Mythic Legions All-Stars 2.0 Final Eight Revealed!

The Four Horsemen have finally revealed the lineup for their All-Stars 2.0 Pre-Order and it’s made me a very happy camper. These are eight previously offered figures that will be once again made available to collectors later this month.

The eight finalists were drawn by fan votes, but all that matters to me is that Carpathias made the cut. This popular and illusive vampire was one of the figures that I had to pull from my original Kickstarter Add Ons, because I ran out of money and running out of money is stupid and lame, and I really wanted him. Of course, he was also one of the figures that shot up in price on the secondary market, but then you could say that about a lot of the Mythic Legions figures. The fact that T4H added more vampires to the second Kickstarter made me want him all the more.

Anyway, the complete list consists of Vorgus Vermillius (The Blood Armor), Attila Leossyr, Bog Goblin, Carpathias, Attlus the Conqueror, the Standard Skeleton Legion Builder, Pixxus, and Jorund Runeshaper! It looks like T4H are also tacking on two extra figures as first time offerings, and teasing the possibility of adding on two additional Legion Builders as well.

I’m only missing two out of these eight, so in addition to Carpathias, I’ll likely be picking up the Bog Goblin as well, and probably one or two more Skeleton Legion Builders. Besides Carpathias, I suspect Pixxus will be the other offering most people are happy to see. He’s a beautiful figure and another that has skyrocketed on the second-hand market.

If you’re looking to pick up any of these figures to fill out your collection, or your looking to dive in to Mythic Legions for the first time, these figures will be going up for Pre-order on Friday, Jan. 19th at 3pm EST at StoreHorsemen.com. Pre-Orders will be open for three weeks. 

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FigureFan’s Favorites 2017, Part 2

Welcome back to the Week of Insufferable Lists. I’m not really here this week, but my Life Model Decoy is right in the middle of laying out my Ten Favorite Acquisitions of 2017. Let’s jump right in with the final five. Again, these are in no particular order…

Mythic Legions Stone Troll by The Four Horsemen: Back when I blew my tax return on that original Mythic Legions kickstarter, I never could have guessed how big it would get. Now my Mythic Legions army is expansive and early next year, I’ll be dropping another 35 figures onto those shelves. But if I had to choose one figure that really illustrates how big and successful this line has been, it would be the huge Stone Troll. The sculpt and paintwork on this guy are amazing and it really illustrates how much more craftsmanship can go into a toy that isn’t destined for the shelves at Target or Walmart. My only regret is that I couldn’t budget the Forest Troll to go with him, but at least I take comfort in the fact that soon he’ll have a Cyclops buddy.

DC Bombshells Batwoman (Designer Series) by DC Collectibles: While I had to take a pass on collecting most of the DC Bombshell statues, I was happy to get the Bombshell figures as a more space-friendly alternative. The first wave was chock full of knockouts, so it wasn’t easy choosing one as a favorite. In the end, I went with Batwoman, because I love the pun, I love baseball, and this figure is just too much fun. Great sculpt, great articulation, and great accessories! But hell, I just as easily could have stuck Harley or Wonder Woman in this slot. These are some of DC Collectibles’ best work in years.

Lost Exo Realm (LER-04) Deluxe Severo by Fansproject: 2017 will likely be my last big hurrah with Third-Party Transformers and it was mostly spent tying up loose ends. It took me a long while to get around to picking up Severo and wrapping up my LER Dinobots, so long that I had almost lost interest. He sat for months waiting to be opened, but when I finally did it was love at first sight. Not only is he an imposing beast in either robot or dino modes, but he comes with so many extra weapons and a throne fit for a king.

DC Gallery (Batman: The Animated Series) Zatanna by Diamond Select: I’ve been generally pleased with Diamond’s line of budget statues based on Marvel and DC characters. So much so, that I knew I had to include something from this line on my list of favorites. There were several contendors, but in the end, I had to go with Zatanna. Not only do I love the character, but this statue is very nearly perfect. The sculpt is a spot on representation of her from the Batman Animated Series, the paint application is clean and precise, and the overall quality feels like something beyond a budget statue.

Zenescope’s Robyn Hood Sixth-Scale Figure by Phicen: I purchased and reviewed all three of Phicen’s Zenescope figures in 2017, and I don’t think anyone really cared. That’s cool. Zenescope is a small comic book company, and most definitely a guilty pleasure of mine, so I can understand the lack of interest. I could have probably picked any one of these figures for this list solely based on the fact that it’s a miracle a company actually produced Zenescope merch, much less high end merch. And while I love all three of these ladies, the truth is that picking one was not even difficult. Liesel Van Helsing and Mercy Dante are both great figures, but Phicen just knocked it out of the park with Robyn Locksley.

And that’s going to do it for the good stuff. Come back tomorrow and we’ll start having a look at some of those purchases that sucker punched me in the nether regions with my first five Disappointments of 2017.

Articulated Icons (The Feudal Series): Deluxe White Ninja by The Fwoosh

If you’re an action figure fan and you’ve got Internet access, then surely you’ve heard of The Fwoosh. It’s a cornerstone site for news, reviews and everything you need to know about little plastic posable peoples. Seems like just the kind of folks who would be good at making action figures, right? Well, they did. They Kickstarted the Articulated Icons, a line of ninja-based action figures with an emphasis on articulation and accessories. At the time, I was really weighed down by Hot Toys Flex-Payments and some other Kickstarter commitments, so I couldn’t go as deep as I wanted. I did, however, pick up a few figures and we’ll look at one of those today.

