The Elder Scrolls Call to Arms: College of Winterhold

The centre of magical learning in Skyrim, the College of Winterhold is an academy of vast power and intense mystic prowess. A handful of the fearsome mages to be found there are now available as miniatures of The Elder Scrolls Call to Arms in the new College of Winterhold set. Thanks to Modiphius for providing this set for review.

The box contains six miniatures, packaged in the usual bags in the high quality resin we’ve come to expect from Modiphius. They’re packed with detail, and the casting quality is broadly very good – there are a few lines and slips to clean up, but for resin miniatures (especially those as fine as these) they’re really rather good. There are basically no bubbles or other miscasts in them at all, which is great because you won’t need to break out the filler to make them look good.

College of Winterhold Miniatures before priming. Credit: Lupe

The models include a number of character you’ll probably be familiar with if you’re a fan of the videogame, including the High Mage Savos Aren and J’Zargo, whose name is lodged in my brain a decade later even if I couldn’t quite explain why. There’s a nice mix of models here (though obviously all of them are mages and dressed pretty similarly), including of course one khajiit. This provides some interest in the sculpts which is maybe lacking in the posing – though there’s action in them (all of them other than Savos are doing something) they’re still pretty static. There’s not a huge sense of movement, for all the swirling cloaks and hands outstretched. I’m not sure what it is, but I wonder if in part it’s to do with the solidity of the stances of them – none of them are caught off balance or without both feet planted on the ground. This is probably a factor of the production and materials, and certainly I think making these models in resin in more ambitious poses would be hairy, but it does leave them a little dull in pose.

One particular oddity of these models is that the spell effects are all provided in coloured translucent resin. This seems initially like a cool idea – you can leave this unpainted and get a great easy spell effect! However, in practice it doesn’t work out. Other than the shield effect on the Mirabelle sculpt, which is a completely separate piece to be glued to the outstretched palm, the transparent pieces all include things that need to be primed and painted, mostly hands. Which means that, yes, you potentially don’t need to paint the cool spell effect, but you do now need to carefully mask it, including around individual fingers, so that you don’t ruin that effect when you prime and paint the rest of the model. In practice I ended up building them completely, spraying them all over, and painting in the effects.

Savos Aren. Credit: Lupe

All in all this is a nice set of magical miniatures. They’re a good add for some mystic potency in your Call to Arms games, and they can be used as some cool (if slightly tall) mages in other skirmish games as well. Special shout out should go to the bases that come in the pack that generally look good, but the one with the ink spill is particularly fun.

Questions, comments, suggestions? Decided you do have the aptitude and you will be joining the Mage’s College at Winterhold? or leave a comment below.