Saturday, August 7, 2021

Wargames Atlantic: Plastic Napoleonic Prussian Reserve Infantry (1813-1815) Reviewed!

Today we will take an extensive look at the brand new Wargames Atlantic Prussian Reserve (1813-1815)! These new 28mm multi-part hard-plastic miniatures are the second set of their new Napoleon's Wars range. The Napoleon's War range covers all sorts of Napoleonic era themed miniatures such as the already released iconic British Riflemen. The trumpets sound and boots and hooves thunder over the fields of battle as Napoleon's wars raged across Europe and around the world. Our ever-expanding range will bring both iconic units and less well known ones to your tabletop.

The Prussian Reserve (1813-1815) Miniatures

The boxed set contains enough hard-plastic parts to create no less than 60 28mm infantry in several unique marching poses. These miniatures are supplied on 10 identical sprues each containing enough parts to create six soldiers armed with muskets. This boxed set is the first Army Builder set aimed at supplying a large amount of similar miniatures to bulk out units and armies with easy to assemble miniatures with much less parts than usually supplied by Wargames Atlantic. This way you can quickly and affordably assemble units although you will need to purchase your command miniatures from other manufacturers. The miniatures are supplied in a nicely illustrated box with artwork by the talented Peter Dennis and pictures of the painted miniatures by Matthew Leahy which are a great painting reference. The miniatures were digitally sculpted by Thieu Duong and are tooled and manufactured in China. The historical research for the boxed set was done by Dr. Stephen Summerfield and Thomas Young.

As mentionned before each individual sprue contains enough parts to assemble six soldiers in marching poses dressed in the provisional grey reserve infantry uniform with either covered shako or peaked cap. The marching pose is most suited for this particular historical period in which large armies of conscripted soldiers clashed in large formations on the bloody battlefields of Europe and the world. In this boxed set you receive no less than 60 miniatures at the same price as the regular Wargames Atlantic miniature boxed sets which were already very well-priced. Although minimal separate parts are included you can further customize your soldiers with 12 unique heads in both covered shako or peaked cap further more there are also some individual rolled blanket or rolled greatcoat pieces included. As mentionned before no command miniatures are included as this box solely focussing on bringing the needed masses to your tabletop battlefields. These command miniatures can easily be sourced with other historical miniature manufacturers such as Perry Miniatures or Warlord Games.

Let's take short look at the history of these soldiers, their formation and uniforms. After the military defeats of 1806/07, Prussia was forced by victorious France to reduce their once magnificient standing army to only 42,000 men. Although forced to only maintain this small amount of men, Prussia implemented the 'Krumper' system to partially avoid these restrictions. This system was based on men passing through the army in rotation, allowing them to be sufficiently trained and then to be replaced by new recruits. When the Wars of Liberation began in 1813, Prussia could muster a substantial quantity of trained men to form reserve infantry units and expand the already standing army army. Over 40 reserve battalions were eventually formed and organized into a dozen Reserve Infantry Regiments. Throughout the rest of the Napoleonic Wars Prussia made good use of these men in all its campaigns. Although these many men were now available, funding was lacking as regular infantry units were first served with weapons and uniforms. To tackle these practical issues a specially designed simple and cheap grey uniform along with peaked cap was supplied to these reserve units. During the army reorganisation of March 1815, when the reservists were incorporated into the line infantry, an attempt was made to supply them with standard Prussian equipment. The sudden return of Napoleon and the start of the 100 days' campaign meant that not all reserve units could be equipped with standard Prussian uniform. As a result, although some of the officers had already been equipped with the standard Prussian line infantry uniform, many infantry units went into battle wearing the provisional grey or British-supplied uniforms, or other mixtures of foreign supplied or captured items.

Assembling your Prussian Reservists

These miniatures are designed as quick to build Army Builder miniatures so the assembly part of this review will be rather short by design. The miniatures supplied in this boxed set are build from only two parts being the body and the head (you can also further add a blanket roll) so very quick and easy to build with minimal hassle and quite fun too. The assembly options are very limited which can be good when assembling big units, you can choose between heads with covered shakos and peaked caps mounted on the six different marching body poses. The quality of these miniatures is also good with only very thin mouldlines on both sides of the miniatures which can easily be removed with a sharp hobby knife. In the pictures below you can see the assembled Prussian Reservists.

The Scale Comparison

I have added some scale comparison pictures with other popular brands such as Perry Miniatures, Wargames Foundry and Warlord Games. As you can see these are a very good match for the Perry Miniatures plastic Prussian Infantry but the old plastic Warlord Games Prussian Landwehr are much bigger. Not entirely sure but think the newer version of the Warlord Games Prussian Landwehr would be a better fit. Taking a look at the metal miniatures, the Wargames Foundry miniatures are smaller but might be usable if you put them on slightly higher bases although that depends on personal taste.

The Conclusion

The Prussian Reserve Infantry set by Wargames Atlantic is their second model kit for the Napoleon's War miniature range and also their very first Army Builder set offering affordable quantity and quality to bulk out your units and armies. This new type of boxed sets is aimed at supplying large amounts of similarly posed miniatures with minimal separate parts in this case only separate heads and some equipment. Although this boxed set lacks command miniatures, it's so very well-priced that this isn't a very big issue as you can easily sort your own command miniatures by purchasing some plastic, resin or metal alternatives from other wargame manufacturers. 

These miniatures are great to start or further bolster your Napoleonic Prussian armies as with minimal assembly, you have these miniatures tabletop ready in no time. It's also the first time that this particular infantry troop type is available in hard-plastic so that's great as you can now almost field a fully plastic Napoleonic Prussian army with the sole exception of plastic artillery. The quality and price of these miniatures is very good, with one boxed set containing 60 hard-plastic multi-part miniatures retailing for £25.00 with further discounts for larger amounts of boxed sets. You can buy these very useful miniatures now directly from Wargames Atlantic or from other distributors and retailers worldwide. Picture of the painted miniatures by Francesco Thau below taken from Wargames Atlantic.

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Disclaimer - We received these miniatures from Wargames Atlantic for reviewing purposes. Please note that this doesn't influence our review as we always strive to supply you with our own independent and honest opinion about the wargame products reviewed.

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Tony does stuff said...

Thank you for this. I found the review and comparison shots really useful.

Wargame News and Terrain Blog said...

Thanks Tony, glad you found the review of interest!