Ok so I got my packages today when I got off from work today. And couldn't wait to open them up and share my findings today.
So I like to do something called a compliment sandwich. Where I start with something good, say the truth and then end with something good. This will be a very meaty sanwich.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewIT_KAQQlU
Last weekend I saw this review on BOLS and they were real favorable but I had questions that they did not answer.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_sO2uiVrSs&feature=youtu.be
So thats the good thing. Now for my observations.
Cool box, check
Already scared, if the head doesn't come off that would make it super hard to paint.
Well sure looks cool. Gotta say the detail is crisp for the most part. Nothing seems overly scewed from having to be molded at funny angles. That's good.
Ok so the head comes off. At least it will be easy to access all the cockpit areas and engine machinery. But you will not the notch in the back. This makes the head only go on facing forward. SO no movable poses. It wouldn't take much to permanently re position the head but to let it detach for storage will be a challenge.
More bad. Just look at those seams. Terrible. No better than a toy and when I finish this review I'll probably restate that opinion. And the legs are 100% stuck. So if you want to reposition be prepared to use a loot of bone saws and refabricating joints.
The armor panels are all glued on and will not easily detach. That will make it extremely difficult to paint behind there.
Some of the armor pieces were glued poorly and either were off in the package or will easily fall off. If only all the glueing was this poor the kit would be much better for it. It kind of looks like the one weapon has a wash on it. That is not the case, that is bare plastic. These models are indeed primed with a very thin coat of paint but they are assembled fully before painted and that is the area that didn't get paint. Exactly why I wish the armor was all on you to assemble.
Some more terrible seam lines. You'll need to fill that gap on the muzzle cause its on both sides. Honestly I'm tempted to buy brass baarrels and just re barrel it.
Some modularity for the back accessories and I'm sure some of the magnet gods will be able to do some magic with it but looks are deceiving. for the long gun model the ammo box has to snap in to the top of the guns as it is assembled thus the guns are not rotatable when in the anti tank configuration. So honestly for only $30 just buy a second one. The smaller ones will be much easier to make weapon swaps.
Here is a size comparison on the four konig vs the gunther. The scale is different. My understanding is that the konig is 28mm (please correct me in your comments) and the gunther is true 1/35th. I'd be curious to see how the $300 resin konig compares in size.
Next up, the light panzer.
First off I think the size is perfect for a sentinel, being just over 3 inches tall. (Again someone correct me) But it goes down hill from there.
The legs are a again totally stuck which rases questions on how you get the model with a different leg pose as shown in the box art.
If its random, that would be super lame. who wants a squadron of all the same pose?
Also my biggest fear the feet are indeed one with the base. If its glue its some very strong glue, there is no popping the feet off you will probably have to chop up the base and grind it down to the feet if you don't want to damage the model.
But the head comes off and is fully movable this time.
Another fear of mine exposed. Miss aligned parts, and no way to fix it without breaking pieces off and regluing.... hopefully without shattering it. And look at those gaps for the mold undernieth. I hear you say "but those are on the bottom" and if that were true it would be hidden and fine. But these are the AA guns which aim up and you will see the gaps from the front.
This is another example of why I'd want the armor to come off. I can see someone who is a better painter than I making these things glow like plasma guns.
Same story with the medium panzer
Fully movable although the left leg blocks any movement to the left. So you will have an army of right looking robots. Same feet glued to the base, same seams.
Forgot to mention all the hatches are glued shut. Personnally I like my tanks buttned up but these little guys are perfect for diorama scenes and all the resin kits are made with crew pouring out.
The arm is another disappointment, the pincer is glued together so again good luck breaking it free to reposition it.
And the silly thing swivels along its longitudinal axis. But only ~2 degrees. Why? Its so little its not worth any thing and with the rest of the model stuck it seemed like a waist of effort on their part.
These are quality products, good subject, good detail, great price. But we have to define what they are.
WHAT THEY ARE NOT
These are not a sunday model build. I was hoping they would be built ready for paint. But if you want to fill the god awful seams you will have to re prime it, so no time is saved there. And if you want to get behind any of the armor its going to be a painfully slow process of removing each piece just to paint. To base them on anything but the silly looking bases they come on you will have to do a lot of work removing them from the bases. But if you just want to add rocks and grass I don't see why you couldn't do it on the current base.
If you want to achieve serious results all they did for you was hurt you by doing work you will have to undo. Personally I think building the base pieces is the most fun part and easiest why would you want someone to take that from you?
WHAT THEY ARE
These are very nice game pieces. if you want a game you can throw a couple hundred dollars on and play at the store, the day you buy it these are for you. Only those people who only
want to play the game will enjoy these.
If you are a serious painter I don't think you'll like them because the work to clean them up will be more than you want to do and not being able to paint around things will probably drive you crazy.
If you are a builder they took away all your fun why even buy it. Unpackaging takes as long as putting the pieces on.
So as a hobbyist that does not really want to play a new game I do not recommend these kits the way they are. If you just love the subject as I do by all means get them but there is a lot of work cut out for you. They are way cheaper than the resin kits.
Light panzer ~$16 vs $115
Mdeium ~$25 vs $98-115
Konig ~$40 vs $250
Apparently there is also a premium line of dust tactics scale with double prices that are prepainted supposedly to high quality but that is for someone else to review.
These will not be an easy pleasant distraction from your army. They are about as daunting as refurbishing an ebay chimera that was built by a fool. You might have saved some money but you quadrupled your work load by removing an prepwork you usually would do.
But these are not models any more that premade prepainted Panzer IVs from the toy side of the Hobby store.
I'm loosing focus so I'll add more and edit this later.