Every time I’ve ordered miniatures or miniature products from Reaper (http://www.reapermini.com/) I’ve received a receipt, which also has a printed statement claiming that if anything extra was thrown into the box with my order, it’s no accident. Ostensibly this is a warning, so honest gamers won’t send back the promotional Krakken that was thrown in with their order of a dozen victims-on-spits.
I’ve always secretly believed this claim of “additional promo products” was a bit of a put-on– to keep gamers buying Reaper in the hopes that they’ll be rewarded with a miniature figure that isn’t on the market yet. Maybe the miniatures-fairy (not to be confused with the short-stature Miniature Fairy) will gift to them a new kind of succubus with extra ta-tas, like the tri-boobed stripper from Total Recall.
Last month I ordered some plastic goblins to harass my players with. Below is a comparison of the old style of goblins to the new Pathfinder variety.
But along with my newer, superior goblins, I was also treated to a promotional product. What, you might ask, did Reaper sneak into my box of goblins? Was it a werebeast with massive claws and bloody fangs? Was it a mechanical monstrosity of menacing might? Was it the coveted quad-bosomed wench?
Nope. It was half an ounce of shit-brown.
Think I’m kidding about the color?
Keep in mind, this isn’t sour grapes because I was skipped over for a promotional many-jugs-hussy. I appreciate color variety almost as much as I appreciate free stuff. I mix most of my own acrylics when I’m brush painting armies. Variety in brown hues is one of the most overlooked aspects of miniature painting. When you look at pre-renaissance art and clothing you’ll notice an abundance of browns. This is because dyes weren’t as bright as they are now, and colors faded to duller tones over time. When you’re talking middle-ages, brown is important.
With that it mind, and because I hardly ever get a chance to review promotional material, here is my take on product 09667– otherwise known as Rattlesnake Leather.
As the name implies, Rattlesnake Leather should emulate the light tan of a desert serpent. The outside of the bottle hints at a deep brown-green, like the pigment of an ogre’s skin. But this is another case of the container being deceptive to the paint’s true color. You might see serpent skin when the paint comes bubbling out of the plastic nozzle. But all I see is, well…
Half an ounce is standard for paint bottles in the miniatures aisle at the game store, but I decided to give Rattlesnake Leather a try around the house– to improve the mood of my humble abode. Here’s my old, boring bathroom wall:
And here’s the same nook area with an edgy, Rattlesnake treatment!
Of course, I only have half an ounce to work with, and couldn’t spare more than a drop of Rattlesnake. Like my roommates you could probably see the improvement instantly. A splash of Rattlesnake Leather gives it that warm, “home” feeling that you could only get from a fortune of fine mahogany chairs and leather-bound books. Sure, the subject of “Is that shit on the wall?!” came up once or twice, but I know in their hearts they were thinking; “Quality leather tones.”
For the record, the label clearly states Non-Toxic. And I know acrylic paints aren’t designed with a gourmet pallet in mind. But for me to review Rattlesnake Leather in complete fairness and in my fullest capacity as a consumer, I had to take it for a spin. And how did product 09667 measure up?
As for how Rattlesnake Leather applies to miniatures, I’ll let you be the judge.
A light, watered coating of Rattlesnake Leather gave the figure a yellowish brown tone with a slight wooded texture. Above is the second, thicker coat after the first had dried into the cracks. What I’m left with is a base skin layer, which I will darken later with a thin black wash, and make it pop by using dark greens for the cloth and black-browns for the goblin’s straps.
I still think Rattlesnake Leather looks like an emergency colon purge after a night of Taco Bell and Pabst. But it sinks nicely into the miniature’s crevices, giving it a deep oak finish. In the future I’ll probably use this paint for wooden shields, arrows, staves, or as a base color for woodland creatures’ skin. That is; until I run out of product 09667, or Reaper finally sends me my quintuple-breasted vixen.