by: Adie Roberts [ ]
From a very young age I read JRR Tolkien's book the hobbit. I have been fascinated by the middle Earth and fantasy creatures like Balrog, warg, Nazguls and eagles to name but a few. There are of course plenty of evil creatures from Greek mythology from folklore and even urban myths. But when did this all start, well Tolkien certainly made more and more people aware of the wonders of middle earth and in the thirties when he wrote a book for his children "The Hobbit". Since then Middle earth has been increasing in size. So where do the creatures come from, Beneath the dark and churning sea, lurking in the deepest, most impenetrable waters, a giant monster called the Kraken awaits … or so the legend goes.
Myths from around the globe, some dating as far back as 2000 years, tell of a terrifying, tentacle clad beast capable of tearing a sailing vessel in half. The "river children" of Japanese folklore, Kappas are scaly, flesh-eating aquatic creatures who drag unsuspecting people and animals to a watery grave — though they might just spare you, if you have good manners! The Kappa is supposed to come from giant salamanders. Dragons — humongous and beautiful lizards with giant jaws, sharp claws and mighty magical powers — have flown into the myths of dozens of cultures around the world. Sometimes they take the form of terrifying fire-breathing winged monsters ravaging villages. This is now believed to come from the giant Komodo dragon, a lizard that inhabits Indonesian islands of Komodo, Rinca, Flores, Gili Motang, and Padar. So we know that in myth and legends is probably where these fantasy figures come from. This Beast is certainly lizard like in appearance!
On opening the box I found two sprue's containing the lizard like beast and the figure, both of these are moulded in a medium grey colour plastic. The mouldings look clean and some of the detail is to a high standard. Most of the plastic was quite hard and came of the sprue fairly clean apart from the tail; I found it hard to get a clean cut at this due to the position in which it was attached.
So I started by looking at the kit and trying to imagine where and when this creature and humanoid was from and I decided more futuristic. So now I will think about a base for it when made. The instructions are printed on the back of the box which are fairly basic however they are in colour so that is nice to see.
I started to build it and I have to say it is different from the middle earth I am used to, you do have to work quite hard at getting the pieces to fit well and will have to use some filler in places. You can see from the photos that the body had to have tape around just to hold it in place while the glue set properly. Then it was the turn of the two front legs where you can see that the fit will require some minor filling; I used Vallejo Plastic Putty 401 as it is very good in accessing smaller areas. I then did the tail which again needed some slight filling to be done here as well. The head was tricky to begin with, however with some manipulating I did manage to get it to fit. The teeth that you have to stick in are best done in each jaw before fitting, although I did fit the tongue after finishing the jaws using a pair of narrow medical tweezers these allowed me to move the tongue into a position that I thought looked more natural for it. Then it is the turn of the feet which adds more realism to the whole model which is although difficult in places is still full of very nice detail. The lizard beast is definite male by the way and is very easy to see why
On to building the figure this was a figure of a woman in some sort of futuristic suit. Now I have to say besides the need for some filling it is not a bad fit at all; Master Box of course are known for their figure work. I started with the legs which went together really easily with no gaps; before the glue was dry I did put the torso on top of it and then manipulated it slightly to get a flush fitting. The arms were moved twice to be able to get them to stick into a position that makes mounting the figure on the beast easy. Once this was done it was the head which stuck nice and flush to the model itself without any issues. You then get to add some accessories to the beast there is a bed roll two side pouches on the right and single one on the left the detail of which is to a high standard and looks very realistic.
There really is very little in the way of building these the instructions are not completely clear as is the same with the paints there is a comprehensive list of them
This is the first fantasy kit that I have built and I was not to impressed with the build as it seemed to be flawed, having quite a bit of work to get it to fit flush; However after building the second fantasy kit I believe I may have had a bad moulding, as fantasy Kit no2 literally fell into place and I have to admit was a pleasure to build compared to the first one. This is not my normal type of kit I have to admit, but having painted a few games work shop fantasy figures many years back I jumped at the chance to build these two kits. If figure building and fantasy is your thing, for the price you will pay for these I do think you would enjoy these two kits.