What Scale Are D&D Miniatures?: Collectible Miniature Inspiration from Dungeons and Dragons

  • By: Richard
  • Date: August 20, 2021
  • Time to read: 13 min.

D&D miniatures are a set of collectible miniatures inspired by the tabletop role-playing game Dungeons and Dragons characters. They come in various scales, with some as small as 25mm and others going up to 100mm. If you’re interested in these miniature figurines for your personal collection or to use them in games, this article will provide insight into what scale they come in.

There are three scales that D&D miniatures can be categorized as small (25mm), medium (32mm) and large (42mm). Generally speaking, the smaller a miniature is, the less expensive it should cost. This means that a player may wish to start collecting with either 25mm or 32mm models if money isn’t available for larger figures. However, some players like just having one figure of each type regardless of size so they have something to represent all creatures – which would mean getting a large size.

This article will focus on what scale is best and what you should do if money isn’t an issue to help players decide what the right choice for them would be. Based on personal preference, most people prefer either 32mm or 42mm models because they have more detail than 25mm figures but still aren’t too expensive (most retail at between $12-30 USD).

However, some people like collecting small figurines, which generally range in price from $15-$40 depending on what’s being sold. Since these are collectibles that many players enjoy displaying on shelves or use during game play, it doesn’t matter how much someone spends. Just whether it fits the aesthetic, they’re going for.

What Is Scale?

The size of miniatures is often determined by their scale, which can be measured in various ways. Two common measurements are heroic and exact scales (or sometimes called the same scale). The heroic scale has an average height that measures ten times the width, whereas the exact scale is based on actual sizes.

Heroic Scale

The miniature is the same height as a ten-sided die or usually takes up about one square foot on the table. This size makes it easy to use miniatures in larger games with lots of terrain and figures. The drawback of this scale is that some creatures might look too small for players to be intimidated by them, making combat feel less interesting.

Exact Size (or Same Scale)

This miniature has an average height of one inch per six inches, making each miniature roughly three feet high when put together. These are more difficult to store since they take up more space than their heroic counterparts but are worth it if you want your game world to seem huge and terrifying! If you want to use these miniature figurines for your personal collection, this scale will look more detailed.

How Many Types of Scale Are There?

There are six types of scale: one inch equals five feet, one inch equals ten feet, and so on. The most common is the “one inch to thirty foot” rule (called this because each miniature in a 30’x30′ area takes up an I square). When fully assembled, these figures stand between 17cm and 20cm tall and usually come unpainted or pre-painted.

Examples and Pros for Each Type:

  1. One Inch Equals Five Feet Scale – This type of scaling is where every figure represents about five feet across the tabletop. A unit stands for approximately 15 inches from base to eye level at its tallest point. Figures for this scale normally range from 25mm all the way up to 33 mm, with some heroes being 35 mm high.
  2. One Inch Equals Ten Feet Scale – This type of scaling is where every figure represents about ten feet across on the tabletop. A unit stands for approximately five inches from base to eye level at its tallest point. Figures for this scale normally range from 25mm all the way up to 40 mm, with some heroes being 50 mm high.
  3. One Inch Equals Twenty Feet Scale – This type of scaling is where every figure represents about twenty feet across the tabletop. A unit stands for approximately two inches from base to eye level at its tallest point. Figures for this scale normally range from 25mm all the way up to 60 mm, with some heroes being 75-80 mm high.
  4. One Inch Equals Thirty Foot Scale – This type of scaling is where every figure represents about thirty feet across on the tabletop. A unit stands for approximately one inch from base to eye level at its tallest point. Figures are usually only painted as a single color. Still, they can also be handpainted using just black and white paint to simulate shading or depth through contrast or other illusions like shadows.
  5. One Inch Equals One Hundred Foot Scale – This type of scaling is where every figure represents about one hundred feet across on the tabletop. A unit stands for approximately six inches from base to eye level at its tallest point. These figures are usually heroic scale or larger, standing between 100mm up to 140 mm high, with some heroes reaching a max height of 180 mm (roughly seven inches).
  6. One Inch Equals One Thousand Foot Scale – This type of scaling is where every figure represents about one thousand feet across on the tabletop. A unit stands for approximately two inches from base to eye level at its tallest point, and these figures are usually over 150 mm in height, with some heroes reaching a max height of 190 mm (roughly eight inches).

Some hobbyists use a different scale than their peers because they like using their own miniatures that represent distances in greater detail. In contrast, others make “mega” sized miniature sets that take up an entire table or floor space–sometimes even both tables!–and require large cardboard terrain pieces and play mats so players can still see what’s happening during gameplay.

What Is Relative Scale in Miniatures?

