Saturday, July 22, 2017

Artizan Design: New Winter Gear Soviet Infantry Preview

Artizan Design: Winter is Coming (1943). But nothing stops the Red Army. New winter clothed Soviets from Artizan Design, available soon.

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry Reviewed!

Today we will be taking a closer look at the newest plastic boxed set from Perry Miniatures, their long-awaited British Zulu War Infantry! Please read on for plenty of pictures and information on these fine new miniatures.

The British Zulu War Infantry miniatures are the latest set of plastic miniatures released by the well-known sculptors Alan and Michael Perry of Perry Miniatures and were released at Salute earlier this year. I have had these on my workbench for quite a while and thought it would be more than time to review these lovely miniatures here on Wargame News and Terrain. While these miniatures are sold as Zulu War Infantry these are also suitable for the Ninth Cape Frontier War and the First Anglo-Boer War and are also supplied with Home Service helmets for repelling enemies both earthly such as the French and Prussians and extraterrestrial such as those troublesome Martians!

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry

The plastic British Zulu War Infantry miniatures are packed in the standard sized cartonboard box in which most of the Perry Miniatures plastic infantry boxed sets are packed with the front being decorated by the lovely and evocative artwork of the talented artist Peter Dennis. While the back offers some information and background on the miniatures along with several useful uniform illustrations. As per usual the miniatures are also supplied with a small booklet containing information about different units and their uniforms, the theatres of war and instructions on how to assemble the specialist miniatures. This booklet offers a great starting point to start, assemble  and paint historical accurate units and armies for the Zulu War, the Ninth Cape War and First Anglo-Boer War.

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry

The British Zulu War Infantry Box Content

The boxed set contains enough parts to assemble 38 high quality plastic miniatures in the box including four casualties and two Heliographs. The miniatures are equipped with the standard issue uniform and weaponry of the depicted period. The bulk of the boxed set contains the regular heroic and stout British infantrymen dressed in his iconic yet outdated red uniform and armed with his lethal breech-loading single-shot lever-actuated rifle Martini-Henry rifle. These common infantrymen were the core of the Victorian era British army and fought more than their fair share in many of the colonial battles of the British Empire in South Africa.

The boxed set contains the following sprues

- 6 Infantry sprues each containing five soldiers
- 2 Command sprues each containing two officers, two casualties and one Heliograph
- 1 Renedra square bases sprue containing enough bases to field your miniatures

Below you can see the infantry sprue of which six are included in the boxed set. This sprue contains as mentionned above the bulk of the regular infantry with plenty of options for field helmets, the home service helmets and other heads (glengarry cap, wounded and bare heads). As you can see on the sprue all of the five body poses are unique and offer an excellent amount of difference stances and weapon poses allowing you to create a realistic firing line. As you can see on the sprue there are nine different options of handling the Martini-Henry ranging from loading and firing, to stand at the ready and repelling close combat attacks. You can even make a soldier waving his pith helmet as he is sheering after repelling a native attack or shouting for his life. It's this kind of options that really makes this set stand out and make it the best 28mm scaled plastic Zulu War Infantry set available on the market today. It will be very hard if not impossible to beat the quality and options of this set in the future.

The only remark I have is that all of the miniatures supplied are in a standing position with no options for a double firing line with a kneeling first rank. That said I actually don't mind this anymore as the miniatures look so fine and full of character that this only a very minor point of attention. Could be possible that a kneeling firing line will be supplied in metal miniature packs but haven't heard or seen any previews of that possibility yet. Note that this set is also sold as a 'standing' firing line set.

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry Soldier Sprue

The second sprue is the specialist or command sprue which contains the parts of the Heliograph, officers and two casualties. As you can see on the sprue plenty of options to arm your officers and regular infantry allowing you to field buglers, standard bearers and enough parts to assemble a realistic Heliograph team with binoculars, note pads and Heliograph operator. There are two command sprues included in the boxed set.

One of the unique selling points is the addition of not one but two Heliographs and their crew. The inclusion of these specialist miniatures further increases the value of the plastic boxed set as you can assemble some of the regular infantry in the specialist role. Should you have to buy these Heliograph teams in metal, you're easily be spending more than £6.00 a team with other miniature companies so great value with these miniatures. The addition of these miniatures also opens a whole variety of wargame objectives and realism to your wargame as communication was often of great importance when facing overwhelming enemy armies in a vast and desolate country. 

