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Friday, October 2, 2015

Heroics and Ros Review

by Allen Smith

Ok.  This has been a long time coming, so my apologies.  Really!

Before the review, a bit of background.  I am crazy excited about a Cold War Gone Hot expansion to FoW.  When I was much, much younger my Dad took me to Origins.  That year, the convention was in Detroit, Michigan.  I remember a few things about the con, specifically that we entered the Squad Leader Tournament, I bought an original copy of the Avalon Hill game Midway, and we played an awesome 6mm NATO v. WARPAC game on some awesome terrain.  While I recently sold my collection of Squad Leader games, I still have Midway!  And I still remember that 6mm game!

My personal struggle with modern armor based conflict is that the rules I have tried just don’t do it for me.  That does not mean that the rules are poor or not realistic.  This is a personal opinion.  So I continue to look for rules that would work.

And then FoW announces Team Yankee.

In the words of a good friend…  Ohhhhh yyyeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahh!

While this may get lost in the posts and threads and discussions, I think the core rules for FoW is elegant in its simplicity.  I love it.  It is a great game.  It starts to falter at the extremes, but the core system is solid.  The game looks right and feels right.  And it would work with moderns.

But… and a big issue to me…

The scale is off for modern armor.  15mm is just too big.  And I really don't want to rehash previous threads.  What I do want to do is put down 4 or 6 or 8 M1 tanks on the table!  Or I want to have 8 IDF S’hots on the table.  And that means I get 32 T-55s!  And that many 15mm armor units on a table just does not cut it for me from a "look" perspective.

So 6mm is the sweet spot.  And that generally means GHQ.

GHQ is without a doubt, the world’s leading manufacturer for 6mm WWII and Modern units.  They have great stuff and an amazing level of detail.  Now they are technically not 6mm (1:300), but they are close enough.  For that detail, you will pay a price.  The retail amount for an IDF Magach 3 is $2.39 USD, before tax and before shipping.  The other issue is that you need to purchase these in blisters or box sets, so the Magach comes in a blister of 5 which retails for $11.95.  This is certainly cheaper than 15mm from BF, where a Magach 3 will cost $18.50 each, sold in a box of 2.  Of course this is retail and many stores are offering deep discounts on AIW stuff from BF.

However there is another option…

Heroics and Ros

I was pointed in this direction by my local FLGS owners who carry H&R.  A quick look at some moderns and I was hooked.  The detail is really good, but less that GHQ.  But the price point is fantastic. At around $.75 a tank, this is great.  So, being hooked, I ordered over 750 models directly from H&R.  I ended up going direct due to the way that shipping is calculated and if you are interested in the details, just send me a note.

I went big on AIW and CWGH / Team Yankee.  Due to the scale and the cost difference, I basically purchased the entire Fate of a Nation book.  That means I got enough stuff to field the UAR, IDF and Jordanians. Or stated another way, 451 models of tanks, vehicles, helicopters and even more guns and infantry.  For CWGH, I ordered 338 models of tanks, vehicles, helicopters and infantry.  For the math challenged out there, that is 789 items.

Let’s compare that cost for a second:







Now in full disclosure, an order the size of mine would get additional discounting in the retail price, which is what I received from H&R.  So the GHQ number would probably be in the $1,900 range and the BF number would be less too. That being said, let the numbers sink in for a second.  While you are going to pay $18.50 for your single M1 tank from BF, I have purchased an entire company’s worth of M1 tanks from H&R!

But the cost isn’t the story, the models are the story!  So how do they look?!

In one word: FANTASTIC!

Let’s review!

First, almost 800 tanks, vehicles, helicopters, aircraft, guns and infantry is a LOT of stuff (the above is a mere sample).  Just sifting through, confirming the order and categorizing the units took a bit of time.  To speed the process, I decided to use blue tack and attach all the models to hobby sticks.
I then labeled each stick with the HR part number, the nation and the actual unit. I am embarrassed to say that this took many hours to do – simply due to the volume!  I also had made a hand written sheet for each nation based on my order.  As I put the models on the sticks, I crossed them off the list.

As you can see from the pictures below, the models are pretty darn good.  I like the fact that the jeeps are all a single cast for the recoilless version.  Same is true for the M113 with recoilless.  I am told the GHQ model requires gluing the two pieces together.  The HUMVEE with TOW does require you to glue the TOW on the model, but that is not a big deal at all.

After all that is done, it is time to prime!

And since I was going to run a 6mm game at Historicon, I focused my painting on the UAR and the IDF.

The models took to the primer perfectly.  I used the Vallejo Surface primers here – IDF got the IDF Sand Grey and the UAR go the Desert Tan Base.
These are IDF Magachs.
IDF box #1...
Some UAR primed
UAR T-55 primed
Since this is 6mm and I am not entering them in a painting contest, I simply painted the tracks and the spotlights.
 After those details, I gave the entire model a pin wash.  Yes, a pin wash.  I tried a full wash, but I just did not like the effect on the UAR.  I wanted the tan to really show through.  So I grabbed my MIG Dark Wash, a super fine brush, a pair of magnifying reading glasses and went to it!  I ended up loving the results.

As you look at the pictures, you can see the Magach has great detail on the model.
The IDF Centurion is just below.
As for the UAR, here is a completed T-55

In conclusion, I am big fan of 6mm and a big fan of H&R.  If you are looking for the most detailed figure in 6mm, then you should consider GHQ.  I am looking for the sweet spot between price and detail, which H&R fits perfectly.  Plus for the price of a T-55 Company from Battlefront, I get the whole book of Fate of a Nation PLUS Cold War Gone Hot.  I like my choice!

I give H&R models a score of 10 6mm Magachs out of 10, which would be the same as 3 15mm Magachs out of 3!


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