Monday, October 29, 2012

Vikings and Rus

A quick review of some minis from two online retailers that I have used for the first time recently, Black Tree Designs and Magister Militum.

Out of the package, the finish of the Black Tree minis is very good.  There is some flash to remove. Also, the metal on some other (more expensive) companies looks a little cleaner than Black Tree's, but it's all covered by paint anyways.

The sculpting is where Black Tree really impresses me. The poses are lively and natural.  Their line of Vikings is heavy on characters, but the rank fighters are just as good.

I particularly like the wounded fellow below. When I ordered this pack, I did not realize he was bandaged. It's a very good example of some of the detail in their line.

Service from Black Tree has been excellent. Orders were confirmed almost immediately, I was notified of shipping dates, and the package arrived in about one week.

I have been interested in purchasing some Rus for a while.  They are a good opponent for the Byzantines, and combining a few dedicated Rus figures with some traditional Vikings could make a decent SAGA warband.  In light of the recent release of the Byzantine faction, I am willing to bet that a dedicated Rus battleboard is on Studio Tomahawk's three year plan.

These Rus are my first purchase from Magister Militum. I was impressed with their selection of eastern figures, including Slavs, Seljuk Turks and Byzantines.

The finish of Magister's figures is a bit lacking compared to some other miniatures. While the amount of flash was not excessive, the mold lines were prominent and took some effort to remove.  After that, though, these figures were a joy to paint because of their expressive faces, dynamic poses and appropriate details. A pack of six came with four figure variations. 

Service from Magister was excellent, with the packages arriving from the U.K.  about two weeks after I placed the order.

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