As mentionned before the purpose of this sprue is to supply officers for your regular infantrymen in the form of two rather dashing looking gentlemen armed with a variety of weapons including swords, pistols and other equipment suitable for a proper officer such as binoculars. There are also options to turn regular infantrymen in standard bearers, buglers and so on. The sprue also contains two wounded or dead soldiers again offering even more useful content to the set as these can be used to make casualty markers, important objectives or to make vignettes for your  infantry and command bases. Next to the miniature sprues the boxed set also contains the Renedra square plastic bases sprues in the sandy color suitable for the arid plains and hills of South Africa.

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry Command Sprue

Looking closer at the actual quality of the sculpting and casting I can only say that both are superb. Alan and Michael Perry are known for their excellent sculpting and historical accuracy and these miniatures are no exception with very crisp details and lots of realism and character in the faces, clothing and body poses. The tooling and casting is again done by Renedra and their experienced team and the quality is again great with minimal amounts of flash and mouldlines present on the miniatures.

The British Zulu War Infantry Assembly 

The assembly of these miniatures was great fun as there are plenty of options to assemble your miniatures in different poses and stands. The planning of the parts on the sprue really makes the assembly easy as all parts can easily be cut loose and the sprue vents aren't situated on the fragile parts such as bayonet points as can be the case with sets of other manufacturers and those can drive a man mad when bayonet after bayonet snaps and there aren't many options left! 

I decided to assemble my miniatures as regular infantry with field pith helmets as they would have been fielded in South Africa you could of course assemble them as new recruits and go the Hollywood way and let them wear their iconic Home Service helmets instead. Really like the way they turned out and will most likely be fielding some of the miniatures as 60th Rifles or perhaps use some to make cheap dismounted Imperial Mounted Infantry with the mounted component converted from Perry Miniatures American Civil War Cavalry. Not historical accurate but well enough for my daily tabletop ventures. Below I have added some pictures of the assembled miniatures but note that this is only a minor part of the miniatures which are included.

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry Heliograph

The British Zulu War Infantry Scale Comparison

As I have quite some unpainted miniatures in my collection that could be used for the Zulu War, I have taken some scale comparison pictures that might be useful to see if these new miniatures fit your existing miniature collections. in the pictures below you can see pictures of Perry Miniatures, Warlord Games, Foundry Miniatures, Wargames Factory and Empress Miniatures. The miniatures scale up well with most of the plastic miniatures but are slighly taller and more slender than the Wargames Factory and Warlord Games miniatures. Note that the Empress Miniatures figure was supplied with the Warlord Games plastic Zulu War Infantry boxed set but I would guess that these are the same size as the actual Empress Miniatures miniature range.

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry Scale Comparison

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry Scale Comparison

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry Scale Comparison

The British Zulu War Infantry Conclusion

As you might have noticed during the review I'm a big fan of these miniatures and will be most certainly grabbing plenty of these miniatures due to their great quality and excellent price. Further more miniatures are top-notch and will most likely never be exceed in quality, affordability and historical accuracy. The addition of extras such as the informative booklet, the Heliographs and casualties further increases the great value of this new boxed set and will allow you to add plenty of character to your wargames in the form of scenics, objectives and markers. The boxed set is now available for £20.00 directly from Perry Miniatures here 

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Infantry

Perry Miniatures have also announced that they will be releasing some plastic Zulu warrior opponents along with supporting metal miniatures such as cavalry and more for the British. You can see the Zulu warrior preview below. More pictures can be found here in our previous post

Perry Miniatures: Plastic British Zulu War Zulu Warriors

Found this review informative? Make sure to follow and share Wargame News and Terrain as more cool wargame miniature news is posted daily. Find us on Twitter @wnt_news and bookmark our homepage here for your daily dose of wargame news and miniature discounts!

Disclaimer - We received these miniatures from Perry Miniatures for reviewing purposes. Please note that this doesn't influence our review as we always strive to supply you with our own independent and honest opinion about the wargame products reviewed.

Dozens of other reviews can easily be found here and make sure to follow this blog as more reviews, tutorials and wargame news appears every day!

