I am really all over the place this month, but the goal is to catch up on a lot of half-finished projects. To that end, I present six of the seven models from Test of Honour's "Warrior Monks of Mount Hiei" These are beautifully sculpted miniatures and easily some of best available on the market. I missed the opportunity to pick up some more from Warlord's Clearance sale, as they are now transferring the game rights back over to the author and purged all of the remaining stock.
I was initially a little non-plussed by the minis offered with this game, as it really looked like Warlord was trying to unload all of the plastics they got when they acquired Wargames Factory by adding 1 metal mini to each box set along with some new heads. The plastics hold up fine for large formation play, but are are far too fragile, for me, in skirmishing.
That said, their metal sets have some fantastic sculpts. The detail on the leader figure is excellent and the pose very dynamic.
The set comes with three more figures with Naginata (one is till awaiting completion). These are nicely proportioned as well, and feature some diverse weapons and armor choices. (Great for skirmish games)
The same is true for the three archers, but alas I noticed that I forgot to paint and attach their Quivers. I suppose an update will need to be added at some point. I am tempted to try and get some more of these, but two questions still remain. I already have 40+ Sohei painted included my Perry Minis, do I really need more? and What will become of the Warlord sculpts now that the game is transitioning over to Grey for Now games? Warbanner (Footsore Miniatures) is taking over miniature production and they have some excellent looking figures already. I may need to wait to pick up more Sohei if they decide to do some supporting figures.
I also managed to finish an archer from Warlord's Onna-Bugeisha set. These are similarly well sculpted minis and far outstrip anything else I have seen in terms of attention to detail. My only concern here, is that I am really not good enough (yet) at painting cloth patterns to do these models justice. There are only a few models in armor (two with Naginata), but at least they got the Naginata part right. It is a niche group, but ever since I saw the movie "Heaven and Earth" I have wanted to paint a small unit of armored women with Naginata to match the fictional group shown with the Uesegi army.