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"I have a use for a box of these and a box of RussiAn Hussars too....(sorry, I'm being cheeky).... "
No, not cheeky at all Mark. I try to re-read posts for such typos before hitting submit, but did not think to check the title; d@mn!! :disappointed:
Wheres Russin?? I must missed that nation in Geography class!!! Perhaps it was a nation that got swallowed up by a bigger one like Bavaria??! 😉😂
Despite the pelisse issue, i do like the lance armed chaps. Technically challenging, but maybe future Russian Hussar sets could have the pelisses separate like the Zvezda set, giving the customer the option? Its an idea anyway.
The bugler with his shako off is another nice figure. The standard bearer will probably just get converted into another lancer by many.
As for the 4-legged creatures........I will move swiftly on!!!!
Overall, I'd give this set a 9 out of 10 - which is pretty good in my book.
At this scale I can overlook small "mistakes" or errors. They are often easily corrected with a brush, or even a snip or two with a knife. I always remember Mr. Mannix's (I hope I remember correctly) "3 foot rule" for 1/72 scale - if you can't see it from 3 feet away in real life don't worry about it. That doesn't mean I don't have great respect for the true artists of the hobby who it seems can paint the decoration on a brass button.
Forgive me if I'm repeating myself. I guess I come from the generation of collectors who "made do." For years our Napoleonics were GIANT figures who all wore French style shakos in red and blue; then we had Airfix's selection, much better. I remember painting Airfix French Infantry green and a different shade of blue to make them "Prussians" and "Russians." We "made do." I didn't know about Marx's Alamo sets so for years my cowboys and American Civil War figures stood in for Alamo defenders (the brimmed or "floppy hat" guys) and Mexicans (Kepis). My "Alamo" was usually a shoe box. We made do.
We don't have to do that anymore, thankfully. There are sets to cover just about everything in some periods and the hobby is ever expanding. I am excited about the "At Ease" sets myself. At last count I had over 1,000 painted Napoleonic Era Cavalry of all kinds in action poses on charging, rearing, galloping horses with swords waving wildly in the air, lances at all angles, or shooting carbines at targets they have a snowball's chance in a blast furnace of hitting. Great poses, great action.
What is lacking IMO are cavalrymen doing what cavalrymen and soldiers in general spend most of their time doing - standing around and waiting. I spent almost 13 years in the US Army before injuries cut my career short - "Hurry up and wait" was a way of life.
On my tables (and I consider myself more of a scenic, temporary diorama guy as I have no one to game with) I have plenty of line guys shooting and charging. What I lack is depth. Those guys in reserve. Some folks don't like marching and standing poses. I get it. But in a real battle - even in Napoleonic times - only a portion of the troops were actually engaged in shooting at the enemy. The rest were moving into position or waiting their turn to go in (hurry up and wait).
Now in my opinion (and to each his own), a formation whether it be at attention or marching has to have numbers or it looks weak. Stand a formation of ten guys on a table, it's not impressive - particularly if it's in a column or ranks of three. That's why I love the dedicated sets of troops marching or at ease or attention. I used to have to buy several boxes of a type of soldier to get a decent marching formation or whatever. The new system enables me to form my armies however I want.
So I for one am great with the format.
The horses, I agree, are the weakest part of the bargain. I can overlook the color bearer - I'm not even going to quibble over the pelisses. But looking at the other cavalry sets of troopers at ease I can overlook this (even as I hope they improve the sculpting) because the overall impression of these guys painted and posed is pleasing. Could they be better? Yeah - but then again, there's always room for improvement.
But I look at the Strelets-R figures of just a few years ago compared to today's output and can only say, "WOW!" I'll say it backwards, "WOW!" And the CIVILIANS? Great idea.
It's not that I'll buy anything - there are companies out there (and I don't name names, I don't like slamming folks) whose product I won't waste money on. My hobby dollars are too precious. But I like the overall look of these guys - even with the horses - so I'll get them and they will fill a gap in my armies and scenarios.
What makes me even more excited is the thought they keep getting better AND they ARE responsive to the input of their customers. THEY WILL IMPROVE. JMO - to each his own; I only finally piped in as a bit of a counterweight to all the negativity out there.
Well said. Being from the "make do" generation myself I can't put it much better.
With regard to the "waiting" poses one thing comes to mind: Strelets did include in some older sets (Crimean War British cavalry) poses of falling soldiers/horses.
