we’ve also got a lot of accessories to talk about, so let’s move on to the weapons.

The Elf comes with a pretty standard sword and dagger, which can be worn on the belt. Well, there’s one loop so either the sword or dagger can be fitted through the loop and the other just has to be thrust through the belt. Either way it works just fine. We’ve seen both of these weapon molds before many times, but I really dig them a lot. The sword is a pretty no-nonsense weapon with a broad blade and a cruciform hilt and the dagger has a stout blade and a slightly down-turning crossguard. The hilts aren’t matched perfectly, but they’re close enough so that they look good together. Both blades are painted silver and the hilts are painted gold, which is notable because most of my previous Legion Builder Knights did not have any paint apps on their weapons.

Next up is the bow and quiver of arrows, both of which are accessories that are introduced in Advent of Decay. The bow has some really beautiful contours, is painted all in silver, and includes a string. The quiver is painted gold and the arrows have silver shafts and gold fletching. The quiver has a clip that can hook onto the belt, just like we saw on the dagger’s sheath that came with Lucretia. There’s also an attachment that can be used to put it on his back, but it sticks out too far and I don’t like it. The arrows in the quiver are all part of the sculpt, but you do get a single loose arrow.

The loose arrow is pretty thin and frail and he can’t really hold it, at least not without the help of a little blue-tack inside his hand. There are, however, two little nubs on the bow that the arrow can sort of clip into. With a little determination and trickery, I was able to get him to actually knock the arrow and draw the bow. It would have been cool if T4H created a hand for these guys with a slit between two of the fingers. I suppose it would be easy to customize with a good razor blade, but he only comes with the two hands and I don’t want to risk messing him up.

Finally, the Elf Legion Builder comes with a spear and this accessory is as old as Mythic Legions itself. It was a popular pack in accessory with a lot of figures from the first Kickstarter, and I’m not surprised to see it continuing to see service in Advent of Decay. It’s a very simple accessory, all molded from one piece of plastic and painted entirely in silver. The spear is also the thing the only accessory that feels like the weapons included with previous Legion Builders. I’m not going to gripe about it, because quite frankly this figure comes with enough goodies that the spear just feels like a gratuitous extra.

As I mentioned in the beginning, the Legion Builders are the  in this line, and that’s part of what makes this Elf Soldier so impressive to me. Sure he doesn’t have as many paint operations as the regular figures, but he still looks great. And with three different heads and a whole passel of weapons, he feels like anything but a budget figure. Alas, the secondary market prices on these figures preclude me from doing any kind of troop building when it comes to Mythic Legions, I just might pony up for one more of these Elves to make one an archer and the other a regular knight.

Mythic Legions (Advent of Decay): Lucretia by The Four Horsemen

Happy Halloween, folks! You’ll note that I’m sticking with Mythic Legions for my Wednesday content, but I still tried to go for that Halloween connection by checking out a vampire! Carpathias was actually the first vampire to hit Legions as part of the original assortment, but he didn’t make my budget crunch for the first Kickstarter and I’ve been regretting it ever since. Fortunately, he was part of the later All-Stars Sale and I was able to pre-order him, but who knows when those are going to be shipping.

So while not the first Vampire, Lucretia is actually the first female vampire. She also happens to be the daughter of Baron Volligar, who was released as part of the Covenant of Shadows assortment. Her bio makes her sound like a nasty piece of work.

And she looks like one too! Lucretia’s body reuses something like 95% of Gwendolyn Heavenbrand’s armored body, with only two key differences. The first is the sculpted purple sash that hangs down from the front of her waist. The second is the tall and sinister, gravity-defying collar that frames her creepy head. Even the shoulder armor is the same sculpt as Ms. Heavensbrand’s. I won’t rehash all the gushing I did over this sculpt last week, but suffice it to say I love all the little details like the tiny straps “holding” the overlapping plates together, the individual rivets, and the exposed chainmail in the joints.

