Regular visitors to the site will know that one of my regular moans is that sci-fi figure manufacturers rarely produce a full range of figures: they usually produce enough to build an infantry squad, but after that you have to mix and match from other ranges in order to get support weapons, different types of vehicles etc.
Loud Ninja Games are better than most: their Chuhuac, for example, have a variety of infantry supported by gravbikes, really cool battlesuits, good-looking AFVs and APCs...everything you could need to represent a fast-moving rapid reaction or reconnaissance force. Cracking stuff.
Up to now, however, their Ikwen range has been limited to a set of what Eli has called militia: enough infantry-types to form a platoon but not much more. I use them as the technical support for the Chuhuac, usually having them positioned defending a supply point or landed transport vessel. Some rather nifty Ikwen terrain pieces are also available, but no support weapons, vehicles and so on.
My Ikwen Engineering Types
Late last year, however, Loud Ninja announced a new set of Ikwen figures: hardened fighters. These were another set of infantry, but this time Ikwen in full combat mode. Now I don't need any Ikwen 'hardened fighters', as that doesn't fit in with the way I use them, but I like to support the smaller manufacturers, and one can't moan on about having no variety if you don't buy them when the variety appears! I also quite fancied having my usual engineer-types suddenly morph into wild warriors ("never make the Ikwen angry") with a quick bit of on-table figure swapping.
The figures duly arrived and I've now painted them:
Ikwen Hardened Fighters
They are pretty nice figures, albeit a little rougher than their predecessors.
That, however, is not really the problem.
The problem is that they are a different size to the militia. Look:
You can see that the new Ikwen are about a head taller than their forefathers. The height isn't the only problem: look at the difference in size of the calves, width of the chest etc. The Ikwen were big anyway (fully explained by their background) now they are huge...and they just don't have the proportions of a 15mm figure: they look...wrong for 15mm.
A related, and annoying problem is what this means for the basing. Note how the original militia Ikwen neatly fits onto a 5p piece, as do the vast majority of 15mm infantry. Now look at the billy-big-balls width of the stance of the hardened fighter: his feet are almost as widely apart as a standard 15mm human is tall!
Not a problem, I hear you cry, he's a very tall Ikwen.
Yes, but he doesn't fit on any sort of sensible base any more.
Billy Big Balls
Anyhow, I have them now, and will have to get them onto the tabletop to see whether they annoy me enough to get rid of them.
Scale creep is a problem with 15mm sci-fi.
Khurasan has a couple of lovely ranges that are quite frankly so 20mm as to be unusable (the Soriog for example), and now it looks as if the Ikwen have unfortunately followed suite.
Vis Lardica is a website devoted to wargaming and military history, with a special emphasis on the company-sized rulesets produced by the TooFatLardies: I Ain't Been Shot Mum (WW2); Charlie Don't Surf (Vietnam); and Quadrant 13 (science fiction)
Welcome to Vis Lardica, a not-for-profit website mostly dedicated to the company-sized wargaming rules produced by the TooFatLardies, but encompassing my other gaming interests as well.