It’s been awhile since I’ve painted up a chibi model – the last was the gnome Kringle prior to the Christmas season – but the other day I was just struck with the urge to work on Hecate Vilehorn, the chibi centaur necromancer, who’s been sitting primed and partially basecoated in a draw for a couple of years now. I have no idea when I’ll next play Super Dungeon Explore, and it’s certainly not a model I can repurpose for D&D any time soon, but let’s face it, the concept just freaking sings.
I’ve always been a fan of centaurs as a fantasy species, right back to the early days of text-based open concept RPGs in the early 90’s (and to Piers Anthony’s Xanth series back when I was devouring every fantasy series I could find at the library in the 80’s), so Hecate was on my radar the moment she was announced. for SDE models I’m normally more focused on the heroes, but her being a centaur trumped that. Add a suit of bone barding and armor and I was sold.
Hecate is only a mini-boss, so she can’t run a whole dungeon by herself in either Classic or Arcade mode unless you’re playing with an undersize team of heroes, but she’s still set to cause the heroes some grief. Speed 8 alone means she’s going to be running through the corridors all willy-nilly (willy-filly?). Her Classic stats are solid across the board – 2R1B with a 2 square range, 2R armour, freaking 3R magic at 6 range. Dex is her only low point. Red affinity, Hex on all of her attacks, gets more dangerous when she has minions ganging up on a hero thanks to Mob, and ignores difficult terrain.
For two actions her Trample melee attack hits ever model in an adjacent square and knocks them down, but remember, she’s a necromancer. One action to raise any bone piles into Bone Heads, Dread Knights and Dust Mages.
Her Soul Shard ability is the tricksy one. It lets her place a token on a hero within 3 squares and, if the hero and killed and Hecate isn’t on the board, she is resummoned back to wreak more havoc. Now imagine this happening in the middle of the boss fight…
In Arcade mode Hecate essentially plays the same way. She’s just as dangerous, still hexing, still trampling, still returning Bone Heads to the board, still infecting a hero with her soul shard. From a Dark Consul point of view, she’s equally delightful in both game modes.\
Painting Hecate was a lot of fun. Washes and drybrushing gave my nice fluffy magic cloud trails for her skills, while the armor itself leaned very nicely into the way I like to paint clean panels. It was long and tedious, but I’m happy with the end result. The eyes were a challenge, as chibi eyes often are, given how easy it is to make them look skewed. It didn’t help that her forward-reaching right claw is lined up in front of her right eye, interfering a little with brush access. Hecate was almost exclusively painted with P3 paints, with a Games & Gears Master Series 00/0 brush doing most of the work, and is mounted on a Dragon Forge Design Ancient Ruins II series base.
Hecate is a Super Dungeon Explore mini-boss available from Ninja Division via their webstore. Whether you can find room for her on the tabletop or are just looking for a fun painting diversion, if you pick her up, send pics. I wanna see!