Maidenhead Miniatures Centyr Review
Maidenhead is an Australian manufacturer of all-female fantasy ranges in the 28mm scale. After the "Babes that time forgot" Stone Age Amazons, they now surprised us by bringing a thus far completely original range to the tabletop: the "Feral Elves". Now when I first heard about this I imagined a type of more savage woodelves. In reality however, the feral elves are very different from any existing elven race. Why is this so? Well, because they are the offspring of elves and beastmen and come with various degrees of bestial characteristics. How such a thing came to pass, is best learned from the feral elf background on the Maidenhead site. While you're there, take a look at the excellent concept art for these figures.
Let suffice to say here that there are three distinct classes, with the upper ones being almost pure elves, the middle caste having hooves and horns and the lower caste having a centaurlike appearance. It is some of the latter caste that we have for review here: the light centyrs. Kudos go to Kym of Maidenhead for supplying the figures, and of course to Mike Broadbent for sculpting them.
First impressions straight from the box reveal a dull greyish metal (which I generally prefer to the shiny stuff for no apparent reason), which feels slightly rough to the touch. All the figures have slots and come with 25mm square plastic bases. Mouldlines are ranging from very faint to invisible. There is a little flash on some of the models, which tends to manifest itself at the feet (hooves) and occasionally at the weapons' extremities. I have left it on the figures for the pictures, to give an accurate view, but have since removed it and it came off very easily. (For pictures of the miniatures in all their glory, visit the Maidenhead website.)
There are twelve different miniatures in all, three command figures, one figure with two-handed weapon, four with spear/javelin and four with handweapon. A word of warning, the Maidenhead feral elves are for all purposes best described as nude. Oh, come on don't look so shocked, the image on top of the page should have given it away already. This remains completely in accordance with the general savage beast(wo)man theme so it shouldn't be seen as gratuitous, rather as 'functional nudity'. (lol... yeah right)
Now, the first figures are the command figures and as is to be expected these got the most attention in terms of equipment and other detail. The leader and standard bearer are among my personal favourites of the range, and both wear a headdress which seems to be made from a horned animal's skull/skin or perhaps once belonged to a powerful beastman of old. The Standard bearer could quite easily be used as a shamanic figure. All three figures come with completely different lower (goat) bodies. At this point I noticed that all the light centyrs seem to carry this sort of gourd made from god knows what part of an animal. Whether this implies they're strong drinkers or holds some sort of potent elixir, I don't know. Click on the images for frontal and back view.
Now for the rank & file. The picture on the left shows the four variants with spears. They are (from left to right) couched charging, overhead thrusting, throwing and well, apparently just walking around. There are four different lower body poses spread over the 9 different warrior figures. All four are different from those on the command figures. One thing that is a bit more apparent here than in the command figures (due to a lack of headdress), is that the centyr heads are slightly larger than normal. This is deliberate to emphasize their bestial origins (in case you missed the four legs, horns and hooves part). All four models are in clearly distinct poses. One small imperfection lies in the fact that in the poses where the spearshaft is held against the body, that shaft isn't always perfectly aligned above and below the hand. We're talking about a minor deviation here, nothing too crazy.
The right picture shows the four warriors with handweapon. Again we are dealing with very distinct poses, although here we have two of the warriors sharing the same lower body (the goat part). Speaking of which, early comments on these figures were the concern that the goat part of the body had 'too many folds'. Having seen the figures in the flesh, I do not find this to be an issue, the 'folds' are very shallow and will only truly become prominent if you decide to use a strong highlight for them. One thing that will be prominent is a certain tendency to be top heavy, quite surprising given that these feral elves are not prone to wearing a bra. Ever. But then, this is Fantasy.
Now that you know what they look like, you may be wondering how big they are. Well, if you've read the background, you will have seen that the light centyrs are the younger warriors and therefore smaller than their older counterparts, the heavy centyrs. Indeed, as you can see in the picture to the left (which shows the twelfth and last miniature, another one of my favourites), the light centyrs are about 30mm to top of head. Which means they're about the size of an average humanoid figure. Let's not forget after all that they are sporting the behind of a goat, not a horse as is the case with bigger centaurs.
The last picture (above to the right) shows the centyr with a metal GW ungor figure, as this is the type of beastman the Maidenhead feral elves best compare to (whether they have two or four legs).
Conclusions are an original subject, well executed with a great variety of models (and more to come). Sculpting is good, and so is the casting (aside from the aforementioned minor flaw on the spears of one or two figures). They certainly have inspired me to save a spot for the rest of the range in my crowded miniatures budget.