Something I wanted to get off my chest.

  • I'm going to piss a lot of people off with this. I just don't like 3d printing. It's pretentious, hard to access unless you shell out hundreds of dollars for a piece of junk you're only going to use for a fuck ton of resin models you are probably never going to use, and people keep on claiming its the only alternative to GW. You guys used to be about plastic miniatures. Then suddenly you guys announce that you're doing 3d printing.... which is nice for all those stupid 3d printer bros but sucks for the rest of your customer base who DOESN'T want to shell out a downpayment of a few hundred bucks for a stupid machine that keeps on getting shilled as the destroyer of GW. Fuck Discourse Miniatures, Fuck Gazma, and Fuck all those other annoying Printer Bros who keep on wojacking over resin models that are often even more overdetailed than GW models.


    I noped out of the OPR community because the whole obsession with 3d printing was getting annoying for a poor guy like me who has to deal with college and a lack of space in my own home. We've hardly gotten ANY news regarding plastic sets ever since Mistah Tribes came in and demanded attention. And given what happened to Geoff and how he got screwed over by your "partner" who does not even have FUCKING CUSTOMER SUPPORT!!! I'm really concerned that this company has fallen for the 3d printer Siren. Sure making plastic models is expensive, but at least be honest with us if things aren't going to plan instead of having us fork tens of thousands of dollars so certain sets can get prioritized if they aren't shoved into the land of digital and Onlygames.


    This post is probably gonna get taken down because I dared to question the infinite wisdom of whoever is simping for digital as the future. We already have a fuck ton of digital and resin companies, you were one of the few companies who offered PLASTIC miniatures for our games. So of course I'm dissappointed and salty.

  • @Charles Tottington Thank you for the support, my friend, come now lets put this print fiasco  behind,  and think of the plastic soon to arive  in the form of the Oh-Rahs, I`m waiting to enjoy my future projects, delayed by our new loger. As the cat is still living in the shed, my Dinno project is on full stop, untill the Oh-Rahs arrive Si/Fi porject are cancelled. Good job my paint .tools and "Nam" were allin the Bungulo,  and yes we are still feeding her. 

  • Really wish we could get her to move into the house with us life would be so much easyer. Cats!!!. Cheers Geoff.

  • @Geoff Maybury Cheers! I remember having cats back in North Carolina, it was long before I got into the hobby (I was just entering highschool when we moved to Oklahoma back in '15) they were mostly outdoor cats but I enjoyed their company. We didn't really adopt them, more like their mom had a little in our shed and they decided to stay.

  • Sorry you're frustrated (and seemingly very angry about 3D printing in general!) but as we've mentioned plenty of times and most recently wrote a giant annual update about, the digital component of what we are doing only increases the # of hard plastic sets we can release. It doesn't replace or get in the way of any plastic releases - it can only add incremental revenue (with $0 incremental costs) to our business. Every extra dollar that comes in from digital goes toward more plastics. 

  • Decent rant.  8/10.  Would LOL at "PrinterBros" again.

    • I get the frustration.  3D printing chatter seems to drown out everything else.  Even when I had a functioning printer*, I couldn't follow it all.  Too many companies sell STLs.  Too. Many patreons want regular money for niche items I'd only use a few times.  I now have to skip half the episodes for my favorite miniatures channel, Obscurities in Miniature, because the focus has shifted so heavily towards 3D prints.


    Fortunately, Dakka split all the 3D printed stuff off into a separate thread, so it should be easier to follow Wargames Atlantic's plastic releases and discuss them.


    However, I don't blame them for making money on assets that otherwise would sit there not earning anything for years, if ever.  It's like profiting from Boxer's labor and selling glue on the side at the same time.  It's good business.  The only hiccup is keeping all the early excitement for the new kits in STL phase from dwindling to nothing by the time the plastics are released.  I'd hate to see them Black Library Horus Heresy themselves from superstar success into grudging relevance.




    *The second time I had to replace a part and recalibrate it without my tech-savvy brother's help, the damn thing never recovered.  Now it's a paperweight.

  • Thanks for being understanding guys. You too Hudson, you helped to explain some stuff for me.

  • Charles, tes mots sont rudes... mais justes (Your words are harsh... but fair). Thank you.

    First of all, the right to a free and open, loyal expression, is guaranteed here. We are certainly consumers, but above all citizens.

    Thank you, members of WGA, for guaranteeing this freedom. This is, I believe, what keeps us here, "solid as rocks in the Trenches".

    I am reassured to see that Fellows, just like me, remain skeptical about certain choices made by the firm.

    All those who express themselves, in a loyal and public way, are your true supporters, Gentlemen (and Ladies ?) of WGA ; even those who refuse to pay for anything else than plastic minis.