Of course the new deco helps a lot to set this figure apart and it is indeed a beautiful coat of paint. The primary color for the armor is a glossy black with matte purple running through some of the decorative panels. We’ve seen a similar deco on her dear old dad’s armor and it looks as great as ever. You also get a flat gray outlining those panels. Other little touches include metallic silver for the tiny rivets, as well as for the buckles of the brown-painted straps. As with Gwendolyn’s armor, this is an absolutely sumptuous paint job, making the already impressive sculpt sing, even if that song is a fear-inducing dirge of death.

I’ve been in love with the vampire head design since first seeing Carpathias, and that certainly carries over to this new female head. The pale bald head features a rather distinctive nose and brow, which is very familiar. And when coupled with the sharply pointed ears and severe look, I’d say this one is an effective cross between the bloodsuckers of Salem’s Lot and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The earrings are a nice touch and there’s some subtle shading applied to her skin.

Lucretia comes with a flowing black cape, which as always requires the use of the shoulder armor to equip it on her, as the pegs pass through holes on the cape to secure it. That’s no problem for me, as I almost always display these figures with their shoulder armor. But since they are optional, and the figure displays quite well without them, it’s still worth noting that the cape does only work with the shoulders. I love the way it looks on the figure, but it can get in the way of her wearing her sword. And speaking of which, let’s check out her weapons.

Her primary weapon is a two-handed sword, which is new to me. It’s a decidedly vampyric-looking weapon with an elegant hilt featuring an extended, textured grip and a curved crossguard with ends that terminate in a flourish. The black hilt also features a purple stone embedded in the center of the guard. The silver blade is roughly leaf-shaped with a swell about three-quarters of the way down to the point. The configuration of the blade means it won’t pass all the way through the loop in her belt, but the fact that it rides high makes it look like it’s slung across her back and I kind of dig that. I do wish T4H would have started producing some of these belts in black by now, because I think it would have looked better on this figure. Or perhaps even in red, like they did with the Black Knight Legion Builder.

Next up, she has this stout-bladed dagger with a black hilt and purple stone in the center of the guard. It’s not a perfect match for the sword’s handle, but close enough to look good if she’s wielding them en suite. It would have been an especially nice parrying dagger, had they given her a single-handed sword.

Finally, Lucretia comes with a hooked dagger and sheath, and the sheath is something introduced in this Advent of Decay series. It’s plastic with a purple and silver deco and a clip on the back that hooks to the belt. The dagger fits in it quite well and is easy to draw out. It’s a great addition to the Mythic Legions armaments and it makes me wish even more that they will one day tackle scabbards for the swords. Hey, they could easily release a scabbard pack with different decos for the existing swords. I’d buy it!

Is this the part where I say Lucretia may be my new favorite figure in all Mythic Legions? Well, I’m trying not to throw that word around as much this time, but she is simply awesome and well worth a consideration as one of the better figures in this line. The black and purple deco of her armor really sings to me, the quality of the paintwork is gorgeous, the weapons are well-curated, and all in all this figure has a lot of personality. She makes me excited to know that I have two more vampires from Advent of Decay waiting to be opened and that Carpathias will eventually be on the way.

Mythic Legions (Advent of Decay): Gwendolyn Heavensbrand by The Four Horsemen

If you follow me on Twitter, than you know I spent this past weekend absolutely obsessed with Mythic Legions! It was back in February of 2017 that I backed Advent of Decay, The Four Horsemen’s second Mythic Legions Kickstarter. With something like 43 figures offered, this project was even more expansive then the first, and it introduced some new elements to the mix, like female characters, as well as Elves and Goblins. I gladly forked over my entire 2017 tax return (and maybe a little more) in what was the largest sum I had ever spent on a single toy purchase. Yeah, it was 34 figures, but still all in one lump sum. And then the long, hard wait began. The figures were originally planned to arrive in April of this year, but if you’ve Kickstarted anything, you know that delays are nearly inevitable. And that was fine with me. You can’t rush art, not even in 6-inch action figure form. And art is exactly what we got.

