I love gaming with miniatures, even if it’s just to help everyone around the table visualize important characters and monsters. Sure, cardboard counters are cheaper and easier to play with, but the wargamer in me really grooves on using actual sculpted miniatures for roleplaying.
Finding cheap miniatures, then, has become an amusing quest for me; at GenCon, I probably spent an hour pawing through huge bins of plastic D&D minis, all priced two for a dollar. I ended up with eight new additions to my collection — mainly because I spent most of my time helping fellow prospectors track down figures for their collections. (“Anyone need another Skulking Ghroll? I’ve got two over here!”)
Anyway, for groups looking for another outlet for cheap plastic minis, check out the MageKnight auctions on eBay. Most gamers fondly remember MageKnight as the pioneering clicky-base game that shot itself in the face with a career-ending rules revamp. Folks still play MageKnight, but there’s not a whole lot of demand left for the figures themselves, which started out looking kind of shoddy but got increasingly better as time went on. Even better, there are literally hundreds of different models in the series, representing dozens of races and factions and equipment combinations. I just won an auction for two dozen undead-themed characters and another dozen male human adventurers — for about the price of a single D&D Minis booster box.