When Hero Forge first came out with their 3D printed miniatures, I did an interview with the creators and backed them on Kickstarter. I used my Kickstarter codes to order miniatures for review and I did a review of the miniatures from stem to stern, showing what they looked like by getting miniatures made of my gaming group. A few months back, Hero Forge sent me complimentary codes for their new Premium “Grey” plastic option. It took me a while to get them painted and prepped, but here is an update to the previous review.

Overall Thoughts

The Premium “Grey” plastic option is right in line with the level of detail, quality, and durability I would expect from any plastic miniature. They paint as easily as Reaper miniatures and have a lot more details than the level of detail I could get from 3D printing them myself or using the Strong plastic. The premium plastic has just a bit more detail than the Ultra Detail options from Hero Forge, but the durability is much higher. I’ve had many of the ultra detail miniatures break at weak points, and even the fiddly bits on the strong plastic pieces have broken on me once or twice, but the Premium “Grey” plastic option holds up far better.

Painting Tips

I’ve rarely had to use primer on many of my Reaper bones miniatures, but with the Premium “Grey” plastic, I found it very helpful to prime them first. Unlike the strong nylon miniatures, which soak up paint, these almost repel it. The first layer of paint I put on the miniatures was fairly slippery, and the thinner my paints, the less likely they were to stay on. I usually use a flow agent to make my paints a little lighter, but for the Premium “Grey” plastic, I had to have a slightly thicker paint to get it to stick on the plastic easily. It took two coats for the miniatures, and having a primer layer would have made it take only one. The miniatures were easy enough to paint, and I mimed the color schemes and setup of other Hero Forge miniatures I had for comparison. Bear in mind that I am not a master painter by any stretch of the imagination. I can do okay, but I am perpetually jealous of the miniatures I see posted in DM Scotty’s Facebook page.

Photo Review

Really, the only way to show how well these do is through photos, so check out the pictures below to see the comparisons, and be sure to check out the other review I did to see the other plastic options from Hero Forge.




Compared to other Hero Forge Options




Comparison to Reaper Bones


Conclusion and Giveaway

I’m a big fan of the Premium “Grey” Plastic option for a miniature. The quality, detail, and durability of the Premium “Grey” Plastic far surpass the other options out there for 3D printed miniatures and are on par with Reaper bones miniatures. For a character or the Big Bad for my game, it is well worth the cost, especially if I plan to play the character for a long time. Now let’s talk giveaway. For the miniatures we created, I duplicated one of my primary characters and we did a female gamer gnome.

That unique and original gamer gnome can be yours! How do you get it? Well, there are two ways.

  • First, everyone who is a Patreon supporter is already entered into every giveaway contest we do.
  • Second, you can leave a comment here.

We’ll compile all of our patreon supporters and the commenters here and roll a die to pick a random winner, then we’ll contact that winner by email to get shipping information. So, if you want to see what the Hero Forge grey plastic is like in person, and have your very own custom painted gamer gnome from Gnome Stew, go back our Patreon (because you love us and want to help us make cool stuff for everyone!) or leave a comment here before 03/06/2017 to be entered into the giveaway!


17 replies
  1. HCCummings
    HCCummings says:

    My whole group got our characters from one of our players for a Christmas present this year (I got a major NPC since I’m the GM) and everyone was blown away by how good they are. Everyone was a big fan how customization they were (even if they didn’t have all the options we really needed) and the quality is much better than some of the early Reaper Bones I got from the Kickstarter.

  2. Bob Farrigan
    Bob Farrigan says:

    I’ve been thinking about buying a hero forge or two but the bang for the buck still seems low. Well, that and I have like 50 primed minis in the queue plus another couple dozen older ones I want to strip ad repaint. 😉

    • John Arcadian
      John Arcadian says:

      I buy them for the minis I’m going to use a lot or the ones I just can’t find. When I’m doing a campaign or want the perfect looking big bad, heck yeah I’ll spend the money, but for most stuff I’m just going to go into the boxes of minis I’ve got and do what you do. Also, I have waaay too many miniatures.