One of the not so glorious aspects of Napoleonic warfare was that waiting for action on the battlefield more often than not ment being shot at without being able to duck and cover. I remember a description of the Saxon Garde du Corps waiting on the field of Borodino and having their ranks thinned to the chagrin of officers and soldiers alike for a considerable time before being ordered to charge. Perhaps some casulties might be another option for future "in reserve" sets. Justan idea.
Really good post Wayne and yes armies do need "depth".
Its not im against in reserve sets per say, definately not, im just not sure the current Napoleonic reserve cavalry sets would be quite so relaxed with cannonballs and musket balls flying around at them, but there you go. That plays into Flambeau's idea. Casualties while "waiting" would be a great pose within such sets.
Currently the sets i would say portray units much further away from battle, if near one at all. Maybe on patrol or something? So still not really adding depth to a battle line in that case.
The lancer sets however I really like as no matter the setting, they work!! I would love to see the French Line lancers get the same treatment.
So as I say, im not against sets "in reserve" its more how they are designed and made, era dependent obviously.
How a soldier behaives while "waiting" today, and how they behaived then, I imagine is quite different. Then throw in the huge class divide back then. I mean, today if shells were to land near you, its expected that you would take cover, even when facing the enemy, to fire back from. Nobody expects you to stand there for the hell of it, in the open, asking to be hit. But back then....if a soldier had simply looked to get out of the way of incoming fire, he more than likely would of been shot for disertion. Sad really. Those big battles looked amazing im sure, but really it was just forced suicide.
Strelets have indeed improved from years ago, and yes one can always continue to improve.
But my beef with the current horses is this....we know and have seen better horses from this manufacturer in other sets. So these horses are not improvements, but actually the opposite. A backwards step.
Its that simple, and in some ways makes me feel short changed if I bought many boxes of them.
As for making do, i understand where people are coming from but at the end of the day, it depends how much we are prepared to spend on something that is perhaps not the best. Ive seen really old Airfix boxes with price tags still on them. Well sets sure dont cost that little now!!!!
As for the 3 foot rule, a good rule sure, but for me, I personally will know that up close they look poor, and that would just keep eating at me!!! A scale modelling form of OCD if you like!!!
So if the horses aint good, to me it doesnt matter how good the troopers are. Cant have one without the other, unless you have unlimted funds to keep buying replacment horses. I dont.
I understand that some may see me as being overly negative on certain sets, & I hope i dont create a enveloping negative feeling on the forum, but I try to offer my opinion in a constructive, and mild mannered way, with the hope it gets taken on board. Not just for my own benefit, but for everyones.
I freely admit to feeling bad tempered over the British Firing line set, but that was due to me really looking forward to a set like it, only to end up really disappointed. I actually didnt even pick up a paint brush for over a week as I was a bit disillusioned with it all.
Sorry for the long post.
Oh dear, here we go again, the never ending story of those ... thingies ... I promised not to mention again, you know what I mean ... these ...beasties ... those riders are supposed to sit on.
Dear Roger try to look at them this way:
They are odd-toed ungulates, are they not?
Ungulates - check.
Toed - check
And odd? - Sure. At least a little bit, no?
So not so far off the mark.
Always look on the bright side ... :wink:
Odd toed ungulates?? Never heard that term before!!
"They" basically stand on one toe per leg...the pedal (pronounced "peedal") bone. The equivelent of us standing on 1 tip toe per leg. With the hoof wall which constantly grows, around said bone (plus flesh obviously). The hoof itself is not bone. If thats an odd toed ungulate than I guess thats what they are!!😂
As for not far off the mark, allow me to just suggest this......
Shall we forget the better human sculpts of now & just go back to a human looking like the Airfix Waterloo French?? No matter the era? I mean, those figures had a head, torso, 2 arms and 2 legs didnt they?? I wonder how many would be as enthusiastic to regress back to that standard for human figures?!!!
Im sorry, but there is no bright side to a company doing half-baked efforts & then fobbing them off to the customer......unless we want to sleep walk into another "Hat Industrie"??
I mean if Strelets really are listening, why after the issue being flagged after the Prussian sets, do we still see these "animals" in these other sets brought out? They are the same just with remodelled furniture/tack. Surely if listening, the animals themselves would be improved no??
Oh well, we will have to agree to disagree im afraid. Besides, the British firing line set didnt even contain "them". It was an infantry set. It was still way below what the company can produce. Muskets didnt even look like muskets....bayonets or no bayonets. Some odd poses too. As someone else said....it looked more like a Grouse shoot in the Scottish highlands!!
Anyway, sorry Flambeau, I promise not to mention "them" again!!
Being a big part of my days activities not to mention working with "them" before the pandemic, they have tended to be at the forefront of my mind!!!
