The lion is the indisputable star of the hunt (venationes). This huge and brutal beast is the crowd’s favourite when it’s time to send the convicted ad bestiam slaves into the arena.
At Level II ir counts with a powerful special attack, Dismembering (with a Beast’s Attack in the orange dice, it raises its attack, specially against knocked down enemies).
Its Thick Fur skill allows it to ignore Cutter and Sharp weapon effects… it’s a very hard nut to crack! Speaking of stats, its Wounds stands out, as it has more than both Panther‘s (green) and Leopard‘s (blue).
Alfonso Mañas: “By the way, David, you told me that the game will have a tiger… but not a lion? There were trained lions that were expert hunters, freed for the venationes and executions like true stars… The game would look impressive with a brutal lion in it (and the lion is the one animal that most people associates the amphitheatre with).”
In fact, we have in GLADIATORIS with the Great Shields’ Lion, the toughest Beast in the basic game. In this case we need a true Nemean Lion, one of those minis that doesn’t fit in the base because of their size (it will be the largest, until the auroch from the expansion “Colosseum” arrives). One of the most recent movies about the Heracles myth (Hercules, Brett Ratner 2014) has a cool lion in it; the powerful Narnia lion (The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Andrew Adamson 2005) would also be a good reference. We wanted it to have a great mane too, as in the statue of the Lion attacking a horse from the Vatican Museums.
Gathering the beasts for the GLADIATORIS prototype had taken us years. We endured a long pilgrimage through specialised national and international stores, as well as online purchases. Our old lion waited and waited in vain to be replaced by one of those cool Foundry Miniatures’ lions…
After a couple days of work, 3DBreed artists sent us this magnificent miniature. Our famished feline from the prototype couldn’t even compare!
David: “The Lion looks very good, even on a big screen. It’s way better than our prototype, and it’s the mini I was looking for without success in many stores. But, like in the banners’ case, I would like to see all the big Beasts finished and compare them, to see if we need to make any changes in the Lion’s jaws (but for the time being it’s OK).”
We compared the Lion with the blue Hound, the orange Tiger and the green Panther, and then we put it side to side with some gladiators. We liked it so much, we decided to leave it at this huge size; Luis pointed out he didn’t even mind that it was nearly as big as a horse, a fact that will surely intimidate its rivals. Another reason to choose the red team!
Once finished the 3D miniature, we had to do justice to it with an illustration at the same level. Enter Antonio José Manzanedo, our illustrator! He left us open-mouthed again:
As much as the Lion itself! Even if we gave him the OK from the first sketch, Manzanedo decided to make some corrections to the jaws on his own; he is such a perfectionist professional that he sometimes goes back to improve illustrations already sent and approved (like George Lucas, but in a good way).
David: “I was in fact worried, that you could end up detailing it too much, but I see that you left the rear parts as loose as in the sketch, something I love (thus you can appreciate the artist’s hand, and when the hand is good, it looks wonderful).
I think that we have a very, very good 2D/3D pair, one that reflects perfectly the GLADIATORIS Lion’s nature.”