1-48 Combat Figure Review | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Thursday, 24 September 2009

When Baueda Miniatures announced that they were working on a 1:48th scale set of miniatures and skirmish rules, I jumped on the chance to try them out. As soon as they announced pre-release, I ordered a "Play Set" of the first four figures from both German and Russian armies.

 

The way that I-48 is set up, you can order a single figure with a scenic base, and get the rules for free with the figure. I ordered the minimum required to play the game, since I was reviewing it for you all and didn't want to spend more than was required.

The very first thing you will (and some no doubt have) notice is the price. You're not buying just a miniature, but a piece of scenery, tokens, the stat card, and a miniature. If you're in the US, Canada, or Australia, you also have currency conversion to deal with, which does make all products seem more expensive.

The entire contents of this review, counting shipping, cost 80.05 Euros, which at the exchange rate on the 15th of August, 2009 translated to 116.48 US Dollars. When you consider that this is everything non-terrain that you need to play the game - figures, rules, markers and even some "flavor" terrain. It is in line with other game systems, depending upon the game. At less than $15 USD per figure - including the extras, they're steep, but as I expected, they're worth it. Read on to see.

Note that I'm not looking at the rules in this review, only the figures and bases. The reasons for this are twofold - first, a version of the rules is available for free from the 1-48th Combat Yahoo! Group in the files section. The second is that there is plenty to review in both cases, so I'm setting up a game and will review the rules after the game (with lots of pictures of course ;-)).

With all of that said, here come the critical parts. As a background to the critical bits, I'll say flat out that I love these miniatures, warts and all. They're simple to paint, they're expressive, and things hang like they're supposed to, and some figures (as noted) come with multiple heads. All of the following criticism is to be construed as constructive, in the interests of helping you decide if these figures are for you.

I have placed the stat cards in the background of each figure picture to give you a handle on how easy it is to paint these figures the way the pictures are - the pictures look almost doctored, but I painted them up, mine looked every bit as good as their professionally done ones. As usual, while I'm aware that I'm not the worst painter out there, when my painting raises to this level I assume the sculptor is responsible.

Germans

SMG Character



The SMG character (Part #48008CS) comes with two heads. In this case I chose to use the head shown on the card. He is equipped with SMG, winter gear, gators, and covered helmet. The base includes a stack of barrels, tarp, tools, a Jerry Can, and a hose for fueling. All of this paints up pretty reasonably, and as you can see, the figure paints up well.

Rifleman Character



The German Rifleman (Part #48004CS) comes with the only head cast on, and this was a bit of an oddity for me. This figure was the first that I painted, and my 22 year old son picked it up and went "You're getting into alternate history! Cool!" He went on to say that he thought it was a Steampunk figure - because the face is covered completely with snow goggles and scarf. This is still my favorite of all of the figures, but that did make me shudder a little bit.

He comes with the rubbled corner of a building that I chose to paint up in a manner that the ruins on the edge of Moscow (in the 90s) and the buildings in the center of Rostov share.

LMG Character



The German LMG figure (Part #48006CS) comes with two heads, and I chose the helmeted head over the scarf-covered head that Baueda used for their card picture. He comes loaded down with a greatcoat, scarf under his helmet (this head), ammo, spare barrel, and standard gear. My figure came with the carrying strap on the MG missing a bit, but this is not horribly obvious, so I didn't get too upset by it.

The base included with the machine gunner comes with a lamp post, a sandbag enclosure, some ruins that I chose to paint up in line with some buildings I saw in Taganrog in the 90s. There is also a stack of German MG ammmo cannisters and two kubelwagen wheels. There is a sheet of corrugated steel on the outside of the ruins that is bullet-riddled and a nice touch.

Sniper Character



The Sniper character (Part #48002CS) comes with a scoped sniper rifle, bread bag, canteen, a single head in feldmutze, camo shelter half, and jack boots. This is the figure that I most assumed was touched up in the picture on the card, but honestly, mine looked as good, though the artist and I used different paints or they had some rather odd lighting when they took their picture. Mine is done with Valejo Feldgrau, it looks like their artist used some other brand all together.

