I was recently contacted by Forged In Battle with the offer to review their products. A few emails later and with both parties happy I have been sent a pack of 1st Century Roman Auxiliary Heavy Cavalry. These have an Autumn release schedule and are part of their hugely successful kickstarter. This is the second kickstarter Forged In Battle have done for their excellent Ancients range War & Empire just follow the link to see just how wide a range of figures they already do.
The pack comes with five different horse poses, thee command figures and a mix of three different spear armed riders. My pack had a eleven of these figures so I could cut back on the command if I wished but I don't know if this is standard practice.
I have tried taking photo's of the figures but most shots don't show the detail well enough for me to post them here. Instead I will clean them up and give them a prime and ink wash to show off the detail better. That's for another post.
So pending that let me describe what I found. All the figures are really well cast with minimal flash and mould lines. I have had a quick go at cleaning up one horse and the flash looks to come off without too much effort. So prep time will be nice and short.
I managed to stand up the five horse poses without needing to clean the bit of flash off the underside of the base. This is a major upgrade on such as Essex Miniatures who have the long thin base that drives me nuts.
The detail is nice and crisp and I really liked that one horse has a fringed blanket, the rest being square edged. This is obviously for the commander, a nice touch. As mentioned recently separate horse to rider is not my favourite method, these are so supplied. The saving points is that it's just the rider and not the saddle cloth and all the figures fitted well to all the different horses. As such I have no issue with being a two part figure.
The command figures all wear cloaks that will allow for a nice splash of extra colour whilst the rest will have their mail showing. Again the detail shows through well but it's not so bold as to force those who wish to paint less detail into painting all shown on the figure.
Long term followers are aware that I don't tend to review figures before I have painted them as I think you can really only give full justice to figures by doing so. However Forged In Battle prefer for pre-release figures not to be shown as painted by other than their own painters. Hopefully I will get a few images of the finished figures sent on to me before release and I will post those here. In the meantime I will paint these up as a unit and once available will post the picks here.
Lee is actually building this army up so the painted unit will end up in his collection and will see action against my armies so you will get the opportunity to see them again I am sure.
I really wanted to take advantage of their first kickstarter that was massive and very successful but I was already committed to two other ones so missed out big time. The latest also was a case of the wrong time and I am now kicking myself for not being in a position to back it. I have been sent three more images set to be released in the Autumn.
Again another Roman heavy cavalry pack , being sold in packs of 12 works really well for main rule sets. War & Empire will be releasing their own rule set so I assume this is the unit size for those too. Great news for those of us who have already rebased figures a number of times.
The Autumn releases are not all Roman but include some more of Romes rivals. The kickstarter allowed Forged in Battle to bring to production a host of new nations. Forged in Battle have gone from zero to major player in Ancients in what seems overnight. I have looked at some of their original Ancients when first released and was impressed by the range and quality.
I built a camp for my armies to use with Fields of Glory that has become redundant in Hail Caesar, these can make such a camp or add a bit of clutter to the table.
Well I am really looking forward to getting the first unit painted up, just to be able to see how good they can look. It nothing else it will get Lee itching to corner another miniature market. With thirty armies to pick up he might take awhile to do it :-)