So I decided to try Flames of War.
When I say I decided to "try" it, don't misunderstand me and think that by that I mean I decided to find a demo game or two, play them, think about it, look at some books, examine some models, sleep on it, and maybe in the future start putting money into it.
No, I mean I already chose a faction (Soviets) and have started buying books and models.
At first, it might seems like that's a stupid way to proceed. What if I hate it? What if I'm no good at it? What if I can't find anyone to play with?
Well none of that really maters, because I've realized that 95% of my enjoyment of wargames comes from building the armies. I love to build models, I love to paint minis, and I love the feeling of working toward building something cool. I may never play Flames of War, but I'm gonna have an awesome Soviet force for it anyway.
That said, I don't want to rip the bank down doing it. I make a comfortable living but that's not enough to let me spend money stupidly.
I started off with some inspiration, my first tank. I picked up the resin/metal T-34 obr 1942 at my FLGS (Friendly Local Gaming Store). It ran about $13 and is absolutely horrible. The resin is so brittle I broke the fenders twice (in 2 separate places) on the resin hull. Both times were before I had glued any other parts to it. The first time, I dropped it from a height of about 3" onto my wooden dining room table, and I have no idea how the second happened. I was able to glue the broken bits back on, but sheesh. After gluing and painting the model it looks decent, but man... $13 per tank would kill me even if the quality was decent.
So I started to explore other options. I know Battlefront sells all plastic tanks in various box sets and come in at around $9 per tanks. That's still steep. If I wanted to build a full size tank company I'm looking at $90. I could break that up into two small companies and add an HQ command tank and have the minimum size Tank battalion with that, but what fun would that be?
So I bought a box of 5 tanks from Plastic Soldier, at a price that comes in around $5 per tank. That's more like it. I just received the box yesterday so I haven't started building them, but already I'm pleased to see I can build the tanks as 1942 T-34s or 1943 T-34/85s. I haven't decided yet which way to go with that, but effectively I have a complete small tank company for half price. I also ordered a box of 2 T-34s made by Battlefront in plastic, so I can compare the kits, but I have a feeling it won't matter much. The Plastic Soldier kits are great and have plenty of detail for wargaming.
Once I have both boxes in hand, I'm thinking of doing an unboxing write-up on them.