Behold, the packaging for the Deluxe White Ninja! It’s not the most exciting name for a figure, but it certainly tells you what you’re getting. The figure comes in a collector friendly (and very professional looking) window box. There’s a tray for the figure and a baggie for a ton of accessories. I can’t remember when this Kickstarter officially ended, but I seem to recall it netted more than double its initial goal. I do remember the figures were estimated to ship in May 2016, and these just arrived on my doorstep earlier this month. Yup, that’s a long delay, but if patience is an issue for you, supporting Kickstarters probably isn’t something you want to be doing. So was it worth the wait? Let’s find out…

The basic figure is indeed a generic white-suited Ninja, and I don’t use the term generic in a negative way, because he’s supposed to be whatever you want him to be. Nameless solider? Hero? Enemy attached to a terrorist army that worships snakes? Like I said, whatever you want him to be. And as we’ll soon see, he has all the extra bits to help you customize him to your liking. The body features a standard ninja outfit… yeah, I’m sorry, but all my ninja knowledge comes from Saturday morning cartoons and Sunday afternoon kung-fu movies, so pardon me if I don’t even make an attempt at proper terminology here when it comes to his outfit and gear. The suit is very simple, with some sculpted wrinkles, wraps around the lower legs and a black belt. There are some minor cosmetic imperfections in the plastic, but overall this is a very solid buck, which scales quite well with Hasbro’s 6-inch Marvel line.

The articulation here is excellent, and since it’s a big showcase of the figure, let’s run down all the points. The legs feature ball jointed hips, swivels in the thighs and shins, double hinges knees, and ankles on balled hinges. The arms feature ball jointed shoulders and wrists, swivels in the biceps, and double hinges in the elbows. The torso has a swivel in the waist, a swivel and hinge in the torso, and the neck has both a hinge and a ball joint. It’s a few tweaks away from Marvel Legends style articulation, and that’s a very good thing! For the most part, the joints on my figure feel great and behave just as they should. Although, the feet and hands can sometimes pop out unexpectedly. It’s not that unusual for the hands, as they are designed to be swapped out, but I’m not used to the feet doing it also! It’s also worth noting that the figure has two peg holes, one in the middle of his back and another in the middle of his belt. These not only work for accessories, but also fit a standard Tamashii stand, and that’s a wonderful little extra.

The figure comes with three different heads. First up is the stock head, followed by the balaclava head. Either of these are perfect for your generic ninja warriors, particularly if one of them is named Shadow of the Storm, or something similar. The heads pop on and off pretty easy. There are also two hood pieces, one up and one down, but I didn’t use them in any of my shots, because I wasn’t really happy with the way they looked.

Next up is the unmasked head, which is the epitome of the wise old Master Ninja. I really dig the sculpt on this one, as it sports a lot of personality. If you were lucky enough to get a bunch of these guys, this head is perfect for their leader or teacher. The paintwork on this head is also very solid.

You also get this amazing demon mask that can be worn over the head and it looks fantastic. The sculpt and paint are extremely well detailed and it fits the figure perfectly. There’s also a red scarf to go with it.

In addition to heads, you get a passel of hands. These include fists, accessory gripping hands, hands with splayed fingers, and karate chop hands. But enough about noggins and hands, let’s move on to the accessories, because there are a ton of them to talk about…

For starters, you get what constitutes my favorite look for this guy: A pair of swords and scabbards that peg into the back. These work in conjunction with a shoulder strap to make it look like it’s holding them on. The swords peg in easily and I haven’t had any issues with them falling out while messing around with him.

The swords draw from the scabbards very easily and he looks great wielding them. The black hilts feature some excellent sculpted detail and there’s a little gold paint where the blade meets the tsubas. The blades themselves are painted in a sharp looking silver and are made from pretty stiff plastic, so there’s no worries about these bending and warping if you’re careful with them. The accessory holding hands grip the blades very tightly.

Another optional load out for the ninja turns him into an archer. You get a quiver with sculpted arrows that plug into the back, a bow, and a single loose arrow, which he can hold between the fingers of his accessory holding hand. Indeed, the articulation is good enough so you can pose him knocking the arrow. The sculpted arrows in the quiver can be removed (all as one piece) and there’s even room in there to insert the loose arrow. If you ponied up for a bunch of these guys, you can have a squad of archers backing up your swordsmen as they charge into battle!

Ninjas and shuriken go together like peanut butter and jelly. At least that’s what the old movies tell me. The figure comes with three different types of throwing stars. I’ve only shown off two here, because the third is super tiny. Again, the fingers on the accessory holding hands have a split between the fingers, so you can slide the shuriken in there and it holds very well.

For the next two weapons, I’m going to have to dig deep into my vast reservoir of ninja weapon terminology. You get short sickle weapon thing, and chunky triangle throwing knife thing. OK, so even if I don’t know what they’re called, these are both really cool and unusual accessories and welcome additions to my ninja arsenal.

Oh, this next one is a sai! I knew that one from watching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I usually see these used as a pair, so I’m a little surprised he only came with one, but considering all the other stuff included in the package, I’m not about to complain. Moving on to the pole arms…

I think this is called a Bo Staff? At least that’s another thing that I learned from TMNT. It’s a simple staff with a sculpted and painted wrapped grip in the middle.

And finally, you have this glaive, which is one of my favorite weapons in the package. The shaft is just a brown pole, but there’s a sculpted butt on the end, which is painted gold, and another gold socket sculpted between the blade and the pole. It’s loads of fun and looks really cool.

Before wrapping up, I have to mention that the Deluxe Ninja comes with this rooftop base. It includes several pegs so you can position the figure in a variety of positions. There are also pegs on the side, so you can connect several of these together to make a bigger display. Yeah, I’m really regretting not picking up at least three more of these. Why the hell didn’t I do that? Oh yeah, I was short on money at the time.

