Review: RPE Skeleton Ballista and Mage Knight Skeleton

Well, I’m solidly back at work at this stage, so painting time has taken a pretty hefty hit. I was looking for the Brigade Skeletons that I purchased last year to select an undead unit for the painting challenge over on Dakka this afternoon – I was thinking perhaps some Skeleton Archers, and instead found the little tub of models that I purchased from RPE at the same time. Inside were a couple of nice little undead models that combine well into an artillery piece and commander for KoW/Warhammer/etc, so I took them instead.

RPE Skeleton Ballista 02.190, Mage Knight Metal Skeleton 541

RPE Fantasy models in their Mail Order packaging.

This is how the RPE models come in the post. Individually packaged in thick zip-locks with a backing full-colour slip that folds out for a little advert. I’m not sure if this is their B&M retail packaging or if they instead go out in blisters, but I have to say that I like this kind of packaging for mail order. Instead of anonymous zip-lock baggies with something scrawled on them in pen (or nothing!) you get to see what’s what and breakage is much less likely as the models all have a little bit more packaging to keep them safe. And of course, the zip-lock baggies can be reused.

RPE Skeleton Ballista 02.190, Mage Knight Metal Skeleton 541


The models themselves are pretty nice casts. There’s a little bit of flash and some minor mould lines, but it took literally a few minutes to clean them all off. It looks like at some stage in the past the Ballista must have come with a metal base, as both crew have pegs and the “slotta” looks like it’s actually supposed to be clipped off. The result is that they stand a little high when glued into the slottabases, even if you cut the tab down a little. (I prefer to use the tab, as the more contact point the better)

RPE Skeleton Ballista 02.190

RPE Skeleton Ballista, mostly assembled.

The “firing rope” skeleton had to be manually adjusted to lower his rope low enough to slip onto the end of the Ballista. I also had to use a GW 60mm base in order to raise the Ballista for the same reason. The wheels needed green stuff to fit and stay on the frame. I’ll trim the excess down later on. I’ll also add the defensive spikes later, once everything else is cleaned up and entirely dry.

Hopefully I can finish assembly tonight. These won’t travel well to be models to work on at work, but they should otherwise paint up pretty quickly at least.

And then I can have another look for those Brigade Skeletons…

….and FINISHED! (13th Feb)