Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Review - Mierce Miniatures Morannach


I recently got a very nice package from the excellent Tim Fisher from Mierce Miniatures. Tim knows my affection for things bog-related, and saw fit to send me this enormous fellow for review. In case you haven't seen him, it's the Erainn Morannach from the Darklands: New Kindreds Kickstarter. Let's dive in, shall we?

The Morannach is part of the new series of miniatures for the Erainn kindred, based on Irish/Celtic mythology. Here's a snippet of background:

The Érainn are, put very simply, the dark age Irish! Their society is mostly Christian but fairly barbaric, and as they are assaulted by the Fomoraic and the Norse and the Atalantes and many others, they are becoming more and more martial and turning to the old ways of Danu the Earth Goddess.

Thus, wild Irish warrior-bands like those of old now defend the north of Eriu against the threat of the sea devils and raiders from elsewhere, and Danu herself lends aid to her people through the beasts of the bog, peat and marsh - terrifying creatures with an implacable hatred of all that destroy the natural world. With those at their side, the Érainn are a powerful foe indeed.

Oooh. That makes me all a-quiver. Here's some of the concepts:


Most of you know of Mierce at this stage, the quality and design of their models is invariably of a superb standard. Let's get in close to this bog beast and see if he matches what we've grown accustomed to from Mierce.

The Morannach comes in five major sections: the body, arms and legs. He's a big fellow, sitting on an 80mm base. There are also three sprues of branches that can be attached to his arm and back. You can click the images below for a more detailed view.

Body
With a creature made of mostly peat, it could be easy to end up with a bit of a featureless mess. This guy, however, is covered in identifiable detail and several great textures. Skulls, rocks, bark, earth, weird veins and the barest echo of turfy musculature, there's plenty here for a painter to go to town on. The eyes in particular are nice, and are begging for an eerie glowing effect. As to the technical quality of the pieces, it's excellent. The parts in the images are are untouched. As you can see, there's minimal clean-up needed. Snip off the gates, a little sanding on the joins, a nice hot bath and ready for assembly.

Right Arm
Left Arm
Legs
All the pieces fit very snugly into their slots. The contact areas are quite broad, so some scoring of the contact points should be enough for your glue to key into for a secure bond. There are also the branches:


Now you can use these or not. They will make the model a little more fragile if you do use them, but that wouldn't stop me. I think they add a lot. You can see the intended placement here:



I do like the way they are flowing back in roughly the same direction. They also break up the silhouette of the Morannach a little and add some more visual interest to his back.

Click for a close-up
A quick dry fit, and you can see the size of this guy. As I said, that's an 80mm base he's on there. I haven't attached the branches here.

I love this sculpt. For me he's an instantly desirable giant-sized model with a lot of nice detail and enough going on to reward a good paint job. It's all you could want in a massive bog monster. My intention is to paint him up to use as a giant fenbeast for my fimir, but looking at the rest of the Erainn I think I may have to give Darklands a closer look. The Jutes and Atlantes look pretty damn sweet too...

The Morannach is due to be released in the Autumn, once the Kickstarter shipping has completed.

Wayland Games

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