In case you can’t tell, I’m quite satisfied with the way this fellow came out and to answer my original question, Yes… he was absolutely worth the wait. My only quibble is the plastic used for the body could have been a little cleaner and more consistent, but even those issues are minor and you need to get in really close to notice them. Otherwise, the figure feels great in hand and is loads of fun to pose. Couple that with the insane number of accessories, heads and hands, and you’ve got oodles of ninja fun. I actually pledged the Kickstarter at the Basic Ninja level, so this Deluxe Ninja was one of my add-on items. He ran $50, which is certainly a premium price to pay for a 6-inch scale figure, but when you toss in the extras and the base, and then factor in that it was a Kickstarted series by a small company the price feels about right. That’s especially the case now if you see what these guys are going for on Ebay. In a week or so, I’ll come back to this line and check out the Basic Red Ninja that I also picked up.

Mythic Legions (Covenant of Shadows): Baron Volligar by The Four Horsemen

We still have a loooong while to wait until the “Advent of Decay” figures from the last Mythic Legions Kickstarter ship, but it looks like T4H are gearing up to offer some more figures for pre-order later this month. To celebrate, I decided to open up another one of the handful of “Covenant of Shadows” figures that I’m sitting on to hold me over until next April. So, come on… let’s check out Baron Volligar!

It’s the same old packaging I’ve shown here dozens of times: Attractive, serviceable, and ultimately collector friendly. As always, you get a little bio blurb on the side panel of the bubble insert. I didn’t care about these at all in the beginning, maybe because the figures were still so new to me, but I’ve come to really appreciate exploring the lore and backstory of this action figure line. The bio here describes Baron Volligar as ancient vampyric royalty, and basically tells us that he is a pretty bad hombre, even as far as vampires go.

And oh, boy does he look the part! Volligar sports a suit of armor, which is a hybrid of Sir Godfrey’s and many of the pieces common to the Orcs’ armor. Mating Templar and Orc designs may sound like an unlikely marriage, but fear not, T4H really know what they’re doing and the results are pretty spectacular. Digging deeper, we can see that Volligar features the knightly tabard torso, hip armor, and upper legs and arms of Sir Godfrey, all of which is given a rather sinister twist thanks to the lower legs, grieves, shoulder armor, and collar of the Orcs. It almost looks like Volligar might have had a respectable suit of hero armor and gradually tweaked it after succumbing to the vampire curse. Of course, none of that is spelled out here, but rather just my own little musings.

As always, the shoulders are removable, and actually come packaged separate from the figure. I definitely prefer him with them on, but taking the armor pieces off does improve the range of motion in the shoulders quite a bit. The jagged and primitive look of these pieces mates beautifully with the similarly designed boots and grieves. There are some wonderful little nicks and pitting sculpted in as well to make them look well worn.

We last saw this helmet on Sir Godfrey, although it’s popped up a few times before him as well. It’s a very classically styled Great Helm with reinforced strips forming a cruciform pattern. Yeah, I find that a little odd for a vampire, but I’m willing to let that go. The helm features sculpted bolts and breather holes, and the deep set eye slits reveal only mystery. The helm is further customized by the rather imposing dragon crest at the top. I really dig the way the helmet sits deep in the center of the collar. It just further adds to the darker nature of a helmet that has so far only been used on the good guys.

And speaking of darker, the deco on this figure is superb. Besides knowing all the right ways to mix and match their system of parts, T4H are also adept at putting together some truly amazing color combinations. OK, so this one in particular is kind of a no-brainer and for me it really evokes a lovely Decepticon deco that I love so much. Yup, it’s all about the black and purple on that tabard. It almost looks like a primitive ribcage or ideogram for the undead. Lovely! The armor itself features both matte black and a rich, charcoal gray with a brushed metal finish. You also get some metallic purple applications on some of the ornate panels on the armor, which look quite striking under the light.

For armaments, The Baron relies on his trusty sword and shield. The sword is the two-handed variety that we’ve seen many times before. This design always reminds me of Glamdring from Lord of the Rings, probably because I saw an illustration of Gandalf carrying a similar looking sword. It’s a nice mix of classic and fantasy and I really dig the shape of the crossguard and that skull-crushing pommel. It has a sculpted black grip and the blade and other fixtures are painted with a charcoal gray to match those parts of Volligar’s armor.  The shield is also the same standard sculpt with his black and purple coat of arms painted on the face. Wait? You mean that’s it? These guys usually come loaded for bear. He just has a sword and shield? Yeah, Volligar is a little light on the weapons, when compared to other Mythic Legions figures, but that’s probably because he comes with…

…this enormous battle standard. T4H did a bunch of these representing the different factions of Mythic Legions. I think they were all available in one pack, but every time pre-orders go up, I’ve been budgeting to get as many figures as possible, so this is actually the first time I’m getting one of these standards into my collection. It’s a very cool piece with a pole so long it comes in three separate pieces. The flag itself is painted with Volligar’s coat of arms and there’s a pretty rad set of wings angling off of the top. Unfortunately, it’s way too tall for me to display him holding it on the shelf, but I may yet find a way to display it somewhere.

And so, to the surprise of absolutely no one, here’s another Mythic Legions figure that I can’t stop gushing over. What can I tell ya? I adore this line and I don’t see that changing any time soon. It’s probably worth pointing out that when I pre-ordered Volligar, I didn’t bother to read his bio and I thought he was just an awesome evil knight. The fact that he’s a vampire pleases me greatly, because the decision to chop the vampire, Carpathias from my original Kickstarter Backer Rewards remains a sore spot for me. At least now I finally have a vampire to tide me over until “Advent of Decay” arrives.

Mythic Legions: Stone Troll by The Four Horsemen

Last week The Four Horsemen put a bunch of Mythic Legions stuff up on their site for pre-order, virtually everything sold out very quickly, and I got shut out because I was working, goddammit! Here I was slaving away to earn Troll monies and I missed it. Yeah, and that’s the shame of it. All I was really after was the Forest Troll, but then it was a hundred bucks I shouldn’t have been spending anyway, so I’m not too upset. And besides, it gave me an excuse to finally open up the Troll I do have and ease the pain of defeat.

