Okumarts has been releasing paper mini sets for about 12 months now. It’s great to see another really talented professional artist get into the paper mini field and I hope he continues to expand his range, especially as Onemonk has hung up his pencil. I decided to build up the first of Okumarts Darkfast Classic Fantasy series (Set Zero: Basic Adventure). I’m currently building sets One and Two and will put posts up about those shortly.
Okumarts has a very distinctive style which aligns most closely with the manga drawing/image style. I personally really have an affinity for his style, if you prefer your paper mini’s more ultra realistic I wouldn’t recommend these. Okumarts has however incorporated a lot of the great features that Onemonk used on his paper mini’s that made them stand out so uniquely, this includes:
- Tabbed basing for easy mounting
- Back and front colour art
- Black border around the outside of the mini to help it pop
- Close cutting of the mini’s. No fold up triangles here.
The above make Okumarts paper mini’s very compatible with several other artists and let you reuse some of your already existing bases. Although the unique style will mean you can mix and match Okumarts and other artisits mini’s on a table for an RPG, if you try to mix and match them inside the same wargaming army unit it will look at little odd as the styles will clash. This however is not a big drawback as you can’t really mix and match different metal miniatures from different manufacturers in the same unit. As with the metal miniature world there are some issues with scale in the paper miniature world. The advantage with paper is that if you want something a particular scale you can scale it up or down prior to printing. I’ve put together a quick image below which shows one of Okumarts miniatures from this set side by side with a Human from Onemonk and a Human from Sanity Studios, Okumarts miniatures align most closely with Onemonks work however they have a less exaggerated head to body ratio:
Scale Up Sanity Studio’s, print at: 118 – 120%
Shrink Onemonk/Okumarts, print at: 83 – 85%
This is the first set in the Darkfast series Set Zero: Basic Adventure and is a free download. The set contains 10 unique miniatures which can be printed in two different colour schemes, this is achieved by using a layered PDF. The mini’s are split into Five “Good Guys” and Five “Bad Guys”. If you were just starting out with D&D or another fantasy RPG, this set would give a you the basic figures to get your campaign running for 1-2nd maybe up to 3rd level characters. This set can also be used to give you some quick starter figures for two different warbands for Song of Blades and Hero’s or some other skirmish sized fantasy game. Okumarts didn’t specifically name each of his mini’s but I’ll do my best below:
Bugbear Fighter (M), Gnoll Fighter (M), Goblin Fighter (M), Pig Orc Fighter (M), Hobgoblin Fighter (M)
The colour options for each miniature are:
- Dwarf Fighter: Yellow/Brown and Blue/Brown
- Human Monk/Druid: Grey/Brown and Green/Green
- Human Fighter: Blue and Yellow/Gold
- Human Wizard: Mauve and Green
- Elven Archer: Natural Green’s and Bright Green/Yellow
- Bugbear Fighter: Green/Grey and Red
- Gnoll Fighter: Light Brown and Light Green (loincloth)
- Goblin Fighter: Light Brown and Dark brown
- Pig Orc Fighter: Burnt Orange and Aqua Blue
- Hobgoblin Fighter: Red and Green
For a free set this set is excellent value for money and the artwork and options are great, the weakest miniature in the set to me is the Bugbear he sort of looks startled rather than aggressive. Okumarts has kept the outlines fairly simple without to many little pointy area’s to cut out (the ones above were cut out by my craftrobo), I test cut out one by hand in 3-4 mins. The back to front alignment is excellent this can be an issue with front/back paper miniatures not always aligning well. The colours print out very well and the miniatures don’t appear muted or dull. I could easily tell which miniature was which when looking down at them from a seated position at a table. The PDF’s are not “locked” so editing them for my (or your) own personal use is easy rather than if they had been password protected.
I do have two minor quibbles with the set although as this set is free the word minor should be bolded and underlined. Normally you want 1-2 of each hero and 5-6 of each monster/critter. As the two are tied together on the one page this means to get 5-6 of each monster you end up with 5-6 of each hero as well, not particular useful and a waste of paper and ink. This could have been overcome by making better use of the PDF layering so that you can switch the hero’s “off” and have an extra row of monsters underneath. The second issue is the lack of craftrobo registration marks. I don’t expect every paper mini set to come with a set of GSD’s however it would have been nice if the little craftrobo “L’s” (alignment marks) had been placed in each corner then it would have been 5-10 min’s work for me (or anyone) to put a set of GSD’s together. Without the L’s I have to export the files to GIMP re-lay them out and then reproduce them which also breaks the layered PDF and makes it impossible to share the GSD’s with anyone.
I really like this set and as it is free go and grab it now . The minor issues are nothing and can be overcome by spending 10-20 mins with the miniatures in GIMP, something you may like to do anyway so as to get a whole sheet of Hobgoblins etc. This is a great way to get that RPG or skirmish game off the ground with a few miniatures as decoration that wont cost you anything but a little time, some paper and ink.
Have fun with them, I know I will 🙂