Befreiungskriege 1813-14

Painting and modelling 28mm Napoleonic wargaming miniatures

Perrys’ plastic plunge

Posted by Martin on December 5, 2007

Now there’s something you don’t see every day – a well known manufacturer of 28mm wargaming miniatures announcing a range of plastic figures. In this case Perry ACW. The subject of the range holds no interest for me but the medium does set your thoughts running doesn’t it? I’m not really sure where my thoughts will end up and I can see both the merits and drawbacks of 28mm plastics. I think the thing that I eventually end up with is that this seems such an obvious idea that other people must have considered doing it before (and I’m not counting Games Workshop in this, because I think that organization is very much a special case). So why hasn’t it happened before? I worry that there’s some fatal flaw but I hope not for the twins’ sake.

Elsewhere, it’s been a good period again for Napoleonics fans in the sense that more figures keep getting released. In an odd juxtaposition of light infantry, there’s the new Foundry early Portuguese cacadores and the TAG Austrian jaegers.

Taking the Foundry figures first: it’s good to see more choice for fans of the Peninsular War but boy are these weird sculpts and I found my confidence less than inspired by the description on one page in the Foundry site that these are a “training range”. The other thing that bothers me is that I count only twelve poses across eight packs – and six of those poses are accounted for by command figures (officers, musicians and standard bearers).

Compare and contrast with the TAG Austrian jaegers (which I might just take an interest in when I’ve finished with Prussians and Saxons). So far only there are only two packs but these alone already comprise eight different poses. From the photos on the site, these look like very nicely sculpted figures indeed and mark the beginning of a new Austrian range. Next up will be four sets of fusiliers and I shall watch this range develop over the coming months and maybe even buy a pack or two to see how they paint up.

Lastly a price comparison: one pack of six Foundry cacadores will set you back a tenner (i.e. £1.67 per figure) and one pack of four TAG jaegers will cost you £4.95 (i.e. £1.24 per figure) – more than a 50p per figure difference. Now before you pull me up on this, yes, you’re right, I haven’t factored in P&P and both manufacturers offer bulk discounts and those might even the scores though I don’t have the energy tonight to go through the maths. I’m sure those of you interested enough in one range or the other will have the incentive to seek the most cost-effective deal.

5 Responses to “Perrys’ plastic plunge”

  1. meadowsboy said

    I am excited about the plastic Perry’s always fancied trying ACW and it will be my major project for 2008! It is worth remembering that the Perry’s are the main, IMO the best and definately the most productive sculptors working for Games Workshop and because of this they may be using GW plastic facilties!

    As for the new napoleonics you mentioned I think the TAG prices include p&p and so are not bad value at all!

    Really enjoy the blog!

    cheers

    David

  2. Giles said

    I’m into ACW so I was thrilled by the news, although I then had to wonder if I’ll in fact continue collecting Dixon (weird sculpts, I know, but I like ’em). In answer to your question Martin, I think the reason why no one has done this before (outside of GW) is that the start-up costs for the tooling machinery are huge. There seems to be an assumption that it’s no coincidence that this initiative has come out of a company with strong links to GW.

    I think it’s a great idea, although clearly limited in applicaiton and one can see why they started with ACW, given that the uniforms can be used (by and large) for both sides. I can see perhaps boxes of colonial era tribesmen, basic line infantry for Naps and one or two other things, but not much else really. The problems of undercuts mean that the poses you get with plastics are much more limited than with metals, which will be another factor in the limited use of 28mm plastics. But let’s face it, anything by the Perries is going to be a winner!

    Foundry Portuguese – horrid!

    Giles

  3. The ACW has always been in my “top five” gaming interests. I’m sure I will get these to bulk out my collection, and I can see that the Orphan Brigade may be looming on the horizon. Being from the Perry’s means that these plastics will look a darn sight better than some of their metal brethren out there.

    I envision units of these guys being “fleshed out with metal figures for variety, and the news that the twins are also planning on bringing out a range of metal ACW figures to complement the plastic figures is also very exciting. A few metal figures will also give a bit more “heft” to the bases!

    I feel that this is bound to be a good thing all round, as I am hoping that not only will it make 28mm gaming more accessible financially to younger players, but that it will generate interest in larger games with larger battalions. To echo Giles, I can see it working well with the ACW, and- maybe- with Napoleonics, but probably restricted to the French, British, and maybe the Prussians as in the old Airfix days.

    But those Saxons are still slated to be first in the painting queue.

  4. Phil said

    TAG includes p&p in their cost, so it’s even better as a deal.

    Greens. Greens. Greens. Greens.

  5. Craig said

    The TAG figures look like good sculpts and with the bulk deal and no postage, @83 p per figure great price. Does any one know how they measure up size wise with Calpe and Front Rank?

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