Holy crap, this is a big box! Let’s not forget that the Mythic Legions line is scaled to about 6-inches, so they really had to spend a lot of plastic to create this behemoth. And that really speaks to the success of this line. It’s rare that Kickstarted action figure projects produce the insane volume of releases that Mythic Legions did, but then to deliver a couple of huge figures like these on top of that. And then have them keep selling out! It’s crazy! Anyway, T4H produced Trolls in two different flavors: Stone and Forest. I had originally planned on buying the Forest Troll, but a little later the weapons were revealed and the Stone Troll’s weapon nudged me over to his side. Ideally, I would have loved to pick up both, but I’ve already recounted how that went.

The Stone Troll comes in a beautiful, heavy cardboard window box with a painting on the back that matches what we saw on the individual figure card backs. The side panels, however, have some lovely original artwork, depicting both Trolls and… Holy shit, is that a Cyclops??? I WANT THE CYCLOPS!!! The fact that both Trolls are depicted leads me to believe that T4H used this same box for both of them, but unless I’m willing to pony up a lot more than $100 for the Forest Troll on the scalper market, I guess I’ll never know. Everything here is collector friendly, so long as you’re patient when removing all of those twisty-tie wires. This poor guy has been all sealed up on my shelf for a long time now, so let’s get him out and have a look!

Say hello to big and ugly, and I mean that as the most sincerest form of flattery, because this guy is fantastic! The combination of sculpt and paintwork on display here shows that T4H can go really damn big and still not lose any of that attention to detail. The variations in flesh tones from the Troll’s rocky hide to the more leathery parts of his belly, inner arms, and hands is like nothing I could ever hope to see on a off-the-shelf toy in this day and age. But hey, that’s the wonderful thing about Kickstarted toys. While the big companies are slashing paint applications left and right to save a couple of nickles, companies like T4H can spare no expense, so long as the supporters are there and willing to lay their money down. On that note, I’ll come back to around to discuss cost and value at the end. I don’t want to get ahead of myself.

I really dig the stony patches that cover his back. The Stone Troll appears to derive his name both literally and figuratively. I naturally assumed he was just a mountain or cave Troll, but he also appears to have adopted the characteristics of his surroundings as well. Maybe that’s thousands of years of Stone Troll evolution that allows him to blend in with his surroundings and ambush hapless adventurers. Whatever the case, it’s a lovely, craggy texture with individual stone scales speckled about and painted in a lighter gray to make them stand out. Other details on this brute include the heavy cuffs he wears on his wrists, and even the soles of his ugly Troll feet are fully sculpted and textured!

The Stone Troll protects his modesty and covers up his own manly stones with with this belted loin cloth. The belt has a hammered metal appearance, which matches that of his wrist cuffs. It’s sculpted as part of the torso and I really dig the way his paunch hangs over the top of the large medallion. I wouldn’t say he’s a fat Troll, but he doesn’t look like he’s missing any meals either. The actual loin cloth presents a bit of mixed media to the figure with the top layer looking like worn animal hide and the bottom layer appearing as frayed cloth.

 

And that brings us to this lovable mug, which really presents as the most triumphant feature of this Troll. It strikes me as very Lord-of-the-Rings-ish, and I’m talking about the Peter Jackson movie aesthetic. The super glossy red paint used for the eyes looks magical and the paintwork and sculpted detail on his teeth and tusks is mind-blowing. He has a little bit of mud splatter on his face and body, and I just adore his little pointed ears. Hot damn, T4H really poured the love into this guy.

The articulation here is pretty basic, but probably not off base for a giant troll, because these are giant lumbering brutes. You get rotating hinges in the shoulders and elbows, rotating hips, and swivel cuts at the ankles, wrists, and neck. The shoulders feature some pretty strong ratcheting joints, which we’ll see is a good thing considering the size of his weapon. His hips are sometimes a little weak for the task of supporting his bulk, but most of the time they seem to hold fine. While the points are all there, there isn’t a huge range of motion in any of them. I wouldn’t call that a complaint, because I wasn’t expecting all that much and there’s still plenty of pose-ability here to have fun with.

Most of the range of motion is in the shoulders, and just look at this guy’s reach! He has a fairly good balance too. Those arms are pretty heavy and yet he’s still holding his own with them both way out in front of him. I wish there were some hinges in those ankles, but maybe next time!

The Stone Troll’s weapon is a giant club made out of a boulder fastened to a tree and like the Troll itself, the attention to detail that T4H invested into this piece is pretty crazy. The tree itself has a realistic wood texture and it’s wrapped with a pair of sculpted bands made to look like hammered metal with bolts running all around the circumference. The stone itself has some runes carved into it and it’s secured to the tree with more of those sculpted “metal” bands. The weapon fits in either of the Trolls hands and it’s actually cast in two pieces of plastic and can split apart in the middle. And as I said earlier, it was ultimately this weapon that won me over when faced with the Sophie’s Choice of which Troll to buy. I’m still very pleased with my decision.

As beautiful a showpiece as this Troll is, the real fun begins when you let him loose amidst the Mythic Legions figures. He’s beautifully scaled to tower over them, lift them up, and rip them apart.

The Stone Troll retailed for $100, which would be steep if this were a regular retail release, but then that’s hard to judge. If Generic Big Toy Company were to put this on the shelf at your local Target, it would probably be half that, but then there’s no way it would have the same level of sculpted detail and quality of paint. As a result, it’s really hard to do price comparisons here, and that is, after all, the whole point of Kickstarters and Pre-Orders. It’s a hefty price tag, no doubt, but I’m not going to sit here and declare that I’ve even a shred of buyer’s remorse over this purchase. The stupid smile I’ve had on my face while playing with this guy is justification enough. And with the continued success of Mythic Legions burning bright, I sincerely believe we’ll be seeing more large beasties in the line’s future.

