Friday, July 16, 2010

Warlord Games ECW Dragoons review.

Hello again,

Now that I have temporairily exorcised my WWII bug from my system, I have been able to get back to painting ECW. I have finished another foot regiment and a cavalry regiment along with my William Waller command figure. I will post pictures of them shortly in another post.

At the moment I am painting up the Warlord Games Dragoons and I thought I would give a quick review of them.

What do you get? Well in the box, you get 12 mounted Dragoons (metal rider and plastic mount) and 12 metal dismounted Dragoons and a set of plastic bases. The plastic horse sprue is the same as the cavalry horses. The size of the horses are quite big compared to other manufacturers and the difference is quite noticeable. Dragoons typically rode poor quality horses compared to the cavalry so these horses are a bit too good for dragoons but that is only nitpicking.

The sculpts of the figures are very good with good poses, and good facial expressions. The characters come with separate metal hats so you can choose what type of hat they can wear, however there are not enough hats for you to, for example, give them all monteroes, so you would need to use some left over plastic ones from the infantry boxes.

Overall quite good value for money.

Now for the down side.

The plastic cavalry are good sculpts but they are let down a bit by the poor casting. The bodies are in two halves which require a fair amount of putty to fix up the gaps around the neck and across the chest.

The metal riders are cast very poorly with quite a bit of flash. Parts of the sculpt are wrecked in the casting so that I had to use green putty to hide it by turning the blob into another sack. The figures look like they have been quite carelessly pulled out of the molds with muskets and standard poles bent quite badly (particularly the standard pole which was also twisted!). The cast riders also do not sit on the plastic horses without considerable filing and bending of the legs with pliers. 

Also the mounted commander figure was missing an arm! Luckily I was able to use a leftover plastic sargeants arm from the infantry box plus some green stuff to effect a passable repair job.

These issues took a lot of time to fix. The finished and painted figures will no doubt look very good, but I will not be rushing out to buy another box anytime soon based on the poor quality of the casts.

There were no problems with the dismounted dragoons.

Overall, very good sculpts severely let down by poor casting. Methinks that they have rushed these figures out to meet the demand and the quality control has gone out the window.

5 out 10.


Friday, July 2, 2010

World War II British Paras - The curse continues...

Here is the latest addition to my World War II forces. The airborne operations in Normandy during D-Day and the Operation Market Garden in Arnhem have always interested me so it was the next obvious force to make to oppose my late war germans.

The miniatures are from Peter Pig and I picked them up at Little Wars back in May. They are excellent figures with good poses and attention to detail. They painted up pretty easily followed as usual with the army painter dip which I am pretty much addicted to right now.  The denison smocks look particularly good.

Here is the company arrayed.

Here is the company commander with radio operator. During the Market Garden operation the British paras at Arnhem had great difficulty maintaining radio communications. The Cromwell IV tank is a prepainted miniature from the Axis and Allies collectible game. I picked it up in a bargain bin along with a Russian T34/76, German Panzer III Ausf. F and US M4A1 Sherman for a few bucks and surprisingly they are correct 15mm scale and will be good for the crossfire games when we start using tanks.

1st Platoon. In the Crossfire organisation list for a Para company they give one 2"mortar. However a bit of digging on the net showed that each platoon had a 2" mortar team which was directed by the Platoon commander. I therefore decided to add two more mortar units to the company along with a HMG section. The added points cost brings them up to the same as the late war german company.

2nd Platoon

3rd Platoon

Forward observer.

 Heavy Machine Gun section.

I now have my opposing forces done. I need to start working on the terrain and plan to have my first game this weekend.