Crooked Dice: New Scooter Gang Preview

Crooked Dice: Here's a preview of August's release… Escape your dead-end job and ride your scooter to the coast for a brawl with some Rockers. Three scooters and riders (plus the scooter is available separately) sculpted by Paolo Fabiani and painted here by Simon Bradley. Out on 01 August.

Element Games: Games Workshop Blood Bowl Dice Pre-Order

Element Games launched the pre-order for new Blood Bowl dice.

Rebel Minis: New Undead Psi-Witch and Merc Sniper!

Rebel Minis: New Undead Psi-Witch and Merc Sniper (ex Judge Dredd?)

Fenris Games: Primitive Dagon Altar Scenery Preview

Fenris Games: Primitive altar to Dagon.To be littered with relics from civilisations that have risen and fallen during His worship.

Front Rank Miniatures: New Prussian Napoleonic Dragoons

Front Rank released these Prussian Napoleonic Dragoons.

Kromlech: New Resin Bottles Released

Kromlech released these new resin bottles.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Warlord Games: Test of Honour - Samurai Factions Preview

Warlord Games announced some new Test of Honour warbands.

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers Reviewed!

Today we take a look at the upcoming plastic Shieldmaidens by Shieldwolf Miniatures. This brand new plastic boxed set will allow you to field armies of fierce Northern Shieldmaidens and Rangers.

The Shieldmaiden Infantry boxed set is the second hard-plastic kit to be released by Shieldwolf Miniatures. This particular set was succesfully funded during the War is coming: Shieldmaidens Army Reboot Kickstarter in early 2016. Gathering more than $80.000 and backed by more than 550 backers, these miniature were put into production and are now almost ready to be delivered and released for retail. Shieldwolf Miniatures is always trying to improve the quality and detail of their miniatures so let's take a look if they have managed to raise the bar on these new Shieldmaidens.

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers Reviewed!

The Shieldmaiden and Ranger Dual Plastic Kit

Most of Shieldwolf Miniatures miniature range consists out of highly-detailled resin miniatures, handcasted at their own facility in Athens, Greece. Although of excellent quality, resin miniature casting is laborious and also requires the frequent changing of silicon moulds which wear and tear during the countless castings runs. As you can imagine resin casting is very suited for small production runs of more expensive creatures and characters instead of infantry which often provides the bulk of your tabletop armies.

For that reason Shieldwolf Miniatures decided to venture into the production of hard-plastic miniatures to create the bulk infantry of their factions and armies. For this expensive venture they decided to use the might of Kickstarter crowdfunding together with their own corporate funds allowing them to release their first plastic Mountain Orc Infantry kit in partnership with Renedra. Together with the very experienced team at Renedra, these were eventually released offering affordable and unqiue orc soldiers for your tabletop armies. With another succesful Kickstarter campaign they were now able to release these new Shieldmaidens.

The Shieldmaiden and Ranger Dual Plastic Kit contains five hard-plastic sprues allowing you to build 24 Shieldmaiden or Ranger miniatures. You can straight away assemble 20 miniatures but can actually build 24 with some kitbashing according to Shieldwolf Miniatures as there are only 20 left arms included. These can of course all be assembled as a mixture of both available warrior types. The Shieldmaidens are the female warriors with shields and melee weaponry while the Rangers are the female warriors equipped with lethal crossbows. In the pictures below you can see both sprues that are included in the boxed set but more on those below each sprue picture.

Note these sprues were supplied  without box in advance but represent the content of an actual boxed set without the plastic bases which will be supplied in the retail version. The set will be supplied with sufficient 25mm square plastic bases.

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers

The sprue shown above is what I call the Infantry Sprue of which two are included in the boxed set. These sprues contain all the heads included in the set along with half of the bodies, you may have noticed the lack of melee weapons as those are included on the other sprues. I'm happy with the overall content and quality of this sprue as it allows for some options of variation. Although I would have appreciated some more left arms as those are supplied in minimal numbers. Another big plus is that most if not every piece included on the sprue is unique preventing duplication of parts among your miniatures which is especially useful when playing skirmish level wargames.

