kit bashing Reaper Bones

Kit Bashing a Nightmarish Miniature for Dungeons & Dragons

D&D Ideas -- Encounters
D&D Ideas -- Using Monsters

There are many awesome crafters out there on YouTube. You can watch tutorials on how they make great stuff. I was inspired by a miniature I saw someone else make on the internet so I figured I would share with all of you the process I took to make this awesome mini.

It starts off with three Reaper minis. There’s the goroloth, which to me looks like an aboleth. Next, a wolf demon is fun, and lastly the dragon tortoise. You won’t use all the parts of each of these three, which means you could use the extra parts for another kit bash. See what you can come up with, and do not throw the parts away. If can’t use them now you will certainly have the option to save them for another project later. If this is your first kit bash use this to begin your parts bin.

I have included progress pics in the slideshow below so you can see what I am doing during each step and what I am using. First up is the dragon tortoise. This is Reaper Bones No. 77334. From this we are going to use the most amount of pieces. Pull out the body, the legs and tail. The other pieces you can put in your parts bin. You can see in the slideshow the parts we are going to use. Dry fitting the legs was a little tight. I used a knife to trim them so they fit in and out better.

Next we are going to take the large clawed arms from the wolf demon. This is Reaper Bones  No. 77307. From here we are only looking to use those arms. The rest can go in your parts bin. Thankfully they come unattached so we do not have to remove anything from the model. Dry fitting the arms of the wolf demon into the turtle shell fit easy but do not stay inserted.

Lastly we look at the goroloth. This is Reaper Bones No. 77343. From this mini we just want the head.

Now I’ve got all the parts I am going to use.

Included in the photos is a basic mini base for a huge mini. Any three in round base will work great for you. But if you do not have any feel free to use these. The other thing is you’ll see two pieces of metal wire bent slightly. Mine are just about 2 1/2 inches overall length. This gives us room to insert it into the glue and still have considerable length.

Now that we have all of our pieces we are going to dry fit everything together and see how it all lines up. The arms and tentacles off of the head really interfere with each other so we are going to have to either reshape the arms or build up some base when we glue to re-position the arms. I prefer to build up a base with glue. Though if you like there are tips out there on dipping Reaper Bones minis into boiling water, reshaping them the way you like and then dipping them into an ice bath to freeze the shape into place.

Either method works just great but it is your call how you want to proceed. Like I said I am just going to build up a base to work from.

Since the head comes from a different model than the body you are also going to have an issue here. It will not be a nice tight fit as you might be used to, if you are familiar with Reaper Bones minis. Hre is another place you can use the glue gun to build up your base. As I look at the model pieces it could be cool to have this creature with an elongated neck. You could get some air-dry clay or any other way of building up and make this creature taller. But I do not want to mess up the balance on this mini so I am going to hold off.

I use hot glue to build a nice secure foundation to attach the head to the shell torso. In the picture I saw online to inspire me the creature had antenna. Sadly I forgot this part when I ordered my parts or I might have spent some time picking the antenna I was going to use. Since I did not I decided to check my parts bin for supplies. I did not have anything that would fit as-is, but grabbing some wire, I cut pieces a little over 2 inches. While the hot glue was drying by the head I shoved the wire in and used the glue gun to build up the antenna with some texture. You can do this part however you like. You can have nodules on the end, bumps up and down them or however you like. I just built up some extra size and texture within that first inch and left the wire alone for the rest.

Next we move onto the arms. We saw how we wanted things to fit in the dry fit section so hopefully you know how you want this creature to look. The arm position was not going to be nice to me, so like the head I had to use the glue gun to get the arms in a position I was happy with. The right arm I angled out to the side while I took the left arm and positioned it up. This got me around all the tentacles coming off the head.

Now we are fully assembled (sorry, Avengers) a creature of nightmare. Moving on to painting. Since this is your craft you can do as you please with color scheme and paint job. I wanted this to be primarily green and purple. Since there is very much a tortoise shell I wanted to own it, but there is the thing from beyond as well and purple fits there to me.

I did a base of primer first. Then moved onto different sections. I used Vallejo 72147 Heavy Black Green on the back of the shell. I thought this dark color would be a nice contrast. I painted the head, or at least the top of it and the arm, minus the claws, in Vallejo 74025 Imperial Purple. This is another great dark color. The antenna and the underside of the head I painted Vallejo 74028 Witch Purple. Like an octopus can have a second color underneath this would be a nice extra detail. Painting the antenna in this same color gives another pop of color and makes them stand out among the darker colors on the top of the model.

I painted the base of the tail and the legs in Vallejo 72029 Sick Green. I used Vallejo 72033 Livery Green to paint the under-shell, the accents on the legs, the eyes, accents on tail and back of shell. I came back and used some of the purples to accent the tail. I hit the front of the shell and legs with Vallejo 73205 Green Wash. I used a basic white for the spots on the tail that looked like eggs as well as the outer parts of the claws. I used black to do the inner parts of the claws as well as the toes. I dry brushed the same white on the suckers on the under side of the head to make those details stand out.

Painting done, it was time to coat. I felt with this creature I was going to use a combination of matte and satin. I used a satin on the octopus, gorgoth or aboleth, head. I used matte on the rest. I think it came out really well. If you decide to follow this idea and you make your own please feel free to share it in social media and tag Nerdarchy so we can see how you did.

Thanks for reading. Until next time, stay nerdy!


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Follow Ted Adams:
The nerd is strong in this one. I received my bachelors degree in communication with a specialization in Radio/TV/Film. I have been a table op role player for about 20 years 17 of which with the current group. I have played several itterations of D&D, Mutants and Masterminds 2nd and 3rd editions, Star wars RPG, Shadowrun and World of Darkness. I am an avid fan of books and follow a few authors reading all they write. Favorite author is Jim Butcher I have been an on/off larper for around 15 years even doing a stretch of running my own for a while. I have played a number of Miniature games including Warhammer 40K, Warhammer Fantasy, Heroscape, Mage Knight, Dreamblade and D&D Miniatures. I have practiced with the art of the German long sword with an ARMA group for over 7 years studying the German long sword, sword and buckler, dagger, axe and polearm. By no strecth of the imagination am I an expert but good enough to last longer than the average person if the Zombie apocalypse ever happens. I am an avid fan of board games and dice games with my current favorite being Quarrios.

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