In my wanderings through the world of wargamming I occasionally will find an article or post that compares and discusses the figures of the various makers. Sometimes pictures are included so you can decide for yourself. These are truly some of the most helpful pieces of information that you can acquire. So – let’s run through the figures I use to begin to understand the task of building multiple 17th century British Isles armies in 10mm from scratch.
I’ve already said that I use lead figures (although plastic is useful for various figure modifications). While an idealized 1/180 implies – to me at least – an individual six feet tall (soles of feet to top of head – therefore exclusive of base and hat) scaled down to 0.4 inches (10.16 mm). In the real world people vary and in the model world – well – people vary. Actual figures may range between about 1/170 and something like 1/185. This is true not only between manufacturers but sometimes within a single manufacturer’s range of figures. Is this a problem? Not for me since I happily intermix whenever necessary to achieve an end result – game pieces that I can play with! For others – of course – it might be a problem. If I get too great a disparity between figures that I want to use on a single stand (I call them pieces) I may shim the smaller figure up a bit.
I use figures from three manufacturers, Pendraken, Minifigs (not the Lego guys – the original ones) and Old Glory. Each have their charm and for me specific applications. Let’s begin comparing the three essential figure types for the musket and pike period: First the pikemen. I love pikemen! They are the near perfect reflection of the vast change in warfare over the course of the 17th century in Europe – lots of them in the beginning, a vestigial few by the end. They are the guys of which you can pick an occasional one or two to wear a bit of armor and let’s face – armor looks cool!
From left to right – Pendraken – Minifig – Old Glory. First Old Glory – I have bunches of their 25mm figures and like them well enough to have joined their “Army” to get deep discounts on figures. MOST of their 10mm ECW infantry is on strips of five figures which does not fit my basing scheme AND the figure base is easily three times thicker than the other manufacturers. The fact that they do not come with cast on pikes is the norm for every modern 25mm figure I have seen – so not an issue (possibly even a plus). I don’t currently use them but will probably thin the base and separate the figures for use at some point.
To the far left is a Pendraken pikeman with a pike scaled to about 18’ (actually 12′ -ed.) in length. The figure is crisp and well detailed (beyond my ability to paint). Pendraken is currently making up about 60 to 65 % of my foot . The Minifig in the center has a pike scaled out to near 30’ (actually < 20′ -ed.)(but looking very correct in proportion to the figure). Like the Pendraken the figure is well crafted and nicely detailed. Minifigs make up nearly all of the remainder of my infantry. Of necessity I shorten the Minifig pikes to match the Pendraken. I would like the pikes somewhere in between the two but far too lazy to cut them away and replace with wire. The Minifig is slightly more robust than the Pendraken but not distractingly so. If the figure base were to be removed from the Old Glory it appears that it would fall in size between the other two. By-in-large I don’t mix the manufacturers on the same stand (piece) but, as I have said, have no problem in doing so (with shims if necessary) when the need arises.
I’ll post more comparisons soon.
I recently got a selection of 10mm from Irregular Miniatures (IM) and thought I would update this post to include them for comparison purposes.
The two figures on the left are IM musketeers. I particularly like the one on the left since I haven’t seen this pose in 10mm. The pikemen, moving to the right from the ruler, are Pendraken, Irregular, and Minifigs. The IMs are nicely detailed but a shade smaller than the Pendraken (and noticeably smaller than the Minifigs). They are well proportioned but slightly flatter in profile then the other three manufactures. I’ve said elsewhere that I am not overly troubled by the size variance and shim up the smaller figures if used on a mixed base. Probably I am going to use the IM musketeers to make skirmish bases and the pikemen will become ensigns for other units.
I have added a comparison picture for the IM horse as an update to the original post on the subject.
Since I am doing pictures of various manufactures I am going to include one as a possible answer to a query over on the TMP ECW board:
The above, hopefully, are examples of the Old Glory forlorn hope musketeers. Normally I keep examples with their original pack so I can refer back. Well I found the pack but it was empty. I had used them when I was working on the Army of the Irish Confedration and found these guys in a “left over” tray. Happily each manufacture has a distinguishable figure base style and I’m pretty sure these are OG. These and OG’s dismounted dragoons are very similar in pose and since OG does very few individual foot figures in 10mm I’d bet that these are ECW-105.