14/11/2022 at 19:50 #180151
Here are the stars of my last order from Iliada: the new resin mobile fortresses for 2-3mm science fiction games. I bought two each.
First of all, it’s clear that Iliada is still experimenting with how to best cast these, as I received three different types of castings. Two are solid cast resin. One is either multipart and hollowed out cast resin, or solid resin but with a different mix. The fourth is 3D printed and is hollow. Ali tells me that that is the most expensive way to do these.
As you can see from my hand photo, these are some big, honkin’ ships, even though they are in 2mm! This means that the resin cast ones are heavy and THAT means that they can suffer some small amounts of damage in shipping. Nothing serious, but I will show you what I mean in the photos below and offer some production suggestions for Ali and his partner in crime here!
All the guns and the included ”flight stands” seem to be 3D printed.
Let’s just look at these beauties for awhile. Realize that the criticism I am going to bring up is most DEFINITELY A NIT. It’s offered up here as a suggestion for future production, as it’s pretty obvious the boys haven’t stopped tinkering with these yet.
Here’s a close up of the model that suffered the most damages in shipping. First of all, note the ultracrisp detail this resin gives it. Just beautiful, even after a spray base coat. You’ll also note that there are almost no bubbles or casting imperfections here. One small stabilizing fin has snapped at the bottom, but that is easily fixed. The main “problem” here are the gun barrels on the ship’s tertiary weapons: about a third of them have snapped off. My guess is that the high quality resin here is just a tad too brittle, especially in conjunction with the piece’s weight, so even small amounts of shifting in shipping can break these.
Happily, there are two solutions: one for me and one for future production. For me, I will just drill in a bit and put in some brass wire. This is a five minute fix and no big deal, especially given the lovely detailing here. For Ali and his designer, I would suggest they take a trick from 3mm figure manufacturer Oddizial Osmy and just add a reinforcing but under the gun barrel. At this scale, it won’t be noticeable and can just be painted black. “Purists” can easily snip it off and add in their own brass barrels, and every one is happy! It is important to note that this is the ONLY problem I have found with these castings.
Here we see the hollow 3D printed model. As you can see, the detail isn’t quite as crisp as in the resin casts, but it is still more than excellent. This is much lighter and more durable than the resin castings, thus more shipping-friendly. Only one tertiary barrel has snapped off here.
This is the third and final casting. I am not sure what they did here. It is sensibly lighter than the other two cast models. At first I thought that maybe they’d cast it in parts and hollowed out some of the inside. Now I think they just used a less dense resin. Whatever it is, it seems to have worked because this has NO barrel breakages and is lighter. In terms of detail, it is slightly crisper than the 3D printed model and not quite as crisp as the other resin casts. If Ali wants to produce immediately without putting supports in under the gun barrels, this is the way forward, I think: a slightly more flexible, less dense, less crisp resin. When I say “less crisp” here, realize that this is all relative. This is very nicely detailed and I will give you guys as close a view as I can, below, just so you can see what I am talking about.
Here are the turrets and “flying” bases. The bases are cast (except for one) and the turrets are 3D printed. Absolutely no problems here! It should be noted that the turrets can be swapped about between the two models, with ease, and a great way for Ali to get extra mileage out of these models would be for him to produce an alternative weapons and greeblies pack for these things.
Here are two of the landdreadnaughts turreted up and ready to go. Magnificent! But…
This is more of a conceptual nit than a miniatures design criticism, and it is EASILY remedied. I do not like the weapons mixes on these two ships. The Myrmidon (the one nearest to the camera) has one BFG in a top turret, plus four shortbarreled double turrets. Meanwhile, the Joseon (or Chosin) has a double-barreled BFG turret and five single-barreled long gun turrets. These are also laid out in a pretty non-sensical fashion, as the two turrets on the back wings can be easily replaced with one on the back deck. As designed, the Myrmidon seems higher tech and more “modern”, but oddly lacks long-ranged weaponry. The Joseon is an all big gun dreadnaught, but has a really strange lay out. Happily, as I mentioned above, you can mix and match turrets, so…
Now we see two different design philosophies at work. The Myrmidon is here configured for broadside fighting and relies especially on its 2 BFGs. It can also give a respectable fight to the front and rear, at long range. Its bow armament can be used to clear out smaller vehicles in its way. It is vulnerable to a Zerg rush from its rear quarter, however.
Meanwhile, the Joeson is configured for a closing, breakthrough battle. It’s rear guns are meant to keep smaller vehicles from swarming it as it moves through the enemy lines, preferably with escorts to the front. In a straight up long range duel with the Myrmidon, it is at a disadvantage. That is why its designers gave it a cell of four long-ranged missiles on its back deck (to be kitbashed) as a quick and dirty way of distracting the Myrmidon while it closes. Conveniently, the Joeson’s accompanying heavy tanks all have what look to be shorter range weapons, so I am saying they are specifically designed as close-in escorts for the breakthrough charge.
Finally, Ali sent a few samples of this range’s smaller stuff along as a lagniappe. Here is the medium tank from the Joeson’s side. It is cast in ultra crisp resin with a detachable turret. It comes with its own base into which it slots like a dream. In my head cannon, these are the the equivalent of destroyer escorts: cheap and plentiful work horses that can fight conventional tanks and infantry.
Ali also sent me some 2mm infantry bases, which I won’t shoot here as this camera simply won’t do them justice. The good news: they are HELLA detailed. Really crisp and pretty. And they are perfectly scaled. The bad news? They are hella fragile: about a third of the figures snapped off from the bases in shipping. I may be using Ali’s heavy infantry, after I see how they scale and what their durability issues are, but for my money, I think I’d rather use O8’s scifi infantry, even though it’s 3mm and not 2mm, just because it is bound to be more durable and is also cheaper.
