WizKids has just released a range of WarLock Tiles Accessory packs, a new wave of pre-painted 3D scatter terrain and miniature sets for various locations. With packs for Taverns to Tourture Chambers released, this review focuses on two of the new sets; Marketplace and Merchants. From a trader with their market stand through to bandits ready to rob the stalls, these sets aim to bring these locations to life – as part of the WizKids 4D settings line. However, are these sets every DMs dream or will the pieces be left in the box? Let’s find out!
WarLock Tiles: Accessory – Marketplace
Marketplace is the first WarLock Tiles Accessory set to fully focus on an outdoor location, though WizKids’ 4D settings range has featured locations such as encampments previously. Going hand in hand with the Town Square WarLock Tiles set that has just been released, the marketplace pack aims to bring the location of… you guessed it… a market to life. The draw of a market is the goods on offer and this is centralised around keys items of the set. The large market stall with a white and blue canopy is sure to catch eyes. It’s tall enough that either of the male or female merchant miniatures can stand beneath it, with a goods table, baskets and crates of produce out in front. The stall roof could have sloped in the opposite direction to allow things inside the stand to be more easily visible, but this is only a minor issue.
A range of small tiles are included for the various wicker baskets and crates. Coming in different sizes for the different boxes, these slot into the top of the crates to appear like they are full to the brim of parsnips, apples, quinces or more. These tiles look a little odd out on their own, when placed onto a shelf, for example, and not in the crate. These could have been painted around the edge to almost be in a punnet, that then sits in the crates. Still, they are a nice additional flair to add to the crates and baskets, when lifting off the lids.
To bring the goods to the market there is a cart included. Note that the cart wheels don’t work, though this adds stability and means the cart won’t roll off when placed down. Players can fit a couple of the crates into the cart to create a scene. This could easily be something players come across on a route outside of town, not just at a market. Instantly, a story is possible of having to help a merchant get their wares to the market, defending the merchant along the way.
Despite the name, not everything in the set is dedicated to making a market, moreso making the town square where a market might be located more lifelike. A fountain, well, bounty board and town center bell are all included, to add some flair to the setting. The latter two can also be used to give adventurers a quest. Message boards can have wanted posters, cryptic messages asking for help or just provide context of a town to a party. Unfortunately, the bounty board has blank pages, which make it look a little incomplete, and the grass at the bottom of the base looks more like a green blob than foliage. The town bell, which could be rung to signify an attack of sorts, comes on a clear base allowing terrain below to be seen. This only raises the question why the message board didn’t get the same treatment, to avoid the “grass”.
In an odd change of direction, an executioner with stocks, gallows and a guillotine is included in the marketplace set. As nice as these items are, they seem somewhat out of place in the set, and may stop some gamers purchasing multiple sets – as how many guillotines does one town need? This being said, these are some great items to add texture to a location. The gallows is the stand out piece from the three, with the trapdoor on the gallows actually functional but not by the visible lever. A small switch is located on the back of the piece. The trapdoor doesn’t quite sit flat, though the fact you can set the scene up ready for the gallows to be used or with the trapdoor dropped allows some additional creative freedom for DMs. A small and useful detail is that the stairs for gallows are not attached, so they could be useful elsewhere. For instance, if you don’t own the Stairs & Ladders set then this could loosely substitute for a set of stairs in a tavern.
WarLock Tiles: Accessory – Merchants
This is almost the accessory to the accessory, feeling like an extension of the marketplace set. Coming with a market stall, like the marketplace set, it is great to see that the one included in the merchants pack is visually different. Ditching the blue and white striped canopy for more of a beige drape, it looks like a perhaps cheaper stall at the market, though they sit alongside each other just fine. Stall shelves, a trough, a tanning rack and scraping board all sit either under or around the stall making it complete. Yet, these items could easily find themselves reused in a barn, country house or anywhere that needs shelving.
Being a much more NPC miniature focused set it includes 4 merchants to attend these stalls, with a fisherwomen and female tanner having a less generic merchant look. A nice touch for including a diverse range of characters is that of these four minis three are female. Despite the name of the set, it isn’t actually full of merchants. Past the stall and 4 merchants, the set swiftly becomes more about characters whom might frequent the market but not to be selling wares.
Two bandits are included to turn an innocent market scene into a more mischievous one. These can be used to give a small market based encounter to players whilst stumbling through a town, when they thought they’d get away with just buying some new items and offloading loot to the locals. These slightly fall outside of the potential use of the set but not as far as the friar. It’s a drunk friar too for all effective purposes, as the miniature in my set needs to be propped up to not fall over. Note that despite coming with 10 miniatures no bases are included that would have gone some way to solve this issue.
These two sets are both in name and content perfect to go together. This makes it even more of an oddity that they both contain an executioner, specifically identical executioner miniatures. With the stocks, gallows and guillotine in the marketplace set there is logic to have one included. However, no such executioner style items/equipment is included in the merchants set. This isn’t the only overlap within this wave of WarLock Tiles Accessory packs either, with the assistant miniature included in the merchants set also appearing in the Torture Chamber set, so 20% of the included miniatures in the merchants set aren’t even unique. A final oddity is the hollowed out log hiding spot. It works with the bandits making it a scatter terrain piece which is nice to have but it doesn’t feel like it is a part of the theme.
Marketplace & Merchants
As the merchants set is dominated by miniatures, it feels like you are getting a lot less compared to the marketplace set – not just because the box size isn’t as deep. Not only are the items less tied to the theme of a market, not that the marketplace set hugely is, gamers also get less scenery content, making it more about adding characters not character to locations. Nevertheless, both sets have versatility, from the wide uses of the scatter terrain items or being able to reuse the miniatures for NPCs time and time again.
WizKids has just released the Town Square WarLock Tiles set and these accessory sets seem to marry perfectly with this. Gamers do not need this new tile set to get a lot of use from the accessories though, they work incredibly well with the regular WarLock Tiles, as pictured in the review, but they can also bring a spot of 3D flair to paper maps. Either way, both sets offer gamers a range of pre-painted miniatures and scatter terrain that will bring locations to life and have plenty of encounters and quest opportunities straight out of the box!
(Editor’s Note: The WarLock Tiles Accessory Marketplace & Merchants packs were provided to us by Asmodee for the review. These sets are currently available from local board game stores! Find your local store here.)