by: Vinnie Branigan [ ]
introductionDragonís eighth Generation 2 figure set, is based around 4 retreating soldiers of the Luftwaffe Division, from the battle for Novgorod, sometime around January 19th, 1944. Hence the quilted parkaís and trousers.
the setThe set consists of four figures, all of which are wearing the quilted parkaís and trousers that would have been common during the Russian winter of 1944. Two figures are wearing the square quilted type, and two wearing the diamond pattern quilt. All four are wearing M43 pattern field caps. All four also have their heads cast downwards, looking somewhat dejected in defeat.
The first figure wears the square pattern quilt, and is striding, left foot forward. He caries an MP40 in his right hand, and carried full field gear of entrenching tool, Helmet, bread bag, canteen, knife, ammunition pouches and flask.
The fourth figure is striding right foot forward, and this time wears the diamond quilted pattern parka. He carries a Kar 98K slung over his right shoulder, ammunition pouches on his belt, as well as helmet, Bread bag etc. on his belt.
The second and third figures are interesting in that one appears to be injured and is being helped by the other figure. One carries a rifle in his right hand, whilst the other has it slung over his chest. The injured figure, has the fabric on his lower left leg torn, exposing flesh, which should present some interesting painting opportunities, the rip is really quite big and well sculpted too.
detail Looking closely, with a big magnifying glass you can see that all the barrels of the MP40ís and Kar 98ís are actually drilled out at the endÖ due to Dragonís proficient use of slide moulding technology. The rifles come with separate bolt detail, and the Kar 98 even has small 5 shell clips! The ammunition pouches for the Kar 98 even has the option of an open, empty one that can be used. The canteens in the kit are provided as two options as well, a closed one or with separate lid. As are the flasks.
There are mould seams present on all the figures arms and legs, but due to the torsoís of each figure being moulded in two pieces, back and front, there are none to remove on these. All the arms do have slightly hollowed out ends, which makes for making the attachment area of the hands look realistic. The pattern itself on the jackets and trousers, I canít fault. It looks good. Very good. The boots are moulded with tread patterns on the soles, and again there is a seam to remove, but also again, this is very simple and well placed for removal. Reaching the jackets, the hood and front turned back collars are treated as separate parts which really makes them look realistic, since a good undercut can be achieved.
The heads on all four figures could be a problem. They are extremely well cast as you can see from the pictures, with excellent expressions as well. However, when the 2nd Generation figures were first introduced, along with the concept of faces being provided separately from the heads, we were given an explanation that the Ďjoiní would be where the helmet strap went. These four figures arenít wearing helmets. Removing the join could be difficult. Having said that, a lot of modelers will replace the heads with those from a resin manufacturer, so it might not be hat much of a problem.
We are also given a small photo etched fret, on which there are cap insignia, belt buckles, and rifle slings. The caps need the plastic insignia removing if the etched ones are to be fitted.
Assembling one figure took me about an hour including clean up off the sprue, which isnít bad. The jacket has 4 separate pieces that hang below the belt, and these could be a problem to fit without gaps. They fell into place nicely enough, but there just didnít seem to be enough circumference there to fit around the top of the trousers. If you take your time, that should be the only place you might need filler. Use liquid cement to really soften up the arm/torso joints, and there shouldnít be any need for filler here.
in conclusionThis has to be my favourite 2nd Generation figure set yet. The poses, the moulding, and the general look of all four figures. Very highly recommended indeed.
My thanks to Dragon for the review sample.