Review: Hero Forge Color Plastic

Kinda-sorta bonus content, here. I’m running an Eberron campaign, and Leanne wanted a miniature of her character (a warforged artificer). Of course, it’s not a character type that’s that common, and hard to find at the local brick-and-mortars. (I don’t even know if anybody actually makes this figure; I haven’t looked beyond that.)

This meant that Hero Forge was the only solution, and we ordered her a color plastic figure. I also took the opportunity to print a similar version of Modern Rita. (See the review of the premium plastic version here.) Here’s what I got:

Modern Rita, in Color Plastic

So the first obvious negative is that the color is not tremendously smooth; the texture is what you’d expect if the figure stepped out of The Road Warrior. That’s not dust, either — I actually washed this figure when I got it, just to make sure.

The second is how lightly her eyes are colored. If you look really closely, you can make out the barest hint of green where her pupils are. They might be a little more obvious if there was more definition to her skin tone, but there isn’t. It’s really waxy. Here’s a close up:

Rita Close Up

In this picture, you can see blobs of green, along with an attempt at eyebrows and lips.

On the flip side, most of the other detail is rendered really well. For example, take a look at the boots:

Rita’s Weird Choice of Footwear

So I couldn’t tell you why the eyes are so ill-defined, or the skin is so waxy. They do warn you that the color definition in the builder is higher resolution than the 3D printer, but I don’t understand why the definition is so much better on the rest of the model (minus the dustiness). I might try it again to see if I can tweak the contrast on the skin tone, and darker eyes.

Again, Hero Forge does warn you about the various printing artifacts, but their gallery doesn’t show a waxwork like this one. Here’s what the preview for this print looks like:

The Hero Forge Preview Image

So what’s the verdict?

In short, don’t expect the “high quality display pieces” that Hero Forge touts in their product description. These things are made for folks who don’t want to paint miniatures, and can tolerate printing artifacts. If that’s you, the $40 USD price tag will limit your use of the service to Player Character models.

Before I close this post, here’s the painted older version of Rita next to the newer version, along with Switch the Warforged Artificer for a fuller experience (yes, those orcs in the background are a preview of my Army Painter Speed Paint review):

From left to right: my painted Rita, the color printed Rita, and Switch

The reverse:

The Back Side of Miniatures!

And now I go debate whether I’m going to touch up my new Rita’s skin and eyes.

’til next time, check out my spaceship combat rules!

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