My eagerly awaited Swedish skirmish set for 'By Fire & Sword' arrived from Nothstar yesterday morning so as promised here's a quick review.
The models come in a colourful box with a large photo of the box's contents on the cover. The rear of the box has a list of the contents with some nice historical background for the units it contains.
Inside the box are two cardboard boxes containing the figures separated into plastic bags with foam padding top and bottom.
The set includes the figures, nice pre-cut metal bases and a sheet of flags. Everything you need to get going. I particularly liked the separate brass spear/lance for the standard bearer as it's top is pre-ground to a nice shiny point.
The figures themselves are ok. There's a nice mix of figure poses and horses and the detail is about the same standard as Essex miniatures. But, and it's a big but, every figure had a heavy mould line round it and I mean every figure. I've been buying figures for nearly fifty years and these have to be the worst batch I've ever had. We've all had the odd figure in a batch with excess flash or a thick mould line but not on every figure. The photos below give you some idea what I'm talking about. I don't know if all their figures are like this or the moulds need replacing or their quality control is just rubbish. But it's going to take me hours if not days to clean off the heavy mould lines on these figures. If I'd bought them locally I'd be returning them to the shop.
Overall I'm incredibly disappointed. I like the idea of the all-in-one pack and I think it's well executed with the flags and bases etc, and I'm looking forward to getting the rules which sound great. But the castings are just atrocious. If they were ok I'd give it 9/10 but as it is it's at best a 2/10. I was going to buy extra figures from them to bulk up my skirmish force to division and probably buy at least one more faction but I can't see that happening now, which is a shame. It looks like I'll be getting my figures from other manufacturers if I decide to expand on my forces.