Monday, August 19, 2013

Deep Wars: Dire Fish-Lizard Review

Up from the depths! Thirty stories high...
I was drawn into Deep Wars primarily due to the setting.  I can’t think of too many things more exciting than fighting scaly fish monsters in the cold depths of ancient oceans. Since assembling my initial starter box of Ancients, however, I have not really been inspired to purchase any of the new models.  And this is not due to lack of new models, as they have maintained an impressive release schedule, sculpting and selling most of the models in each range.  Unfortunately, I feel most of the models are not as strong as the initial set of miniatures for each faction.  Many of them are Bob Olley sculpts, which tend to be mediocre at best.  Some of this can be attributed to questionable concept art, which looks to have been followed to the letter in every case (character’s weapons being particularly outlandish and undetailed).

The kit only has a few pieces and the one I purchased had very minimal moldlines.
When WIP shot’s of E. Louchard’s Dire Fish-Lizard started to surface, however, I could not help but take notice.  Louchard masterfully captured the deadly furiosity of this ichthyosaur-like creature, making one of the best looking models in the entire range.  It was not hard to convince myself to buy the little guy the instant I saw him at my local game store.
The only defect in the resin cast were a few small bubble on belly of the fish.
Like many of Deep Wars’ larger models, the Fish-Lizard is a resin metal hybrid.  The body, which comprises the majority of the model, is cast in a single piece of white resin, while the four fins are a soft metal.  The model was extremely easy to trim and assemble, and within 30 minutes it was together.  The moldlines on the resin were minimal and easy to remove.  The fins had more substantial ones, but the softness of the metal made them simple to remove and sand smooth.  There were a few small bubbles on the underside of the fish’s belly that were easily remedied with green stuff.  Green stuff was also used to fill in some small gaps between the base of the model and the fish itself.  To provide more durability, I pinned the fish to the little column of coral on his base, completing the model.
Ready to tear apart any Ancient of Atalan that crosses its path!
Overall, I was impressed with the kit.  It was very easy to work with and cast well. Like all the previous releases, it also came with a high quality textured card that contains all of the Dire-Fish-Lizard’s rules.  In the games I have played, they have been really nice aids, especially since the models Str, Res, and Will scores are listed, reflecting all their special rules (many of the special rules in the game affect the base Str, Res, and Will you need to roll, and having these values already calculated makes the game faster and easier to play).  If you play the Scaly Horde, the model is a must buy, and even if you do not, it is worth considering.  I hope for more excellent models like this in the future from Antimatter games!

-Godwyn Fischig


  1. Is Bob Olley the Marmite of sculpters?

    It certainly seems that way a lot of places on the internet loathe him and others I have heard only are interested in Deep wars due to his sculpts...

    He did the Dark mariners didn't he? They look olleyish...

    I am impressed by this figure and you're right for setting alone the game soundfs like its worth a second look.

    1. Yeah, Olley made a lot of the Dark Mariner stuff. Most of the best Dark Mariner models, like the Annihilator Biomech, were not made by him though.

      It is almost as if they hired Olley to make a lot of the newer models because they felt pressured to release them quickly due to Kickstarter promises, and he was someone who could pump them out. Most of his are fine, but they lack finesse, and tend to fill the models with indistinct detail that is difficult to determine if it is flash or not...