I have got an outrageous backlog about work as web designer, homework, game designer and tester for Ganesha Games. More, I have a main daily job and the last weekend I visited Turin for three days. So my Dadi.Com reports is delayed again. However I prepared before another 1/6 action figure review, so here it is…
Kaustic Plastik are 1/6 action figure producers based here in Rome. I suppose they had a past experience about WWII action figures, when they released a Italian soldiers range. Their pieces are a little cheaper than rivals. Good as historical accuracy but some details look not so perfect because of fault manufacture design for some proportions, like you can see for the leather sleeve, the long neck or the large vests. But the overall and historical look is pretty good.
A retiarius with the Totti’s face, the captain of the Roma football team. I’m not a football fan, so it is awful to me. I would buy another head as substitute…
This thraex has got a real bronze helm! The better thraex around in 1/6 format.
Well, at this moment I don’t know more 1/6 gladiator figures. These are almost limited edition for collectors at high prices but with finer details than a 28mm miniature cannot give. To accomplish my dream of a game with 12″ action figures I should choose a fighter couple. The support to keep them standing can be utilised as a base, following Ferrum et Gloria rule principles. But my rules aren’t thought to this scale and the possibility to add details that are spontaneous to give to a fight with these enormous “miniatures”, would lead to the adoption, and the creation, of an entirely new rule system. What will I do? I don’t know, now I’m only dreaming about it.
While I’m recovering from Dadi.com convention, selecting photos to show that event, I retake the 1/6 gladiator action toys reviews. ACI Toys wants to create a full gladiator range. At the moment we have got a myrmillo, a dimachaereus and a provocator, but more are on arrival. You can go to their website to follow their production.
What can I say? Almost perfect. With the right muscle body too. The only fault is the metallic sleeve with the articulation at the elbow, build according to a wrong concept. To have the needed flexibility at the elbow they wore leather plates. But this is a common fault.
According to me, this is the most beautiful gladiator 1/6 action figure. What I like most is the colour choices, perfect! Do you want to find a flaw? The sword is too long and the shield was a little smaller, egg-shaped and with a reinforcement on the end.
Another gladiator inspired by a famous tv show. If as myrmillo and provocator the result is really great, as dimachaereus we have got a fantasy puppet. The swords are right, the shin guards too, but the armour is absurd. Well, if you are a follower of a Hollywood soap-opera with sex and violence that claim to represent Roman times, you can think that is beautiful. I don’t think so. This is sold as an expansion kit, only head and armour.
Another dimachaereus, with the same name (?), always from Spartacus. The axes are purely fictional, but the helm is great, a real thraex helm! The shin protectors are not decorated but they better because they are really realistic. Give him a sword and a shield, so you can have a thraex. Still at preproduction phase, it will be out towards the end of the year.
While we are waiting for the new part of the Doctor Who television series, I wish to show you some Daleks that I own. Thanks to Alessio and Emily that bought me this Doctor Who Adventures issue, I laid my hands on a plastic set with Daleks miniatures, incidentally in 28mm scale. These are from a children magazine that give away some Dr Who themed toys every week, and these Daleks set sold very well so they presented them for 3/4 times.
The sculpt is not so fine and some details are fainted, the assembly sometime is a little approximative, but they are very cheap. Now I don’t remind exactly prices but as far I remind you can have got a box of Daleks for the price of a single Dalek from Shapeways. If you live in UK could built a large Dalek army with these miniatures. So I create a newDaleks squad with an official in black armour and five troopers in bronze and gold. I panted a black skullcap for them to add some contrast. I don’t like these pale metallic newDaleks so much, I prefer the classical design and strong coloured patterns. Moreover now they seem too much powerful and invincible too.
Another new design in the set is for iDaleks (or “paradigmDaleks”) with their bright five colours. It is the revolutionary form for these pepper shaker aliens, with more soft lines. Since sixties we had a design that evolved principally through colour patterns so something new had to be added, even if Daleks are a national icon like double-deckers or telephone boxes. However was the time to say something new about Daleks.
And now a parade of the various Daleks that I own. From left to right: renegadeDalek, imperialDalek, newDalek, iDalek, Spider Dalek. And this evening a new adventure on BBC with the Jenna-Louise Coleman mystery!
Last November I saw 3D printing in Ludica fair in Rome. So I thought about to buy something made in this way to touch a future feel. A special offer with free delivery from Shapeways gave me the opportunity to spend money for a Spider Dalek.
Some days after, in Christmas time as you can see for the towel, I received a huge parcel with inside a little transparent sprue. It was pretty viscid and the details were fine but a little crispy. 3D printing is not perfect, you cannot have a resin mould quality. A method to obtain smoother surfaces is to scratch them with a acetone light wash or other acid substances. I’m lazy so only wash the sprue with a lot of soap.
A Spider Dalek is a fictional Dalek – the others are real, aren’t they – an aborted hypothesis for a character development. There is not a definite design, only some sketches. So I was not so sure about how to assemble it. A fast painting on the first Daleks colour pattern complete it. Now it is ready to spread terror among the galaxy.
