Monday 15 December 2014

Painting Warlord Games Napoleonic Infantry

I got a couple of freebies at Crisis, well, my chum got one and I got one but both ended up in my grubby little mitts.

They were sample sprues from Warlord Games, one Napoleonic British infantry and the other Hanoverian infantry.

The sprues each comprise of five bodies (marching pose, one is an 'elite' ranker), five regular heads, one bandaged with cap and one bareheaded head, five backpacks (with subtle variations) and an additional pair of 'elite' wings.

There was no flash and only a few mould lines which scraped off easily.

It took but a minute or two to snip the pieces out and glue them together. I did take the precaution of washing the complete sprue in some warm soapy water first.

A close-up of the figure shows that there is a lot of detail on the figure but I am depending on the painting technique to bring it out.

I took my cue from an article on the Warlord Games website.

I made one or two slight changes to fit my own style namely to not use a spray undercoat/basecoat. I'm not a great fan of spray painting although it does have its place.

I started with red all over the jacket area.

Then dark-ish grey over the trousers, being neat along the junction of the jacket and then flesh all over the head and hands.

Then it was simply a case of block painting in the finer details, collars, cuffs, straps, backpack, musket etc. The most difficult part is probably the lace and the straps. I'm 64 and I can manage so I dare say most of you will manage too.

The end result looks a little like this although I did touch up one or two overpainted areas.

I diverged again from the Warlord treatment in that I drybrushed the black shako cover with dark grey to bring out a little of the detail.

The final stage is a brush applied coat of Army Painter Strong Tone and looks like this.

I gave the figures a couple of coats of matt varnish.

I was a wee bit disappointed with the overall tone of the figure, a bit dark I thought.

In an attempt to resolve this I painted the second sprue, the Hanoverians, in a similar fashion with a couple of differences. After all the painting was completed I varnished the figure before applying the Strong Tone slightly watered down and also painted some of the shading rather than expect the Strong Tone to do it. I think it made the figure a little less dark.

What do you think?

The figures themselves are lovely, just enough variation in the poses to simulate a unit marching along but not in a parade ground manner. The heads can also be positioned a slight angles to further add variety.

I think I am quite inclined to buy a few boxes of these figures to make up complete units which will adorn someones army. Now when is my next show?


  1. I am not usually a fan of plastics. The main reason being the fiddliness of assembly. But I like the fact that those only require fitting of heads and backpacks. I agree that the first batch looked a bit dark, but then with the second batch I think the army painter stuff makes the trousers look dirty/muddy (not inappropriate for figures in the field). Still, they look fine for wargame armies with either method you used. Get a bunch in units and they should do nicely.

  2. I have as box of Hanoverians on order so we will see soon enough what a whole unit looks like.

  3. Not bad at all. What about trying a light black wash for the gray trousers instead? They're fine as they are in my book though.

    1. The Strong Tone is pretty well black anyway and diluting it makes it lighter.

      It will suffice for the time being.

  4. Looking good, although I agree, the Hannovarians look better! One thing that also looks good is to highlight after the Strong Tone, but I can see the reason why to use it with the British (it is hard to get a good coverage with both red and white when used together without lots of coats = time) and this would rather defeat that. I am still looking for fast options when I start my British in earnest, so I will be watching this with a keen interest!

    BTW… you should have told me about the freebies at Crisis! ;-) Although I already got a pretty good deal from Warlord, so I am not complaining!

    1. Hi Burkhard

      I'm really looking for a reasonable finish that can be done without a great deal of effort. I cannot hope to match the quality of painting that you produce so what I get from this technique is good enough for me.

      The freebies were part of the welcome pack at the door for paying entrants. This cost 10 euros. I expect you came as an exhibitor which cost you nothing.

  5. Great job, they look splendid!