Monstrous Cavalry

  • Now that Wargames Atlantic has started showing off cavalry models... how about some Monstrous cavalry?



    Crazt beasts... Big tusked things, Lion like things, etc... 


    Undead mammoths, Giant Crocs, a mangle of human skeletons arranged as a giant beast.


    Giant sloths, Big armadillos, Falcor from the never ending story, Appa from Avatar. Elephants or other large creatures with a howdah?


    Dinosaurs, Wingless Griffins, Wingless dragons, Big he-man like riding tigers (or panthers). Big Crabs... (with or without howdah). 


    If you are doing 12 cavalry to a box, Mostrous could come in boxes of 4- 8 depending on how monstrous... Like 4 Really big crabs to 6 Large panthers... 


  • I am all for giant crabs... I am unsure they would sell well but I would like to have some. Smaller ones, bigger ones to ride and a huge one with a howdah. 

    Wolves/Wargs for the Goblins would be nice given the rider legs in the set.

  • @Grumpy Gnome  Wolve and wrags would be great.

  • @William Redford  

    For skeletons at least,  the issue is that the perfect monsters cavalry and warbeasts can already be bought pretty cheaply either around Trick or Treat in form of fake animal skeletons or in the form of edutoy dino skeletons that can be bought from folks like oriental trading company. And of course there companies like Safari that every once in a while put out things like zombie dragons etc.

  • Issue (as ever) is doing stuff a bit too niche.

    Big wolves in plastic might be good - issue is scaling them so riders fit without being basically cavalry/horse size (although that IS big for a wolf!).

    Slightly customizable 'beasts' (ie not just scaled up real animals) with compatible left/right sides and a variety of heads (wolf like, lion, skull etc) and tails might work?

  • Terror birds, with bits for fantasy and death fields, much like the Spiders kit.

  • @Vitor Soares

    What sort of rider would Terror birds have? Plate armor  knight types?

  • I am not sure what Vitor has in mind but Crooked Dice recently had some interesting Sci-fi wasteland “terror birds” with riders. A bit like Star Wars rebels in design. Mrs. GG liked them but we did not have a project that needed them.

    I think a key issue with separately sold mounts would be trying to be as widely usable as possible. 

  • For some reason, the Terror Bird idea only brings to mind Taarna and her bird from the animated movie Heavy Metal (1981), which would make an awesome miniature kit, now that I think of it....

    I agree with David and Grumpy Gnome above - I suspect one of the biggest challenges for something like this would be balancing something unique and interesting that isn't already overdone, against being so niche, there isn't a market for it.

    I think Northstar's Oathmark line currently has some Tolkienesque goblin wolf-riders available at the moment, so I'm not sure if there's a market for more of that specific sort of product (though I'm sure there are going to be those of us who would prefer Wargames Atlantic's version, and those of use who would buy both for the variety!)

    I've got a real soft spot in my heart for this sort of thing so I don't know how niche it would be, but something that might be a bit different might be something like the retro-scifi/fantasy stuff you'd find in Edgar Rice Burroughs' Barsoom novels, like this Martian Jeddak on his trusty Thoat:

    I would love to see a lot more old-fashioned sci-fi/fantasy stuff like that available - I think it fell out of fashion in the last century, but in an age where an old-school fantasy renaissance has been gathering momentum and a lot more people are beginning to appreciate old-fashioned pulp art and old-school RPG illustrations, maybe its time has come around again for this sort of thing to make a comeback?  (I'd hope so!)


    For example, consider this beautiful and unique early 1980s vintage "Sharkoss" action figure from Arco's defunct Otherworld toy line:

    I don't think anyone's doing anything remotely different like that, and to my mind, it would look great in any fantasy or sci-fi setting!  (I believe it would fall into William's category of "tusked beasts" for orcish cavalry, and I agree completely that, niche or not, I'd love to see some variety out there for something other than horses, wolves, dragons, and the occasional dogs for fantasy cavalry!)

  • I need a button stronger than like for that post@Yronimos Whateley!

    Yes to Taarna, good call... and definitely yes to anything Barsoom if WA can get IP approval. Such wonderful Pulp-y goodness. Especially large 4 armed green Martains in conflict with smaller humanoid red Martians... and mounts for both... to fight Victorian Earth colonial invaders in the Martian deserts. Yes. Definitely yes. 

    PS : Then both Martian and Earther Aeronefs with suitable crew... the sky is the limit....

  • @Grumpy Gnome I was thinking about a kit with Terror Birds with saddles and some miscelaneous accesseries, for various ages. A bit like the spider kit.

    If it came with various legs, anyone, even me, could kitbash a Grognard, a Lizardman or a Late Roman to them. Or even, in a perfect dream land, a dwarf warrior.

  • @Yronimos Whateley best post in this tread, love your ideia.

  • @Brian Van De Walker if they came with some saddles and generic legas, you could put a any torso you liked on them.

  • @Vitor Soares

    (sigh) I have been meaning to bring it up and have not since I to have sinned this way a few times on here, but "generic" is not a real good description  as it can mean anything the user wants but the hearer/reader may have a completely alien conception of what "generic" is for that thing (take elves or even guns as an example, everyone has thier own ideas of what those look like in a generic sense).

    When you say "generic legs", do you mean normal male human legs in plain pants with a belt and some sort of plain pull on boots covering the feet?  cause to my knowledge that’s as versatile (ie useable for several diffrent things) as you can get with legs for fantasy and SF at least.

    @Yronimos Whateley

    Actually the first thing I thought of (after the 10,000 BC movie and museum displays) was the Chocobos from the Final Fantasy video game franchise (partly because the comparison was brought in the FB group awhile back). 