After the unsatisfying Ignite action figures, this time I’m showing you something very better. CM Toys is producing some gladiators inspired by Spartacus television series, without a real license I think. I’ve never seen this series and never see her (I’m not interested in fantasy soap-opera added with sex and violence), but I can still enjoy these figures.
This is Spartacus, or at least the television Spartacus. Even if this figure is not historically based, the final appearance resembles a gladiator and the “dirty” look is great. The problem is that you can use it as a generic fantasy fighter too, because does not refer to the look and the armament of any gladiatorial category. But at least it is a beautiful figure.
Almost a thraex, only some wrong details, as the short shin protectors or the long sword. I find great the dirty look or the lion on the helm. Instead the sleeve is not so good.
These pieces have got a better look even because you cannot see the joint parts of the figures. The internal structure is covered by a skin made of flexible gum. Great solution but maybe in the course of time this skin could lose his tone ruining the figure, but I don’t know.
As I think you know, I’m a 1:6 action figures collector too. The only problem is the money to buy these figures and the place to show them. So I limit myself to only a few pieces. I have a complete and selected Italian paratroopers in WWII series but I wish more. I’m thinking about gladiator action figures for an insane project about Ferrum et Gloria played with 1:6 figures. I should buy at least a couple of gladiators to set a game and this means 200-250 euro to invest. At the moment I have not yet had the unscrupulousness to do this madness. But that does not prevent me from thinking about it all the time.
I’m studying what the market offers about gladiator action figures and I want to show you the result of my researches. We begin with Ignite gladiators. They are the cheapest and the less attractive.
A slim figure (scarce rations?), with a medieval axe, a thraex helm, a steel breast plate, a cloak. Well, this is not a gladiator. Take the helm and throw away what remains.
A left-handed retiarius with a t-shirt (you cannot claim it is a tunic) and a medieval mace as support weapon. And embarrassing muscle tone for a gladiator.
From this review is evident that you can find better action figures than these. But some spare parts could be useful. Next time other proposals.
Have you ever heard of 3D printing? We have saw it in the making! Unterwelt is a small company in Rome that love open source technology and had a stand in Ludica convention. They use a kind of DIY plotter with vertical movement in addiction to horizontal one. It is technologically based on Arduino platform. Over a heated plate this plotter start to draw a plastic flux from the base of the object, going up, building the object layer after layer. The head of the plotter is like a syringe. A plastic wire, unwound from a roll, feed the syringe. A computer control the flux and the plotter. It is like built something by a microscopic tube of toothpaste. The plastic is melted by heat and after is firm up by ambient temperature. They use various plastic materials. One of them is that used for Lego bricks. The only fault is the slowness of the process, we are still in a pioneering phase, these are not industrial machineries that can built at enormous speeds.
On the photo you can see some objects that the machine created. In the making is a green foot. The parts of this plotter are partially created by another similar plotter. The machine replicate itself! The only necessity is to have a CAD project. The structures of the drone in the other photo are build with this 3D plotter! Drones build by a CAD project downloaded by internet! Moreover, if you have a 3D scanner you can replicate every kind of object without CAD programming. The kit to built this plotter is only 750 euro. Materials are cheap too. Ideal for professional modelling.
There is another company based on 3D printing services. It is called
Shapeways. They have a small miniatures catalogue, CAD draws that can become 3D objects. People design their pieces, upload them, and people can buy the final product. I have ordered a not so cheap 28mm Dalek miniature, just to taste the water. The future of miniatures production? Imagine: you need a specific piece and you want to give it an unique pose or aspect. 3D printing is the solution.
In Ludica Roma there were wargamers and modellers, so you could view a lot of beautiful miniatures.
A multicoloured scenario from an A La Guerre game.
Your miniature collection can become really huge after a lot of years playing wargame. Piles of 15mm for an 1:1 fight between Gauls and Romans along a small river.
Bigger miniatures and greater painters than wargame world. That Zues is awesome. I’m thinking about a game with this Zeus in the upcoming Of Gods And Mortals…
More models museum worthy.
A scene set in the Lybian desert, with Folgore paratroopers. My mobile camera is not so great but the weird yellow lights in the display case destroyed the fine paintwork. White lamps for another time, guys?
A customised Warhammer 40k squad. I don’t think that these miniatures are manufactured by GW. They are really huge and majestic.
A Dust diorama with a Jagpanzer. I have to buy something made by this Paolo Parente guy…
There were a lot of railway modelling dioramas. I remember them in their specialised fairs. Now I want to show you only this beautiful view of Porta San Paolo station. Every day I pass close to there to go to work. It serves the line for Ostia, the waterfront of Rome. It would be perfect is the lights in the platform were made by leds. Maybe this scene was built a lot of time ago. More on this station here
A display were made about the development of the Wings of War (now Wings of Glory) boardgame. It was very interesting to see as an idea was developed from the first rough pieces of paper to the final release with aeroplanes miniatures, through small sets for playtesting and prototypes of the game elements.