Hi! I’m Alex Bates, and Forge of Ice is what happened when I had an epiphany. I’ve been a tabletop miniatures/RPG/wargames hobbyist for most of my life, and one day, after wistfully thinking “Man, I wish some company out there would make a miniature of _____” for the umpteenth time, I had a moment of clarity.
“Hey, wait a minute, I’m an adult! I can make miniatures!”
It took me a few years and more than a few missteps, but eventually I found some focus, and I’m very happy to now be working to bring my Lost World setting, Azor, to life on your tabletops and in your games.
I live in Fairbanks, Alaska (perhaps explaining my fascination with tropical jungle locales), and I design all the Forge of Ice figures. I do some of the painting, a tiny little bit of the sculpting, and all of the wrangling of the artists and sculptors who take my rough little sketches and turn them into finished pieces. If something goes wrong, it’s probably on me – if something goes right, it’s probably because I had help from my friends.
Speaking of friends, I couldn’t do this without the support of some great people – Jason Huffman and Hannah Semock have been there from the beginning, helping me with computer stuff (I’m rather stubbornly technology-phobic), pitching in at my table at events, letting me bounce ideas back and forth, and just generally being awesome and supportive.
Tyson Rhody has been there since the start, too – he sculpted most of my first figures, and he still helps out with conversions and creative trash talking every chance he gets!
And there are many more! Brianna Reagan Davis, fine artist extraordinaire and my partner on the Clockwork Queen. Lucas Elliott, concept artist, beard brother, and convention buddy. Peter Foglesong, who designed the Forge of Ice Logo & helped settle the look of the Snake Priestesses. Tania Clucas helps me with the books, Zoe Rezek with inventory, and Tina Chambers, the best booth helper ever!
I also owe a big thank you to the Indianapolis crew – Brian Roe (creator of ‘Zombie Plague ‘ and oodles of other cool projects), Cathy Hamaker (White Ape studio), and Chris Fitzpatrick of Crocodile Games. I might not have ever gotten started if it hadn’t been for their encouragement & advice. Andrew Barlow, my trusty caster at Dark-Platypus Studio, has been and still is a great resource, answering my long and rambling emails with thoroughness and patience.
Last but not least is, of course, my Mom, without whom none of this would have happened. Thanks, Mom!