I recently needed to obtain a big pile of bones and skeleton parts for a terrain piece I was building. I decided on the Skeleton Warriors kit from Wargames Atlantic, and decided to build several skeletons for my fantasy wargames while I was at it. Below you’ll find my thoughts on the kit as a whole.
I looked for a box of skeletons that would meet these requirements:
- I could separate the parts easily,
- close in scale to AoS Skeleton Warriors, with bonus points for being able to proxy the models as them,
- good quality of bits.
What’s in the box?
In the kit you receive the same sprue 8 times. Each of them contains 4 bodies, 5 skulls, 3 spear arms (and one extra big one), 1 sword arm, a bow and quiver, and a horn. You also get 4 shields (2 big and 2 small) and an animal skull detail, that could be used for a banner/icon.
The design of the weapons matches ancient Greece, especially the swords and shields remind me of the movie 300 a bit.
The details on the pieces are nice, and I was especially impressed with very minimal cleanup required – mold lines are very thin, and they are easy to remove – plastic is just a bit softer and more bouncy than GW’s.
Note: there are no bases included in the kit, and I’d recommend 25mm square or round bases.
Building and painting
The biggest surprise to me was the scale of the skulls. The bodies in general fit 28mm scale really nicely, but the skulls themselves look just wacky, almost like Halloween decorations.
I built one skeleton with the original skull, but for the rest I used skulls from the Citadel Skulls box – an invaluable kit for basing, decorations… a must have in my opinion 😉 A comparison below, this time with built models (I kept shields separately for painting).
I built 5 spearmen and 5 swordsmen, plus 2 extras. It was an extra challenge to make the swordsmen have different poses, as there is only one sword arm.
The heads and arms connect via a ball socket joint – the socket is on the ribcage, and the balls are on the arms. To swap the heads, I needed to trim the last millimeter of the spines, so they were flatter and had better connection with the new skulls.
I decided to add a little bit of cloth to them with Green Stuff, as all of the bodies are completely bare, and this would add some variety to the models. I was, again, inspired by GW’s Skeleton Warriors kit.
I wanted to paint them to show you how they look when done. It’s not the topic of the review so I’ll quickly go over that:
- prime: black bottom, Zandri Dust from the top
- bones: drybrush VGC Elfic Flesh
- shields and metal parts: VAC (Air Color) Copper, VGE Verdigris
- cloth: 1:1 mix of Contrast paints Blood Angels Red and Basilicanum Grey
Can you spot that one odd head? 😉
Score and summary
I got the kit from Battlefield Berlin, our Friendly Local Game Store, but you can buy them directly from the producer’s website too. For the price of just €35 you get 32 skeletons, barely over a euro per model – and some additional hands that you can cut up for bones on your bases. Skeletons are so ubiquitous in Fantasy, no matter what you play, you will find a use for them.
Now, as for my review score/opinion. If you need skeletons, I would rate the kit 7/10 on is own, but 10/10 if you already have Games Workshop’s Skeleton Warriors.
- no bases
- only 8 swords arms, all the same poses
- goofy skulls
- small sprue multiplied 8 times, if they designed more different parts and had the sprue repeated 4 times instead, there would be a lot more options
- good sculpts, nice details
- minimal cleanup
- easy and fast to build
- ball socket joints offer posability
- you get plenty of extra bits
As you can see, most of the kit’s negatives are easily solved with the spare bits you get from GW’s Skeletons – they have 10 extra heads, and many different weapon poses.
Note that if you decide to use GW arms on WA bodies, both use opposing socket joints, and you’ll need to do some trimming to fit them together.
The shields on WA’s Skeletons look very appropriate to their intended period. That is totally a personal preference, but I like GW’s shields better – they look more rugged and fantasy, they barely holding together. Having no bases was not a problem for me, as I have way too many 25mm bases already, but it’s worth pointing out. Some skeletons come on their own ‘disks’, but they are not stable enough to use as bases on their own.
tl;dr – best price/quality skeletons you can buy, but get better skulls and bases
And lastly, here’s a size comparison picture, next to Age of Sigmar Stormcast Eternal and a Daemonette.
That’s it for the review. If you would like to get in touch with me or have any questions, you can find me on Discord as aSubtleDoot#2374 or via email.
I’ve been playing D&D for more than half of my life now, and got more into Warhammer (both 40k and AoS) two years ago. Always interested to find more cool games 😉
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