The second wave of Order Militant models has arrived from Gripping Beast –the Grand Commander of The Order Militant leads the way and 8 Fanatics follow in support, ready to take part in SAGA: Age of Magic.
These metal models are all sculpted by Wargames Illustrated favourite Matt Bickley (who has made lots of lovely Giants in Miniature models) and there is much to admire here. Most models are single piece, cast in the high-quality you would expect from the Beastly folks. The Grand Commander has a separate sword arm, allowing it to be placed at a more dynamic angle, and three of the Fanatics have individual parts that you will need to fix in place.
Someone has clearly been eating his porridge! The Grand Commander is a big guy and looks most imposing as he attacks with his axe and sword. He is in rather dynamic pose and there is a hint of Beric Dondarrion (from Game of Thrones) to his face. The flamberge blade he swings reinforces that likeness; although he is in the rare few Order Militant models who doesn’t carry a torch of some kind, we wonder if his flame blade makes up for it!
The Fanatics are a freakish looking lot, clad in hoods that might bring uncomfortable comparisons to a particularly detestable group of modern-day fanatics. Thankfully, these weirdos have extra levels of detail that take them beyond and into a far more fantastical place – they wear grotesque and uncanny masks over the hoods, carry a diverse range of weaponry, and have all manner of manacles, blades and torture devices hanging from their belts.
The Order Militant are shaping up to be an outstanding range of dark fantasy miniatures; along with the Hearthguards we already reviewed we are struggling to find fault with the quality and look of these superb 28mm models. As mentioned, the Grand Commander feels a wee bit closer to heroic 32mm scale, but that kind of creep is hardly an issue and maybe he became the Grand Commander because he towers over everyone else!
The thinnest parts of the torches feel like they could be a snapping risk after extended use (we already had to straighten them a few times) but we are digging to find quibbles here. Overall, we are extremely impressed with these models. Bringing character to a group of faceless zealots shouldn’t be as easy as these sculpts make it look!