Painting Star Wars: Shatterpoint Figures
Getting into tabletop gaming can be a bit of a daunting task. Some companies like Fantasy Flight Games are encouraging more tabletop play with their miniatures board game titles like Journey’s in Middle Earth and Descent: Legends of the Dark.
These games, while not complete tabletop games as they still involved a board, do bring pre-molded miniatures to the table. This is what got me excited about miniatures and miniature gaming, but you haven’t really enjoyed the hobby until you’ve done your own tabletop war game. Shatterpoint will be that war game for me.
Having someone who understands the hobby alongside for the ride is incredibly important. When I opened up my review copy of Star Wars: Shatterpoint, I will admit to being a bit overwhelmed. Inside was plastic on plastic upon plastic. All of it had to be snipped out, glued together, and painted to look just right. I didn’t have the tools for the job, let alone the knowhow to get it done. So I enlisted the help of my father-in-law, a seasoned tabletop gamer.
There are a few key tools for putting your figures together. The guide included in the box does a great job of showing you HOW to get them together, but getting each of the pieces ready is an entirely different ball of wax.
It’s important to have a pair of hobby snips to clip the pieces from the plastic, and a hobby knife to clean up rough edges and remove mold lines. Mould lines are lines on the plastic left behind by the mold used to create the pieces. It is inevitable that almost all miniatures – whether pre-assembled or not – will have some mould lines, and cleaning them up right away is key to a good look, final product.
While working through the cleaning phase for these figures, my father-in-law did note that there seemed to be more mould lines than he would normally encounter on a brand new set of miniatures, but getting them cleaned up and ready to assemble wasn’t too taxing.
While some of the figures went together really well – we used plastic cement which essentially melts the material before drying and fusing together – some of the figures were described as ‘fidily.’ The battle droids, especially, were a bit tough to assemble neatly.
Still, all the figures went together fine, and with a few different head options and configurations, you can make some of the figures a bit unique to your tastes. Many of the heroes in each troop have the option to have a printed face for a head, or a helmet for a head. We utilized a nice mixture between the two. Ultimately, however, if you really wanted to spend some time and hollow out small magnet holes in the plastic, you could make the heads interchangeable! That would, however, require some serious skill and plastic manipulation. For a starter, we recommend against it.
Once the assembly and priming has been done, it’s time to paint the figures! There is no easy way to go about painting. It’s time intensive and requires a steady hand. Many individuals online can be paid to paint your miniatures for you, so there is always a professional option should you want it. I personally have a shacky hand, so any painting I do would be sub-par at best. My father-in-law, however, has painted thousands of miniatures in his lifetime, and was ready for the challenge.
Giving the figures solid coats of paint must have been pretty fun and rewarding. Despite telling me on multiple occasions that he was going to take a quick break from painting Shatterpoint miniatures, he quickly sent me more pictures of more miniatures. At the time of writing, everything is assembled, and only 4 figures and the terrain are left to be painted.
Painting your miniatures is almost a must for tabletop games. Half the fun of getting these games setup is how pretty they look on the table. While game wise having them painted doesn’t really add anything to the gameplay experience itself, it still seems weird to play without painted miniatures. If you are picking up Shatterpoint, we suggest taking the time to get those miniatures painted. You will enjoy the game that much more!