That’s not to say I got everything yet. The figures finally started shipping last week, and I got my first box this past weekend with 24 figures. T4H are shipping some larger orders separately, which isn’t a bad thing because it’ll give me time to really enjoy these before getting more. It took me quite a while just to open these figures and give them a once over for QC purposes. And while I admit, I’ll rest easier once I get that second shipping notice, I’m content to wait so that everyone can start getting their figures in a timely manner. Anywho… I thought I’d kick things off with Gwendolyn Heavensbrand, since she was the figure I chose as my backer reward, before adding 33 more to the Backerkit. I’ll note here that the above is the last packaged shot I’ll be doing for this series. These packages take up a lot of space and I’m going to be putting them away in storage for the time being, and probably eventually getting rid of them. Suffice it to say, the packaging hasn’t changed much since the previous series. It is collector friendly, there have been some minor art changes on the card, and you get a character bio printed on the side of the bubble insert. All you really need to know is that she’s Sir Gideon’s sister, so let’s get Ms. Heavensbrand out and see what we’ve got!

I have a running gag with my other Mythic Legions reviews, where each one I open is my new favorite. Here’s a case, where it may be true. No, I’m serious! Well, if she isn’t my favorite, then I have to say Gwen is one of the most visually striking figures I own in any line that I collect. The new female armored buck easily rivals anything we got in the first assortment, and nudges that bar up just a tad. The armor is just bulky enough to be convincing, and yet still keeps all of Gwen’s curves in tact. At the same time the sculpted detail here is just insane. Every over-lapping plate, every segmented hinge, every little rivet, strap, buckle, fastener, even the glimpses of chain mail exposed at the joints, it’s all lovingly crafted on this figure. To say nothing of the etched ornamentation present on the center stripe running down the chest plate. This is a fine example of T4H at the top of their game, and that’s really saying something, because their worst is on par with most other companies’ best.

Likewise, the paintwork on this figure has all the chops needed to compliment the sculpt. The sumptuous gold leaf paint used on the armor is rich and satiny with just the right amount of sheen. This stuff makes Sir Gideon’s gold armor look rather flat by comparison. Add to that the metallic purple used on the secondary panels, and you have a deco that really pops beautifully. And then we come to the finer details, like the individually painted silver buckles on those straps, the tiny silver painted rivets, and the slightly more gray finish of the exposed chainmail. The choice of colors, the quality of paint, and the precision of application are all excellent. One thing that’s different this time around is the joints on the figure are left unpainted. I think this was a good idea, as the painted joints in previous assortments would sometimes cause stuck joints and the paint would usually just rub off anyway as the joints were worked. In some areas, like the backs of the knees, it looks OK as the gray plastic sort of matches the chainmail. It’s a lot more obvious on the shoulder hinges, but only if you choose to display the figure without the shoulder armor.

Gwen comes out of the package wearing her helmeted head and it is a lovely portrait. The previous assortments of Mythic Legions didn’t feature a lot of human head sculpts, and I think that was a good thing, because I didn’t find any of the human portraits to be exceptional. Here, it feels like T4H upped their game a lot. Gwen is quite the looker, and I’m particularly impressed with the paint on display here. Both the eyes and lips have a really nice glossy finish to them and there’s a bit of rosiness to her cheeks. The form fitting helmet features the same luscious gold paint as the rest of her armor with a little of that metallic purple carrying over to the chin. And you can’t miss that monstrous purple plume spilling out of the back and flowing down the back of her head. It’s a separate piece that plugs into a socket at the back of the helmet.

