Home Forums Ancients Ultracast 15mm figures and MeG from Plastic Soldier Company

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  • #147655
    Norm S
    Participant

    A quick first impressions blog post on the Mortem Et Glorium ancient / medieval rules by Simon Hall and Published by Plastic Soldier Company.

    Also a look at the new plastic material ‘Ultracast’ that PSC are using on their 15mm figures that support the MeG rules.

    LINK
    http://battlefieldswarriors.blogspot.com/2020/11/ultracast-figures-and-mortem-et-gloriam.html

     

    #147660
    telzy amber
    Participant

    Thank you for the review. They sound nice. I wonder how long before I even see either

    #147663
    ian pillay
    Participant

    Norm, great review thank you for sharing. The army scaling reminds me of Armati II by Arti Conliff. Sounds like the rules have some neat ideas in them.
    The ultra cast material sounds interesting and a much improved recipe over GW version a few years back. That was brittle and put me off buying characters.
    looking forward to seeing some of your battle reports in the near future.

     

    Tally-Ho!

    #147666
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    Thanks very much for that look at the rules and the figures.  Both are quite tempting, for different reasons.

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #147667
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Ultracast is just a rebranding by PSC of the siocast plastic injection system also used by Warlord Games….

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    #147672
    Norm S
    Participant

    Ian, yes exactly like Armati.

    Warlord Games have called their material ‘Warlord Resin’ which shows a certain confidence towards it if one is willing to associate it with their brand. It will be interesting to see how or whether the technology improves, as these tend to do. My understanding is that it is quite cheap. Battlefront 15mm produced some bendy figures, was that the same stuff?

     

    #147677
    Blackhat
    Participant

    Norm,

    I am not sure that it is the same thing that Battlefront use.

    The siocast machines are expensive – £50k for a machine, plus you are tied into using their plasic – which would worry me.  Cheapre than proper full on plastic production but at about 5 times the cost of setting up metal production.

    I believe that PSC and Warlord are both leasing their machines.  It has the advantage over metal casting and resin casting that it is a simple process to produce the figures – like standard plastic production from metal moulds.

    Instead of having a fairly skilled operator (even metal casting can be fiddly), you just need someone to load plastic chips in one end and dump out the frames the other.

    Personally, I cannot see what it particularly adds, but I have never been a big fan of plastic figures…

    Mike

    Black Hat Miniatures -
    http://www.www.blackhat.co.uk/

    #147688
    Norm S
    Participant

    Interesting, thanks. I suppose only time will tell.

    #147713
    Guy Farrish
    Participant

    I pootled over to PSC on Sunday morning on the strength of seeing this and was delighted to see a Black Friday Sale on – Up to 75% off!

    Of course the Pacto starter sets weren’t discounted to that level but they were down to £26-90, or thereabouts, from £35. Might be worth a punt.

    Unfortunately all the sets except the Hundred years War and the Carthaginians were sold out. And they weren’t discounted at all.

    I don’t know why I went to have another look this morning, but imagine my surprise when all the sets were now available again with many boxes in stock.

    Of course the sale is now over.

     

    #147779
    Sane Max
    Participant

    with some 230 pages of very well illustrated rules

    Goodness, I hope not – roughly how many pages are rules, would you say?

    #147784
    Norm S
    Participant

    Chapter 8 …. playing a turn (basically the sequence of play detailed) starts on page 72

    Chapter 9.11 …  unusual troop types and actions, end on page 186

    I would describe those pages as core rules to the ‘wargaming’ bit.

    #147804

    Thanks for the review, Norm! I am seriously thinking about buying some of these and your review was a big help.

    We get slapped around, but we have a good time!

    #147823
    madaxeman
    Participant

    It’s fascinating to me how so much discussion about these figures amongst wargamers always focuses on their price, when they are not actually wildly out of line with many other manufacturers. PSC “unit” packs are £10 for 32 figures, which works out at 31p each, and their ‘army” packs at £35 contain between 114-136 figures (counting foot as “1” and mounted as “2”), which is in the range 26-31p.

    Those prices are not all that far off QRF (34p), Lancashire Games (39p, or 36p in a blister of 50), Alternative Armies (35p), Outpost (30p) or even Museum Originals at 38p – and even the most expensive manufacturers out there only ever reach 50p a figure – and thats before considering that the PSC ranges are only sold in bigger pack sizes than almost anyone else offers, and that some of these manufacturers even sell singles too.

    Even considering a 10p difference in price, that is still only a difference of tenner or so on a whole 15mm army. If you like the figures that’s great, but is a tenner in the purchase cost of a whole army really enough of a difference to cause any of us to choose any manufacturer over any other if we thought there was a nicer-looking range out there we could have bought instead?

    The question is a bit different when it comes to 25mm, where plastic ranges are all in the 50p/figure range whereas metals are 3x, 4x or sometimes even 5x more expensive (and where there’s a legitimate discussion to be had as to whether some of the plastic ranges are in fact better sculpts than any of the metals out there)… but for 15mm armies.. shouldn’t the discussion be about how good the figures are, not if there are frankly quite marginal savings to be had on buying them ?

