There are lots of Mythic Legions fans out there with impressive collections, including many collectors who have at least 1 of every single Mythic Legions figure released, but our “featured fan”, Toshi Hingst, has something that very few fans can boast of – a nearly complete collection of Mythic Legions Test Shots!
For those who may not know what a “test shot” is, these figures are a normal part of the production process. The Chinese factories will run samples of each figure to test the molds and to make sure no adjustments need to be made before the full production begins. Normally, the factories use whatever color plastic they have on hand, and test shots are often seen in all kinds of crazy colors. Back when the first Mythic Legions wave was in production, the studio received some test shots that were cast in solid gray and we loved how cool the figures looked that way. Knowing that fans would appreciate them as well, we had the factory produce a very small run of these figures – just 10 of each character! These figures were sold on StoreHorsemen.com and were actually shipped out to fans before the normal figures were even available!
Later on, when the “2.0” wave of Advent of Decay was in production, the studio did another limited run of test shots and sold those, along with some from the Coliseum wave, on the website to eager fans. Once again, only 10 of each character were made available.
Most recently, the Siege at Bjorngar wave got the test shot treatment, with 20 of each character in that wave, including the new ogre-scale figures, made available in a test shot sale. The entire run sold out in just over 10 minutes!
Considering how rare these test shots are, it is pretty cool to see someone with a few of them on display, but to see Toshi’s amazing collection of test shots is truly a stunning sight. You think it’s hard to find that Otho figure you need for your collection? Imagine trying to hunt down an Otho test shot, one of only 10 that were available! Amazing.
For this “Featured Fan” column, I wanted to showcase this incredible collection and ask Toshi some questions about it.
So the most obvious question first - which test shots do you NOT have?
I very recently scored a B’alam test shot from a friend on the Cabal (shout out to Yang Zhou, all the way in China!), so I now only need two more; Snagg and Bolthor the Tower.
Why the test shots? What made you want to hunt down and complete a collection of these?
I really enjoy the simplicity of the test shots. They’re like green army men or pewter miniatures, and they feel more like toys in a way. Conversely, the solid gray makes them feel a bit like classic statues.
(Or, it could just be that I’m slightly color blind, and I don’t have to worry about mixing and matching parts when they’re all the same color!)
I didn’t initially have any intention of trying to complete a collection of test shots. When they were first announced (back as part of the initial 1.0 wave), at a higher price, I thought I might get one or two. Then when the price was dramatically lowered, I thought I would try to get a mix of figures that would provide a large selection of parts to swap around. I got all of the figures with unique head sculpts and armor pieces. My initial order ended up being fairly large, but I still had no plans to try to get them all.
I remember the first shipment arriving remarkably fast, like 3 or 4 days after ordering. This was before any of the regular Mythic Legions figures has been released, and it was all very exciting. It was so much fun mixing parts, taking pics, and sharing on the old forum.
So, obviously, I was hooked. Because this was back in the early days, things didn’t instantaneously sell out. I was able to place more orders over the next week or so, eventually getting all but one or two, if I’m remembering correctly. Then over the course of the next few months, I was able to trade and deal and get the rest of the 1.0 test shot releases.
By the time the next round of test shots were released (Advent of Decay and the Coliseum mini wave), Mythic Legions was much more popular. I did pretty well on the initial sale, but with so many released at one time, I still needed around a dozen or so. I’ve slowly been able to pick up the ones I missed from here and there.
With the Siege of Bjorngar test shots, even though the quantities were doubled, it seemed like the fan base had also at least doubled. My luck held though, and I was able to get most of them.
And that leads to the present, where I’m very close to a complete set, but realistically, I know I likely will never get there. Still, it’s fun to try!
How do you currently have the test shots displayed?
Sadly, I don’t have them all on display. I collect way too many toys and end up rotating displays. I’m always in the middle of painting walls or putting up shelves, but work seems to get in the way of finishing.
I assume you also collect the normal Mythic Legions figures? How big is that collection?
It’s an almost complete collection. I’ve gotten at least one of every 4 Horsemen release since the first FanEx/Xetheus. I get a few extras for customs (that I never seem to finish), but, with the test shot collection, I don’t have the funds (or room!) to army build. I don’t have the busts, pin sets, and probably some other things I can’t recall, but I’ve got all of the figures released so far.
Any favorite test shots in the collection?
Otho is my favorite. He was the first I opened, played with, and took apart.
Carpathius is a close second. He’s just so much better in person than I thought he was going to be. Really taught me not to discount any of the Four Horsemen designs until I checked it out in person.
Gonxx is a favorite among the newer figures.
Want to see more?
The shots in this article are just a sample of the ones that Toshi has taken of his test shot collection. You can see a ton more pics at his Flickr page - https://www.flickr.com/photos/-domu/albums
Published on 12.20.19