    You have to be able to hear them... or lose them. Difficult I know, but essential.

  • @Charles Tottington While 3d printing is hobby on its own, I don't think it is entirely to blame for this situation. But I do understand most of your frustration.

    The only games situation is unfortunate, but I think it was obvious solution for someone using MyMiniFactory to use them since it is an integrated solution provided by the same company that owns the MyMiniFactory website. It is a service to third parties and like any service it depends on the company providing it. If I had stl's to sell as an individual I could setup the exact same infrastructure with only games and MyMiniFactory which would remove me from the logistics part of the production and delivery but also keep me in a position where I cannot really do much when the service provider is not able to keep the logistics efficient at a large scale, which what happened with only games, they bit a bigger piece than they could chew.

    In what relates to the plastic releases that is where I see an issue that Wargames Atlantic needs to fix, but based on what was mentioned on the annual update they already identified it. The production of their plastics kits is also performed by third parties, with the distribution also being performed in a similar way. While they cannot necessarily control when exactly things are produced because of production queues of the plastic manufacturer (or box producer and other suppliers...), they can plan things ahead in a way that avoids so much disappointment with the delivery of the kits, especially the new releases. Shipping has been a bit of a nightmare and that cannot be entirely avoided, but if you make sure kits are produced in advance and only released to the public when they are in stock at the distributors, then the logistics seem to work well even when things are not entirely smooth on the background. That is one thing that is often done by larger companies, only release stuff when they are already in stock somewhere locally and the customer gets used to that sort of expectation. It is different to have something take 2 weeks from the sender to your home, than taking 2 weeks after you pay to actually ship something to you. In many cases with Wargames Atlantic that was 2, 3 or even more months rather than weeks, which is overall.

    One could argue that even someone as big as GW has been having issues with distribution, so it is acceptable to have such issues for smaller companies, but the major difference is that GW doesn't allow the particular region suffering the delays to actually pre-order the item, in order to avoid such issues.

    I think that on the plastic side of the operation what we need to see is an improvement of the logistics, one that allows items to be available most of the time (there are always out of stock issues from time to time for particular items) and that makes sure people are not waiting indefinetly for their pre-orders or even orders for out of stock items.

  • @GreenScorpion I do not think WGA relies on third party production of their plastics but I could be wrong. I thought their plastics were made in-house but boxes were third party. But again, I could be wrong.@Hudson Adams could perhaps clarify.

    I would hazard a guess and say there is only so much production capacity so making new kits is balanced with making more of the older kits in order to replace depleted stock. 


  • @Grumpy Gnome Yes, I believe you're correct. Especially now that production is in the US they're in direct control of it, whilst boxes are printed elsewhere.

  • @Grumpy Gnome  Unless they suddenly bought a factory for themselves which was never evident from previous news articles (it was mentioned that the company behind the factory they were using in China relocated production to the US), so essentially one of their "partners" handles production for them on the factory, but just like Renedra produces for several companies, that company might produce for other customers (I doubt that there would be so many issues with production at this point if it was all done in house).

    Things like logistics are handled by Bridge distribution, which is also a third party, so not even the shipment of boxes in the US is handled directly by Wargames Atlantic, at least for most orders (there was never a mention in the articles that they put some of the logistics under their own wing, or reduced the effort from Bridge).

  • @GreenScorpion Sounds to me like something for @Hudson Adams to clarify as I was very much under the impression WGA ran their own production now. I did not think they used a third party such as Renedra makes things for various companies in the UK. 

    It seems odd to me that WGA would partner with companies like Grey for Now, Firelock and Zombiesmith and then have another company produce the models.

  • We own our production. Of course that doesn't mean it's free! 

  • @Hudson Adams I figured that was the case now, from everything that had been said.

  • @Charles Tottington I get what you're saying, and I can appreciate where you're coming from. I like a plastic set as much as the next guy. Unfortunately, 3D printing is going to overtake injection molding at some point. This isn't to say that it can't be done, just that eventually it will replace it. That being said, I feel WGA is right to get into the game early. They don't necessarily have to go full in like it appears they are (which I think is an appearance and not the reality of the situation). Injection molding is still a great tool for production, and shouldn't be neglected or abandoned just yet.