When playing miniature wargames, it is important to know the relative scale of miniatures compared to their real-world counterparts. For example, some objects used during time specific wars have certain scales for miniatures that a person needs to consider before choosing which ones they want if there’s not enough variety available on hand.

This can be done by using length measurements from the real world object and then figuring out how much size difference will result when scaled down as needed so one doesn’t end up needing multiple versions of an item just because they didn’t get them at proportionate sizes beforehand!

The scale models can be as small as 1/72 or large at 1/6,000. A typical land-based object would have an approximate scale ranging from 1 inch to 72 inches (1:24). Airborne objects and vehicles may use scales ranging from 4 inches to 12 feet for each foot on the ground (1:10). Ships in water are typically scaled by ratio; one inch is equivalent to six nautical miles.

Relative Scales and the Objects They Represent:

  • Land objects — measured on a scale of about 1/72 to 1/300, buildings, cars.
  • Aviation objects — measured on a scale of about 1/287-1/1,250 aircraft.
  • Naval (Marine or aquatic) object — “scale” measure from 700 to 6K includes ships & tanks.

Absolute “Relative” Scale

Absolute relative scale is a measuring system in which the size of an average human being is used as a model for determining how large or small something might be. Absolute height ranges from 160 cm to 180 cm, while relative sizes range between 1/32 and 1/61 on a relative scale.

Absolute Relative Scale: A calculating method that compares measurements with those of an average person. There are two types–absolute (which does not account for perspective) and proportional.

Side note: Differing scales can affect how your game setup appears on the table. It’s also important to have some really cool dice and something to corral them with, like this neat little D&D tray I picked up recently!

What is Absolute Scale in Miniatures?

The absolute or metric scale of a miniature refers to how it measures in comparison to other miniatures. There is not always an actual human form that the measure can be drawn from, but instead, there are established standards for size comparisons at which we find our inspiration.

The absolute scale of a miniature is measured in millimeters. For the most part, we measure from head to toe and then compare that measurement with another model’s height to determine its relative size. This means if one model has an average human form when it stands at about 35mm tall or less than 35mm long, it will be on the same level as other models because they are all modeled off real-world measurements.

If you have two miniatures with different sizes but both considered “human-sized,” their comparative lengths would define which is taller between them – for example, 34mm vs 36mm (the 34 mm figure would be smaller). Absolute scales can also range by event or set, so keep your eyes peeled!

What Are Realistic And Heroic Proportion In Miniatures?

Realistic Proportion:

  • Made to look like a real person or creature.
  • The body is usually shorter than the head and may have disproportionately large feet compared to other body parts. This can make the figure stiff and rigid in appearance.
  • The head is usually large and the eyes are prominently drawn to show expression.
  • Usually made from materials like resin, vinyl chloride or polyester plastic to feel lifelike and soft.

Heroic Proportion:

  • Made to look bigger than a real person or creature.
  • Heroic proportion includes larger hands and feet so they’re not disproportional when looking at their heads from above while standing up straight.
  • A heroic figure will typically have proportions that relate more closely to one another, with realistic body shapes that don’t appear too thin or exaggerated in any way. This can make them seem more natural on display compared to figures of other scales.
  • A heroically proportioned miniature will typically be taller with longer limbs that taper towards the ends (rather than grossly disproportionate). It might also have exaggerated features that would not be found on someone’s face in reality but are seen as desirable for works of fantasy art. In general, these figures do not feel “real” because they’re often less detailed and more stylized looking; They give off an air of power and otherworldly beauty.

Popular scale D&D Miniatures

This means that a D&D miniature of an orc will measure about the same height as one from a Monopoly game, for example.

Adult Blue Dragon Premium Figure

D&D Icons of The Realms: Adult Blue Dragon Premium Figure


The D&D Icons of the Realms: Adult Blue Dragon Premium Figure is an excellent addition to any collection. Bring your crews and adventures to life with this detailed dragon! Vain and territorial, this blue dragon can be found soaring above deserts, preying on travelers doing business in the verdant lands beyond their reach. This figurine will look great anywhere you place it!

D&D Icons of The Realms Miniatures Epic Level Starter-Game

WizKids 72779 D&D Icons of The Realms Miniatures Epic Level Starter-Game


Leveling up never felt better! Encompassing a new story arc that brings your heroes to their most difficult tasks yet, the world’s greatest roleplaying game is about to give you everything you need to level up. The D&D Icons of the Realms Epic Level Starter-Gamebox offers all the premium WizKids HeroClix figures, maps and power cards you’ll need for an epic adventure right out of a fantasy novel.

