Heresy Labs: Lord of Decay - Rage Lords
I discovered Heresy Labs not long ago, and since I really liked their mini range, I ordered a couple I especially liked . Heresy Labs is one of the smaller companies producing resin figures and accessories -mostly for Warhammer 40K, but they have other ranges as well (for this review I will assume the reader is somewhat familiar with the setting). Their Rage Lords series are actually drop-ins for the Warhammer 30K Primarchs - the “sons” of the Emperor. Some of them have official figures, some do not -so apart from providing alternatives, these primarch figures fill important holes in the market, too. This particular figure is obviously the primarch of the Death Guard Legion -although, for copyright reasons, he is not named as such. So this not-Mortarion is provided as a daemon-prince, with bat-wings and all. (Games Workshop has a similar figure, and Forgeworld has a pre-Heresy version of him, but this is the second alternative figure of him I bought simply because I much prefer the way they look. There is also a third, 3D printed version I am eyeing, and I will get the GW version eventually, so I will have a lot of Mortarions in my cabinet.)
The figure came in a single ziplock bag and some packing peanuts. Despite all the delicate details it was completely fine, nothing broken, so I can’t complain about packaging. It is much smaller than the official daemon-Mortarion -about half the size, 7cm for the body (see photo with a poor Terminator I use as a test subject for painting). I like its aesthetics much better, despite looking quite similar to the official mini. (I really do not like the little fat daemons -nurglings- GW puts on every Death Guard mini they issue.)
He does not come with a resin-base; you do get a black round plastic one. (Some of the miniatures of named characters have their own custom base, so I thought it would be important to mention.) The round base is a bit different from the usual ones I have seen before with a rim and a slit in the middle -not a very important detail admittedly. However, what is important is that the base is too small for the miniature, so you will need to swap it for a bigger one.
He has his signature scythe (Silence) and pistol (Lantern). Good news: no need to drill out the muzzle of the pistol. The pose of the figure is quite dynamic, reminiscent of the official figure: he is captured in mid-flight, holding his weapons. Something to note: it resembles the official GW mini both in pose and in design very much so, with some minor differences: his wings resemble a bat's rather than insect wings, and he switched his weapons.
The resin is really finely detailed, and quite thin -so careful handling will be a must, otherwise things will break. The wings come as a single unit with the backpack which makes positioning much, much simpler. The casting is excellent overall, but there is a prominent seamline to be removed from the sides where the casting blocks met. (It will require some careful sanding as you really do not want to damage the fine detail.)
Now let’s take a closer look at what we get. I have really good news: non-Mortarion looks positively revolting. The whole armor displays organic-looking growth everywhere, making him look like the lord of pestilence even without paint. I can hardly wait to actually paint it. The places where the horns erupted from the armor look very good- you can see the peeled-up plates. There are tiny spikes everywhere -it must have been really difficult to do the casting. The wings have a real nice, leathery texture; dab on some brown paint and some washes, and they would look life-like. There are crusted, diseased parts everywhere, organic outgrowths resembling sea-creatures… all-in-all he looks like he spent a considerable time under the ocean while being subject to a variety of diseases - a perfectly good representation of his status post-heresy.
The model looks great as a display piece -it is what I am going to use it for. As it is smaller than the official version, it is a bit easier to transport, so perhaps this is a good reason to use it as a drop-in for the official mini. However, the wings are fragile, so constant handling is a problem. I drilled in rare-earth magnets to attach the backpack and the wings, so they stay removable. If you are planning to field him in an army it may be something you need to consider, too. The mini also comes with a surprisingly friendly price-tag, which is a very good argument for it should you wish to get the Primarch of the Death Guard as a miniature.