Thursday, April 13, 2017

Interlude: Boxes of 1/72 scale plastic, a guilty pleasure

Like many wargamers of a certain age, my first battles were fought with Airfix plastic soldiers. New sets were few and far between in the early 1970s, and I was amazed with the wealth of possibilities when I dropped back into the historical gaming world around 1986. Well, I hadn't seen anything yet...

Anyway, probably as a result of early imprinting, I've always been excited by the possibilities inherent in a new box of plastic. Even when frugality and space considerations had me tracking my lead purchases closely, I always gave a pass to plastic, a reality which continues through today. So, when I decided to work on this campaign idea, I had no need to go any farther than the basement in order to round up a heap of potential resources for the new armies.

Son Norman helpfully pointed out that he had been concerned that I was biting off more than I could chew, given that I already had about 1 1/2 of the 5 armies I had placed on the map. He's probably right, but at least any elements finished will fit directly into his larger 1/72 fantasy/Hordes of the Things campaign map, so they'll see some use, and I needed the mapping pactice anyway.

I think that I will actually make more progress if I clean things up and prime them just a couple of units at a time, rather than by the whole army. The latter strategy is what I did with the Cold Islanders (various Vikings and Saxons), and might possibly bear some of the blame for the fact that the primed strips of troops I've been painting lately have been in a box for four or five years.


  1. I'm feeling rather jealous right now.

  2. Yep, plastics will always have a hold on me. Awhile back, having decided to pursue a number of smaller projects concerning periods I had never explored, and armed with One Hour Wargames and Portable Wargames, I decided to go that route and take advantage of the stupendous variety now before us: Vlad's Wallachians vs Turks, Porus vs Macedonians, 7YW, Franco-Austrian War, etc. Now all I have to do is actually paint and use them...

    Chris Johnson

  3. Oh that sweet intoxication of a big pile of plastic.

  4. I can recall during my 54mm only and the preceding metal only days when I occasionally caught myself sneaking home with a 1/72nd impulse buy from the local hobby shop. "Just trying to support the local merchants".....

  5. Quitting plastic is a bally sight harder than quitting tobacco - and I speak from experience! There are two things that stop me from adding to my inventory: space (lack of); too many unfinished projects already; and the fact that I am not entirely sure what is in my inventory anyway. OK, then, Three things...

  6. I'm not entirely sure of what's in my inventory either. :P I do know that in addition to the fantasy and medieval heap, there are Persian/Greek, Bronze Age, and tricorne heaps...