Vitruvian HACKS: Atelis Warrior (Kokomo Toys Exclusive) by Boss Fight Studios

A couple of weeks back Indiana toy store, Kokomo Toys revealed their second Exclusive release from Boss Fight Studios’ Vitruvian HACKS series and I was quick to drop in a pre-order. It also reminded me how I’ve let this line has fall by the wayside when it comes to my reviews. I still have quite a few figures from Series 1, and I promise I’ll be getting back to looking at them regularly. But for now, I’m going to go ahead and push this figure to the head of the line, because I’m really excited to open her up and check her out.

BFS have done a few exclusives in this line and they’ve all come in these simple, illustrated boxes. They’re certainly not as flashy as the full-color carded packaging used on the regular releases, but these are still collector friendly and the little boxes give you a place to keep all the extra bits. And there are a ton of extra bits! I probably could have bought three or four of these figures and kitted each one out to make them look unique. So, let’s start out with the basic figure and then check out all the extra goodies.

The Atelis Warrior (I’m just going to call her Atelis) is the result of a misguided attempt to turn human warriors back after they’ve been cursed as Gorgons. The result is this half-stage mutation warrior, who in the end still remained loyal to Medusa and the Gorgons. That’s a pretty rad backstory for what is a great looking figure. We’ve seen just about all of these parts before in previous HACKS figures that I reviewed here. You get the basic female buck, painted green. The chest armor, shoulder armor, and arm pieces all come from Medusa, while the greaves are from the Spartan Warrior. Pretty much all the armor and accessories here are repainted with a gorgeous gold and they all look fantastic.

The sculpting on the shoulder piece is superbly done, especially for a 4-inch scale figure. I also really appreciate the individually painted rivets on the skirt and straps. The sandal straps are individually painted, and even the body has some nice dark green markings to drive home the whole snake motif. As always, all the armor pieces are removable and they are compatible with the other female HACKS figures. For that matter, even the figure itself can be disassembled and rebuilt fairly easily.

Atelis comes with two head sculpts, which was an unexpected, but most welcome, surprise. The standard head looks to be a repaint of the Coral Snake Gorgon head, which was part of the original wave of four figures. This portrait features some very nice sculpted scaling, and the eyes look incredible. The head attaches via a double ball-jointed post, which allows for easy swapping as well as a little extra movement in the neck.

The second head is an even more incredible sculpt. You get the full open mouth with some beautiful work on the interior. I can practically see the venom glands in there ready to spew! This head has a little more of a sheen to it and both the sculpted scales and the painted markings are different for this head, so if you happen to be picking up a couple of these, you can diversify your display quite nicely. As long as we’re talking heads, let’s take a look at the head gear included with the figure.

You get two types of head gear, the first being a standard Spartan-style helmet. We’ve certainly seen this before, and it looks great in the gold paint with a dark green comb on the top. These helmets were obviously designed for the human heads, so the cheek guards splay out a bit on the snake heads, but I still think it looks fine.

The other piece is a gold repaint of the snake skull headpiece we’ve seen with some of the Gorgons. I loved the design of this thing when I first got it with the Coral Snake Gorgon, and I have to say it looks incredible in gold.

BFS have really been packing these exclusive releases with a ton of weapons and Atelis here is no different. She comes with two sets of hands and each set has the hinges placed differently. As for the weapons, first off you get two of those skeletal whips that have been included with some of the Gorgons in the past.

Next up, you get a pair of matched swords. These are the Etruscan style swords with leaf-shaped blades, all decked out in gold.

You also get this sweet little skeletal dagger, which compliments the whips quite nicely. Get ’em caught in the whip and then make with the stabby-stabby! It’s a delightfully brutal combination.

And finally, Aetlis comes with a gorgeous golden shield with Medusa’s face sculpted into it. This features the usual combination of sleeve and grab bar that allows the figure to hold it pretty securely. It can be a little bit of a chore to get her hand to grasp the bar, but to be honest, the sleeve is more than enough to keep the shield on her arm.

With BFS hard at work on Vitruvian HACKS Series 2 (this time, a medieval-fantasy themed series), I was all but certain that Series 1 was finished. Nonetheless, this lovely lady came across my Twitter feed back in March for pre-order and I jumped on it right away. At $30, she ran about ten bucks more than the regular figures, but in fairness, you do get some more goodies in the box than with a regular release and since that included shipping, the price here doesn’t seem outrageous, especially for an exclusive release. The Atelis Warrior is still available through Kokomo Toys’ Ebay Store.

 

Mythic Legions (Covenant of Shadows): Silverhorn Sentry by The Four Horsemen

Last week, the Backer Kits for the second Mythic Legions Kickstarter, Advent of Decay, went out. I put in for 35 figures and now there’s nothing left to do but wait. Wait thirteen agonizing months. And that’s not accounting for the inevitable delays that often occur with these things. Thankfully, I still have a few figures left to open to tide me over. Not to mention a giant Troll that has not yet tasted sweet freedom from his window-box prison. Nope, no Troll today. Today I’m checking out a figure that I came very close to passing on, The Silverhorn Sentry.

In the beginning, I wasn’t at all into the bios or the fiction of this line, but with each successive assortment of figures, the canon of Mythic Legions interests me more and more. For example, this fellow’s bio notes that The Sentries of Castle Silverhorn are under the command of The Forest Elemental, Faunus. Why is that relevant? Because Faunus is one of the figures I’ve got coming in the Advent of Decay series and he’s already got a place in the continuity of my shelves. In the meantime, The Sentry will be taking his orders from Captain of the Silverhorn Guard, Asterionn, a figure that was issued in the original Kickstarter.

