Made-to-order Classic Skaven Characters

Already in 2019 Games Workshop offered some Skaven, the human sized rat-people of Warhammer, in a made-to-order run but went for a new one last week. I ordered some items and I have to say, that was quick. They put the order online on 11 am on satuday, and some people even received theirs on monday (!), mine arrived thursday which is still pretty rapid, especially if you count in that it went through customs.

Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Made to Order

This is not the first time I used the made-to-order run by Games Workshop, I did that to fill some gaps in my Blood Bowl collection back in 2017 with a halfling team.

Warhammer Fantasy - Made to Order Skaven Warhammer Fantasy - Made to Order Skaven

The miniatures come in white card board boxes with the clear clamshell blister insert. No foam packaging or instructions, just the metal parts and some round bases (the days of square bases for fantasy miniatures are over at Games Workshop ... probably).

Warhammer Fantasy - Classic Verminlord Warhammer Fantasy - Classic Verminlord Warhammer Fantasy - Classic Verminlord

The Verminlord is a large miniature - for old measurements - and more slender compared to for example the Greater Demons of Chaos. He is casted in a very light coloured metal and the details are captured quite good. Yet, if you would show this cast in a middlehammer or oldhammer group, it would most likely be classified as a recast, due to its double mould lines. I'm aware, that this is something that happened from time to time, even back in the old days (for example when they had to make up molds in the US facilities but haven't had the master there to do so). But they did it in a reasonable quality, so this does not scream back alley recasting quality. Anyhow, I just wanted to point that out.

Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Grey Seer Thanquol and Rat Ogre Boneripper Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Grey Seer Thanquol and Rat Ogre Boneripper Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Grey Seer Thanquol and Rat Ogre Boneripper

As for Thanquol and Boneripper. This is the classic duo, Boneripper got an update (picture further below) around the 6th edition. Details are once again properly captured, yet Boneripper has some massive mould lines / mould slip, that will take some filing and filling. But no double mould lines as with the Vermin lord. As for the Thanquol, a brief comparison with the Grey Seer from the Screaming Bell. Somehow, I felt that this pose was the stronger one between these two.

Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Boxed Sets Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Boxed Sets

There was some buzz about the prices. And I understand that, especially with the regular characters. All those characters were 20 DM back then, and most of the Skaven characters you can buy today are around 15,50 EUR, pretty close to the 14,89 EUR the 20 DM would be in todays money. So I have to give the 23 EUR MTO a hard pass. By the way - some things got ridicously expensive. The plague monks were a 20 DM blister with 3 (!) models (which is 14,89 EUR in todays money) and are 14,50 EUR per single model today (Skyre Acolytes) - that's a 300% price rise. The gutter runners anyhow are still packs of 3 for 14 EUR, and Lord Skrolk (single miniature, 20 DM blister) is still available today as a Plague Priest for about 13 EUR via Mail Order, which makes no sense as he's a named character like the other - now 23 EUR made to order - characters.

Yet, the Verminlord was a 40 DM box back in 1996, (as you can see in the catalogue pages), which translates into 29,71 EUR and that is not that far off the 31,50 EUR they charged to for this run. Similar with Thanquol (one of the 20 DM single blisters) and Boneripper (who came separately in a blister of his own for 30 DM), which adds up to 37,13 EUR in todays money. So the new price tag of 40 EUR for the made-to-order models isn't that far off. I went for both, as the offers on eBay were ridiculous. The vermin lord was often offered for 70 EUR and more, and the ones cheaper were in bad shape. Going for larger lots usually drowns you in plastic, as Skaven are a horde army and players happily buy in bulks as you need quite a lot of miniatures for your regiments of 30.

By the way, price rises were a regular topic back in the 90s, so if we'd take the 60 DM they charged in 1998 (compared to the 50 in 1996 that's 20% on top), were are at 43,23 EUR. So these guys are currently actually cheaper than buying them back in '98.

Warhammer Fantasy - Classic Verminlord Warhammer Fantasy - Forge World Verminlord Warhammer Fantasy - Age of Sigmar Verminlord

But let's talk about these models. The Verminlord was a miniature that came in a boxed set and not a blister. The old ones with the styrofoam inlays that separated the pieces and protected them at the same time. And that metal model was around for quite some time. They added among the time of Warhammer Forge (the Fantasy themed Forge World "spin-off) an alternativ model, that is nowadays called Warpgnaw Verminlord. And around the End Times / introduction of Age of Sigmar the Verminlord got an huge update with a multipart plastic kit (called Verminlord Corrupter) that covers different variants and if you ask me is more of an showcase model than actual gaming miniature. I'd be afraid that something breaks off.

Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Grey Seer Thanquol and Rat Ogre Boneripper Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Grey Seer Thanquol and Rat Ogre Boneripper Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Grey Seer Thanquol and Rat Ogre Boneripper

For Grey Seer Thanquol and Boneripper, a classic duo that was sold in a blister each - he even made it into the Gotrek and Felix novels and around the 6th edition, Boneripper got an update, being more "steampunky" if you want to call it like that. And this updated variant was the one offered in the 2017 made-to-order run and not speaking towards my "proper" oldschool vibe, so I passed. As for the latest model, both of them are now available as a plastic kit, similar to the Verminlord and the update is surely impressive in size and with the options quite the centre piece.

I added a few gutter runners along with regular skaven warriors I got sent by a friend to these characters. And now I'm just a few rank and file warriors and rats in different sizes for rat swarms short of a nice little warband similar to my beastmen.

Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Gutter Runners Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Gutter Runners Warhammer Fantasy - Skaven Gutter Runners

The Mail Order gutter runners are the newer 200x ones, not the ones from Mordheim nor the classic ones, but do the trick. They even came with both sets of bases, round and square ones.

Warhammer Fantasy - Classic Skaven Miniatures

Posted by Dennis B.

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