And the best thing is that, because Jennell Jaquays is an artist, as well as a game designer, she made the concept art used to make the sculpts for her own monsters! You can't get much more authentic than that.
Here is what Jennell said about her "Minion of Set" design on Facebook:
There is another picture of the concept art of the "Minion of Set: Warrior".Jennell Jaquays on the Dragongirl Studios page wrote:The Minions of Set were the second set of figures that I tackled for the Dark Tower line from Otherworld games (I had already completed three figures for the Lions of Mitra, angelic guardian spirits associated with three magic artifacts found in the adventure).
The whole Set vs. Mitra mythology was drawn from the Conan the Barbarian fiction, by Robert E. Howard and other authors finishing his stories (L. Sprague De Camp and Lin Carter). Mitra, loosely based on the deity Mithras and Set on the Egyptian god. And of course, my spin on both of them in an adventure that was itself inspired by the conflict in Howard’s “Red Nails” Conan story.
In the original adventure that I wrote, there were no depictions of the Minions of Set. They were powerful human-like warrior creatures who could be summoned to protect the god Set, or his servitors. They were based on a short description found in the original D&D supplement Gods, Demi-gods, & Heroes (the precursor book to the AD&D 1e version Deities & Demigods, and then Legends & Lore for AD&D 2e). There were no illustrations in the book. Jeff Dee had depicted a minion in Deities & Demigods (a book that I also worked on as an illustrator), but that’s not how imagined them back in ’79 and DEFINITELY NOT how I would come to imagine them in 2016.
If it’s not immediately apparent, my minions are greatly influenced by the Jaffa, the warriors serving the alien Ra in Stargate the motion picture and later as the genetically engineering warrior caste of the alien Goa’uld in Stargate SG1. I took influence there, but I didn’t want them to be exactly like those warriors. So I collected a lot of related reference and worked from there.
I drew on a lot of stylized Egyptian warrior armor and weapons, aiming for “is it cool” rather than “Is it authentic.” There was also some consideration given to the way Thulsa Doom was portrayed in the Conan the Barbarian movies (the 1980s Arnold Schwartzeneggar ones). Otherworld had already decided that they wanted to use the two headed serpent symbol on the Dark Tower figures (there’s a reptilian theme throughout the D&D Set mythos).
I rendered my art digitally, using a combo of CLIP Studio Paint (aka Manga Studio) and Photshop CS 6 on my aging Wacom Cintiq drawing tablet.
I looked to other miniature figures for poses that would express the character (and not be too difficult to manufacture … these things have to be molded and the molds hopefully have a longish lifespan). I originally gave the Guardian Minion two of those sickle swords. But Otherworld ask that I stick closer to the description, and changed that up for a sword and shield (and in the process, flipped the drawing right to left to make the character a “righty.”). The shield IS a traditional ancient Egyptian war shield. I added the scales to play up the reptilian theme, and made the two-headed serpent into the shield boss.
The armor is a mix of classic medieval plate mail (D&D is NOT an ancients type setting). As much as possible, I tried to draw on Egyptian inspiration for the styling of chest area, torso, and armored skirt. I originally drew the ears (they’re ears, not horns) on the head dress more vertical, but decided they look less goofy, angled back. The headdress is inspired by the canon head of the god (and is therefore some sort of ambiguous creature, neither jackal nor crocodile). The foot gear was originally draw just as armored shoes. I changed them to be more claw-like (the armor is clawlike, not their feet) after doing the same on the second drawing of the Warrior minion.
My final “style statement” on the miniature was the addition of tattered linen wrappings on the wrists and ankles of the figure. They have no specific purpose except to add a weird “mummy-like” decoration to the creature.
I’m really pleased with the way the miniature sculptor captured this figure in both pose and details!
There is a video floating around Facebook. I'll see if I can find one that is not on Facebook, so that other people can watch it.