Silverhorn Sentry represents the usual reshuffling of parts that we’ve been seeing out of the later run figures. That’s not a dig or a complaint, mind you, because just look at this guy… he’s amazing. He uses a combination of the full chest plate torso from the knights with the lower tabard piece to make a belt sash. In fact, everything below the waist is re-purposed from Sir Gideon, with the exception of the hooves for feet, which I first encountered on the Minotaur, Asterionn. The deco consists of a rich, metallic brown, almost like a very deep copper color, for the armor. When you pair that with the gold and pale emerald decorations, and the hunter green sash, the whole figure has a very earthy flavor that meshes perfectly with the antlers and his task of guarding the forests around Silverhorn Castle. As always, the shoulders are optional, but in this case I think they’re a must, for reasons I’m going to get into right now…

One of the things I liked most about this figure when T4H first showed him was the fact that it uses the helmeted Dwarf head on a full body and it looks splendid. The shape of it, however, makes it a little hollow in the back, but these shoulders with the high ridges help to fix that a bit. Those antlers, which are the same ones we saw on Gorgo’s helmet, also make him out to be quite the imposing chap. I would not want to be up to mischief in the forest and run into this guy. And if, for some reason, this helmet doesn’t do it for you…

T4H were also generous enough to toss in a variant head with this figure. It’s something that they seem to be doing a lot with the Advent of Decay figures, and I’m not about to protest extra heads! In this case, it’s a repaint of Gorgo’s helmet. I like it, it looks great, but I’m really too sold on the stock helmet here to even consider swapping it out for display. Also, combining the same antlers with the same helmet as Gorgo makes for too many similarities for my taste.

Weapons! What good would a forest sentry be without them, eh? This guy comes with the two-handed sword that we’ve seen plenty of times before. The hilt is painted gold and It features a down-turned cross-guard and a pointed, skull-crushing pommel. I love this sword a lot and it really suits this figure. I might have opted for a different color hilt. Maybe green to match his sash? But now I’m nitpicking. Of course, the sword comes with the standard brown belt so it can be worn on his hip or slung across his back.

The spear is another very familiar piece and one that I think really goes well with this figure. I also really appreciate that they painted the shaft a different color from the head. The single colored spears have been one of my very few bugaboos about this line.

And finally he comes with a brand new shield! Well, it’s actually one that was released among the weapon packs, but I didn’t get any of those, so this is the first time I’ve seen this shield among the twenty-seven or so Mythic Legions figures I own. The sculpted wood face with the painted, reinforced metal is a welcome change from the same knightly shields we’ve been seeing over and over again. And like his weapons, this shield feels like it’s perfect for the Sentry. This is a great piece, and I wish that T4H had included it with a couple more of the figures.

Before wrapping up, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention a few QC quirks with this figure. Firstly, the hip joints were totally loosey-goosey out of the package. I know that this has been a problem for some collectors on several figures in this line, but this is the first time I really encountered it. It’s an easy fix, just a little floor polish on those ball joints and he’s right as rain. Secondly, the paint came off the back of the knee hinges very quickly. I’ve had some rubbing on other figures, and I think that’s inevitable, but here it wore down to the plastic almost immediately. It’s a minor cosmetic flaw to me, in a very discrete area, but still worth mentioning.

Passing on The Silverhorn Sentry the first time around cost me a little, as I got this one from a re-seller and paid an extra fifteen bucks for him. That’s quite the mark up, but the reality is that most of the figures from the first Kickstarter are going for crazy money now, and I’m betting it’s only a matter of time before the Covenant of Shadows releases catch up to those. BBTS has some of these guys for $50, and that’s actually not bad considering the Ebay listings that are out there. Either way, I was comfortable spending it when I got the chance and now that he’s in hand, I glad I did it. This guy is a solid addition to my lineup, and he’s going to look damn cool standing off to the side of Faunus when he arrives next year.

Mythic Legions (Covenant of Shadows): Scaphoid by The Four Horsemen

After doubling down on Transformers Thursday last week, I’m taking a week off from the change-o-bots. Also, because I have nothing new to look at. Maybe something new next week? Maybe not. It all depends whether the Retail Gods are good to me. In the meantime… Mythic Legions!!!!

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A few days ago, the second Mythic Legions Kickstarter came to a close with an unprecedented $930,000+ pledged against a goal of $140,000. Needless to say it was a success, and needless to say I’ve had a lot of money hoovered out of my bank account to support it. And now commences the long wait until the projected shipping date of April 2018. Hoo boy, that wait is going to hurt! Luckily, I still have some unopened Mythic Legions figures to tide me over a bit. Today I’m opening another release from the Covenant of Shadows assortment. His name is Scaphoid, and don’t stop him now, he’s a necromantic skeleton waiting to reload, like an atom bomb about to oh oh oh oh oh explode! Seriously, read the bio on this guy! It’s metal.

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At his core, Scaphoid borrows a fair amount from the excellent (and personal favorite of mine) Skapular The Cryptbreaker. Most notably the tabard-wearing torso, the bony arms, the segmented bicep armor, and the the high collar, which I presume is to protect against decapitation at the hands of Sir Gideon and his band of do-gooder knights. The hip armor is different. Sure, we’ve seen it before, but I really like the buckles on this style, and his angular gauntlets and boots come from the Orcs. It’s a wonderful combination with a lovely ancient patina on the armor and a deep purple paint on the tabard that transitions to an eerie green down towards his feet, giving him a bit of a spectral glow. And speaking of spectral glows, it’s the unbelievably spooky and ethereal green paint on the bones that makes this figure truly (and almost literally) shine. It’s the magical necromancy energy that’s baked right in! I really can’t say enough great things about the paintwork on this figure. As always, even the individual rivets on the armor are painted!