Anyway, Ive said all Im gonna say about current accuracy/sculpting issues etc now, so what happens now, happens.....come what may.
I think when the new set previews come out, from now on, I wont bother posting my thoughts on it....regardless if I like it or not.
I firmly now believe sets are being rushed, to meet this weekly hunger for something new and exciting.
And worryingly, any genuine and serious issues flagged up are tending to get put down & diluted, as almost an affront to daring to criticise the products.
Genuine observations, no matter how obvious, no matter how politely put, in some quarters have to be counter attacked and dismissed no matter what.
"Odd-toed ungulates" is the taxonomic order under which Equidae (horses, zebras, donkeys) and a lot of others are categorized. Just google it, it's in Wikipedia (had to do it myself :sunglasses:) No need to memorize it ...
Anyway my comment was just a pun on the "oddness" of the beasties which has triggered such a more or less heated debate. Please don't take it too serious. I know it's a serious issue for some, but once everything has been said, a little bit of irony might be forgiven ...
I honestly had never heard that term before!! Learn something new everyday!!
Anyway, no problem Flambeau, despite not hearing that phrase before, i understood it to be a joke....hence my laughing emoji after my 1st paragraph.
As for the seriousness/importance of recent issues in sets (whether 4-legged figs or 2!!), ive said all what I want to say now.
I guess we will see just how much Strelets listens and takes these matters into account, & thus addresses them.
If the same poor sculpts for our "4-legged animals", or other mistakes like no bayonet attached, muskety-shotguny wielding turkey shooters keep appearing in sets, I guess we will have our answer.
See.....I didnt say horse once!!!
As for the (modified) reuse of previous poses, I suppose the answer is simple: Strelets has done this before (viz. Arab horses) as have other companies like HaT and Redbox. And I think the reason is purely economic. You reduce production costs and can produce more sets. It's not ideal, sure, but I guess it's not a market that yields huge profits. And of course you can argue that if a producer takes this path he should take special care that a product that is intended to appear in multiple sets is absolutely first rate. Perhaps being from the "make do" generation is letting me see things in a somewhat milder light if the results do not always entirely match my expectations.
Excellent figures! The first two things of popped in my mind was a guard unit for a headquarters or out on the flank concealed in the woods doing piquet Duty. I think I'll get several boxes just for those purposes.
I hope nothing I said was taken as an "attack" I am not unaware of the flaws in some of the sets; just trying to give another way of approaching it in what I hoped was a civilized manner. As I said, there are some sets and even some companies I avoid because they just don't "cut it." It's up to each of us to figure where that line is drawn.
I believe constructive criticism is vital and should be not only accepted but sought. Again, where the line between constructive criticism and "trolling" is up to the beholder. Just as is the line between loyal support and being a blind sycophant. May we all tread the narrow line between the two.
For my part, I have aimed nothing at you personally Wayne. Please dont feel that I have.
Just as I hope nothing has been aimed at me? In fact I think I actually said your previous post was a good one?
I agree wholeheartedly, that there is a fine line and I hope I do not come across as a "troll". I most certainly have no wish to be such.
I have made my feelings known on certain things, made observations which I feel are important and have tried to convey them in a passionate but respectful manner. Looking at the situation from the perspective of not just a consumer, but from a business point of view too. I have not descended into name calling, personal attacks or vicious vitriol. I have at times even tried to add a little humour.
When I say there are those who shout down even the slightest little criticism of a set, i am thinking of no single person in particular. Rather a recollection of various comments ive read here and there.
Thing is, sadly sometimes you have to press home your view, just to be heard, just to enact some action being taken. Trying to speak out in a meek fashion, just runs the risk of not being heard at all.
As I have said in my earlier post, from here on in, i am no longer going to post any more feedback..good or bad...on new previews of masters/sets. That way i can neither be a blind loyalist nor the devil incarnate!!!
Instead I will let my wallet do the talking.
If sets are made which clearly have issues but nothing is said or done about them.....oh well.
I will finish just by saying, it is not always easy to try to convey our thoughts, feelings or moods in the context of written text/social media etc, compared to being in front of people and speaking directly with them.
No slight intended to anyone personally, Roger. As I said, I personally agree with some of the constructive criticisms of the sets in question. For me it's not a deal breaker. I agree, this isn't the best means of communication; however when I think of the friends and acquaintances I've made across the globe I might not even have ever heard of had it not been for the net it's a trade off I'm willing to make.
I would add to that the help and useful tips we all give & also recieve. No to mention excellent pictures of work by others.