Forged in Battle Miniatures — Review
Forged in Battle is a new historical miniatures company. They produce 15mm resin and metal WW2 miniatures. The line includes both infantry and vehicles. The FiB infantry are traditional metal figures and are packaged in sets usable for Flames of War or other WW2 fireteam based games. We did not compare them directly but looking at them in the store they appear to maybe be a just a bit smaller (slighter) than the FoW infantry minis but we are not sure. Comparing the infantry figures that came with the 88mm guns they are less chunky than FoW figs. The quality seems just fine. The line is expanding but they currently have infantry for American, British, German, and Russian forces.
The Forged in Battle vehicle line currently only includes German vehicles but this will be expanded as well. They sell the vehicles in platoon packs or in individual blisters. The vehicle bodies are all one-piece resin castings that include a molded base (similar to the Flames of War trucks). Turrets, guns, and misc bits are cast in metal. The resin castings are extremely crisp and have almost no flash and almost no filled in areas. Of course these are all new castings coming from new molds so we will have to see how Forged in Battle does with quality over time. The metal is also very finely cast, crisp, and with only light mold lines. We did have a couple metal pieces that were not fully cast so they do have some issues there but seemingly no more than any other manufacturer. The bigger problem was that when looking at the various blisters in the store we noticed that most of the resin tracks on the tanks were broken in places (mostly where the tracks come off the front idler wheel). This is not a fault of FiB minis per se but FiB needs to package their products better to avoid this issue. It would be tough to recommend getting any FiB vehicles via mail order because a good percentage may very well arrive broken. But when intact (or if you don’t mind doing some repairs) the castings look very good and have real personality. Proportions seem about right. As with many resin minis with a cast base, the base is not perfectly level so you will need to do some sanding/filing if this bothers you.
Obviously any 15mm WW2 minis are going to be compared to Battlefront’s extensive Flames of War line. So below are a number of images comparing a Forged in Battle MkIVH tank with one from Battlefront. These images highlight a few issues. First, in the one blister image we circled the area where we saw the most track breakage on the tanks in other blisters (not just the MkIV tank but on all the tanks we looked at). The arrow points to an incomplete casting on the metal cupola.
The most obvious thing you will notice in the photos is the size difference between Forged in Battle tanks and Battlefront. The FiB MkIV scales well with the older Flames of War MkIVs but not their newer ones (the ones they started producing a couple years ago or so). The FiB tank is shorter in length, the turret is considerably smaller and the gun tube is shorter. The FiB tank is a bit taller in the photos but only because of the base. The two tanks area actually about the same height. We actually prefer the molded-on skirts of the FiB model to the separate plastic skirts on the Battlefront model but this is a personal preference.
Overall, the Forged in Battle line looks very nice but the breakage and scaling issues may be a problem depending on your preferences. For us the size difference was too great to mix FiB tanks in with similar units in our FoW games but as separate unique units they are fine. Their unique casts certainly add some variety with no customization needed.
Also see our comparison of a Battlefront Sherman with a Plastic Soldier Company Sherman and the PSC SdKfz 251D halftrack.
One thought on “Forged in Battle Miniatures — Review”
23Oct11 at 1853
[…] we had was, ‘How do they compare to Battlefront’s vehicles?’ We liked the Forged in Battle line but it did not scale very well with Battlefront and of course were still resin and metal. Having all plastic miniatures not only saves a bit of […]