Impact! Miniatures new Classic Dungeon Adventurers on Kickstarter

By Polar_Bear
In Crowdfunding
Sep 28th, 2012

Impact! Miniatures just started their latest Kickstarter project. This one is to fund chibi-style classic dungeon adventurers.

From the campaign:

Impact! is pleased to announce their next miniatures project is now on Kickstarter. These miniatures will be roughly 23-24mm to eyes and around 28-30mm to the top of their head once completed and will come with a round 20mm plastic base. Further miniatures may be larger if the project hits its funding goals and stretch rewards. We have approximately 24 additional sculpts that we’d like to do to include DM, Demon Lord, Evil Fighter, Unicorn, etc. We’ll have both monsters and player character types. We also created custom d6’s using the artwork.

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  • blackfang

    Wow, a double rip-off. Congrats.

    • Bewulf

      I agree on this being a rip-off based on the old D&D cartoons.
      But super deformed/chibi has been around much longer than Super Dungeon Explore and I would not fault someone for using a common art style. (Unless your second rip-off refers to something unknown to me, in which case I hope you can go unto more detail)

  • Cherno

    Exactly what I was thinking, couldn’t be more blatant.

    • Cherno

      At least they are cast in “Trollcast Plastic”, so that makes kinda sense 😉

  • cannondaddy

    I always had a crush on Sheila.

  • Shades

    23-24mm to the top or the bottom of the eyes? That’s about a 10mm difference. 😉

  • Gabbi

    Cute 🙂
    I would not think as this as a ripoff. No more than Dead Space or Aliens “inspired” characters from Sedition Wars (being picky, it could be seen a ripoff as a ehole from Dead Space or Doom III). So where ends the tribute and starts the ripoff? I think we could debate on it for ages…

  • I love the concept and I love the cartoon that has inspired them. I’m not gonna comment to heavily on whether they are an infringement or not however, if these come unpainted, they will look a lot less like their inspiration and a lot more like generic archetypes.

    • Soulfinger

      Still, as much as I want these, I would hate to put down the money and then be left with nothing when the IP holder files a cease and desist. Who holds the cartoon license these days? Disney? Hasbro? It was a joint TSR/Marvel venture back in the day. Sure, “we could debate on it for ages,” but from a legal perspective it is cut-and-dried. The fact is that there is a substantial similarity with the same idiosyncratic elements as the original work and an obvious attempt to give them an appearance of dissimilarity (yes, “the same but different” demonstrates a clear intent to misappropriate an IP). So, the only way these come to market is if Disney/Hasbro don’t care enough to stomp them down. Small companies are getting pretty ballsy about IP infringement by flying under the radar, but eventually they will overstep and the boot is going to fall. Were Hasbro, unbeknownst to us, considering a reboot of this franchise then the legal response could easily put Impact out of business.

      • The fan of the D&D TV series in me loves them (I recently rewatched them on DVD with my kids), think I’d prefer them as keyrings. But the wallet holding part of me absolutely agrees with Soulfinger. Hasbro/Marvel (I think) may have the rights tucked away somewhere and seeing as both companies do a huge amount of merchandising with IP licenses for all kinds of toys and third party ‘stuff’ this simply looks way too risky for me to back.

        • Hmmm… Since their planning on using a chibi art style, could they claim parody if such a legal claim was brought against them?

          • Soulfinger

            Nope. It could even hurt their case. For starters, chibi as an art style is just doing a miniature, childlike version of something — cute, but not necessarily poking fun or commenting on the characters or society, which would indicate the piece as a parody. Simply put, they aren’t employing the likeness to make a social statement.

            Secondly, Disney is already producing mass-market chibi stuff for its own properties (I’m sure Hasbro is too). Impact’s figures would definitely impair the distinctiveness of an iconic brand in a way that would confuse consumers regarding chibi versions of Disney’s other properties. They have to defend their weakest brands to prevent the dilution of their trademarks as a whole.