Thursday, April 7, 2011

Death (of) Metal

Well, after a total rout for my Deathwing, I decided to re-focus my sights on my Dark Eldar. Problem is, it seems that Games Workshop is moving away from making metal miniatures. This led to more than a little panic from me. You see, I'm an old-school gamer who likes his metal miniatures. There's a reassuring heft to them which makes them make more of a *thunk* when they hit the table rather than the sad little *thwip* plastic models make. They're more durable as well (especially when properly pinned) and have a tendanct to break a lot less (short of inconsiderate jerk "friends" bending Eldrad's staff and snapping it off- but that's another post entirely). In the end this led me to quickly grab the boxes of Incubi and the two Haemonculi I'll be needing for the army.

What's the worst that can happen with G.W.'s supposed switch to some other material? Resin. This stuff is a giant pain to work with. Molds shift, flash is nightmarish, and you can't use side-cutters on certain parts as the miniature may snap in a place you didn't want it to. The mold release is a greasy mess that takes a fair amount of effort to remove, and many times miniatures the size of the minis being replaced by this switch will come warpd or worse yet not totally set and all sticky (happened with a bunch of my Forgeworld Rhino Doors). Worse yet, cleaning the model. Resin needs to be cleaned with a knife as the dust it leaves behind is a very aggressive cancer causing agent.

Unless they come up with some new Super-Resin, I'll attempt to avoid the miniatures as much as possible and stick with my "classic" metal minis.

What if they take an alternative route? What if everything goes to plastic? Well, this isn't much of an improvement for me as plastic, despite being so wonderfully detailed these days, is soooo easily breakable. Have you seen the shardnets on the Wyches? I'll be lucky to have them last a month with the abuse they recieve in play. My Raiders are even more of a concern. That's a lot of model to be resting on top of that thin little plastic rod. I cringe every time I move my model, and it hasn't even seen play yet. I'm considering breaking the flight stand just to run a pin through it before some jerk busts it in the middle of a game.I left off as many of the trophy racks and chains as I could, wanting to leave off anything that could snap off and leave me with a busted, ghetto looking miniature. I don't build and paint these minis to have them get broken, and I want to keep them intact for as long as possible.

My next post should be all the progress I've made with my Dark Eldar. I'm liking the way they're coming out so far.

1 comment:

  1. I'm pondering how much metal I want to get before it goes away. I don't share your love affair with it, in fact I would rather have a plastic mini than a metal one in most cases. I'm concerned that these models may just disappear entirely, never to be replaced, but I doubt that would happen. It should be interesting to see what their new material is. Isn't Mantic using some sort of combo resin-plastic for their character models? I can't believe that GW would use a material known to cause cancer in models that are, at least in part, targeted at children, but I also can't believe they'd just let all their character models disappear after having made a push on special characters of late.

    Re: breaking Raiders, have you thought about magnetizing them? I keep meaning to look into that, but no luck so far. You could also put in an extra large, extra long pin that serves the same function as the flight stand but is more durable. As for details breaking off, just call it battle damage. The Wych nets wouldn't work so well there, but if some spikes come off a Raider well, things happen when people shoot at you.