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D&D Male Half Elf Bard Miniatures Review


One of the reasons I’ve got back into painting is to paint the type of adventurer figure I can use to represent one of my own player characters, in addition to representing a more general non-player one. Some years ago, I played a half-elf bard and I enjoyed it, and so after I came across this miniatures pack in the Nolzur’s range, I knew I wanted to buy it and set out to paint them for potential future use

As I get back into painting, I’m learning more about how to bring out features, use shading and highlights. These figures are interesting are pre-primed and have a good amount of detail such as the armour, musical instruments and other adventuring gear and I wanted to reflect this bringing out a weather-stained canvas look to much of it.

The paints I used are mostly Citadel – Eldar and Kislev Flesh, Straken Green, Agrellan Earth as well as shades for flesh, earth, camoshade and a little Nuln oil. I’ve also used Vallejo paints for the metal – although bards typical favour leather armour I thought I make this look a little fancy and went for a metal breastplate using gunmetal and silver and gold trim. I often use Citadel and Vallejo paints. I’d recommend them as I usually find they are good quality and come in a good range of relevant and thematic colours. The shades in particular I find are very useful in bringing out detail that could otherwise be easily missed and with the Nolzur’s range containing great detail, it is important to ensure the miniatures are painted well enough to showcase the details.

When painting, I often use a base layer which is usually a darker shade and then add a lighter shade on top with an ink shade to fill in the gaps for detail and then I add even lighter touches for highlighting. The lighter colour also brings out a well-worn effect on clothes and boots which is fitting for a seasoned adventurer. The shading was straightforward and I wanted to bring to focus some of the detail on the bedroll and cord (at the back) with the light colour creating that worn clothing look.

One of the key features on one of the figures is the lute and I tried to work with the wood grain and different shades of brown. I then looked at some highlights and focussed on face, lute and clothing using either a slightly lighter shade of green for example, but also adding a little white for some parts of the hair to merge with the blond look to add further detail. It’s one of the key features I find with the Nolzur range that the attention to detail is there for a great range of adventurer types and the bard pack is no exception; in this pack the figures have their lutes, pack, bedroll, weapons and armour and they look the part. There are great miniatures to user for a GM too as they can easily represent non-player characters in a tavern, especially if you have general local folk and tavern staff represented too.

Overall, I’ve achieved what I wanted which is painting a couple of miniatures that help immersion and bring encounters more to life. It also helps when playing roleplaying face-to-face, involving tactical encounters using tactical maps, where understanding a scene visually helps with play. Each miniature can be painted in a distinct style and then you have individuals that stand out and are unique.

In addition to rebuilding a nice miniature collection, it is quite therapeutic to paint miniatures, especially I find when the miniatures represent adventurers or have interesting detail to paint. You can imagine a backstory behind each miniature and paint the character accordingly. This might even prompt themes in play and side quests as the GM feels inspired through painting, to create a storyline that features the miniatures painted. Where did that crystal ball come from? There could be an interesting tale to tell and a plot to become involved in as a result.