The new Prince August 'Seven Years War' infantryPlease note that I have already posted a lot of the information below on Yahoo Groups such as 'Old School Wargaming', 'Lace Wars' and '40mm Wargaming and Collecting', but I thought it better to kick off by bringing it all together in this one area.
When PA previewed the new additions to the infantry in their Karoliner range back in July 2012, I emailed them and commented on the new moulds. The gist of the email was that I thought it good to see that the range was still being extended, but expressed my opinion that the figure poses were in general not suitable for wargaming purposes, and that they were missing out on a significant market. I also asked that they consider extending the Karoliner range to allow it to be used for other nations, suggesting that the following be added:
• Artillery crews with turned back coats.
• Grenadiers in bearskins.
• Prussian fusiliers.
• Russian grenadiers.
• Hussars in busby.
It came as something of a surprise when in April 2013 PA's sculptor contacted me, to advise me that they were going to extend the semi-flat range with a view to adding more mainstream European armies, and asked if I would like to make suggestions on what to produce. As you can imagine I jumped at the chance. Over the last year or so I have had a lot of contact with their designer with a view to producing a range of moulds/figures in poses to fit into 'old school' units, the first of which are now on the market, with others to follow on a regular basis.
(Just in case anyone is wondering I have no financial interest in this range - other than a few free moulds. My main interest is in trying to guide PA towards a range of figures which are useful to us.)
For example, the initial Prussian bodies can be made up as musketeers, fusiliers or grenadiers.
The next release is likely to be a single Austrian (German) infantry mould, this will contain two infantry bodies (advancing and march attack) with four heads (2 x fusilier, 1 x officer and 1 x grenadier*), used in combination with the Prussian command bodies these will allow the Austrian line infantry to be assembled.
So the first four moulds will allow all the figures needed for the following units to be cast:
- Prussian musketeers
- Prussian fusiliers
- Prussian grenadiers
- Austrian fusiliers
- Austrian grenadiers*
If you are building an 'imagination' army the options will become very interesting.
*Update - due to the fact that the march attack figure needed the arm to be separate it was not possible to include the bearskin in the mould; these will be included in the Hungarian moulds.
Using this logic the Prussian officer, standard bearer, NCO, and drummers will also be used in the Austrian and Russian armies, but with different heads. As an example see the NCO below.
|3102/1 - NCO as Prussian fusilier|
|3102/1 - NCO as Austrian fusilier|
The poses for the first releases were selected based on my suggestions, and in the absence of any better ideas I opted for what I use in my armies. The chosen poses are similar to the advancing infantry in the Irish Wild Geese range (I-903 & I-904), but with a change in the musket angle on the advancing figure to a higher port so that they are not sticking in the back of the man in front. To make the figures more unit friendly I have asked that the figures be sculptured such that they rank up on 20mm x 30mm bases.
Below are photos of a unit made up from the first 3 new moulds (3101, 3102 & 3103), as a fusilier unit. The same body can be fitted with different heads to represent not just fusiliers, but also guards, musketeers and grenadiers.
PA are also working on march attack figures, this is really THE pose for this period, so if they can get it right I think it will be a very useful addition to the range; below are the 'greens' of the Prussian and Austrian figures with tricorn.
|Prussian as guard|
These should be out in the near future, however I understand it is proving difficult to fit this tall figure into the mould, so the figure may need to be broken down so that the musket (and arm) are separate. Below is a unit cast from the pre production moulds to show what they will look like (the bodies for the officer and drummer are from the Prussian moulds).
|March attack Austrian Grenadiers (cast from pre-production moulds)|
Prince August's plans for this range
Initially the plan is to cover the following three main protagonists; Prussia, Austria and Russia. Other armies may be covered later if the range proves successful.
Initially 'close order' infantry for these nations will be produced, followed by artillery, cavalry and then light troops, possibly in that order. I have seen photos of some of the preliminary 'greens' for Austrian (German & Hungarian) & Russian infantry, which should be released in the not too distant future. I will post photos once the sculpting is finalised.
Artillery, light troops etc.will be in more active poses as these do not need to rank up.
I think the important to stress that PA are designing this range with the wargamers in mind, it is us that they are wanting to sell these moulds to - there is no point in them making moulds which nobody wants to buy.
One of the main aims of this site is to become a forum for discussions relating to the moulds in this new range, and have influence on future releases. I am in regular contact with PA's sculptor, and I know he will try and take on board any constructive comments you have on the range.
So please do two things:
- Post comments on this site and so influence future releases.
- Buy the moulds, both PA and myself have put a lot of effort into producing this range, and it is of benefit to everyone to make it a commercial success.
I promise future posts will be shorter, but I wanted to set provide as much backround to the range as possible.