While it’s a shame to mask all that beauty, the visor on Gwen’s helmet can be lowered into place to protect her from messing up her pretty face in the heat of battle. Between the classical design of the helmet and the gold paint, I’m instantly reminded of the vintage Marx Knights, and that’s not at all a bad thing. The protective bars on the visor are wide enough that you can easily see her face through the visor, and I really dig the pierced breathing holes down around the lower face. And since apparently two display options for the head aren’t enough…

We also get an un-helmeted head, and… Wow! Everything I said about the Gwen’s face on the helmeted head goes double here. I love the paint on her eyes and lips and I really dig the sweeping motion of her hair and the way it partially obscures the left side of her face. It adds some wonderful depth to the portrait, and I’m not even concerning myself with the fact that there’s no way she could get that coif contained within that form-fitting helmet of hers. I’m worried that deciding which head to display this figure with is going to keep me up at night. But then these are good problems to have. Let’s talk swords and belts…

Gwendolyn comes with the ubiquitous brown sword belt that we’ve seen with every Mythic Legions figure since the line began. Part of me wishes T4H had tweaked this design a bit, and maybe even worked on some proper scabbards, but then these belts work fine and I’m happy to keep them for aesthetic continuity. The belt rests loosely on her hips and the sword passes through the loop where it can rest on her hip, down the front, or as I like to do it, a little behind the hip. Any of these configurations work fine for her standard single-handed sword.

The sword itself appears to be new, but it’s extremely similar to the one included with her brother, Sir Gideon. Mythic Legions is a line that’s all about the economy of parts sharing and sometimes that’s more evident in the accessories than the actual figures. With that having been said, I like the no-nonsense design of the weapon. It’s got a classic cruciform hilt with a straight crossguard and a disc pommel. Gideon’s sword had a grip that swelled in the middle, whereas this one tapers toward the pommel. The hilt is all in gold with the blade painted a bright silver. Of course, when Gwen wants to make more of a statement…

She also has a much larger two-handed sword. As always, you have the option to use the belt as a shoulder strap to sling the sword diagonally across the back, which is great for Gwen’s larger sword. On the downside, this method works best when you remove one of the pieces of shoulder armor, and if you’re a fan of symmetry like I am, this may not be the look for you. It’s also worth noting that Gwen’s copious plume gets in the way a bit, but it will work.

This sword is a beautiful piece, with a golden hilt, extended grip, fluted pommel and down-sloping crossguard. There are even a pair of red painted crystals in the hilt. The long double-edged blade even features a pair of parrying flukes extending from the blade. One of the things about this line reusing so many weapons: When you get a new one like this, it sure is a treat!

Gwen also comes with a shield, and here we see some old and new. The shield itself is the same configuration we’ve seen dozens of times over. This one is even painted to match her brother’s although the size and placement of the crest is a little different. The edges are painted silver and the face is gold to match her armor. My shield has some notable scuffs and brush marks on it, which I’m going to assume is not intentional, although it does look like it could easily pass as weathering. So what’s different?

The grip! Gone is the plastic clip and in it’s place is this L-shaped grip, and I have mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, the old clips could be at risk of stressing and snapping the more you take them on and off the figure’s arm. Granted, I haven’t had that happen with any of mine, but it has happened with one of my Marvel Legends Captain America shields, and that works on the same design. Also, I sometimes worry about the clip scratching the paint on the figures when putting it on and taking it off. This new system definitely sets aside either of those concerns, and it certainly works, but it feels a lot more unwieldy. It looks fine when viewed from the front and you can still position the shield in almost any orientation, but when viewed from behind or the side I think it can look awkward. Of course, the peg it attaches to is the same, so you can feel free to swap it out with any of the shield clips from the older Mythic Legions figures.

I’d apologize for all the gushing, but when it comes to my Mythic Legions reviews, everyone should expect it by now. It seemed only right to start out with Gwen, since I started with her brother back when my Mythic Legions reviews began, and I think it was cool they offered another one of the Heavensbrand clan as a Backer Reward this time around. And thus begins what will be a long stretch of Mythic Legion Wednesdays as I work my way through this amazing collection of figures. I’m even going to do my best to squeeze another one in on a Tuesday or Wednesday when time allows. I know there have been smaller assortments of figures leaking out since the last Kickstarter, but damn it feels great to have a whole box of brand new Legions again!