Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Spartan Pictures

The Arrival

"It is said that as many days as there are in the whole journey, so many are the men and horses that stand along the road, each horse and man at the interval of a day’s journey; and these are stayed neither by snow nor rain nor heat nor darkness from accomplishing their appointed course with all speed."

My Spartans arrived last night, thanks to the sharp eye of some nameless postal service worker somewhere. Thank you anonymous post-person. Actually, I think it was UPS. So thanks mr. ups dude.

I doubt I can add anything to the reviews that have been circulating around the Inter-webby about the new Conte Spartans. Most reviews I have read have been gushing, glowing, and usually announcing a revolution in plastic toy soldiers.

They ain't too far off.

I won't bore you with a long summation of my feelings on these little red wonders, only that I have already found myself attempting the twist the arm of some other poor toy soldier that wasn't meant to twist. The poseability of these figures has opened new doors for the hobby. Let's see... I bought 70 figures in 21 different poses, but on my table are 70 differently posed Spartans. You can't beat it with a stick.

The only thing missing are the Persians. I imagine we have quite a wait in front of us. My hope was that we would see Spartans and Persians available together in a series of playsets that would include some terrain pieces. I guess that wasn't meant to be. But OTSN is coming, and you never know what will show up.

Hey, you think other companies will try to create similar figures? And would it work for other eras? Is Conte pricing itself into oblivion at $24 a card? Or is $24 the price we are going to have to get used to? Do you think this hobby will still be around in 100 years? How about 50 years? 25 years? I guess as long as we all keep kickin', we'll find out in due time.

Pictures of spartans coming later tonight.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Waiting for Spartans

I now know what happened to my Spartans. Seems they got their marching orders a little confused and ended up in Idaho rather than Indiana. Those crazy Spartans....

But a little confusion in shipping addresses won't delay them too long I hope. The folks at Conte were very helpful and have gotten it taken care of. My table should be full of Spartans before no time.

Hey, has anybody heard any news on 21st Century. Wal-Mart seems to be going through a renovation in it's toy department, and I hope 21st Century still has a place once they are all done. After buying several pieces at a steep discount, it makes me worry. Hopefully they are just making room for the christmas season.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Wal-Mart Clearance on 21st Century

Check it out, I found two 32x vehicles and a couple of sets of 1/144 planes marked way down. $5 each for the vehicles, and $2.50 for the planes. Not bad for a trip to wally world.

I've been reading here and there that people are starting to get their Spartans in the mail. Nothing here yet, but as soon as I do have them, I'll be posting some pictures. I've been trying to work out a good way to recreate the Thermopylae pass scene. Need styrofoam. Lots and lots of it. If anybody has any good tips on how to find sheets of styrofoam cheap, I'm all ears.

Also, my house is still in a bit of disrepair from the water pipe incident the other day. Here is a picture of our living room. You can see the big dehumidifier and the fans that we are using to dry out the walls. And yes, that is concrete where the carpet should be. bummer. Though it would probably make for a great place to set up some figures for the next couple of weeks.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Conte Spartans Shipping

Just thought I would pass along, I just got a phone call from Conte that the Spartans are shipping out today. I don't know if they are calling everyone, of if I got a phone call simply because my credit card expired back in July, so they needed an updated card #. A bright note in an otherwise bummer of three day stretch. To be honest, I shouldn't be too bummed out. My insurance agreed to pay for everything that got damaged by my busted pipe. So, Stephanie and I got to go floor shopping today. Never knew that there were SOOOO many types of flooring. boggles my little mind.

Has anybody else ever had water damage? Right now we are running industrial sized fans. Very loud, but, if it keeps mold from setting in, I can live with it.

Rock on!

21C German Tank Destroyer at Wal-Mart

Saw this guy for the first time at my local Wal-Mart yesterday. It wasn't priced, and I didn't feel like walking it to a price check thingy.

They also had, and this may not interest most of you, the new G.I. Joe figure sets packaged with DVDs of the original cartoons. I always loved those Cartoons, and they are not currently available to purchase. Rhino used to have the rights, and released a season and a half, but then sold the rights to Sony, who have not released anything. You can buy those original Rhino DVDs, but they usually cost an arm and a leg.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

We're taking on water!!!

I had a water pipe bust on me today. The living room is drenched all the way through to the carpet pad. Not fun. The dog seems to like it. He's finding all sorts of new scents and stains as we pull up the carpet to sop up all the water. So, myself, I wouldn't be completely disappointed if the Conte Spartans don't show up for another month. New carpet, drywall, and some hard wood flooring, along with a boat load of Spartans don't really fit into my monthly budget all that well. Oh well. Maybe I can sell the dog. Anybody want a 4 pound poodle that has a taste for plastic?

I got some comments ( I LOVE getting comments) about the Hat figures being undersized. Don't know myself, haven't seen them, but that was always a fear. And one has to take into account, are they undersized compared to Conte and TSSD, or undersized compared to Marx and Airfix? If they are more akin to ESCI, that will be tough to swallow, though I could probably get over it. I've never had too much trouble mixing styles and sizes. And yet, there are small people, and larger people, but when it comes to standards, like helmets, rifles, ect. ect., there needs to be a concerted effort amongst companies to make everything jive.

Monday, August 4, 2008

More Hat 1/32

Hat has really picked up their production of 1/32. You can see here their upcoming Sacred Band set. If you skim around on their forum you will find several other upcoming 1/32 projects. A lot of them fall in the "Ancients" category. I haven't picked up any of their latest offerings, but will try to sometime soon. I'd like to get the Italian Allies and the Gallic Warband. They look cool.

I think I have checked the Conte website everyday waiting for more word about the plastic Spartans. Waiting truly is one of the most exciting things about this hobby. Once they actually arrive, and have been torn out of the packaging and neatly aligned on the shelf, the only thing left is to allow them to collect dust, occasionally getting them down off the shelf to examine, play with, or show a bewildered friend the extent of your madness. It's all part of this "collecting" disease we suffer from. The wanting is often a more powerful emotion than the joy you get from actually having something. I wonder if everyone is like this, or if I live in a mad little world all of my own. Don't worry, it doesn't keep me up at night. The only thing that keeps me up at night is my cat. She bites my fingers. At least she doesn't lick my eye lids, like she does to Stephanie.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Keeping an eye on Ebay

I was just skimmin around, and found these playsets of interest.

1. A huge Ben Hur playset, being sold with lots of extras along with the Conte Roman ship.

2. Captain Gallant Playset.

3. Alaskan Trading Post Playset

4. Barzso Aztecs and Conquistadors Playset

The Latest Catches

Last night, whilst perusing my local Wal-Mart, I finally found some of the new 21st Century Chinese Infantry. Now, I have no idea what I'm going to do with these figures, but the poses were so cool, and they were so unique, I had to get them. HAD TO!!! One downside, the guy with the binocs, his rifle is very fragile near the tip and is about ready to break off.

I have a tendency to paint my 21st Century figures in solid colors to match my other figures, but I doubt I'll do that with these. They look so nice, and besides, It would be hard to set up a scene with only six infantry. So I'll just leave them to be nice display items.

Stephanie, while at the Michael's craft store, picked me up a Lemax Spooky Town palm tree. I'm not sure what's so spooky about a palm tree, but it's going to look great with my next Pacific Island scene. It cost 4.99, but I reckon they'll go on sale once halloween gets a bit closer. I'ma gonna get me a whole load of em'. You can find the whole range of new Lemax items, including the Spooky town collection, at Just to warn you, the vast majority of it is NOT useful for our hobby. If the figures were just a touch smaller, we could probably really have some fun with them.