By Joseph Forster
The new Native minis for the Fire on the Frontier have finally arrived and I have started getting them painted up. Today I want to share some pictures of my completed King Philip legendary commander miniature.
King Philip (or Metacom), one of the central characters of King Philip’s War, was a Wampanoag leader who managed to patch together an impressive alliance of tribes and leaders in the New England area to fight against the increasingly aggressive English.
Metacom became chief of the Wampanoag in his late 20’s after his brother (Wamsutta or King Alexander) mysteriously died after meeting with New England leaders under strained diplomatic circumstances. Metacom worked to keep the peace with Plymouth but eventually, the distrust and unequitable treatment from the New England governments pushed Metacom to go to open war with the colonists.
The war, known as The First Indian War, and later as King Philip’s War lasted from 1675 to 1676 and did not go well for King Philip. He managed to rally several tribes to fight with him (which is was not an easy feat), and deal the English several defeats, but the firepower, numbers and more stable economy of the New Englanders wore the native alliance down until exhausted war parties were either defeated piecemeal by the colonists, or they willingly surrendered themselves (which usually ended in enslavement in the Caribbean).
Metacom was shot and killed at the hand of a native ally of the English in the summer of 1676. You can read a great summary of King Philip’s War and Metacom’s (King Philip) contributions in Fire on the Frontier!
Let’s look at the mini itself. There are no surviving portraits of King Philip made during his lifetime, but there are several images of him created a generation or two later.
This miniature seems to have elements of several of these depictions.
King Philip was familiar with English culture and language and is known to have worn English clothes. But it is likely that he put aside his English garments when he took up arms against them. The portrait above was created several generations after the war but I can see our model draws inspiration from the pose.
The most famous (and oldest) depiction of King Philip was printed by Paul Revere! I think this is a pretty ugly portrait, but I drew inspiration from this colorized plate for my paint scheme.
This King Philip model is not made in metal but is actually a high quality 3D printed model, as are the Young Braves and Pnieses (and Benjamin Church model) released with the Fire on the Frontier book. Apparently metal prices have been increasing exponentially and they are to a point where using metal prohibitively expensive. I like my metal minis but I have to say I’m pretty impressed with this product! The detail is notably better here. Some of the small details like the lock on the musket, the rings in the ears, and the detail on the bag and feathers are all excellent.
On the flip side, if you look closely, you can see print lines in some areas. Overall, they are largely not visible at all, even with a macro lens. But there are a couple spots where the angles weren’t favorable to the printer were they are more visible.
The head, skin, shoulders, and hands all look really smooth and great!
The one place I can see print lines is on the head of the hatchet in the belt. You can see them unless you look, but there is some texture there that wouldn’t be visible in a cast metal mini. But I’d rather get new models than nothing and I’d rather get a little texture along with better detail at a lower price than metals at an astronomical price!
You can see a little texture on the musket barrel as well if you look.
This model fits in nicely with the existing Braves models.
I love having a unique model for the important commanders and I find they can be useful beyond just playing with this legendary commander. This ,model could be used as a different historical commander or as a Grizzled Veteran or Officer character in a Native American force.
Here’s a 200 point list I intend to use soon using King Philip’s Legendary Faction from Fire on the Frontier:
With 32 models, including some bows, two units of Veterans, and some brutal melee capabilities combined with the ability to use the Distraction scenario rule to control the first turn of the game, this list should be a lot of fun! Now we just need to get that image for King Philip updated on the Force Builder!
I’ll end with a couple more pictures of King Philip on the raid!
I have another copy of this model on the way to me to paint up slightly differently. That headband should probably be a wampum belt with white and dark purple beads so I’m going to try that with my second copy of this figure.
If you haven’t already, you should check out the Fire on the Frontier book and the accompanying minis here on the Firelock website. There are two new Native units, King Philip and a Benjamin Church model available now and there should be a new North American French unit available soon as well.
You can find some previews and more info on Fire on the Frontier here on this blog as well!
Thanks for reading and happy gaming!