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Download - Mega Miniatures

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FROM THE EDITOR Welcome

FROM THE EDITOR Welcome everyone to the June 2003 edition of Fictional Reality. Right away you’ll notice a small difference in the magazine as we’ve gone to a slightly (and it is really just slightly) smaller font size. We did this to reduce the page count and file size to make Fictional Reality easier for you to get your hands on. We printed out some test pages and found that they were still very readable. If you are reading Fictional Reality on your monitor instead of printing it out and want a larger font size it should be no problem for you to just up the zoom a little bit. Either way, if you’d rather us go back to the font size that’s just a bit bigger than this please let us know and we’ll take care of it for the very next issue. After all, we’re here to put out a ‘zine that you want to read. Also, along the same lines, if there is something that you’d like to see more of in Fictional Reality please drop us a line and let us know. The other change is in the Table of Contents. We’ve listed the article in question, the manufacturers website, and the author of the article all on the same page. Well, our convention plans are past the decision stage and into some actual planning. If everything goes according to plan we’ll be able to meet and hopefully throw some dice with a bunch of you at GenCon when it’s held in Southern California in December. Hope to see you there! Ok, so what have we been up to lately? Well, on the non-Fictional Reality side we’ve been continuing with our rotating role-playing games. Feng Shui has turned out to be a very enjoyable game and is well worth checking out if you’re into the kung-fu action movie kicking ass kind of thing. We’re about to start up Mutants & Masterminds and also a one-shot Call of Cthulhu adventure which will likely end up with us dead or insane, but somebody has to keep the body-bag and straight-jacket manufacturers in business, right? On the miniatures side of things we’re still eagerly awaiting new cool miniatures for Warmachine Prime and I’m having a Pavlovian-type reaction any time I hear something new about Ultimate Warzone. I’m toying with the idea of building a 28mm scale version of the intersection of Hollywood & Vine and fighting it out with a ton of figures using the d20 Modern rules, feats, skills, classes and all. Ok, where’s my straight-jacket again? So, what are we looking forward to? Well, personally I’m on the lookout for the Shadowrun action figure game. I didn’t like Mage Knight too much at all, but did have quite a bit of fun with Mech Warrior: Dark Age. I’m figuring that I have at least a 50/50 chance of liking it and the large scale figures and ability to kit out your fighters with different weapons really interests me, along with the fact that I can use my living room as a battlefield. Also, Dogs of War is piquing my interests and you’ll see a battle report in the September issue of Fictional Reality. Speaking of my interests increasing, Warlord, Reaper Miniatures upcoming skirmish fantasy game definitely has my attention and it hasn’t even come out yet. I haven’t seen one bad figure in the releases so far and from what we’ve heard from the guys at Reaper it should allow you to use any figures that you might have collected over the years. For more insight into Reaper Miniatures be sure to read the Meet and Greet articles that starts off this issue. On the role-playing side I’m looking forward to playing some Savage Worlds. It looks like a very open system and could be a lot of fun. Check out Michael’s review of the game later in this issue. Also, Armageddon 2089 looks like it could be a lot of war-torn fun in the not too distant future of a world not far off from ours. Well, hope you all have a great Summer and we’ll see you back here in September for another installment of Fictional Reality. What are you waiting for? Turn the stinkin’ page and start reading. Mark Theurer and J. Michael Tisdel 2 ADVERTISERS INDEX Great Canadian Miniatures IFC and 60 100 Kingdoms 2 and 8 Warzone GTS 5, 17, 56, and 71 Reaper Miniatures 12 and 72 Jeff Valent Studios 16 Brok’s Armory 19 Zombiesmith 21 Excelsior Entertainment 22, 45, and 65 Fantization 24 and 69 Devil Dog Design 26 and 73 Thane’s Games 32 Pinnacle Entertainment Group 36 RPG Objects 41 and 53 Privateer Press 44 Dark Basement Miniatures 50 Charon Productions 51 Bring Your Miniatures to Life 58 Excalibur Miniaturen 76

On a recent Saturday morning we (myself, my oldest son Bradley and co- Editor J. Michael Tisdel) made the 45-minute trek to the home of the second largest miniature company in the world, Reaper Miniatures. We had been invited by Ed Pugh, Reaper head honcho, to come down and ask question, take pictures and hopefully not make too much of pests of ourselves. On the next several pages we hope to bring you some insight into a real success story in the miniature gaming industry. Reaper Miniatures is located in Lewisville, Texas (yet another great thing about living in the Lone Star State!) and was a pretty easy drive. The offices and foundry are located behind a non-descript row of offices and stores and takes up several thousand square feet of office and manufacturing space. We were greeted by Ed while wandering around the parking lot and had actually wandered into the foundry instead of the offices by accident. We then headed into where a lot of design work is done (top picture) and sat down with Ed for a good hour or so and talked about the past, present, and future of Reaper miniatures. Around ten years ago Reaper figures were sold in plastic baggies and were comprised of some old miniature lines that they owned the rights to, such as the Dungeon Dwellers line. Reaper was also doing lots of work casting awards and medals for schools and other organizations, but that could not always be counted on for business. Additionally, Ed and his brother had also put in several years as CPA’s in their family’s accounting firm. Several years ago when the bulk of the miniatures industry was switching from lead to pewter Ed and company decided to stay with a more lead-based metal (as the switch was not mandatory) and move into casting miniatures exclusively and moving away from the awards business. Of course, now they are all-pewter. Reaper’s star really began to shine with the production of Magic Scry (the magazine) counters and Magic life counters. These were made using the same manufacturing techniques as other awards, which they had long since perfected. These counters used fantasy figures as a focal point and some of them later became part of the Dark Heaven line of figures, which continues to grow with new figures being added to the line on a consistent basis and those that don’t sell as well being rotated out of the regular production line. This cap on the production line allows retailers to stock the entire line of figures without having to devote an ever-increasing amount of shelf space to just one manufacturer. This cap also allows Reaper to maintain an order turnaround time of approximately two weeks if specific product is not in stock and immediately available. The other two pictures on this page are of (center) just a tiny taste of the painted figures that have taken over the Reaper offices. There’s about a bazillion (ok, maybe not quite that many) figures there and all of them are painted to a great standard. I was on pins and needles not wanting to touch anything out of fear of breaking it. Of course, to Ed and the rest of the crew it’s all old hat and they’re picking up figures and moving them around without a worry in the world. Sheesh! Pretty much everything you’ve ever seen in a Reaper color ad, and lots of stuff you haven’t, sits somewhere in their offices. The bottom picture is a snapshot of Ed’s office and yes that’s a container of artificial butter flavor popcorn topping. Either Ed really likes popcorn or Reaper figures taste better all buttery tasting. A R. Lee Emery doll, oops action figure, also graces his office, but I’d have to say that Ed has a decidedly different attitude and motivational style. I got the sense of two things during our time at Reaper: 1) They run this place like a business, a real business, and it shows just from talking to them. They’ve been at this for around ten years now and have turned it into what was essentially a tiny speck on the map to a true industry leader. 2) They are also a family of sorts. That doesn’t mean that they let old drunk Uncle Joe run the spincaster to keep him off the streets, but I just got a really good and friendly feeling from the place. Ok, back to business… 3

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