38 Miniatures Fantasy Tabletop RPG Figures

38 Miniatures Fantasy Tabletop RPG Figures for Dungeons and Dragons


A fresh batch of 38 Miniatures Fantasy Tabletop RPG Figures for Dungeons and Dragons. Great variety of figures to kickstart your epic campaign, featuring Tiefling, Human, Elf, Gnome, Orc, Orge Gargoyle Hag Kobold and Goblin in 2 different colors. Give your adventures a more diverse look with these miniatures – perfect for any tabletop roleplaying game or larping adventure!
Approximate dimensions: 28mm Scale

Boneyard Booster 32 Count

D&D Icons of The Realms Miniatures: Boneyard Booster 32 Count


This miniature pack features characters like undead monks or skeletal dwarves. These figures are perfect for adding a little extra drama to your tabletop battles. Mix the good old adventurers with a few eclectic tokens of death for some excitement at any place and time!

The “25mm” scale has become popular with collectors and gamers because it’s not too big or small; they’re pretty much on par with standard figures used in RPGs such as Dungeons and Dragons, where each figure represents roughly ten people. In those games, if you have twenty orcs to fight against two players – well, then all your players would need are four figurines! It also just happens to be perfect size-wise for use in boardgames like Arkham Horror or Descent: Journeys in the Dark Second Edition, among others.

FAQs

Where To Find The Scale Of Miniatures

For those who want to create a D&D adventure, many miniatures can be used. The various scales vary from 15mm-28mm and the scale is important for your miniature terrain to match with existing maps or boards. Find out what size you need by checking on miniature manufacturers’ websites such as Games Workshop or Reaper Miniatures because their products will provide information about its scaling.

What Scale Are 25mm D&D Minis?

A 25mm D&D miniature model will be much smaller than the scale of 28mm fantasy miniatures. The difference in size can affect gameplay, so it’s important to know before choosing your miniature figurines. If you want these figures for personal use or as decoration, then this is not an issue. Still, many gamers prefer one over the other and the differences may impact their gaming experience.

As such, it’s best to find out what you need beforehand rather than ordering them online without researching first because if they don’t match up with existing terrain pieces, then they cannot be used during game play unless additional modifications are made by cutting down certain parts from each side. This process will require precision skills and tools which some people do not possess.

What Scale Are Standard D&D Minis?

D&D miniatures are not a single scale but rather come in several scales. The size of their figures typically categorizes D&D miniature games: tiny (less than an inch), small (about an inch or two tall), medium (a little over three inches tall) and large-scale (>four to six inches). The style used also dictates what is considered “standard.” For example, Pathfinder has its own standard for miniaturization. In this case, they would be referred to as medium-sized miniature models which fall into the 39mm range. This may seem unclear at first when it comes to purchasing them because you need to know what game system you’re going with before buying anything else!

What Scale Are D&D Pathfinder Minis?

The popularity behind Pathfinder’s tactical grid system (5 feet = 1 inch) means that many people are already using this measurement in their RPGs. Still, if they’re not, then DnD 5e materials may also fit nicely. Some products out on the market are made specifically for it at an affordable price point, such as Reaper Minis, 3D printed dungeon tiles and furniture.

What Scale Are Warhammer Miniatures?

Warhammer is a game with miniature figures scaled to 1:56 (28mm/32mm) and has Heroic proportions.

Warhammer miniatures come in two scales, the 28 mm scale for Warhammer Age of Sigmar models and 32 mm for 40k models. The smaller range has more detail than its larger counterpart. Still, it lacks dynamic poses or scenic details like ruins on battlefields because they’re used primarily by hobbyists who prefer painting intricate wave patterns onto armor plates rather than blasting them off at close-range combat scenarios anyway!

Which is The Best to Use in A Game?

There are many scales available for miniature figurines. The scale you choose will depend on what game you’re playing, the size of your gaming surface and how big or small you want your unpainted miniatures to be!

The most common scales in use today (in descending order) are:

54mm – a popular choice among painters as they’re usually larger scale than 28mm figures making them easier to paint;

  • 32mm- an excellent option if you have limited space as these models can fit into smaller locations;
  • 25/18 mm – designed specifically for tabletop war games like Warhammer 40K with terrain features that make it easy to identify where players should stand during gameplay. For D&D enthusiasts, this is a good range because it’s the same scale as the original miniatures released in 1974;
  • 15mm – a popular size for many wargamers and collectors.

Conclusion

One of the most important pieces of information to understand is what scale are your pre painted miniatures? This will help you make informed decisions about what miniature supplies and paints work best for you. What type of scale do I collect in? Many different scales can be collected, but some people prefer one or two over others. The key here is to explore which ones might interest you before buying a bunch because it’s often hard to find certain types at retail stores. I hope this article has helped answer any questions you have had about Dungeons and Dragons Miniatures!

Richard

Hi! I'm Richard Baker, a miniature painter who has been painting for about ten years. My website is packed with great advice that I've learned from both books and personal experience on building and painting miniatures.

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