    Terror birds are one of TWO ice age critters that keep coming up when fantasy mounts for gaming miniatures are the topic and they can work as wild animals/monsters for games, so they might not be as bad an idea as they first seem, though wolves and velociraptors would probably be the logical choses as far as fantasy goes.

    Oh, thought of something mildly related to this thread but camels are sort of one of those things history gamers have been wanting for awhile in plastic for a lot of things and I know there are fantasy armies that have them so it might not be a bad idea to do fantasy cav set with camels.

  • @Brian Van De Walker that is the problem when one replies from a cellphone, it induces sighs onto others. I ment exactly that, "human" legs, plain pants, boots. 

    Just let me use this for a lighthearted syntax discussion, something can be versatile, related to its use, and generic, not specific to any fantasy race or gender. But let me stress, I perfectly understand your doubt, and I should have been clearer. 

  • Does anyone make any plastic kits with camel cavalry? I think Reaper does some pack camels in their Bones plastic but I can not think of any multipart plastic kits with camel cavalry. I know I struggled to come up with how to proxy camel cavalry for Middle Earth Strategy Battle Games.

  • Yes - camels and war elephants both seem to come up in topics about cavalry a lot, and as far as I know, Reaper is one of the few (if not only) manufacturers out there making either war elephants (war mammoths, rather) or camels (pack camels, rather).  There might be some in metal out there, and I think I've seen some camel cavalry in 1/72 scale, but I'm not really familiar with metal minis anymore, or 1/72 scale soldiers.

    Naturally, there's quite a bit more regular horse cavalry out there, but it seems to be hit-or-miss, and wargamers seem to always be looking for more. Horse cavalry seem to be the best bet going, for any cavalry kit-bashing.

    After that, there are a few wolf and dog cavalry out there, with the Northstar Oathmark goblin wolf-riders being perhaps one of the better kits I know of for wolf cavalry, and Mantic making most of the dog cavalry I can think of.

    Wargames Atlantic have most of the in-print spider cavalry I know of (I'm sure I've seen some in white metal back in the '80s, but I don't think those models are in print anymore.)

    There might be some lizard cavalry out there - it seems like a good choice for fantasy gamers.  I don't think I can think of much though, except in some Wizkids Pathfinder or D&D prepainted collectible mini sculpts.  There might be some Star Wars collectible pre-painted mini cavlary of that sort, too, but I don't know of anything in particular.  Wizkids D&D/Pathfinder miniatures also include the odd wolf-rider goblins, dog-rider halflings, and goblin-dog rider goblins.  I've also seen one salamander-riding goblin in D&D/Pathfinder minis, and one small manufacturer recently made some frog-riding gnomes.

    Skeletal horses seem like a popular request from fantasy gamers, but I don't think I know of any beyond some Wizkids collectible D&D/Pathfinder mini sculpts (or, rather, at least one of these, and I'm not even sure how common it is.)  Reaper's made some mountd Bones "not-Ring Wraiths" recently, those looked great, but I think the horses looked like they were living. 

    There might be some undead cavalry and wolf-riders for LotR gaming, but I'm really not very familiar with those miniatures.

    Dragon-riders seem like popular artistic sculpts, but these seem rather too big, heavy, delicate, and expensive for routine gaming use.  I'm thinking most of the ones I've ever seen have been in metal and resin, there might have been one or two in Reaper bones as well.

    Reaper also produces at least one bear-riding dwarf, and one pony-riding dwarf.

    I think there might be some boar-riding dwarfs out there, too.


    I can dig the fantasy-kitchen-sink thing, but the halfling dog-riders and dwarf boar-riders seem a bit goofy for my tastes:  not quite as fun and adventurous as riding alien creatures, and just a bit too strange and unlikely for straight-laced Tolkienien generic fantasy compared to ponies.  For whatever reason though, these cliches seem to have more or less stuck as the fantasy defaults - I'm guessing it comes from Warhammer or Warcraft, but I'm not familiar enough with either to say so for sure!

    Short of alien monsters, an alternative that might appeal to me a little more than bear, dog and boar cavalry Lovecraft's Dreamlander zebra-riders (easily improvised by painting regular horses in stripes), with some of the most exotic-looking riders I can find - sure, zebras are about as well-suited for the task as bears, boars, or dogs, but if I'm going to do niche real-life animal cavalry, that seems a little more innocuous, a little more plausible, a little more traditional, and a sight less commonly-used than most.

    In the end, though, I think proper war elephants, mules, and camels seem like excellent choices that both fantasy and historical gamers can find uses for, even if only for niche markets, while dinosaur/dragon/lizard-riding cavalry seem to be an under-represented traditional fantasy option.


    Now, someone out there did modify a Reaper Bones "Axebeak" prehistoric-megafauna-looking bird with a saddle and rider, and it's a cool conversion - check it out:  (link)

  • Victrix do “ancient” war elephants and are not difficult to convert for other settings. I have seen them converted for various fantasy projects.

  • Ah!  I keep forgetting all about Victrix.  I really ought to check in on what they've been doing lately - I'd bought a few Dark Ages warriors from them many years ago, but it was a bit of a hassle importing them at the time.

  • I'd like to see some reptilian quadruped mounts with generally equine body structure.  With one head option they could be aliens or stop-motion-era dinosaurs.  With another head option (mane and antlers) and tail plume, they could be longma or Kirin for Chinese or Japanese inspired fantasy cavalry.  Another head (with horns) could make for demonic or dragon cavalry.

    Considering the giant crabs, could they be given Sci fi options?  Also, if you go into eastern fantasy, the dragons in Journey to the West fielded armies of shrimp soldiers and crab generals, so they'd be useful there, too.

  • Giant crabs with sci-fi options sounds good for Neal Asher’s Prador....

  • war elephants with tusk swords for history or fantasy would be awesome.

  • Giant crocs, crabs, and dinosaurs would get my money!

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