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thank you Aaron!
I have been wondering the same exact thing for years! To your list I would also ask why REVELL made their WWI French Infantry in purple plastic with tiny heads?
In my opinion it was one of the worst sets ever made.
Your guess is as good as mine....
Its a capitalist conspiracy... so the box of soldiers you bought for $8 needs $25 worth of paints and brushes and glue and varnish, basing card and felt and scenery and trains and ships,dice a packing case and so on.
These hobby people arent daft its part of an industry.3 Cheers for the spray cans.
Best advice (cheap + simple) one could give about this...
Didn`t we have similar comments already several/multiple times before (like every 7 -9 weeks)?!
YEAH, start painting them! It`s fun!
Or go for some 2,-Euros spray-cans at Ebay!
I'm with you. Proper colors, or close to, should be a basic rule to follow. There have been several discussions here and on HaT's forum about colors. Both non-painters and painters put forth strong feelings. But, the fact is, it has never been better for those who like colors. It is too bad Revell continues to use some strange colors, but others are listening to us on these forums. In the end, my recollection is that it basically came down to this ...
* HaT's Napoleonic and Ancients sets are geared towards wargamers, and Europeans are the biggest market and gray is easiest to paint-up as requested.
* HaT is now listening to it's customers requests and beginning to make newer sets in colors, but easy to paint-up (see WWI sets).
* HaT's customers who like colors are mostly American.
* HaT-Airfix re-issues are now covering the primary colors and more for classic sets.
* Strelets*R sets are for everyone, filling any gaps and needs, so they keep each army in a basic color (thank you S*R Team; great colors!)
* Imex, Emhar, et als are now beginning to produce in proper colors.
* Orion and other smaller producers offer many colors.
* My main supplier told me that he sells more of each set if they are in proper colors.
Remember, it really has never been better. Thanks to e-mail, the internet, and caring and passionate producers who communitcate directly with their customers as S*R and HaT does, we are now getting more than ever the way we want them.
I applaud the producers for giving us colors.
I think the companies are just cutting cost by getting the best deal for plastic without reguard to color or they are simple using old plastic. Possibly some other production issue(s) I haven't thought of.
I actually have most (first run sets) of both, the Hat Republican Romans and the Carthaginians in both grey and tan. Including a set of grey elephants. I have only been able to find the command sets and allies sets for both sides, in tan only.
I like the old blue-grey Airfix and matchbox used to use for their WWII Germans, the Revell Norman's metallic black and the orion metallic green which is next to impossible to find. I can't stand that brick red so many new sets are comming out in. Red never really worked for me in small scale, even when appropriate for the subject and the same goes for dark blue. Tan or grey is alright, but if a color nuetral set is a must, I prefer the old Airfix cream or the Atlantic Tan
I'm not real into the brick red either (and I still think it's a tragedy that Strelets did their early GNW sets in it), but at least it's better than the monotonous greys and tans most makers do for their "redcoats." It would also be nice if the manufaturers would go back to window boxes; the best I can figure is that HaT did their early airfix recasts in primary colors. Not only am I having trouble finding their Napoleonic infantry in blue and red, but many sellers hate to open the boxes to check the color for you because many customers don't like getting already-opened boxes.
I'm also pleases that Strelets seems to be getting away from the monotonous bronze for their medievals; I like bronze OK for Greeks and Russians and Byzantines (if anyone would ever do a set of them), but bronze doesn't seem to make sense to me for any group that used little or no bronze armor.
I like the window boxes too. They seem to be the first cost to be cut.
Welcome to my world Aaron! i have been complaining about this for years!
some answers for you:
alot of manufacturers bowed to the wishes of wargamers who want a neutral color to paint on so they don't lose detail when priming & painting. is this fair? heck no, but they buy the most so they get the props!
alot of it also has to do with cost cutting. it is easier & cheaper to run off sets in the same color one after the other than it is to change over. that is why we got tan AWI French & American infantry sets when Italeri has a nice light blue that they use!
HAT has come around a bit & may be coming around more. alot of their recent sets bear this out.
Red seems to be a difficult color to come up with & make the set look good! for every HAT/Airfix reissue Waterloo British inf, Highland inf + British art & Orion Pirates we get in a nice flat red, we get Imex's Mexicans + AWI Brits, Emhar's Crimean British Cavalry + French Zouaves & MPC/Airfix re-issue AWI British Granadiers in a dreadful shiney red! i guess that is why Strelets uses a brick red for their Brits! & why Revell & ESCI never attempted to make any sets in red!
I don't think Revell ever gave a **** what colors they used! some were perfect for the particular set, while others were just a mystery? at least they always did opposing colors!
Thanks to Strelets, some companies have come around (ie: HAT & Zvezda) while others will never come around! (Italeri!) all you can do is hope for the best! hope this helps?!
If the topic of plastic colour wasn't so important then why did "Plastic Soldier Review" run a whole page on the subject? The article basically explaining which colour should represent which nation or civilization.
I for one no longer paint the figures and wish there were a wider variety to choose from. I actually had to reorder quite a few sets after Italeri finally got smart and switched from that Gawd awful Silver.
Patrick du Nord
I'd like to see figures in colors other than tan and gray too, but I was wondering if anyone has tried to dye their figures? Also, does anyone have a "spray can" painting example picture that they can post? Were any weathering techniques used to highlight the details?