Friday, 29th August, 2008, 08:56 PM #1
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ø Ignore John Cooper
D&D Icons: Legend of Drizzt Scenario Pack
THE LEGEND OF DRIZZT SCENARIO PACK
Wizards of the Coast product number 107730000
The Legend of Drizzt Scenario Pack is a slightly different entry in the D&D miniatures line of extra-large dragon "miniatures" (thus far, we've had the Colossal Red Dragon, the Gargantuan Black Dragon, and the Gargantuan Blue Dragon), as it features not only a Gargantuan White Dragon ("Icingdeath," from one of the Drizzt Do'Urden novels by R. A. Salvatore) but also D&D Miniatures versions of Drizzt Do'Urden (a drow ranger) and Wulfgar (a human barbarian). It also includes a fold-out battle map, game stat cards for each miniature (Drizzt and Wulfgar actually get two cards each, one regular and one for epic-level play), a scenario booklet, and an excerpt from Salvatore's latest Drizzt book, The Orc King.
Let's start with Icingdeath, shall we? This is, quite frankly, a beautiful piece. The detail is excellent, from the pebbly-surfaced scales on its body to the vaguely bonelike structure of its head plates. The ridges along its spine interlock in a convincing manner, ending in a tail rather reminiscent of that of a crocodile. The dragon has its wings sweeping forward, and you can see how the flaps of skin wrinkle up above the "elbow" of the wings. I really like the overall effect, and I place it as my second-favorite piece in the series, coming just behind the Gargantuan Blue Dragon (but that personal ranking likely has a bit to do with my overall preference for blue dragons over white dragons). On the down side - and this might just be particular to my own specific figure - Icingdeath's left wing is much lower than his right wing, which wouldn't be a problem if the tip didn't dip lower than the actual base of the miniature. As it is now, the wing "drags" on the ground when the miniature is placed on a flat surface (fortunately, the weight of the dragon's body and base prevents the base from canting up at an angle). It's not a big problem, and might not be common to all such figurines.
Next up is Drizzt Do'Urden, and my initial impression was that he looks ridiculous with that solid black skin, but a quick reread of the "drow" entry in the Monster Manual informs me that, yes indeed, drow are supposed to have jet-black skin. I guess I've just been conditioned by years of D&D artwork to think of drow skin as being dark, but not quite black. In any case, the solid black face makes it hard to see any details at all on the miniature (you can't even tell he has a nose unless you turn him sideways, in profile), as all you can see are the two white dots of his eyes. (And doesn't Drizzt have lavender eyes in any case?) He's depicted wielding his famous twin scimitars, with a raggedy, fur-trimmed cloak billowing out behind him. So points given for an accurate depiction of Drizzt, but he's still my least favorite miniature in the set.
Finally, there's Wulfgar, depicted with his warhammer above his head and clad in shaggy furs. I like this figure better than the Drizzt one, perhaps because it more accurately matches the visual image I get when I picture Wulfgar from the novels than the Drizzt figure does when I visualize the iconic drow ranger. The texturing job is really good on the shaggy furs, and I like the fact that the striking surface of his weapon is coated with blood.
I won't comment on the stat blocks on the cards - I know, odd for a John Cooper review to ignore stats! - because I've learned from past experience that the stats aren't likely to be correct, and the "rules" are even different on a DDM stat card, even for the side that represents the D&D stats (as opposed to the DDM stats, which I can't comment on anyway, as I don't play the DDM game and am unsure of the rules). That said, even if the D&D stats on the cards were perfect I likely wouldn't use them anyway, as again I don't play DDM and will only be using the miniatures as "generic" creatures of the appropriate type, not the specific individuals they represent. And let's face it, nobody's likely to be buying this set for the stat cards in any case - they want the miniatures!
The fold-out battle map is nice in that it's dual-sided, with Icingdeath's lair on one side (an underground ice cavern, basically) and the small village of Evermelt on the other, with a small gathering of teepees or huts. Each map is 22" by 34" and has a variety of interesting terrain features and obstacles. (Each of the village's 7 campfires, for instance, has a 4-square section of smoke billowing away from it, while there are slippery slopes in the ice caves that can cause difficulties when fighting on those squares.)
Taken as a whole, The Legend of Drizzt Scenario Pack is an excellent addition to the supersized dragon miniatures line. (I'd imagine we'll see a green dragon next, to finish out the chromatic dragons.) The fact that this is packaged with two extra miniatures just makes it that much cooler. (And no, that pun was not intended, but I'm leaving it in.) I give the set a solid "5 (Superb)."
Last edited by Morrus; Friday, 29th August, 2008 at 09:02 PM.
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