The options for miniatures have increased substantially since I started the craft years ago. Here are some popular options for your game table.
Reaper bones are made from a flexible white plastic which makes them inexpensive but sometimes they can be molded out of shape. To prep them I use my heat gun to bend any misshapen models back into place, wash and dry with soapy water then paint them with a black gesso (as a base coat) as they do not take most primer sprays very well (end up sticky). Even with all these issues Reaper Bones are a economical way to bring lots of models to the table.
Here is how I fix any bent Reaper Bones miniatures:
WizKids produces a line of pre-painted miniatures specifically for D&D 5E. These are pre-painted to what I call a “table ready” quality. (This means they look good on the table but most do not have the quality of a fine paint job when looked at closely). These cost a bit more than bones but the advantage is that they are ready for the table right out of the box.
Another cool option from WizKids is the Nolzurs Marvelous Unpainted Minis line. These minis have nice details and are pre-primed but are a bit more expensive than the Reaper Bones. They are official 5E miniatures so if you want minis that stick to the look and lore of the game then these are great for the person who wants authenticity. Some of the minis also sport clear parts and spell effects that look great painted with a colored wash.
More to come...Check back soon.