OK, the title is a bit of a tease. I don’t have any painted examples to show you other than the ones currently posted on the Warlord Games site but I do have some of the sprues! I have been asked to write a step by step painting painting guide for a forth coming issue of Wargames Illustrated so I have been given early access to the sprues as part of the project.
I’m not in a position to do a full review, as I don’t have the full boxed set and I have yet to start my research but here are my first impressions. Actually, I would further qualify that statement by saying I’m not the most objective when it comes to reviewing. I either like something or I don’t and I don’t get too hung up on the miniscule detail. If I don’t like something, then I don’t review it…so I guess by now you will know that I do very much like the look of these new additions to the Warlord Range.
For £20 you will get a nice box of 12 plastic Cavalry figures ( 6 sprues), plus a metal Officer figure and a metal Buglers arm or in the Union box a metal bugler, so 13 or 14 figures in all in the set. I guess that for most of us, that will mean that we will have one or two bonus spare plastic figures as wargamers will tend to build their units for Black powder in 12’s. Also included in the box will be a leaflet explaining how the British heavy cavalry were organised and some basic painting hints to supplement the box art. I think that this is very good value. I particularly like the effort that Warlord Games have gone to in terms of the packaging and information leaflets that are enclosed with their sets. It is yet another example of how this company is making historical wargaming more accessible to the new entrant.
The pictures above show the front and rear of the Union Brigade sprues. You will be able to use this set to make the following regiments: 1st Royal Dragoons; 6th (Inniskilling) and of course the iconic 2nd Royal North British or Scots Greys. The Horses are well posed and in full gallop and they look like the big horses that were used in the heavy cavalry regiments. I’m not sure but it looks to me as though you can mix and match the four halves of the horses to get a variety of poses but I have yet to put this to the test. The horses tails are ‘docked’ which is generally correct for British cavalry – it is said that officers often left their horses with full tails as they looked nicer on parade but lets not worry about that now…
The cavalry men themselves look well molded and very well posed. When combined with the choice of the five sword arms supplied, you should be able to model some nice action poses. I like the arm holding the sword ‘at point’ and the arm with the pistol is a nice touch. There are six choices for the heads. Bearskins both with covers and without are supplied. For those that would like a ‘correct’ Waterloo look, the covered bearskins are the ones to use. For others, the chance to use the uncovered Bear skin headwear will make a nice change and the models will look even prettier on the wargames table! You also have the standard Heavy Dragoon helmet from 1815, an oil cloth covered version as well as the bicorne for the Penninsular Campaign. There are also Watering caps supplied that will unlock further conversion options – mounted 95th Rifle officer perhaps?
The parts all look well molded with little or no flash apparent and no sink holes to fill. I also like the way that the water bottle and sabretache fit onto the body as a separate piece. First of all, it is clear how it should fit and secondly the join should be nice and solid. I think that painting these as a separate item and attaching them later will be a good option and should simplify the painting process.
The House hold Cavalry sprue is very similar but has less in the way of headware options.
As you can see, the horses and riders are identical to the Union brigade sprues, it is just the headwear that is different. The heads come either with plumes – used in the main for officers & trumpeters or without, for the troops. It’s also worth pointing out that there is a bare head with a bandage – just in case you would like to model the regiment either after the battle or perhaps as one of the ‘riding wounded’ from Quatre Bras!
The box will let you model the main Household regiments, the 1st or 2nd Lifeguards, Royal Horse guards ( the Blues). To model the 4th regiment in the Household brigade ( at Waterloo), the 1st Dragoon Guards, you will need to use the Union brigade box to get the helmets with the ‘horse tails’.
I think that these sets are a fantastic addition to the range of plastics that are now available. My next project will be a ‘batch paint’ of 24 of these, representing the 1st and 2nd Lifeguards. They should go nicely with my existing ‘Blues’ and no doubt, the next project will be another 24 from the Union Brigade to go with my Scots Greys. It will be nice to have a representation of the British Heavy Cavalry Brigade at Waterloo and having them in plastic will mean that I wont need a fork lift to transport them! Now whether I ever get them all onto a wargames table at the same time will be another story…
The official release date for these sets is 17th June. Unusually for Arcane Scenery we will take pre-orders for these sets as we are close enough to release not to delay dispatch by too long! If you would like to order your sets just click on the links below and as usual we send our orders post free to most worldwide locations. As soon as we have them – we’ll send them …..CHARGE!