Let me begin by saying this: I understand there to be multiple generations of Minifigs miniatures. This figure was ordered in late 2001 from Heritage Crest. It arrived in a plastic clamshell package, and has the code 29NB on the underside of the base. Which generation it hails from I don’t know. (May 1, 2005 Update: This is a third generation figure)
Overall this is a pretty nice figure. The detail is pretty good. The sculptor was clearly going for moderate levels of detail that would be easy to paint. In that regard he has succeeded. Equipment is clean, geometric, and readily distinguished. Straps are flat and don’t degenerate into looking like a computer network gone haywire. The rifle has nice detail and paints up well. The cuffs are sculpted but smooth. The bayonet looks a bit large and the bedroll perhaps a tad small, but these are minor criticisms. The only real disappointment if the face. There’s just not a lot there to work with.
Minifigs score further points because the proportions of this figure are good. Hands and face are proportionate, legs are the right length, and the arms are the proper girth. The right foot looks a bit small, but not fatally so. Generally I think this sculptor must have used good reference to get the anatomical proportions right. Bravo!
The pose is also very good. This is a serious advance pose that manages not to fall prey to the super-hero posing of Old Glory or the too static Naismith. He clearly plans to move those Frogs off that ridge. (Note: the pose quality of Minifigs seems to vary - I have a pack of French that lean a little toward the Old Glory style).
As for variety in the poses, this is very limited. The pack I ordered (1501-1015 Stovepipe Advancing) had just this one pose among the 18 soldiers. There were 2 each of drummers, officers and standard bearers, but only one pose for each.
Minifigs look to be a very solid entry in the market. To my mind they are well priced at about $0.275 per figure, are easy to paint, and generally well sculpted. The downside here appears to be the limited poses as well as the limits to the breadth of the line (no Spanish or Portuguese, few minor states).
Page Last Updated May 1, 2005