After finishing my early war Blitzkrieg Germans I felt the need to get dirty again. With all those rifles and not much else, those Germans had cleansed my spirit after building USMC and playing that lovely game entitled 'See how many BAR's you can fit in an army'. *shudder*
Late War Germans were an obvious choice after Blitzkrieg and I was really impressed with the Black Tree Design (BTD) Kradschutzen that I painted for that army. The decision then was made pretty easy when BTD had one of their frequent sales and I picked up a heap for 50% off.
BTD have an extensive range of late war Germans with assault rifles and panzerfausts as well as medics, officers, flamethrowers and such. You can pick up individual blisters of four for around $9 USD before sales which is pretty good, with sales it gets really cheap. (Yes! Let it rain metal! - J) BTD also offers army deals of thirty troops with support options and with a regular sale you can pick up miniatures for as little as $1 each.
BTD are a little inconsistent with time taken to fulfill your order but I think this may be due to the popularity of their ranges when big sales are on. You buy cheap during a sale, you best expect to wait a few weeks or a month while they juggle the influx. In saying that, I recently picked up sixty US Infantry in a big sale, order was fulfilled and items sent within three days; so anything can happen.
As well as having a really good range of late war Germans available, the quality is on par with other major manufacturers. I have bought and painted a diverse amount of miniatures from Warlord, Artizan, Crusader as well as Gorgon Studios and Gripping Beast and I can state that BTD are just as good as, if not better at times, them all. Individual miniatures from BTD can be hit and miss but so can those of other manufacturers.
The poses are dynamic with enough varieties to make sure you don't have to have the same sculpt in the same squad twice and they are generally full of character. My favorite is old mate dragging on a smoke with his rifle slung, probably doing sentry duty. The miniatures require minimal cleanup but there can be throw backs with significant flash that may need some work. These are also single sculpts, so no assembly required.
Painting them is a real strong point. They have plenty going on with their uniforms to give us wanna-be painters depth to work with, as well as lots of points to highlight. If you're like me and just want to experiment with camouflage patterns and get better, then what better miniatures exist to do this on?
Overall BTD offers the best value for money on the current market in my opinion, if you need to really watch your coin then they are hard to pass up. The sales are really regular and you get notification as a member through an email. (Check blacktreedesign.com for information on how to become a member. - J)
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