Taji Mbutzi

Star Character

As I continue to prepare to play a campaign set in Pathfinder’s Mwangi Expanse using Two Hour Wargames’ WHAT mechanics, I finished painting my star character – Taji Mbutzi.

So, who is Taji Mbutzi? Taji is of human ancestry, a member of the Spotted Cattle clan of the Zenje people. She grew up in the savannahs between the Mwangi Jungle and the heavily forested Kaava Lands just west of the Bandu Hills region. The Zenje are a semi-nomadic people who move their herds to various pasturelands during the year. In our world, the Zenje would have much in common with the Masai.

Following her older brother, she left the savannah to work as guides for explorers and other adventurers. Our story starts a couple of months after a failed expedition claimed the life of her brother and all members of the expedition save for Taji and five others. She is blacklisted as bad luck and can’t find employment.

Her fortunes are about to change, a party of Chelaxian foreigners, short on money, want to hire Taji to guide them to a lost treasure deep in the jungle. Also, a mysterious patron has sent a familiar to train Taji as a witch.

In Pathfinder, Taji is a level 1 character of the Witch class – in WHAT, she is a Rep 3 character of the Caster class. It took only a few minutes to create her character in WHAT. Being a total noob to Pathfinder, it took me a few days to create her character.

Miniature Representation

I do understand folk who play games using only the “theater of the mind” and counters as these are rewarding in playing a game. But we are living in a renaissance of game miniatures. I continue to be impressed by the variety and quality of many of the new sculpts. For my miniature of Taji Mbutzi, I wanted a dynamic pose like the central figure on the cover of Paizo’s Lost Omens the Mwangi Expanse for Pathfinder.

I was able to find a figure in almost the exact same pose – the Female Elementalist from Vae Victus Miniatures. She is a 3D printed resin figure. I don’t own a 3D printer, so I purchased one from a licensed printing service: Modest Minis Studio. The miniatures I’ve bought from them have been clean and crisp requiring very little need to remove flashing or bumps from where the supports were located. For those unfamiliar with 3D printed models, instead of mold lines as you would find on a plastic or metal miniature, 3D models have supports which are removed after the model has been printed. Sometimes where the supports have been removed there is a little residue “bump” or worse, a small divot where the support had been connected to the model. Another great thing about Modest Minis Studio is that where many companies will charge a dollar or more to print a 28mm scale model in 32mm, there is no additional charge at Modest Minis – 28mm and 32mm models cost the same.

I have started buying 32mm miniatures. The small amount of size difference makes the figure easier and more enjoyable for this old woman to paint. Anyway, I’m pleased with the way this mini turned out. What are your thoughts? Your comments and suggestions are always appreciated, and I look foward to them.

Original photo before zooming in on the model

6 thoughts on “Taji Mbutzi

  1. Great backstory. I’m looking forward to see how she evolves.
    Pathfinder, never looked into it I heard it’s more number crunchy than D&D, but I’ve stopped playing D&D eons ago. I like GURPS, sadly no one plays it out here.
    As for miniatures, I find myself going smaller (6mm-15mm). Not sure why, I still collect individual 28mm to paint, but some reason I am moving to the smaller scale for a lot of my gaming.

      1. LoL don’t we all. Though I have started to sell off my Pile of Shame, there is just too much and I have to be a bit more selective in what I am doing. Even with posting stuff I still have a large amount left (mainly LoTR, and Historical)

  2. I use cardboard heroes by Steve Jacksons Games in my fantasy rpg Check them out Elaine they have front and back characters and are already painted.

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