Sprue content Infantry Sprue

- 6 unique bodies
- 4 cape backpieces
- 4 backpieces
- 5 unique shields
- 4 crossbow right arms
- 4 left arms
- 2 unique quivers
- 2 hooded heads
- 15 unique heads

The sprue shown above is what I call the Command Sprue although this sprue would most likely be better called the melee or Shieldmaiden sprue due to all the melee weapons included. In the boxed set you will find three of these sprues. As you may have noticed, the left half of this sprue is identical to the Infantry Sprue with the right part being replaced by command and melee bits. All of the melee weapons are wielded in the right hand with the left hands being reserved to be bare or with shields. Again satified with the content and quality of the casting looking at the range of melee weapons included but would again liked to have some more left arms and maybe also some more unique body poses.

Sprue content Command Sprue

- 4 unique bodies
- 4 cape backpieces
- 1 fur cape backpiece
- 4 backpieces
- 6 unique shields
- 4 crossbow right arms
- 4 left arms
- 1 left arm flag
- 1 left arm horn
- 3 unique axes
- 4 unique swords
- 1 unique flail

In the pictures below you can see some more close-up pictures of the different sprues showing individual bits and pieces. The detail of these miniatures is well-defined and the quality of the plastic and casting is superb as you may expect from Renedra.

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers

The assembly 

The assembly of these plastic miniatures isn't very different from assembling other plastic miniature kits which were designed for wargaming purposes. That said I can't remember ever seeing seperate backpieces for models allowing you to make miniatures with or without capes. For me personally the separate backpieces are interesting but really not necessary as the capes could have simply be supplied as individual pieces as seen in plastic kits by Games Workshop or Fireforge Games to  name some examples. Feel free to correct me if I missed something important about this design option. Confirmed by Shieldwolf Miniatures is that the same design option will also be used for their upcoming plastic Warmaidens and Dragonbreds making the miniature sets compatible. The Kickstarter for these miniatures will follow in Q2 2017.

Following are some remarks regarding the assembly - While preparing for assembly be sure that you carefully remove the parts as some pieces such as the crossbows and other fragile bits can easily be damaged when using too much force. While assembling the below miniatures I snapped the strings of two crossbows. These however broke off clean and could easily be glued but it's better to avoid the hassle of doing that by being careful. I have also noticed that the heads look better when you cut of some length of the necks as these than better fit the bodies, I have done this with all miniatures shown in this review. My last remark is that some sprue vents are placed in difficult to reach or fragile places such on the capes/ inside of the legs/ crossbows making it a bit hard to nicely remove the parts without some damage so I really recommend that you you use a small and sharp hobby knife to tackle these pieces. That said the assembly went really smooth with all pieces fitting well, for the assembly I used plastic glue from Revell with a small nossle by far my favorite brand.

As you can see in the pictures below these miniatures can be assembled in a large variety of poses armed with either melee or ranged weapons. I really like the look of the assembled miniatures as they can easily be assembled as standing, attacking or advancing. The amount of unique bits also allows to build individual characters offering a great source for female barbarian like characters for wargaming and roleplaying.

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers

Scale comparison

Below you can find scale comparison pictures with other metal and plastic miniatures of other well-known wargame miniature companies. Check the pictures and find out if these new Shieldmaiden miniatures fit your own miniature collection or armies.

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers Scale Comparison
Mantic Games Orc - Shieldwolf Shieldmaiden - Games Workshop Empire Spearman - Shieldwolf Shieldmaiden

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers Scale Comparison
Conquest Games Norman Knight -  Shieldwolf Shieldmaiden - Gripping Beast Anglo Saxon - Shieldwolf Shieldmaiden

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers Scale Comparison
Shieldwolf Mountain Orc - Shieldwolf Shieldmaiden - Games Workshop Ork - Shieldwolf Shieldmaiden

The conclusion

The quality of both the sculpting and casting is great in my opinion even superb, after seeing the pictures I'm almost sure you will all agree with this. The sprues are packed with nice bits and pieces allowing you to build convincing female northern warriors ready to take the fight to your unwary enemies on the tabletop battlefield. My only issues like the use of the separate backpieces and the lack of more left arms are merely minor remarks when looking at the full content of the boxed set.