However, the heavy infantry looks like it will make kick-ass battle ’bots and will probably be much stouter, too, so I plan to get some of that. My only advice for Ali and his pal here is that I think it would be better for them to cast heavy infantry figures separately, so we can base them as we wish. I plan to CAREFULLY cut mine off at the feet and remount them in a more ragged formation.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!15/11/2022 at 11:15 #180171SteelonsandParticipant
Hi Thaddeus, thanks for the in-depth review and excellent close-up photos – I had been admiring these new designs, and was wondering how they might be in the flesh – you’ve just answered all my questions !
They really are Monsters….. and I mean that in a good way – I’ve had a hankering for some OGRE-style forces in 2/3mm for some time now, so these definitely fit the bill, being absolutely mahooosive !
I appreciate your well-reasoned take on turret placement and likely/deployment and usage – although it has to be said that military designers don’t always get it right – just look at French pre-dreadnought tumblehome battleships and the 1930s vogue for multi-turreted madness like the Soviet T-35 tank……
That said, pretty nifty that the turrets are swappable, and agree that a multipack of spare greeblies would be good.
Look forward to seeing how they paint up – remember, photos or it didn’t happen ! 🙂15/11/2022 at 12:00 #180172Paint it PinkParticipant
Super nice models to brighten the day of any lovers of Keith Laumer’s Bolo’s, or fans of Steve Jackson’s Ogre/GEV games.
Or for that matter, those who might want to run Heavy Gear landships on the world of Terra Nova.
Outstanding quality castings too.
One is good, more is better
http://ashleyrpollard.blogspot.co.uk/16/11/2022 at 02:13 #180191
Yes. And now we hear Thomaston might be doing up some printable heavy gears!
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!16/11/2022 at 19:34 #180221
I like the vibe of these figures a lot. Unlike Thaddeus I personally like the pre-based infantry and feel that it scales better for my purposes, but that’s a minor issue. I’m just jaded from hand-basing millions of Space Marines for my 3mm scale Blood Angels (you quickly burn out on that and that is now what I consider a “long term” project – having infantry pre-based is a godsend to me!)
I like the “Deserts of Kharak” look to these forces. I know nominally they’re meant to be fighting on Mars but you could see this being a force for any desert planet – habitable desert planets actually probably radically outnumber Earthlike ones so we’re going to be trying to settle them some day, I feel sure, and we’ll find some way to have wars over them as well.16/11/2022 at 22:54 #180223
Do we have any fluff about Fritz and Ali’s world yet?
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!17/11/2022 at 02:13 #180225
First Myrmidon, underway. Not sure what color I want to paint the superstructure…
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!17/11/2022 at 02:38 #18022617/11/2022 at 17:23 #180250
It’s just various shades of blue- and green- grey. All Vallejo. The back is Light Green Blue. Moving forward, we have US Marine Corps Tank Crew, then an as yet unpainted stretch, before finishing off with German Tanker I (feldgrau) on the bow.
I uses USMC Tanker for my 3mm Suns of Hors, so it definitely works for that. It was suggested to me on a WH 40k board for just that purpose.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!18/11/2022 at 01:16 #180262
Here’s more progress on the first Myrmidon.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!18/11/2022 at 02:10 #180263
Mathieu, you have a great eye for color: what do you think I should use to pick out that round object in the middle of the framework? (Anyone who has an idea, please chime in.)
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!18/11/2022 at 17:45 #18029318/11/2022 at 18:00 #180294
I picked them out in white, with a Polish roundel slapped over the top, just to give the side profile a bit more “oomph”. I also picked out the manifold bays in red and white.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!18/11/2022 at 18:12 #180295Jim WebsterParticipant
They look amazing when painted 🙂
https://jimssfnovelsandwargamerules.wordpress.com/18/11/2022 at 19:00 #18029619/11/2022 at 10:13 #180301The Red HobbitParticipant
The paintjob looks fantastic on those!19/11/2022 at 13:18 #180321
I have the second Myrmidon already base painted. It will have a much less elaborate color scheme. Mat, if you want the “chapter approved” Sons of Horus paint scheme, use Vallejo USMC Tank Crew green with Coelia Greenshade wash (although I am sure a Vallejo green wash will work just as well).
This is the result:
For a cleaner look, retouch all the panels in USMC Tank Crew. I wanted a more weathered look here, so I only retouched the obvious blotches.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!19/11/2022 at 16:02 #180323ThomastonParticipant
Nice color scheme. Are teh ble and white circle decals?
Tired is enough.20/11/2022 at 05:15 #180334
The blue and white circles are indeed decals from Infinity. I just had them lying about, so…
Here is the first Myrmidon finished, with the second one about halfway done. Also, a First Order transport.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!25/11/2022 at 20:14 #180497
Both Myrmidons finally finished!
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!25/11/2022 at 20:53 #180500
The entire grey army, as it stands.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!25/11/2022 at 20:57 #180501Jim WebsterParticipant
Very impressive 🙂
https://jimssfnovelsandwargamerules.wordpress.com/26/11/2022 at 15:27 #180527
There is a militia brigade in there (made out of ultramodern vehicles) as well as walker battalions, hover cavalry, tank and IFV battalions and, of course, super tank battalions.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!26/11/2022 at 15:47 #180528Microworld SteveParticipant
These are some of my favorite models to come out for a while and the army presentation looks fantastic.26/11/2022 at 19:16 #180534
It’s been built rather like Johnny Cash’s proverbial Cadillac: one piece at a time over the course of almost 15 years.
We get slapped around, but we have a good time!
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