Tuesday, July 22, 2008


The new Empress British. The painter did a great job. If I can do half as well on mine I will be pleased!

As I noted on the introduction to my Sudan blog it was the film Zulu that got me into colonial wargaming and I painted a lot of those Revell plastics. I never found a satisfactory range in 28mm. The two main rivals, I suppose were Black Tree Design and Redoubt.

Black Tree Design have a wide range of poses but the anatomy of the figures is variable: some are excellent, some are a bit odd. The real problem with them is the strange interpretations of the helmets with odd ridges on them where all there should be are seams.

The Redoubt range is also comprehensive as to different troop types although their are less poses of individual infantry. The figures look quite old and on the internet anyway look a bit indistinct in their sculpting and casting. One of the reasons I like the Musketeer Miniatures figures so much, even though they are rather exaggerated compared with, say, the Perries, is that you know exactly what you are painting.

So I was delighted to see a new range of Zulu War figures by an equally new company called Empress Miniatures. http://www.empressminiatures.com/ These are sculpted by Paul Hicks, who is rapidly getting up there with the best sculptors on the planet now. They look a bit chunkier than my usual taste (but that is often the result of the photography) but are very crisply sculpted. I have immediately ordered one of each of the four packs that have come out.

The owners (who claim to be women, which is unusual in itself) say that the range will be complete for all troop types in the war. Sensibly, they are going for a release schedule of first some redcoats, then some Zulus, then back to British again, so you can build an army and its opponents at the same time.

I know these will distract me from the Sudan but I have always wanted to do Zulu War British!

The greens of the Zulus are up on the site too and they look great and should be quick to paint (excellent, as you need thousands of 'em!)

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