A Tale of Blood Bowl, Frogs, and a Guy Named J_Bone

Once upon a time, there was a guy on the interwebs named J_Bone. J_Bone liked a website called Talk Fantasy Football. One day, he had an idea to produce a line of miniatures for an under-served Blood Bowl team… Slann. The Slann team was added to the game post 3rd through 5th edition, after Games Workshop had stopped supporting the game. As a result, there were never any official Slann Blood Bowl minis. Over the years, a couple of third party companies released some nice Slann teams, but J_Bone decided he wanted a team sculpted by one of the best independent sculptors on the Blood Bowl scene, Pedro Ramos.

At the time, I didn’t have a lot of experience with Slann. I had never played them, and the one time I played against them at a tournament, Steve Campbell of the Both Down podcast gave my Orcs a beating that still hurts to think about. Knowing what the team was capable of on the pitch, and having already picked up a couple of Pedro’s teams in the past, I was very interested in the idea. Soon concept sketches started to hit the forums and I was hooked. Pedro’s designs mixed 2nd edition inspiration with modern dynamic poses to show a fantastic full team of unique sculpts.

A little while later, an Indiegogo campaign began and it was an instant hit, funding in only a few hours. Over the following month, the campaign would climb to just over 600% of it’s goal, and would twelve stretch goals. And now, almost a full year later, a box from the UK has arrived on my hobby table.

I have to admit that after waiting so long to receive the minis, the excitement had worn off some time ago… until I got the box in my hands. Then it all came rushing back.

The minis were packed plainly, which in unsurprising since J_Bone was not looking to start a full-time business with this team. The important thing is that the minis were well protected during their trip across the Atlantic.

The first thing I did was pull out the bases… all twenty-eight of them. The first thing I thought to myself was, “Did I really order this many minis?!” The answer? Yes… yes, I did. As I have said before, I’m really not a big fan of this particular type of base, so I will probably replace them with some Games Workshop 25mm slotted bases at some point.

This is nearly thirty minis wrapped in bubble wrap. Nearly thirty… for one team… how am I ever going to paint all of these minis?

Let’s take a look at them!

Let’s start the team Big Guy, the Big Croaker! He is a solid 42mm mini with options for adding a long tongue or tail to represent a Kroxigor’s Prehensile Tail. You can include either, or neither if you want.

Here are some front and back pictures of the Croaker with and without the tongue and tail pieces.

This is a really cool Big Guy for a team full of frogs. As with all of Pedro’s minis, the sculpt is great, with lots of detail, and the pose is natural. I’ll probably skip the tail and attach the super long tongue when I get around to painting this team… in a couple of years probably.

Next up, we have the standard Line Frogs! All seven have nice, dynamic without being silly poses, and completely unique sculpts.

The crowdfunding campaign also included “campaign exclusive” Kicker Line Frog as an add-on, which I added to my pledge, because of course I did…

This guy is the perfect frog to represent the Kick skill on the pitch!

The team also included four uniquely sculpted Catcher frogs.

The Catchers are a bit slimmer than the rest of the team, which I like as it gives them a more lithe, agile look. On top of that, their poses really make them look like real Catchers.

Now let’s take a look at the Blitzers!

The Blitzers are a little bit of a departure from the rest of the team. They’re the only minis on the team with heads as separate pieces. The heads are interchangeable for customization options.

You can use any head you want on any Blitzer body!

This brings us to the Star Players! The J_Bone Slann team has five Star Player minis. In the group shot above, the Stars are, from left to right: Buzz, Kermee, Toador, Phibius, and Shank. These minis should cover all of the Star Players available on the Slann roster.

Yes… there are STILL minis to show off on this team. Holy crap…

Here we have the sideline/support staff minis. I opted for five of the six available sideline minis, including the Referee, the Shaman, the Doc, the Cheerleader, and the No. 1 Fan. I actually passed on the Head Coach mini because even though it was a really nicely sculpted mini, I didn’t feel like it matched the look of the rest of the team.

Finally, we have some frog tokens. From left to right we have a Stunned counter, a Score/Turn/Reroll counter, and a Prone counter.

Well, that is pretty much everything there is to show with the team. As with all of Pedro Ramos’ teams, these minis are simply fantastic. Good sculpts with lots of details with a 2nd edition style, and good, modern dynamic poses. J_Bone picked a great caster to produce the minis, and there is minimal flash and mold lines on the minis. I do have a some slight concerns over how thin some of the legs are, but I’m sure they will hold up fine. They made it all the way across an ocean without breaking, so they can probably survive games on my tabletop.

If you’re wondering how you can get your hands on this awesome team, the unfortunate truth is that you probably can’t unless you find someone who pledged the campaign who is willing to sell to you. J_Bone said from the beginning that he didn’t intend to start a business and the team would likely be a one-off. The team might be available again later, but don’t be surprised if it isn’t.

And now I will leave you with a few size comparison shots for those who like to see those. Let me know what you think of this team in the comments below!

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6 thoughts on “A Tale of Blood Bowl, Frogs, and a Guy Named J_Bone

    • Initially that was true, but I think he had some personal issues after the campaign and from what I’ve read, it doesn’t sound like he is interested in continuing to sell them minis. I could certainly be wrong, though. That, or he could sell the rights to the team to someone like Tom Anders at Impact! There’s definitely the possibility that the team could be available again at some point.

  1. Hey, good point about selling rights to another company, hopefully they would get a good deal with compensation (both J_Bone and Pedro).

    As for the frogs, I don’t like them. They look too cartoonish and were made in 28mm size. I would rather they were more alien like, than silly looking frogs.

    Until I saw recent pictures. I don’t know what clicked or changed in my head, but having seen pics of the actual metal minis and another pic on TFF with a partially painted set….I completely changed my mind on these. They really look amazing, and I wish I had jumped on a chance to get them.

    They have just the right amount of whimsy, great poses, and size-wise…they are barely shorter than the 32mm and I could easily let that slide for a team of frogs.

    Probably my fave of the bunch is the chainsaw Frog. So awesome looking. Is that a real Star?

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