  3. KamoKamo
    KamoKamo says:

    Yay! I’d love one 😀
    They always say ‘you don’t have a character, aren’t you bored GM-ing?’ so if I get one then I’ll answer ‘Now I do!’ 😉

  4. Toldain
    Toldain says:

    Well, I’m inclined to be a bit extravagant, so I recently got a pair of mini’s from Hero Forge for a superhero campaign I’m playing in. One is for my heroine in her street clothes and the other is her in her power armor. Hero Forge is really a go to for me when you’re doing things that aren’t quite the normal thing. I got them in the Premium Gray Plastic (which is black).

    One question: What kind of paint do you use, and what kind of primer would work best on PGP(wib)?

    • John Arcadian
      John Arcadian says:

      So I have a mix of Reaper Paints and war gaming paints for the really nice stuff and details. I also have an array of cheaper craft store paints (~$2 a bottle) that I mix with flow agent to get a little better quality out of them. I’ve got a TON of reaper bones, so for my general painting I use the cheaper paints.

      For primer, the citadel stuff is premium, but I also use a basic gesso mixed with some paint. It all depends on whether I’m painting for a showpiece or to use in a game. 11 times out of 10 I’m doing it just to have miniatures for a game or for a convention scenario, so I don’t stress too much on having the good stuff around to use.

      Sealing at the end will protect them a lot, but depending on the sealant can make them a little sticky.

      • Toldain
        Toldain says:

        Interesting. These days I mostly use acrylics from an art store, and a sealer is essential for anything that’s going to be handled, like, at all. I’ll have to try that business with a gesso, though. I have a handle on metal figs, but the plastic ones often can be a little recalcitrant.


  5. Roxysteve
    Roxysteve says:

    I’ve found that unless you get a quality primer on them sharpish, the ultra-high quality Heroforge minis (the transparent ones) start to get a brittle, flaky layer of (for want of a better word) oxidation on them.

    Before priming it is still important to wash the minis carefully in warm water with a small amount of detergent added, then to rinse them, blot them with a paper towel and allow them to properly air dry.

    Personally, I don’t rate certain primers these days as they are simply rebranded top coats with none of the necessary qualities. The best one I ever used was Poly-S spray but that no longer exists. Tamiya spray primer is nice, with an ultra-fine particle fiormula, but is temperamental and very expensive.

    I’ve had good results with Army Builder colored primers on plastic and resin, but on metal the results can be fragile. The two dozen Deep Ones I did using the pale green AB primer for a convention game of Realms of Cthulhu needed lots of loving care and several coats of dullcote before they were handling proof.

    I’m off to Heroforge to see about getting my Deadlands PC minified.

  6. mrbosko
    mrbosko says:

    I saw these when they first came out and fell in love with them. Its honestly fun to just build a mini on there and then screen shot it. My group and I used to go to a local con and the thing we always ended up having the most fun with was painting reaper minis at a paint and take. I’m glad they are coming out with more and more options in both designs and materials.

  7. Lordomatic
    Lordomatic says:

    Does anybody have a good tutorial on painting miniatures? I’ve come into a few plastic ones and I’d love to do something with them. 🙂

  8. Michael O'Connor
    Michael O'Connor says:

    Looks like the new “grey” material doesn’t have any of the annoying grittiness of the ultra detail. I hated painting over those gritty areas. Especially when I’d apply a wash to the area.
    This has me just about sold on finally getting myself one, (not that I’d necessarily stop at one if the quality is as good as you say).

  9. anyse
    anyse says:

    I recently painted my first miniatures and would love more to do. I have the perfect character in mind that I’ll create if I win!

    EDIT: I misread the prize. I’d still be cool with a pre-painted gnome gamer! 🙂

  10. John Arcadian
    John Arcadian says:

    We’ve just done the random roll and the dice choose a winner from 37 entries (from comments and our patreon supporters)!

    The winner of the gamer gnome is Patreon supporter Lordtentacle! We’ll be sending the painted gamer gnome out post-haste!

Comments are closed.