    That being said- I think accessory sets to current lines, or "cutting room floor" kind of items should be prioritized in the 3D printing space for now. And this seems like what they are doing. Some items aren't reallyt good as an injection molded kit, or there isn't enough draw for them. them offering the 3D printed option is a good move. It offers a rapid diversification of their product line, while incurring little overhead cost. Hell, I have 3D printable items you can buy or download, and it costs me ZERO dollars to maintain. (If you need a sci-fi 1/48 Tiger turret- I got you covered)

    Long story short- this is a good move. Maybe it's annoying them slamming it out seemingly at the expense of normal fair, but it's still a good move. If you don't own a printer, people you know likely do, and I have found there are plenty of people who are willing to offer their help with stuff if you reimburse them. i'm looking at investing in a resin printer for just that purpose- for guys like you who don't have one and have no desire to get one. Still have to sell my wife on the idea, but Battle Specter Games will be it's own thing sooner than I think she appreciates. :)

  • @Grumpy Gnome  I stand corrected then, I really had the impression they were still working with someone else on the production.

    @Hudson Adams  Thanks for clarifying that point. That means you control the production which is good on one aspect but it also means you currently are your own production bottleneck and the issues I mentioned in this thread are mostly under your control in terms of plastic production. I hope that the changes that the annual update mentioned will be enough to address those issues.

  • @GreenScorpion only through communication can we all better understand the situation, hence why this forum is so important. Especially when WGA staff share information. Transparency is in my opinion good for increased customer trust and thereby increased sales. 

    In a way, I think WGA is a victim of its own success. So many products in demand but only so many resources available for production. 

  • Well, though @Charles Tottington's outburst is expletive and aggressive, I still want to add another vote in favour of WA remaining a hard plastic model-making company first and foremost.

    Not everyone wants to shell out on a 3D-Printer, which are gradually becoming more affordable but still involve paying a good few hundred pounds at least at this stage (and that's before paying for the cost of the liquid plastic and other essentials on top).

    Not everyone has enough room in their house for a 3D-Printer (I doubt I do!).

    Not everyone has the patience to wait potentially days to print out the miniatures they want, especially with the infuriating scenario of prints getting botched for whatever reason, resulting in having to start all over again.

    A lot of people like to have options and customisability, which 3D-printed models, even WA's, struggle with like traditional resin and metal models.

    There are also those people (myself among them) who want to get out and support their local model shops and grab a nice box of plastic figures in hand, with no worry about waiting whether they will arrive in the post or not.

    Hard plastic caters to all these audiences in ways that 3D-Printing doesn't, and given the increasing number of independent 3D-Printing sellers these days, we need every hard plastic retailer we can get. Currently I can count the number of hard plastic sellers on two hands (GW, Warlord, WA, Mantic, Gripping Beast, Perry, RGD, Renedra, Rubicon, Grey for Now, with Firelock and Zombiesmith about to make the jump to take it just above two hands' worth), while you'd need dozens of hands to count the number of independent 3D-Printing sellers around. Hard plastic needs the support of its fans and makers more than ever with the growing digitisation of our world, and any company that forsakes it in favour of the 'in-thing' is helping the oppressor, not the oppressed, to use a political/strategic term.

    @Hudson Adams I know you have said in the past that WA is able to and doing its best to keep a balance to favour both audiences, but see this thread more simply as a reminder for WA to keep it that way, and not to abandon what made WA great in favour of a newer, shinier thing. Games Workshop did just that a while back, and the wound has never really healed among those who were hurt by it.

  • @Caratacus the reasons you are not a fan of 3D are precisely the reasons that plastic will survive. It's not truly a cost issue - advances in fabrication technology have vastly reduced the cost of making injection plastic moulds and new ways of making them are developing too, so costs are falling on all sides.

    Right now, it's still early days with home 3D printing. There is no best option - detailled but toxic vs coarser, and always needing new skills in getting the damn things to print successfully. It's a hobby in itself, and you should treat it as such. 

    Maybe some day you will be able to print off a HIPS mini with no hassles or mucking around. At that point plastic sprues might be consigned to the history books alongside lead figures or white metal products from GW. But that's a way off, and I don't expect sprues will ever be totally made obsolete until cost of 3D production is far lower than it is for the forseeable future. 

    As far as existing plastic manufacturers changing over to 3D (as opposed to ADDING that option), I don't see it. It's always been a case of being a high startup barrier, but with better returns on kits that sell (material costs are almost nil, unlike metal, resin or 3D.) The number of plastic manufacturers has always been small. Warlord, Perry, Gripping Beast, Conquest, North Star andf probably a few others I missed all use Renedra. Games Workshop is in a class by itself and whatever it does is unlikely to have much effect on the smaller companies. They operate at scales that just do not translate and have complete control of the whole process, including a worldwide chain of bricks and mortar stores. Even the model kit giants like Tamiya don't have that.

  • @Mark Dewis @Grumpy Gnome Friends I think that a point I was trying to make that WGA do not damage their god relaitionship with customers, has been lost. I don`t object to 3D printing, "Hell I ordered 2 packs Security Robots" it`s the  bad service from Only-games that makes me feel mad. I`ll not rant or rage, but now I  won`t  rest untill I and others, recieve our models. No one from Only -games as come back to us  saying when we will get our items.  If the only way we can sort things out is on WGA`s forum so be it , I`ve never blamed WGA for the chaos at Only -games, but when it`s your only point of call to order items whhat do you do when the won`t respond?


  • There are a few bits of GW promo material that are worth talking about. They've been printing prototypes and models to be painted for box art since at least 2013, maybe even 2008. And on the 7th edition cold one knights, you might have said that a few print lines would be just par for the course. You might have said the same for the 8th edition executioner they used for the dark elf "how to paint" guide. But in 2023, wouldn't you expect a massive company like GW to be able to not have stepped stuff front and center in their flashy announcement video for the upcoming saurus warriors? And yet, that champion halfway through the video is clearly printed. If they can't avoid that, after a decade of using the technology, what hope does a consumer level printer have?

    Really, printing is used for three purposes: prototyping before you invest into industrial tooling, IP violations without industrial tooling (because you can't do it commercially anyway, so you won't have the production run size to make that economically viable), and customized miniatures. Of those, only the first is sensible, unless we are talking 3d scans of existing models that you are pirating. If you sculpt your own space marine, digitally or physically, that is YOUR intellectual property. GW doesn't own the concept of stupidly overbuilt, stupidly bulky, stupidly space-faring stupid astronauts. And customized miniatures? My bitsbox contains swords from:

    • heroic scale dark elves
    • heroic scale wood elves
    • heroic scale high elves
    • heroic scale chaos people
    • heroic scale orcs with powerful build
    • heroic scale aztecs
    • heroic scale renaissance humans
    • truescale renaissance humans
    • truescale late medieval humans
    • truescale normans
    • truescale celts
    • truescale fauns & centaurs
    • truescale medium-sized greenskins
    • medium scale medium-sized greenskins
    • medium scale samurai elves
    • medium scale undefined culture

    All of those are in materials way easier to securely and durably attach to whatever arm than any resin would ever be, and any steps caused by minor scale differences are way easier to hide by a bit of carving and wiping off excess putty with my bare finger than by futzing around in a 3d tool.

    That really is what is bothering me about this whole mess. Printing is more difficult, is more expensive, and provides worse results than the techniques and the parts of the hobby it is trying to supplant. I don't blame WGA for grabbing the extra money on the side (though I do need to echo the complaints about the signal-to-noise ratio it causes). But I don't bloody get why there is a market for that in the first place.

    Maybe a day will come when everybody will have dropped a resin spearman to snap of at the thinnest point, as well as having seen a HIPS spearman be dropped to just bounce off the floor. Maybe that will be the day when the even last absolute lemon will realize that printing is a bad idea.

  • @Blutze While 3d printing is far from being perfect, if user printers are able to produce resin miniatures without visible lines (the lines are always there, but if you zoom in enough on any surface things are always different so who cares about non visible stuff), I guess GW is just using lower accuracy settings or thicker layers to get the prototypes done faster. I have seen a lot of 3d printed miniatures which could not easily be distinguished from a resin cast miniature so it is possible, not necessarily for every miniature concept or every end user but it is a possibility.

    It obviously doesn't replace manual sculpting/conversion work, but 3d printing certainly seems to have gained its space with some people in the hobby and likely works well for those who have more difficulty getting different putties to look as they want.

    Most resin cast miniatures nowadays are done using 3d printed masters to create the moulds (obviously printed with super powerful printers which are not available for regular users), so the potential is there and with some miniaturization of printers it might get to a point that no one will be able to tell the difference, especially after painted.

    In terms of cost and durability of the materials you will get mostly the same issues with resin cast miniatures and those have been a part of the hobby for a long time, even if some people flee from them. Still, I personally prefer resin that can be somewhat fragile versus metal bits which are often too heavy to get glued together easily although they are somewhat sturdier than resin.

  • @GreenScorpion I actually did not know that Onlygames and MyMiniFactory were owned by the same company. That actually explains a lot. It's actually kinda cool that a 3d printing company would allow vendors an option to sell physical products with their STLs. Hoping the best for them since there are a lot of tempting options there.

  • @Charles Tottington Hey you mentioned that youre busy at college, I am too. Barring going to a very very small school, your college should have something of a makerspace. A place where you can send STL files and get them printed for very cheap! I dont have a printer but I've been getting into battletech a lot lately because I can print models for very cheap at my school library

  • @Big Boi Yeah luckly I can print FDM stuff for free as long as it falls within a 12 hour print limit. And there is someone there who does resin prints on requests. So I MAY be getting some models printed later on after I clear up my pile of shame.

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