Of the Germans, this is the best face. In fact, as I'll mention below, all of these faces don't have the detail I expect from 1:48th figures, but then again, for most of them the face isn't fully visible. The two snipers are the biggest exception to that statement, and have the best faces.

Russians

LMG Character



The Russian LMG character (Part #48007CS) comes with the trademark DP LMG, two visible pouches, a cloak, and jack boots. He comes with two heads, and I chose the one in a helmet over the fur cap of the one pictured on the card. His base is a ruined building with a pillar and part of a wall still mostly intact. The base is mostly rubble, but that fits with the theme of Stalingrad well.

Rifleman Character



The Russian rifleman character (Part #48005CS) comes with two heads. I chose the soft cap over the helmeted alternate head, the same as the one pictured on the card. This is one of the best figures in the set, in my opinion. I like the face on this figure, he's in an action pose and loaded down with everything he might need to survive in the wasteland that was Stalingrad. As with some of the German figures, his greatcoat is tattered at the ends, and I considered painting in some blood stains to accentuate the tattered look. He's got gators with half boots, and a mustache. His base is an ammo dump that has recently had both German and Russian occupants. This can be told by the Kar 98K with German SMG ammo pouches and the Russian backpack and carry bag. This is one of my favorite bases, and they are all honestly astoundingly well done. No surprise from Baueda, but worth noting.

Sniper Character



The Russian sniper character (Part #48001CS) also comes with two heads. I chose the bare-headed one pictured on the card because the features (as noted above) are higher quality than most heads in this set. The sniper comes with a cloak, a Mosin-Nagant with telescopic sight and sniper barrel wrap, and a minimum of gear. He is well proportioned, and easy to paint. This figure comes with the ruins of a factory as a base - part of a reinforced brick wall with a broken steel girder and winch system. There is also a piece of warped steel on the outside of the wall. This base was a bit tough to paint, but once snow was applied looks as good as all of the others.

NCO Character



The Russian NCO character (Part #48003CS) comes with molded on helmeted head, carry bag, greatcoat, PPSh smg, jack boots, canteen, and pistol holster. His face is not as nice as some of the figures above, but is not horrid at the level that makes you hate the entire figure. Of all of the figures I purchased, I felt that this one was the least inspired, but is still compatible with "average" figures on the market.

Overall Points

Okay, you've seen pictures, you've read an overview, here comes the points that span all of the figures in the line.

While they are compatible with other 1:48th figures in height (in line with Tamiya and former North Star 1:48 figures), they are generally bulkier than these other brands. Note that these figures are layered up for winter in stalingrad, so you can fit them in with a similarly equipped army or as special characters in your army.

I don't generally paint infantry in gloves, but I followed the lead of the cards that came with the set. The Germans are generally gloved and the Russians are generally not. Whether you like this or not is a question of taste, most definitely.

The weapons are big, but some vendors do this to protect them from clumbsy wargamer fingers. What you can't wave off is the size of the hands, which are generally big - as in the long fingered big hands of super 28s. It's not so bad as to take away the luster of these figures, particularly on the gloved ones, but it's noticable.

These figures across the board have character. That's kind of the point of the game, and they hit that nail on the head. That's one of the things that appeals to me, but might not be as appealing to you.

In the final assessment, I think that each and every one of these figures is worth the money, with the snipers at the top of the list, and the Russian NCO at the bottom.

I'm not going to narrate what you can see in the pictures, here are pictures of the bases and tokens that come with the figures.


















The following item was only shipped to those of us who ordered in the pre-release, and according to Baueda is not yet available for general consumption... Western Front MG nest. I included it so you get a sneak peak at what's to come on the terrain side.



 

 


The only downside if you're not in the EU? Yeah, currency conversion and shipping. But that's not enough of a negative, in my opinion.

Order at: 1-48 combat.
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