     

     

     

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    #147841
    Norm S
    Participant

    I think the discussion will mostly be about the material used, as that is the real game changer here, for good or bad depending on your view.

    I agree that the actual cost of a figure is the smallest part of the equation because you will spend the same amount of time and effort cleaning, painting and gaming with them as you would any similar figure, so in that bigger picture, the actual cost is less of an issue for some …. but for a huge part of the global population, price is everything and cost matters because of personal circumstances and budgets.

    The PSC are slightly cheaper than you suggest because you get exactly the amount of figures needed for the starter PACTO army, whereas many other suppliers will be selling bags of 8 – 10 and invariably that means left over redundant figures.

    These particular figures are very (VERY) light, but I don’t know to what degree that will impact on postal charges, but that could be part of a deciding factor for anyone outside the U.K.

    It is a case of horses for courses and as a small hobby we are fortunate to have so much choice. The rules author owns the Lurkio line of metal figures, so there may be options there for buyers of Pacto armies and from memory, I think Lurkio and Corvus Belli are close fits.

    #147845
    madaxeman
    Participant

    I think the discussion will mostly be about the material used, as that is the real game changer here, for good or bad depending on your view.

    I’m not sure the material is really that big an issue, or indeed whether its any sort of game changer  – the great “lead vs plastic” debate in wargaming circles is surely pretty much played out now, and mostly happened when 25mm plastics came onto the market.  Frome everything I’ve seen and heard these are pretty much indistinguishable from their metal equivalents – its a new development for 15mm ancients, but that kinda because 15mm ancients is a bit more niche. Even PSC themselves (and others) have been producing plastic 15mm WW2 figures for years, to the point I’d even suggest that plastic is now the default material for WW2 15mm – and I’d bet most 15mm Ancients players already own some plastic figures already for other scales and periods.

    I agree that the actual cost of a figure is the smallest part of the equation because you will spend the same amount of time and effort cleaning, painting and gaming with them as you would any similar figure, so in that bigger picture, the actual cost is less of an issue for some …. but for a huge part of the global population, price is everything and cost matters because of personal circumstances and budgets.

    Without wanting to unfairly dismiss anyones personal circumstances, I’m still very skeptical that there are all that many wargamers out there for whom the difference between £35 and £45 would be enough to stop them buying something wargaming-related if they’ve convinced themselves they really wanted it.  Yes, this is of course going to be true for some, but for the vast majority of the community it’s just not an issue (if we are honest with ourselves about what and how we buy for this hobby!)

    The PSC are slightly cheaper than you suggest because you get exactly the amount of figures needed for the starter PACTO army, whereas many other suppliers will be selling bags of 8 – 10 and invariably that means left over redundant figures.

    That’s true… if someone is playing that one specific ruleset (which, lets remember, they will also have paid £50 for, with all the special dice, cards and the like that are needed to play), in that one specific scale, using that one specific combination of figures to make up that one specific list… and if you have the self control not to think “hmmm, if I just had another unit of Agrianian Javelinmen… and maybe an elephant would be cool too… oh, and some cataphracts..   However, that’s not a description of many wargamers I know!!

    These particular figures are very (VERY) light, but I don’t know to what degree that will impact on postal charges, but that could be part of a deciding factor for anyone outside the U.K..

    Yep – international postage rates by weight start to make somewhere north of £10 difference when you get towards a kilo of lead – again though I’d guess it’s a fairly small number of people who are buying a kilo of lead and shipping internationally… and anyone buying that much lead in one goI suspect isn’t going to be counting the pennies (or cents..) all that closely.

    It is a case of horses for courses and as a small hobby we are fortunate to have so much choice.

    Absolutely agree!

    Don’t get me wrong, seeing Corvius Belli figures back in production is great, and the more choice – at lower cost – we all have the better.   All I’m pointing out is that surely it’s kinda weird that (or maybe even it’s “a shame”) that given the cost factor is actually pretty insignificant in the greater scheme of things,  much of the discussion around these ranges tends to be “gee, look how cheap they are!” … and it would be better to hear people saying “hey, aren’t these great characterful sculpts – that’s why I want to buy them !

     

     

    You can:
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    #147922
    madaxeman
    Participant

    Actually.. the whole “price vs quality” thing ended up being such an interesting topic that we covered it in our weekly podcast.

    https://madaxeman.podbean.com/e/episode-53-the-price-is-right-come-on-down/ for the download or stream from Podbean, or search for the Madaxeman Podcast on your usual podcast provider

     

    You can:
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    #147928
    Guy Farrish
    Participant

    Okay, I listened to the discussion.

    Can’t say I agreed with much if any of the thoughts on pricing.

    Rather than hijack this thread further, I have posted some thoughts in ‘general’ under the heading:

    ‘Do I Really Want to Pay More for Wargames Figures?’

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