As these miniatures are sold as fantasy miniatures and not as historical representation of female warriors you may have noticed some bare skin on these miniatures which would of course have been covered up in real life. That said I think these miniatures have great potential to also be used as proxy 'historical' miniatures as the boxed set contains a nice mix of bodies with more/less bare skin shown and with realistic body proportion unlike the looks of other popular female miniatures. Shieldwolf Miniatures has succesfully filled a significant gap in the wargame miniature market with these high-quality plastic modular female warriors. I'm sure that these new miniatures will prove popular on the tabletop as the quality and subject of this new boxed set is excellent. The content of the boxed set will also allow you to convert other miniatures with cool weapons, gear and the female heads can easily be used to turn other wargame and roleplaying miniatures in female characters.

I can easily see these miniatures been used as heroic roleplaying characters, stand-alone skirmish warbands or combined with creatures (like the Shieldwolf War Mammooth check pictures below or our review here) in full female tabletop armies. Fielding a full female fantasy force has never been so easy and affordable so if you're interested in buying these make sure to check the Shieldwolf Miniatures website later this month or early April to pre-order. This particular plastic boxed set will retail for €27.75 for 20 models.

The War Mammooth with Howdah will be bundled with two Shieldmaiden sprues allowing you to crew this deadly creature of war with some fierce female warriors. The restock of this huge and highly-detailled creature will happen in late april. The bundle set will be sold for €159,50.

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers War Mammooth

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers War Mammooth

Shieldwolf Miniatures: Plastic Fantasy Shieldmaidens and Rangers War Mammooth

Disclaimer - We received these miniatures from Shieldwolf Miniatures for reviewing purposes. Please note that this doesn't influence our review as we always strive to supply you with our own independent and honest opinion about the wargame products reviewed and you may have noticed that these miniatures are simply awesome so no need to dishonest about that!

Dozens of other reviews can easily be found here and make sure to follow this blog as more reviews, tutorials and wargame news appears every day!

Black Scorpion: Free Wild West Tombstone or Pirate Miniatures!

Black Scorpion Miniatures: We currently have a little offer running, our spares bins are overflowing! Any order over £10 placed until, the end of July receives a random miniature free! You can specify in the comments on checkout either Tombstone or Pirates should you choose.

Petersen Games: Cthulhu Wars Onslaught 3 - Miniature Boardgame Kickstarter Launched and Funded

Petersen Games recently launched and funded their Cthulhu Wars Onslaught 3 Kickstarter in which they aim to fund the production of their premier horror strategy game with high quality miniatures and great competitive gameplay and tactics according to the creators.

Cthulhu Wars’ original Kickstarter campaigns launched in 2013 and 2015 to stellar success. If you’re already a fan, now is the time to complete your collection! If you have been waiting for the opportunity to get in on Cthulhu Wars, this is your best opportunity! Check the Kickstarter here

Cthulhu Wars is a competitive strategy game in which 2 to 8 players face-off to determine the fate of the planet. You'll recruit cultists and summon monsters, cast spells, open interdimensional gates, and awaken your colossal unearthly Great Old One! Every game is different - as you play, you unlock new spellbooks, giving new amazing powers unique to each faction. Play is asymmetric - every faction has a unique set of rules and victory conditions.

The core game offers an asymmetric, two to four player strategy experience (up to eight players with expansions). Each player controls a faction of cosmic evil competing with its rivals for the remains of the defeated, dying Earth. Players push and battle each other to control areas, build gates, gain power, achieve personal goals, and unlock special abilities in the form of spellbooks to render their own faction supreme. The miniatures are conspicuously monstrous, appealing and evocative.

The Ion Age: Free Playing Prang in Patrol Angis Booklet

The Ion Age: Now online for free download the second expanded booklet for playing as the Prang Army in Patrol Angis. With all of our releases for the month now online we present this PDF for you to add to your game books to add infantry, infantry support vehicles and larger vehicles to the Prang. A play test document which is evolving it now shows codes we plan to create in the future for this force. Click through to download. Remember you get IMP47 Happy Burger Bin Bot free in every order this month and we still have an updated free booklet to come for the Xin Trade Fleet. Thanks. GBS

Micro Art Studio: New Foam Flat Hills Scenery and Contest

Micro Art Studio: The new Flat Hills are available at Micro Art Studio's store! Within this set you get 4 hardfoam flat hills.  They are light & durable, easy to paint and will improve greatly your gaming tables!

We have also announced a contest on our Facebook profile. There's a chance to win the set of Flat Hills (4) - share the post and write which gaming system would you use them for!!! We're going to draw the lucky winner on Saturday, 22nd of July.