Despite everyone’s best efforts, miniatures are still expensive. There is no way you will ever pay less than four dollars for a mini, so do your best to move past your nerd rage.
In the opinion of this DM, the Monster Tokens that come with the D&D Essentials Monster Vault are quite satisfactory. See my Monster Vault Review for more details. However, some of my fellow gamers have emailed me expressing their distaste for a cardboard disc that is 1/8 inch high. I can see where you guys are coming from, I really can. However, the question/conundrum still remains: how can I make some good cheap miniatures?
Before I owned the Monster Vault, I used paper stand-ups, rocks, pennies, you name it! However, there was one medium that I did find quite nice that I might reexamine again now that my campaign has moved to Dark Sun! (This being because races have changed dramatically, and the Forgotten Realms-style artwork and concepts no longer work visually.)
So, before we can begin our arts and crafts shenanigans, you will need the following.
- A label maker of some sort
- A set of 5 tubes of primary colored acrylic paint
- Some wide transparent tape (NOT translucent)
- Some Birch Men
- And some Birch Boys
Do you see where I am going with this? Haha!
For your PC’s, you will want to use the Birch Men and paint them bright and diverse colors (red, blue, green, yellow, etc.) Make no others the same color as these!
For the rest of your figurines, paint them dark and drab colors. Or, make your colors based on the Dark Sun Creature Catalog. Use the “Men” or the “Boys” depending on the size of the creature. If the creature is larger than 1 square wide, I don’t know what to tell you… Wait. Yes I do. Go to your arts and crafts store and find something the right diameter!
Go to 4etransmission.com for more do-it-yourself solutions like this one...