I have already done a few previews of the Victrix Hoplite endeavour. One contrasting Immortal/Warlord to Victrix in terms of historical accuracy. One note on a site comparing the size of Immortal/Warlord and Victrix. And a rant about how weirdly they have decided to package hoplites from different times and places.
Now I’ve had a box for a few weeks and have been able to put a few of them together and can wrap up my opinions in this rather quick and dirty review (the pictures are even more raw then the text as usual). I have loosely tried to stick to the review formula of the Plastic Soldier Review.
Quality of Sculpts and Poses 9/10
The sculpts are well done. Although I am normally attracted to less chunky styles these pass my esthetic barrier. I really like the sculpting of the faces, the solid breastplates, the arms and the excellent poses. The tube and yoke corselets look fine as well in terms of quality of the sculpting. There is at least on hand that looks a bit weird and one helmet that looks bad as it has no nose guard but otherwise a more Corinthian style. Not sure if its sculpted badly or badly researched. The “skirts” could have been sculpted even better to match more closely depictions on ceramics.
Quality of Molds 9/10
The molds work fine and the figures are easy enough to clean up — probably a bit easier then the Immortal/Warlord hoplites. Unlike Immortal/Warlord the sprues are however very sparsely populated. A benefit is that its possible to really get a clipper in there when removing pieces from the sprues but there are other downparts.
The Number of Parts 7/10
The sprues could easily have included a few more heads to make this box more useful for those of us that want to pick a time frame that is more narrow than two hundred years. Its incredibly annoying to be stuck with two to three heads that I have no use for while having to improvise heads for the bodies without heads. And also to have to use the unarmoured heads for such a big proportion of the figures since the bare heads are a part of the eight available for the eight bodies per sprue. It really wouldn’t have taken much for them to just include a few more heads.
There are plenty enough of arms and weapons and other paraphernilia, at least for me that focus on equipping the figures with spears.
Historical Accuracy 6/10
Since this set covers a wide period of time that alone means that the historical accuracy can’t be top notch. I don’t care if the historical accuracy is top notch but I really don’t want glaring errors or issues that makes it hard to use the figures. Due to the already mentioned problem of too few head options I will have to modify heads from this or other boxes in order to use all the included bodies. I have already made a head with a pilos helmet from what I recall was a Fireforge Games sergeant head. The Corinthian helmets have better overall shapes than most offerings out there but the nose guards are pretty untypical — either too wide or non-existent (if that Chalcidic looking helmet is really intended to be a Corinthian..)
Given that the bodies are meant to cover a wide period of time they work fine. The belt-like waists do look a bit too unhistoric. Although I have mentioned a historic presedence for them they are sure not typical. The greaves look really good — better than a lot of reenactors’ greaves. There are some form of wrist bands on the arms. I don’t understand why they are there.
The weapons are not that historically accurate. I have no real problem with the swords when seen from a distance but the sauroter (the spearpoint at the back end) looks like crap. I just can’t see how they could have designed it that badly. I don’t really like that the midpoints of all spears have handles. Ok with handles on a few of them but why put it on all of them. That issue is not so huge though.
I perceive the shields to have more typical proportions than the Immortal/Warlord ones. They are well-shaped and the shield drapes look great.
Total score: 31/40
Edited to add: In total I can definitely recommend this box. There are some obvious problems but I will buy more of the Victrix hoplites. I’ll just wait until most of them have been released so I know which boxes give me most of what I want. If you are most interested in historical accuracy and slender sculpts then Immortal/Warlord might be best. But if you want a good blend of decent historical accuracy, great poses and good sculpts then Victrix is your thing.
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