Monday, 17 January 2011

Wargaming on the Cheap?


I have been wondering if it is actually to collect an entire force for £10 or less.

Back in the day when I first started gaming GW sold 3 tanks for a tenner and the same price bought you 36 imperial guard. Fantasy wise, figures were £1.25 each which meant that ones money went quite a way. Nowadays its a different story with many figures costing £10+ each!

The best option seems to either go for the cheap Mageknight or Dungeons and Dragons pre-painted plastics or to choose a different scale!

The first option has its plus points as I have in the past used a similar approach to get some rather nice figures cheaply. However, one must be prepared to have slightly soft detail and somewhat bendy figures plus a lack of variation as most have a single sculpt for any given miniature.

I did well with the other option over on my Stainless Steel Rat blog where I managed to get quite a pile of lead for relatively little outlay by electing for 15mm scale. The choice to play mainly skirmish games aided this but for fantasy, I sometimes want to see a large-ish army.

I have also got very little gaming space at present so collecting an army of any real size is out of the question and I am attempting to make do with skirmish forces for my Leviathan project.

I do however want to be able to play larger actions from time to time as my Axebite Pass campaign will call for a mixture of skirmishes and several pitched battles so how can I represent this without spending a fortune or running out of space?

The answer seems to be with dropping the scale down dramatically. The reduced space, price and painting time are all attractive and a massed army can look really spectacular too!

Therefore I am looking into placing a small order with IRREGULAR MINIATURES, who produce a vast range of figures in 6mm scale that could solve my dilemma. I have painted their miniatures before and have been struck by just how nice they look when painted (unpainted they look really quite rough which is really off putting).

Irregular 6mm Miniatures Painted By Andrew Taylor

As you can see from the image above a splash of paint can have amazing results!

As to the gaming surface, I plan on building a small gaming board, perhaps 2x2' which will allow me to play a decent sized game and can easily be stored. It will also give me the opportunity to test out my 28mm army lists quickly and without spending too much. An added benefit is that the units painted will be generic enough to be useful in several different systems!

I will post my progress as and when I can but I figure I will be able to get the first few rounds of the campaign season in relatively quickly using this approach!

All the best!


  1. Careful though, some of their monsters are very badly done. My mate got the 2mm dragon and it looks like a dog with wings!

    Good luck though, 6mm fantasy has always had some kind of appeal with me.

  2. Hi!
    I know! Their monsters are a bit shady but I will sculpt all the warengines and stuff too!

    This will go alongside my 28mm stuff so I can choose to skirmish or mass battle!

    All the best

  3. On a budget I'd say have a look at the 20mm soft plastics (and not they don't flake unless you do things to them you wouldn't do to a metal figure 0 acrylic paint shrinks onto a figure).

    This blog is quite inspiring:

  4. Now Thats an option I hadn't thought of!

    I do find the detail a little soft on the sculpts though, I may have a butchers to see if I can get any on the cheap!

    All the best!