Over on my 'gaming' blog, http://modernappendixn.blogspot.com/2013/12/onward-to-2014.html, I talk about why I hated 2013. For gaming and well, life.
But miniature wise? There were some problems but those were relatively small.
For me, the biggest problem is Kickstarter. Companies being late, companies having crappy quality control, companies just being bad businesses.
But one of the big wins was also some late delivered Kickstarters. For example, Stone Heaven Miniatures came out of no where and kicked ass multiple times. They haven't been afraid to listen to customer feedback and haven't been afraid to switch things up.
But overall, it was more a feeling of awesome things coming out.
Games Workshop for example, man they get punched in the face all the time. I'm sure it's in part for being the big dog but in part its because of crappy products. When Privateer Press decided to jump on the 'restic' bandwagon, yeah, the quality of things took a huge crap in the customer service dumper and there has been a lot of flak flying back their way, rightfully so because of it.
But those were, for me at least, small things. Games Workshop coming out with 'technical paints' for different special effects? Yes, a lot of people can achieve those effects already, sometimes just with some thinning agents or careful color selection. But for those who don't care about that and just want to dip a brush into the paint and go? Right on.
Vallejo came out with several new products this year. Right on for them.
Scale 75 came out with a boxed set and several themed painting sets. Excellent work.
There were a ton of great figures that also came out. This doesn't count the delivery of Kickstarter products to the retail channel like some of the Bombshell Sidekicks or Reaper Bones or Center Stage Miniatures Demons and Devils.
There were a lot of efforts at new products like double ended paint brushes. For me, the quality of them was terrible but the price wasn't bad, and they were on time. Neutral.
For others, who were smart enough to get in on them, Miercer miniatures delivered the goods in a huge way with their Kickstarter.
It seemed that for miniatures, Kickstarter was the way to go for a lot of things.
For me, I've cut way back on supporting them. It's not that there isn't some awesome things going on, but look at Redbox. This guy is a fantastic sculptor, but his first Kickstarter, from his last post, sounds like the death knell of the company. Innovation is not necessarily paved on the path of the best and brightest and most enthusiastic, but the bones of those who went before it would appear.
Speaking of Bones, I'm waiting for an announcement that some company is licensing the material. Let me be clear, I'm not starting a rumor, I don't know any company currently doing it, but the price point is too sweet and the potential benefit of using an already established partner too clear as opposed to trying to use say, Trollcast as a viable alternative to metal.
And it's not that I love Bones. The price is good, but I'm not impressed with the detail of the figures. This doesn't mean there aren't many positives. For example, you can easily cut and modify Bones as opposed to say, metal. You don't feel, well, I don't feel terrible if I mess up a paint job on a Bones figure. And of course again, the affordability. The price of metals and resins has quickly escaped the industry.
While 2013 sucked in a lot of ways for me personally, painting wise it was great and I hope that 2014 brings even better times.