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As is almost always the case with these figures, Scaphoid comes with a set of optional shoulder armor, which pegs into those holes on his back. I originally wasn’t going to use these pieces, because I rather dig the armor on his upper arms, but once I put these on I knew I had to keep them. It has the same great coppery finish as the rest of the armor and the emerald inlays really look spectacular along with the green deco of his bones.

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Scaphoid includes two portraits and they’re both so good, it’s damn hard to choose. The stock skull is in pretty good condition and beautifully sculpted. Why would you ever want to change this out for another one? Because the other one includes a hinged jaw and a lot more cracks and a couple of missing teeth. Do you like your skulls to be clean and fresh or roughed up and beaten around? The choice is yours! This would be an opportune time to have doubles of a figure, because if you change up the shoulders and heads, they’d each still look pretty unique even standing next to each other.

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Scaphoid comes with a collection of gear that we’ve seen before. The mace is still the freshest piece in this arsenal. I only own one of these and it came with Sir Godfrey. This one is painted with a greenish hue around the mace head. It still features some really nice sculpted wood grain in the handle and the head looks like it could do some serious damage.

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The dagger is familiar too, it seems like a majority of the skeletons have come with daggers. It sports the same greenish tint to both the blade and the hilt and looks absolutely bitchin. He also comes with the standard brown belt so he can wear the dagger on his hip or slung across his belly. It also doubles as a shoulder strap if you want to give Scaphoid another sword and sling it across his back.

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And finally we get a standard shield, which we’ve seen many times, here with the surface painted purple to match his tabard. I really dig this piece, but I think it’s the one accessory that I’m starting to get a little tired of seeing. I also would have liked some kind of coat of arms on his. Maybe at some point, T4H could release sticker sheets to allow us to customize some of the blank shields. That would be cool!

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The Skeletons in this line have all become non-negotiable for me. I’ve got them all so far and I’ll keep buying any and all they release. God help me if they ever start selling these skellies regularly on StoreHorsemen, because I’d probably be ordering more every month. With that having been said, Scaphoid here still feels like something special and a lot of that just comes from the distinctive magical deco and the crazy story behind him. I’m done trying to assign favorites to this line, because they’re all so damn good that whichever one is in my hand at the moment is usually my favorite, but right now I’d rank Scaphoid right up there among the best. He’s just gorgeous and he compliments my skeleton ranks beautifully.

Mythic Legions (Covenant of Shadows): Gorthokk by The Four Horsemen

In case you were wondering, that loud sucking sound is the veritable money vacuum that is the new Mythic Legion Kickstarter going on right now. As I write this they’re closing in on the $400,000 mark against the $140k they needed to fund this thing, and they still have 12 to go! And I can say with all honesty, that I’m doing my part as my pledge grows with each new stretch goal that’s revealed. It’s only natural that all this excitement has me hankering to open some new Mythic Legions figures, and luckily the Wave 1.75 figures hit my doorstep a week or so ago.

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I’ll admit, I was really tempted to start with the mammoth Deluxe Stone Troll, but I’m going to save him for later and instead start with one of the regular figures. Here, you see Gorthokk in all his packaged glory. Despite being a Wave 1.75 “Covenant of Shadows” figure, there’s nothing new about the packaging. It’s attractive and serviceable and, as always, collector friendly. The blurb on the bubble insert tells us that Gorthokk is a Cavern Orc, sometimes called Shadow Orcs, and these are the worst of the worst of them!

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The new variety of Orc is distinguished by his gorgeous dark skin and some splattered mud (or blood?) on his chest and face. As a late release in the line, he’s comprised entirely of parts that we’ve seen before, and yet somehow manages to still look like a fresh figure. That’s the beauty of this line’s inventory of swappable parts. The boots and gauntlet are the same ones we’ve typically seen on the previous Orc releases. They’re jagged and clunky and have that rough and primitive flavor about them. The waist, hip, and groin armor are all pulled from the regular knights of the line and the bare chest and arms we’ve seen on a few different releases.

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As is often the case, the figure comes with optional shoulder armor, and these are the standard Orc pieces that match the jagged look of the gauntlets and boots. They simply peg into the holes on the back of the figure and displaying him with one, both, or none offers some nice variety. The paintwork on all the armor pieces is superb. The shoulders, gauntlets, and boots have an enchanted blue sheen to them, while the rest of the armor features a deep, rich rusted brown. The individual rivets are all neatly painted, as are some of the decorative inserts. All of it is properly weathered.

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Gorthokk comes with two heads, helmeted and un-helmeted, which was a fantastic surprise, as I purchased this figure assuming it only came with one. He comes packaged with the un-helmeted head and it looks great with the new darker deco. It’s very sinister and brimming with personality. The creases in his face give him a ton of personality and I love the upward jutting tusks and those beady yellow eyes. I can just imagine those peepers coming out of the dark at me.

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The helmeted head has a deco that matches the rusty brown and metallic blue of his armor. Once again, the paint on this piece is just exquisite, especially the weathering on the cheek plates. The comb on the top looks aggressive and it features a nasty nick from a sword or axe attack. I really wish I picked up a couple more of these, two of them with the helmet and shoulders flanking the one without would look amazing. But then I remember, oh yeah, I don’t have all the money in the world. Let’s move on to weapons!

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Up until now, we’ve been seeing repaints of the same handful of weapons, but Gorthokk breaks that tradition with a couple that are new to me. I’m sure these were released in the original Weapons Packs, which I would have loved to pick up, but I decided from the beginning to funnel all my available budget into the actual figures and take whatever accessories come my way with them. The new sword has a rough looking blade, which is like a cross between a scimitar and the Uruk-Hai blades we saw in the Lord of the Rings films. The hilt has more of an Fantasy Eastern Barbarian flavor and the sculpted wear and tear in the blade is just phenomenal.

