Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Further "further thoughts on samurai"

The new samurai are here!! The new samurai are here!!

On May 10th, I wrote a post, "Further thoughts on samurai". After a rather ridiculous amount of elapsed time, both Baccus and Pendraken have finally supplied my small one-item orders. Pendraken took 3 weeks from submission of my order to mail it out (and then only after I sent a semi-polite WTF email) and Baccus took 2 1/2 weeks. Both orders took a further 2 1/2 weeks in the mail. I get things from China in 5-6 days! Well, I can't really blame the companies for postal inefficiency, but 3 weeks from order to shipping? Really!?! Ok, I'm finished bitching (whinging) now. 

When I began this, I intended it to be a comparison between 6mm and 10mm samurai, so I could decide which scale to go forward with. That being the case, I ordered as close to the same item from each company as possible. From Pendraken, I got foot samurai with bows (pack# SAM4). Baccus doesn't make foot samurai with bows, so the closest that I could get is ashigaru with bows (pack# SAM14):
Samurai armies must have used the bow as a direct fire weapon, as opposed to the European tradition of them being used for indirect fire. Both figures seem to be firing at a fairly flat trajectory. 

Pendraken's pack includes 30 figures (15 if it's cavalry) all in just one pose. There are no sashimono, but the figures are nicely detailed. The tiny quivers clearly have arrows in them. Overall, maybe not the most animated pose, but quite an attractive figure. 

The Baccus pack holds 96 figures (45 for cavalry and 15 for personalities), 92 of which are the same pose, but each figure has a sashimono. The other 4 figures are nobori guys:
Being smaller, the detail isn't as intricate, but for 6mm, they are very good. All the main features are clearly visible and well defined. I very much like that every figure has a sashimono and that a few nobori are included all in the one price. What I'm less pleased about is that the figures are cast as strips of four, which is all well and good, except that they're cast as files and not ranks:
They aren't standing side by side, but rather, one behind another. So it's not going to be a matter of painting whole strips and then gluing them down as is. The figures will have to be separated and glued down individually. You really can't even use them two by two because of the flat trajectory they're firing at. It makes them all appear to be shooting each other in the back of the head. Yes, I could bend all their bow arms up, but when you're doing 96+ figures at a time, that's damned tedious.

So, where do we go from here? Given that with Pendraken figures, I'll have to puchase separate sashimono packs (I don't know how many to a pack, but certainly not "masses") and being larger, they're slightly less bang for the buck, I'm going to go with Baccus. Neither line is exhaustive and some significant (and irritating) gaps exist in both, but overall, given my MEA ("mass-effect addiction"), 6mm is the better choice, if slightly more of a headache to paint.

I've also received my rules:
so let's get reading!

Anyone in the market for a totally unused bag of Pendraken 10mm foot samurai with bow? First come, first served. Make me a reasonable offer and these little guys are yours. Otherwise, off to eBay we go. 


  1. Baccus does do Samurai Archers, but they are in the "Medieval Samurai" representing units from the Gempei wars. These are the first Samurai figs that Baccus did, so the quality is not as great as the Age of War collection. I have a bunch of the older figures left over after my "Samurai Battles -Travel Edition" project. If you are interested I would be happy to donate them to your cause.

    1. Yes please and thank you. Drop me an email. frnqtr@yahoo.com