Chronicles of the Wayfarer Painting Competition

posted 20 Apr 2017, 20:50 by John Martin   [ updated 20 Apr 2017, 21:36 ]
So, as you may know, I am a big fan of 15mm Fantasy figures, in part due to some amazing sculpts from the likes of Copplestone, Demonworld and Splintered Light Miniatures, I try to keep abreast of what is happening in regards to fantasy models at that scale, it is also why I created the 15mm Fantasy Gaming group on facebook (Link) to promote it more too, as there were only historical and Sci Fi variants when I checked.

A while back, some new miniatures surfaced for a starting company called Chronicles of the Wayfarer (Facebook Page ) and the sculpt looked absolutely amazing.  As more images were released, the company set out to organise a painting competition, of which I was one of the entrants.  The rules were simple - paint the models, supply photographs and a review, and send the images off.  There will be an online contest to determine the winner, and everyone who took part has first refusal at future contests.

So, onto the figures.  There were 4 resin miniatures supplied - A female with sword, a heavily armoured crossbowman, and two heavily armoured warriors, one with spear and a large shield, and the other with the choice of sword or hammer and a smaller shield.  Also included were 4 circular resin bases with a stylised Lava pattern (20mm diameter)

The emailed instructions stated that the miniatures were cast in a high grade resin and that they were free from any mould releasing agents, so did not require any special preparation, however, I found this out after having washed them. 

Initial Impressions - Woah, these are tiny, and super detailed.  Like, ridiculously detailed, what have I gotten myself into here?  They are gorgeous though, and it is a cool opportunity.  Might also motivate me to get off my ass and do some painting.  Plus, resin bases, always a fan of that.

So,  after basic prep of washing in warm soapy water, glueing to a lolly stick and hand priming (white) I had to figure out a colour scheme.  Obvious choice was blue as it is my default go-to colour, but I wanted to avoid orange, as I can't paint everything in Irn Bru colours (or can I?...) so I settled on yellow, with standard silver/brass detailing.  I also decided to do the bases as fetid swamps rather than Lava, because, well, laziness really, and it saved me having to do any OSL...  plus I like doing my own thing, and it would fit better with my gaming mat.

Overall, I'm not sure about the blue lacquered armour, it certainly makes a change from the standard metals, probably needs some work, these figures are a lot finer than the models I generally work on, and are probably more realistically proportioned and scaled and less suitable for my standard cartoony paint style.  Some of the detail is extremely fine, and is easy to lose with thick paint, it is also extremely easy to lose with even a small paintbrush.

On to the individual figures

Figure 1

This guy comes in two parts, the main body and the choice of either a hammer or sword wielding arm.  I really like the clockwork/gear effect on the shield rim and the heavy armour.  Probably one of my favourite figures in the set.

Figure 2

Single piece model in heavy armour wielding a crossbow.  The armour is similar to the other male figures, but has a studded covering. 

Figure 3

The sole female miniature in the set, comes in 2 pieces, the main body and a separate back banner, depicting the stylized gear icon.  She appears quite well armoured, indeed there are a few areas that could be painted as either exposed flesh or clothing on the model, and she is armed with a large sword.  Her bare head sports an impressive mohawk.  Probably my least favourite figure in the set due to the exposed flesh and head, but that is generally because my immediate advice for anyone asking about painting faces is "start with a model wearing a helmet."

Figure 4

Another heavily armoured male figure, armed with a tower shield and spear, and holding a plumed helmet.  I like this figure a lot, probably as it is one of the chunkier sculpts, it has a very commanding pose, surveying a field of battle, rather than being depicted in full fight mode.  He has some rather difficult to reach areas, due to being a one piece pose, however his shield is pretty big and could be a good place for either transfers or (for the insane) freehand designs.  There is some sculpted detail in the centre but it could be easily removed.

Group shot - Front

Group shot - Back

Base Details

Scale shot with UK 5p piece

Scale Comparison 1 - (l-r) CotW, Demonworld Elf, CotW, Khurasan Werewolf, CotW

Comparison Shot 2 (l-r) Khurasan Werewolf, CotW, Copplestone Northlander, CotW, Plastic Soldier Company German.

Comparison Shot 3 (l-r) CotW, Demonworld, CotW, Blue Moon Vampire, CotW, Splintered Light Satyr (18mm), CotW, Splintered Light Skeleton.

So, overall thoughts?

The resin is an absolute joy to work with, these are the first 15mm scale figures I have painted in the medium, although I already owned some from Scibor.  They are easily cleaned up and go together very well on the two multi-part figures.  The figure with the spear is chunky enough to pin underneath, however the others are far too slight to attempt such a manouever and have to rely on being superglued to the bases.  There is a sense that these would be very easy to accidentally damage, especially taking the rigours of gaming into account, however from reading the CotW page, I understand that they are designed to sit 3 to a 40mm round base, however it may still be an issue for anybody with plans to base them individually for skirmish use.  Larger contact areas would be a nice touch to provide a little more leeway for pinning.

The poses are very good, a nice mix of action and at ease, and some variety could be achieved with the figure with the optional hand weapon.

Scale wise, these are true 15mm scale, closer to the PSC model above than most of the Fantasy stuff I have to hand.  Personally, I would prefer slightly chunkier sculpts, possibly some more exaggerated features to allow for less fastidious painting.  Some of the tiny detail could also be toned down, as it is far to easy to obscure it, even with extremely thin paint.

Overall, I am happy with the models, as stated, not sure they really fit my usual style, but I find with 15mm you have to aim for high contrast at a distance.  I would definitely consider picking some up when they are released, either as character models, or for a small skirmish warband.  I am also keen to have a go at some of the larger figures in the range.  I think, that they are easy to recommend picking at least some up, purely for the joy (or novelty) of working with such great (if fragile) material as it makes a real change from the predominantly metal models you get elsewhere.

So yeah, that's about it.  Chronicles of the Wayfarer, tiny and highly detailed sculpts in lovely resin.  Go check out their facebook page, follow them, and vote for your favourites in the painting competition.