...the wargaming show that is! I always find something new there every year. This year for me it was the laser etched scenery that seems to be sneaking into gaming more and more.
Is it a good thing? I had to find out. I got two 15mm kits from Warbases.com to try out. They were reasonably priced at £8 & £7 and I got started on the first on Saturday night. The first kit I did wasn't as precisly cut as I would have imagined but it went together after a bit of work. Thankfully the second, which I tackled today, went together like a charm. The 15mm kits are a little fiddly but not complicated. My overall thoughts on them?
Dirty. The laser etching leaves the edges of the HDF sooty. I assume this is from the heat of the laser. But they smell like lovely BBQs!!
A Fair bit of work. Whilst being quicker than a scratch build they are not a quick job to finish as the roof on each will take some time to fit the tiles. I suppose that it might be possible to find pasticard with a tile texture to speed this up but that will obviously add to the cost.
Detail. Resin cast stuff does have more detail but once painted I don't think there will be a great deal of difference.
Value. I enjoy puting things like this toether so I am more than happy with the price. For me it is almost like a double win as £7 or £8 seems like a good deal for a model kit that keeps me entertained for a few hours AND which I can then use again and again.
Weight. A good size building for the scale without the potential for many of them to turn into dead weight in a scenery box.
Robustness. I think the HDF will stand up well over time as it is pretty hard stuff. I don't know if paint will change this with the addition of moisture but I can't imagine it would make a great deal of difference.
I think I can safely say that I would be happy to buy HDF kits in future and having seen some nice ones already I think this is an area of the hobby that could expand quickly over the next year or so. With brands like Sarissa and Warbases generating new designs all the time, I will be keeping my eye out for any HDF releases.
I think I'm a convert. I also think Sarissa will be graced by my patronage in the not so distant future.