by: Darren Baker [ ]
When it comes to modern combat troops I can only think of the US troops being covered with several choices, but even then you are not exactly spoilt for choice. It is why I was very pleased to see this offering from Gecko Models covering modern British Infantry. So letís waste no more time and delve into this offering.
This offering from Gecko Models is very well protected being inside a flip top cardboard box with an end opening carton over that, the result is a visually pleasing product that is superbly protected both on the shelf and in the post. There are no less than eleven sprues inside which are packed in a sealed plastic bag and so even if a piece should come loose it should be in the bag (there was a leg loose in this one); also provided with this offering is a decal sheet and photo etched fret. Lastly there is an instruction booklet that also covers the painting guide for the figures.
This offering provides four figures and so the number of sprues kind of lets you know this is not your average figure set in 1/35th scale. The moulding quality in this offering is the very high standard I have come to expect from Gecko Models. Close examination only gives me one thing that if I was being pedantic I could complain about and that would be that seam lines are present, but how many injection moulded figures do not have seam lines? I do have a critique and that is the eye guards supplied on the alternate heads are moulded on the face and would have been better as clear parts. The side portions of the body armour are separate parts and I would only expect to see this on larger scale figures.
The torso and legs break down in the expected manner and all of the detail is very well done, especially the body armour that has great definition. One of the kneeling figures does have a leg in two parts, but for the life of me I cannot see why Gecko Models has taken this route; this is not a complaint but an observation. A really nice touch here is that the figures that are kneeling have separate tread detail parts for the exposed sole. Another nice touch here is that separate knee pads are provided for the figures and so provides especially good undercut detail.
The arms of the figures are single pieces with separate hands in some cases. The hands are all depicted wearing combat gloves and the detail on both the gloves and the fingers is exceptional in my opinion. The heads without the visor are very good from a detail aspect with good definition in all respects. The heads with the visors I personally donít find appealing as the look odd, but once painted who knows how the visual result will appeal. There are two helmet options provided for the figures and I am a little stumped as to what the difference is; I am sure that the Mk 7 helmet is provided, but I am otherwise at a loss.
The decals provided here are stunning inclusions due to having especially good attention to detail on them; from union jacks to rank and conflict zone force badges. Moving back to the plastic and we are provided with separate backpacks, camel packs, ammunition pouches to name just a few of what is on offer in this truly exceptional figure set.
Moving onto the offensive weaponry and we are provided with three L85A2ís and an L110A2. The detail on the weapons is of a high degree of accuracy, with the L85A2 rifles looking odd to me due to having the carry handle removed and a top mounted site in its place; this is all perfectly accurate it just looks odd when you are used to seeing the handle there. The muzzle of the weapons will need to be drilled to improve the look as slide moulding has not been used here. The L110A2 is also a very accurate looking weapon in all respects, but again the muzzle needs to be addressed. I was very pleased to see the inclusion of photo etched rifle slings included with the model and is something that is rarely seen.
An unusual inclusion with this set is four pieces of wall with bullet impacts present on the pieces and so with a base you have a diorama with everything in the box.
If you want some modern British troops for any reason in 1/35th scale then this offering from Gecko Models is an absolute must have unless going for resin models. The attention to detail and inclusion of decals and photo etch make this a one stop purchase that I feel marks Gecko Models as one of the very best injection moulded plastic manufacturers. This truly is a model with all of the bells and whistles included.