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The hand axe is another great little sculpt with the primitive blade fastened to a curved and blackened bone. It’s a refreshingly unique looking weapon considering previous Orcs have been coming with the same conventional style of swords as some of the heroes of the line. I think this piece really suits the more savage nature of the Shadow Orc.

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You also get this standard cruciform sword, which is a great piece, but feels out of place with this guy, and will likely be doled out to one of my other figures. Maybe it’s a trophy he took off a slain enemy. And as always, you get the standard brown sword belt, actually in this case I got two of them, which can be worn on the hip or as a cross-strap on the shoulder. The scimitar is a tight fit when passing it through the loop, but it will go through with a little patience.

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Gorthokk brings my Orc forces to four, and that feels like a good number for now. They’ll be getting some reinforcements of the female Orc variety next year when The Advent of Decay figures ship. Don’t get me wrong, if these figures were swinging on the pegs down at Target or Toys R Us, I’d have a lot more Orcs than I do now, and I’m still hoping that one day Store Horsemen might have a permanent page devoted to these guys where I can pick up a few here and there as my budget allows. As a Pre-Order, Gorthokk set me back $33 and while that may seem like a premium for a 6-inch action figure these days, the quality and workmanship here make it worth every penny. I keep reminding myself that when I factor in shipping, I was paying more than that to have the average Masters of the Universe Classics figure from Matty. I still love my MOTUC collection, but comparing the two lines hardly seems fair.

Mythic Legions: Jorund Runeshaper by The Four Horsemen

Mythic Legions news dropped late last week from the T4H, announcing that the new Kickstarter for Advent of Decay (previously known as Wave 2.0) would be going live at the end of the month. They also let it be known that the last of the pre-ordered figures, including the Trolls, have arrived at their warehouse and would be shipping out in a couple of weeks. Seems like a good time to look at the last figure I have waiting to be opened. And it seemed appropriate to do one last Mythic Legions Wednesday before I re-work my posting schedule for the year (yet again!), bringing myself to four weekday updates, and taking Wednesdays off.

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Jorund Runeshaper is one of the figures I passed on while trying to budget out my initial Kickstarter Add Ons. He was also one of the ones that was hard for me to let go, because I wanted a lot of dwarves. Well, late last year, T4H put up some of their remaining stock up for pre-order, I had a second crack at this guy, and naturally I took it! I’ve got nothing new to say about the packaging, so let’s get him out!

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This is my fourth Dwarf, but if this is your first look at one of these, you should know that they share the upper body and arms with the armored humans of the line, and only the legs are shorter and dwarf-specific. Jorund’s bio indicates that he’s a rather atypical Dwarf in that he’s a master of the mystic arts and I’d like to think that’s reflected in his spectacular, and obviously enchanted, armor. Indeed, with the metallic blue, gold, green, and purple deco, this is one of the most visually striking suits of armor in the entire line, and that’s saying a lot! The quality of paint that T4H uses on these figures continue to amaze me as does the precision of application. Every tiny sculpted rivet on this suit is painted and the emerald green and gold look superb against the blue. It’s absolutely gorgeous!

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As always, the shoulder pieces are optional, although in this case they’re required if you want him wearing his cloth cape. Personally, I prefer him with the cape and shoulders, but when I get to articulation, I’ll talk about some of the drawbacks of using them. The cape is made of very soft material and I’d stress caution when taking it on and off, because the fabric is thin at the tops of the holes and it looks like it wouldn’t take much to tear it.

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I was expecting this portrait to be a straight repaint of Thord Ironjaw, but I was pleasantly surprised. The face looks the same, but the sculpt of the beard and mustache and bushy eyebrows are all new. The head gear is also new, with a smooth, rounded helmet and a crest above his forehead. The wings are repaints of the ones we originally saw worn by Sir Gideon Heavensbrand and they look quite nice here.

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And then there’s the neck. Like all the Mythic Legion figures, Jorund’s head is on a ball joint, which is usually fine, but the shoulders and the head sculpt here are all at odds with each other. If you want the shoulders on, you’re going to sacrifice almost all neck articulation. Trying to move the head results in it popping off or the wings popping out. Take the shoulders (and cape) off, and the problem is solved. There’s one other way to solve the problem…

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Jorund comes with an alternate helmeted head. This is the same sculpt we’ve seen a few times in the past, now painted to match the armor. It looks great on the figure, but I think it robs him of a lot of his character. Besides, when he puts that helmet on, where the hell does all that beard go? Hey, I love options and I’m always happy to see T4H throwing bonuses like this in the package. I honestly didn’t even expect it to be in there. But I honestly doubt I’ll get much use out of it. I just love the regular portrait on this figure way too much.

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In addition to the extra helmet, shoulders, cape, and ubiquitous brown belt, Jorund comes with some weapons that we’ve seen before. First off you get the single handed sword with matching dagger. These feature disc pommels and are among my favorite weapons sculpts in the line. They’re just great, serviceable, no-nonsense weapons, and they each have purple painted grips to match his helmet deco.

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You also get the spear we’ve seen many times before, painted all in silver. The spears seem a little much for these little guys, so I think that one is going to go to one of my other figures and I’ll let Jorund get by with his matching blades.

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And so we have another amazing figure from Mythic Legions. I can’t put into words how glad I am to have had a second crack at this guy for my collection. He’s a gorgeous figure and that enchanting deco on his armor will serve to brighten up my little band of Dwarves while they’re out adventuring together. And it can’t hurt for them to have someone skilled in the arcane arts along for the ride. Hopefully in a few weeks I’ll have a some new Mythic Legions figures to check out, including a big ass Troll. You can probably also expect to hear me plugging the T4H’s new Kickstarter quite a bit towards the end of the month.