March 1, 2016 by brennon
We’ve been keeping an eye on the Warploque Miniatures Kickstarter for ArcWorlde: Battle For Troll Bridge and it has been going from strength to strength. With that in mind we thought we’d have a look at where the campaign stands right now and talk with the man behind it all, Alex Huntley…
We decided to find out a bit more about where Warploque Miniatures got started and the game behind these fantastic models.
BoW: Tell us about how Warploque Miniatures got started?
Alex: I have been collecting wargames models for a (relatively) long time, since I was about 9 or 10. Initially I started buying the models from other companies, and converting them to represent characters I had created. A head swap here, a different weapon, you know the sort. As I got more and more confident I started to mix sculpting into it as well, using existing models as a base.
When I was about 14 I started a number of blogs on various miniature war-gaming forums showing my projects, such as The Warhammer Forum and Warseer and eventually built up quite a following.
As I slowly became a better sculptor I took the plunge and started sculpting models from scratch, and people loved it! It was the vast number of positive comments I received from doing this that really drove me forward with my work. People really enjoyed watching the progress of my sculptures, and often put forward ideas I could use in my miniatures.
I came up with the idea of Warploque Miniatures in my final year of 6th Form, when I was 18 years old. I took some money I had earned from a private sculpting commission and had a few of my original works cast. I continued to have a few more made into resin, but even though I had a very active following on a number of forums, I never seemed to sell anything! I had always kind of hoped that it would take off, but eventually I resigned myself to keeping it just as a hobby.
I had been casting and selling a few pieces by the time I started at the University of Nottingham where I began to study Human Genetics in an attempt to get a “real job”. It was throughout my first year that I prepared my first Kickstarter, thinking that it would just raise enough money to get a little range going and maybe a few beers. Then it got silly.
One month, and £57,019 of backing afterwards, I was left reeling. It was at that point that I knew that this was what I really wanted to do as a career.
BoW: What inspired the design and aesthetic of the ArcWorlde miniatures as they have a very distinctive style?
Alex: To be honest, most of the inspiration for my work comes from non-miniature based sources. My biggest inspiration by far is the work of the late Terry Pratchett and the Discworld series of novels, as well as the fantastic illustrations of Paul Kidby. I’m sure I don’t need to wax lyrical about how amazing those books are.
As well as novels, I take inspiration from video games, fantasy art books, fairy tales, films, cartoons and historical events. I also take a lot of inspiration from nature when it comes to designing monsters and creatures.
Although it might be tempting to follow the crowd and copy what others are doing, I always try to inject individuality into everything I do. I try to make my work in a way that people can tell it’s mine just by looking at it. There are a lot of companies out there that just seem to copy the style of each other, and as such a lot of the miniatures can look interchangeable throughout many different ranges!
ArcWorlde/Warploque models don’t really fit in with any other range, and whereas some people might think that is a weakness, I think of it as a strength.
BoW: Can you give us a brief overview of how the game plays for those who are new to the game?
Alex: ArcWorlde is a game that does not take itself too seriously. It is a skirmish based game, which can range from about 5 models a side, to potentially as many as you want. It is very narrative driven, with tons of scope to create your own stories within the titular world.
At the moment there are six warbands to choose from, three of which are represented in the Battle for Troll Bridge boxed set. However, a big part of the game is that you can play as the wild monsters that roam the landscape. The beasts have always been my favourite part of any fantasy worlds, and I wanted to give ArcWorlde players the option of fielding these titanic terror on the battlefield, without the restriction of fitting them into tight warband restrictions. If you want to be a massive dragon, you can be a massive dragon!
Each game is split into five turns, in which all the players activate their models. Each model has a certain number of Action Points which to spend on actives within the turn. They also have many different attacks to choose from, so every Grunt has their own part to play in the story.
The Battle for Troll Bridge box set contains everything you need to start playing ArcWorlde. With enough models for up to four people to play, as well as dice, tokens, and a quick-start rules booklet, it would be the perfect thing to take to your local gaming club!
BoW: What does the future hold for Warploque and ArcWorlde? Could we see more of these ‘Starter Sets’ looking at new scenarios and adventures?
Alex: Well, one of the beauties of keeping this Kickstarter small and contained is that I can make sure it is fulfilled in rapid time! And it also means that I can quickly move on to my next project. ArcWorlde – Troubles in the North will be the first major expansion to the game. It will look at new areas of the world, with new warbands and monsters, as well as a campaign mechanic! If all things go to plan, you guys will be seeing it hit Kickstarter before the end of the year.
As for more starter sets? I have really enjoyed the entire process of creating Battle for Troll Bridge, so you will be certain to see more starter sets in the future. I already have plans for my next one…
BoW: Thanks Alex!
There have been a number of different stretch goals unlocked for the project so far but I’m going to focus in on some of their bigger ones. First of all we have the Artisan Chest which means that your collection gets cast in resin…
Following on from that we also saw an awesome Tarot Deck come to life for Alex’s birthday which also comes with an array of Mage miniatures for the various factions including Professor Chalk.
Last but not least we have an actual Bridge that has been sculpted up by Warploque for you to use in the scenarios. I think the real narrative edge that we’re seeing from this game is what drives it forward and makes it something worth picking up. So, with that in mind I think this would be a good Add-On.
Do you think that you’ll be picking up this game and playing a bit of ArcWorlde?
Drop your thoughts below…
"My biggest inspiration by far is the work of the late Terry Pratchett and the Discworld series of novels, as well as the fantastic illustrations of Paul Kidby..."
"As for more starter sets? I have really enjoyed the entire process of creating Battle for Troll Bridge, so you will be certain to see more starter sets in the future. I already have plans for my next one…"