Showcase of Icons of the Realms: Curse of Strahd: Legends of Barovia
Last week in preparation for Halloween I did a showcase on Wizkids Icons of the Realms: Curse of Strahd: Covens and Covenants. In the showcase, we were visited by a variety of spooky and sinister characters, who all fit the October season perfectly! Today, I bring you the second set in the Curse of Strahd line: Legends of Barovia!
In case you missed my first showcase or are new to Dungeons and Dragons, The Curse of Strahd is one of the most popular adventures published in the D&D 5e library. The characters capture the imagination of both players and DMs alike as playgroups explore the creepy region of Barovia. Due to the popularity of the adventure, WizKids has produced two sets of miniatures with unique sculpts of important NPCs.
But do the figures in this set live up to the ‘legendary’ nomenclature printed on the box? Do the figures have quality paint jobs? If you spend the money on this set, will the figures have uses outside of the Strahd adventure? And most important of all, do they visually capture the look and feel of the characters they represent in the Curse of Strahd adventure? I hope to answer all of these questions with a brief showcase and review of each figure! I will offer my opinion on the look of these characters, as-well-as what uses I think the figures could fill in other adventures outside of the Strahd one.
A fair warning, I will be providing character names and potentially some background information on them. Therefore, if you wish to avoid any spoilers, please skip the written portions of this showcase and just enjoy the pictures. I will leave it up to you to determine if this collection of minifigures is the right one for you!
First up we have the NPC Pidlwick II! There is so much I can say about this character, but in the interest of ‘no-spoilers,’ I must keep my mouth shut. This little character will quickly become an interesting encounter for the player characters and a fun tool for any dungeon master. As for the figure itself, it is spot-on to a picture of Pidlwick II in The Curse of Strahd adventure book. I particularly like how his jesters hat reminds of Chrono’s hair in the game Chrono Trigger! Pidlwick II is a hard act to follow… and an even harder act to open for. Personally, I found this character to be so unique and memorable, that I cannot imagine another use for this minifigure.
Next to the Pidlwick II, we have the determined Dr. Rudolph Van Richten! Taking some heavy inspiration from Dr. Van Hellsing, you can just imagine what Richten’s mission in Barovia is! This minifigure is a perfect representation of Richten and I think that he could have some limited uses outside of the Strahd adventure. He could certainly operate as a quest giving NPC, like some professor or scholar asking the party to retrieve an artifact for him. And if a player wants to roll an aging, but well learned fighter or cleric, I think this miniature could fit the bill.
Beside Dr. Richten is one of his students, the adventurous Ezmerlda Avenir! You might notice that her feet do not match. That is intentional for her lore. But you’ll have to dive into the adventure to learn what that is all about. A recurring theme of these figures is just how perfectly WizKids captures the look of the characters based on pictures from the Strahd adventure book. And Ezmerlda is no exception! This figure is generic looking enough that she could also fill many roles, from NPC to player character.
If any NPC could follow Pidlwick II in memorable encounters, it has to be the fortune teller Madam Eva. Madam Eva is able to read fortunes using her Tarokka deck of cards. The Curse of Strahd adventure book provides DMs with information on how to use a regular deck of playing cards to substitute for the Tarokka cards. But the images of the magical cards are available. Additionally, there are some supplementary products out there that include a complete deck of Tarokka cards for use! When players encounter Madam Eva, she can read their fortunes and the cards drawn can alter future events of the adventure. This minifigure looks incredible and could fill other roles in an adventure. From a mysterious NPC to a spellcaster player character.
Continuing down the path of the supernatural, we have Baba Lysaga! One look at this sinister old lady standing on a top of skulls and you can bet she doesn’t have a tin of Royal Dansk Butter cookies waiting for you after school! I have nothing but good things to say about this figure. From her intricate robe, sunken eyes, and detailed bouffant, this is one solid mini. She could definitely work as a witch or a hag in another adventure. But I think of her like Pidlwick II, I can’t imagine using this mini for any other purpose than Baba Lysaga.
Next is the only non-named character in either of the two sets for the Strahd adventure. This figure is the Mongrelfolk! Mongrelfolk are humanoids who have gone through some terrifying magical transformations and now only a sliver of their humanity remains. Since Mongrelfolk can come in many combinations of races and beasts, I really appreciate this miniature for its look. I don’t think it could be anything but a Mongrelfolk… but what else would you want it to be? And just look at that leg! This Mongrelfolk must have been mixed up with Howard the Duck!
Last and certainly not least, we have the tenacious title character, Strahd von Zarovich! This is probably one of the best detailed pre-painted miniatures I have seen. From the way he stands to the wine glass in his hand, this miniature screams Strahd! Obviously, Strahd is a big deal, since the entire adventure is named after him and WizKids did not hold anything back making this character. You could probably find uses for this figure outside of the Strahd adventure. But why would you? This is Strahd von Zarovich and players will quickly learn to fear this miniature for what it represents!
Like the previous set I feel strongly that this one is excellent! The figures maintain the high quality that WizKids is known for, the paint jobs are incredible for pre-painted figures, and the figures accurately depict the characters they are intended to. Additionally, some of these characters can fill many roles outside of the Strahd adventure. But once again, it is up to you to determine if you feel these figures belong in your collection!
I hope you have enjoyed this ghastly look into WizKids Icons of the Realms: Curse of Strahd: Legends of Barovia! The set is available now at your local game store with an MSRP of $39.99. I always recommend supporting your local LGS. But if you cannot, it is available online as well. Thank you for reading an Happy Halloween everyone!
Showcase of D&D Icons of the Realms: Curse of Strahd: Legends of Barovia Miniatures by WizKids
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