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Thursday, January 14, 2016

Plast Craft Medieval House Unboxing/Assembly/Review...

Checking out the poll results (despite the small number of votes) it is clear that many of you think I should work on filling out my gaming table a bit more.  In light of those poll results, I decided to give Plast Craft games a look, and decided the safest thing was to order a single terrain piece, to check the quality and such BEFORE buying a whole table's worth of it. Seeing as I could use a medieval house to use with Saga, I decided to start there. 

A quick shout out.  I purchased this from MiniatureMarket.com, one of the online shops I sometimes frequent.  I live in KS, and their location is somewhere around St. Louis, MO. It may not exactly be a "local gaming store", but at about 5 hours away, it is pretty close to one as far as online retailers go!  The average cost of Plast Craft terrain is around $15 on MiniMarket.  I ordered it late on Thursday night, after hours, and ended up shipping the following day on Friday.  (I chose FedEx shipping). It was scheduled to arrive on their following Friday, and I was a bit bummed as I had no other hobby projects to work on.  To my surprise it actually showed up Tuesday afternoon, so 3 days early!  Below is my unboxing, or unenveloping, and overall review...

It arrived in a padded envelope.  I was expecting a small box, as I had seen on other reviews. (More on this in a second). Opening the envelope, I didn't expect to this time see a cardboard envelope inside!  Opening that, I finally got down to the actual materials.

Now, I believe Plast Craft's "Medieval" line is one of their oldest, and perhaps may have been their first foray into terrain making for a couple of different reasons.  As mentioned before, I've seen other reviews done of their Malifaux line, and things were a bit different. For starters, those came in a box.  Another reason is that this one came with instructions, while the Malifaux set I saw reviewed did not.  This kit also seemed less detailed than the Malifaux ones, and also the cuts may not have been as good as the ones I saw in the Malifaux terrain review.

In the package are the instructions, a set of resin pieces, and two of these sheets.  The material for the main product is PVC.  I was a little unsure as to how tough the material would be, as this is my terrain piece of this type, but I will say I'm pretty pleased!  It is more resilient than I expected, tougher than a foam core equivalent, but maybe not as rigid as MDF.  The tradeoff is, it is much easier to cut and manipulate.  The best way I would describe the material, is that it seems like plasti-card, the same material as plastic garage sale signs, or the same material that your credit cards are made of.  I've placed a standard GW square base on top, just so you can gauge the thickness.

Assembly.  As I mentioned earlier, the cuts seemed a bit rougher than what I had seen reviewed elsewhere, which once again leads me to believe this is one of the heir earlier sets, before perfecting their methods.  I was still able to get things punched out with relative ease.  That said, there was one boarder piece on the front of the building that did break trying to punch it out, but I'm not too concerned.  Assembly was pretty simple, just punch the pieces out only as needed, dry fit, then glue!  I used a super glue gel, and given the nature of the material, the pieces instantly bonded... Hence, why you dry fit things first just to check.  That really helped speed up assembly, as you could just punch, test for, glue, and repeat without pause.  The total assembly time was probably an hour or so, with a majority of that going towards the roof, which I'll get into later.
 One quick tip, save ALL the scraps until you are 100% done!  The resin pieces were a bit of a challenge, so I devised a way to simplify things.  I took the scraps I held onto, and blocked the openings. Then I took the resin pieces, and glued them into place.  It does mean that the resin pieces stick out a bit further than pictured, but in ok with that.  It also gives the resin pieces a solid backing to hold onto.  I decided to leave off the chimney, and I also left off the the shutters too to make our painting easier.  Not sure if I'll go back afterwards and put them back on or not.

Here it is fully assembled.  It is pretty solid, and will definitely hold up to general use just fine!  Now, one thing you may have noticed, is that it really doesn't come out exactly as pictured, the roof is just bare, and the cracked part of the masonry must have just been painted on.  My solution for the roof was to cut wood shingles for it, similar to the one pictured, using the leftover scrap pieces.  You could also use static grass for a thatch roof, and I've also heard of fur being used as roofs too.  I won't really comment on the historical accuracy of the piece, as I honestly didn't do a lot of research into it, but in this regards, ignorance is bliss.  I think it will fit in just fine with my Saga games.

Just as with assembly, painting was quick and easy.  It probably took me an hour and a half to two hours total, and again, the roof took up the most time!  I wanted to give it more of an aged, weathered look, so I definitely deviated from the method that Plast craft used.  Again, I'm really pleased with how it turned out, and it is easily my new favorite terrain piece!  Scale wise, it will easily fit in with my 28mm models, and I've pictured one of Saga figures from Fireforge Games and one of Bloodreavers from GW, just to give you a sense of scale.

All in all, I'm really pleased.  It went together easily, was very affordable, looks good, and seems pretty solid overall.  So, would I buy more?  The answer is a resounding YES!  In fact, I already did!  I ended up ordering about $100 worth of it to use with both frostgrave and sci-fi games like infinity, battletech, and whatever else!  If you are looking for something that will be easy to work with, affordable, but don't feel like you are ready for a ton of MDF terrain, I highly recommend you give Plast Craft games a try!  Do what I did, but just a single model first, and see for yourself!  Once my infinity terrain arrives, I'll probably revisit this post, and just compare and contrast the two terrain lines.

As always, thanks for reading!
- WuhSawBe -

1 comment:

  1. I'm looking at this as an alternative to picking up a 4ground dark ages saxon building. I think looking at your pics here, with some faux fur as thatch, it should fit in quite well.

    Very well written review and your finished house looks great. Think I'll steal the idea to make the mould/moss effect on my own. :)