The deadly ballet of the Death Dancers is a truly amazing thing to witness as these surreal creatures move with an unimaginable grace, perpetually morphing and transforming while new limbs grow or vanish from their body. The sad thing, though, is that their hypnotising dance is most likely the last thing you'll ever see...
If you followed our previous Kickstarter The Toughest Girls of the Galaxy, you know that the Iron Empire was built by a human colony: they were the first humans who chose to flee a dying Earth and try to find a new place for themselves. Sadly, their expedition was doomed from the start. Radiation, sickness, catastrophic hardships: colonists and crew were decimated. The last few survivors manage to land in extremis in a far-away belt of asteroids, where they stumbled upon the relics of a very ancient Egyptian-like civilisation. And hidden away deep in the Aegyptians' tombs, necromantic knowledge enabled the colonists to raise from the dead their deceased companions.
Armed with this necromantic magic and the many artefacts found in the tombs, the colonists set about rebuilding a new society. But, unsurprisingly, the radiation they endured during their journey had lasting effects: most of them had become sterile, with the colony unable to renew its population. When the Iron Empire's leaders decided to forcibly enlist their few fertile citizens into a breeding programme, many went into hiding rather than become breeding slaves, while other tried their luck once more and, with stolen space transports, left their home again. But the Iron Empire pursued, mercilessly killing many of the very people who could have been their future...
And yet, some managed to get away, among them, several pregnant mothers-to-be, of which seven became leaders of the exodus. When they reached an habitable planet a year, later, they were the one to name this new world Edenia, when it downed on them that this world had been the one the original colonists had been searching for.
Once settled near a large river, the new settlers felt revived. In fact, they were in better health than ever. Some probably believed that their bodies had been longing for a real planet rather than a cold asteroid.
One night, all 7 mother-leaders had the same strange dream: a cryptic message, delivered by a being of light, telling them to go forth and explore. And so quest teams set out to see and map their world. Some went far and away. Others stayed closer to home to better understand the area around Cathedra, their new home settlement. One such team set out looking for the source of the river that fed their home town. This led them to a large cave from whence the river emerged. As they explored it the cave narrowed down to a small passage. Abandoning their vehicle, they walked, then crawled through the diminishing stone corridors. The water flow was running thin, like a small stream seeking to merge with the rest of the river... Hours later, cold and shivering, the questers emerged into a gigantic subterranean cave. And then their hearts nearly stopped: the cave was a field of giant crystals running tens of meters high, with myriads of stalactites and stalagmites appearing to hold the ceiling.
And in the middle of the cave, a group of stalagmites stood on a small hill. The questers, uneasy, approached in silence as the seven stalagmites' shapes increasingly evoked those of 7 pregnant women... And at the feet of the 7 stalagmites, there was a natural basin from which the water came. One of the quester slowly pulled a cup from her bag, and scooped up some of that water to bring back to Cathedra.
It didn't take long for the people of Cathedra to relate their good health to the sacred water. When completely pure and drunk from the source, this water could literally bring back to life what things had been dead. Not in the dark way that the Iron Empire necromancy could. This water meant real life, the holy grail that the Iron Empire couldn't find.
Should this transcendental knowledge and power be shared with the Iron Empire? The seven Mothers and their Council argued on and on. But in the end, they could not forgive or forget the past.
And this would be their curse...
(to be continued)
You've probably noticed the mysterious All Star Box icon that sits next to some of the girls...
We came up with the All Star box Concept because, when working on some units, it became obvious to us that each of the girls was actually much more than a simple trooper. Those girls reminded us of The Magnificent Seven or Inglorious Basterds, in which a band of characters are the heroes of the story Since our upcoming game will be very cinematic and influenced by the movie culture, it made a lot of sense to create special units in which each character will be some sort of hero/champion.
But, for various reasons, developing and sculpting a Heroine character costs more than developing a Trooper.
So, we thought we should begin these boxes with 3 characters only. But if the Kickstarter goes big, we will upgrade these boxes with additional characters, up to 5 per box! This means that, basically, you'll get additional free minis in those boxes and end up with a group of heroines for the price of a Troops box, which in our opinion, is a seriously cool deal!
In the coming Updates, we will have an on-going series to explain specific steps of our work when we create a miniature.
Today, we talk about something that might seem quite abstract, but which is really a key step for creating lethally elegant female minis.
We spoke on the last Update about how the sculpts will continue to evolve until they are finally produced.
One of the few drawbacks of 3D sculpting is that it is really hard to get a good feel for the bulk and size of a mini until it's actually 3D printed. You can take as many measurements as you like on your screen, use measuring tools in the 3D software, you can compare them side-by-side to previous sculpts you've made, and more... All this will help. But it will never be enough to make the right call.
And if you know a bit about photography and filmmaking, you'll probably have heard this expression: “ the camera always adds 10 pounds” (or 5 kilos, here in France). This means that on a photograph or on film, most of the time, one will look about 10 pounds heavier than in reality. Strangely enough, the same is somewhat true between 3D renders and actual minis. So we also have to take that into account when working on them.
This is why, every time we create a new army, we need to go through some sort of calibration process where we test the look and feel of key minis. To do this more efficiently, we got ourselves a 3D printer that we use for prototyping and testing. We print the same miniature at different sizes and different bulks until we find the right mix.
So, in the end, while some of the renders we've shown might still appear a bit squat, they will end up with similar proportions as our other miniatures once they reach then casting and moulding stage.
Monsters and base sizes
We've been getting several queries about the size of the various creatures, how they compare to each other, and on what size of base will you be able to mount them. Just so you know, we always try to make such pieces as big as we , however, we know that, depending on the game you play, base size can be really important, so we do keep that in mind. In the next few days, we'll post images and measurements to help you get a better feel for this.
Lots of stretch goals have been unlocked since the beginning of this campaign. We've updatedour Front Page to reflect this more clearly, with a little green unlocked padlock and the KS amount at which it was unlocked. Come over and check it out if you've missed this.
In future updates, we will start adding larger sized concept images. Just bear with us while we re-order everything, because there are a lot of them... And meanwhile, here's a new one: