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Sunday, September 30, 2012

Armies In Plastic - Toy Soldiers

Armies in Plastic is an American firm based out of NY that produces a wide range of figures, mainly from the 18th and 19th century. As far as the 20th century goes, they do not have any WWII figures, but they do have a couple of WWI sets that can pass for WWII figures if you are a little flexible. Their sculpting is decent, but not exceptional, however the range and uniqueness of the sets that they produce makes them a popular manufacturer. The size of their figures is also on the big end of the 1/32 scale. Given their prolific output, maybe one day they will turn their attention to WWII. I am sure they would to a nice job covering the less popular sets in that period, which seems to be their specialty. Anyhow, let's take a look at the WWI sets that could be used in a WWII setting. 

Armies in Plastic French Infantry - Part I
Given the fact that the French uniform did not change that much during the inter-war period, except for the switch from blue to brown, these guys can pass for WWII French Infantry once they are painted. They are a bit bulkier than the Marx guys -the other French guys available-, but I think they will blend in well with them once painted.  

Armies in Plastic French Infantry - Part II
Note that some of these guys are wearing long coats, but that was also the case with WWII French troops up to the summer of 1940. The Adrian helmet is also the same as the one worn by the Marx figures.

Armies in Plastic WWI German Infantry - Part I
If for some reason you find that you don't have enough German Infantry options you can always throw in some late WWI guys. These already had steel helmets. The only thing that is noticeably outdated is the use of the puttees up to the knee. Most WWII German soldiers used ankle puttees during the second half of the war when leather became scarce and jackboots were no longer manufactured. But I have seen one picture of a WWII officer wearing puttees up to the knee, so that opens the door for these guys!

Armies in Plastic WWI German Infantry - Part II
As you can see, the AIP figures are not the most detailed -for instance, the faces look a little plain. The poses in some cases do not show enough movement for my taste, or the movement does not 'flow' as is the case with the grenade man on the right. Still, they are good enough if you need to add extra manpower to your unit.

Armies in Plastic WWI Indian Army - Part I
I had been looking for Indian troops for a Monte Cassino scenario and was pleased to run into these guys which were recently released. The poses are nicer than some of the previous AIP figures. Less bulky and with some good movement in them. The level of detail is good and the turbans and beards make them inequivocably Indian. The uniforms and weaponry are close enough to make them pass for WWII figures. 

Armies in Plastic WWI Indian Army - Part II
The first picture shows some of the more active poses. This other five guys are in a more static or defensive stance. Both are needed to depict a good battle scene. All in all, a nice and useful set from AIP. Will paint up well next to the Atlantic, Cherilea, Charbens and Crescent guys. 


  1. I just discovered your blog. Your posts are pretty interesting. Congratulations.

    I totally agree with your review of AIP figures. I could had: very good value for the price.

    1. Thanks a lot! Appreciate the kind words. And I also agree very much on the value of these figures. A very decent price considering the number of poses and figs that come in each set.