Finished painting the first group of Italian Wars era landsknechts. The castings are Russian, made by the Three Heroes company. I bought three sets of 8 each from Soldatikov.net. One "Swiss" one "Mercenary" with the third being Spaniards. Prices were quite fair, ~ 100 rubles a figure works out to $1.50 US, not bad at all for a hefty hunk of metal. Shipping charges were also reasonable and proprietor Maxim Latsin, very fluent in English, was a pleasure to deal with. There are also "extra" sets of 4 figures each for these groups, so 36 in all, but none of the latter were in stock.
So let's take a closer look. Some of the the castings are a little on the rough side, you might even call them crude.
Nominally 40mm scale, they're a bit larger than true 40mm figures. And you'll notice some size difference in the two figures below, but within the realm of normal human variation I'd say.
Stylistically they match up pretty well with Meisterzinn. Unfortunately, I have no direct comparison shots for you. My sister-in-law was asking for some painted figures and I gave her my painted Meisterzinns. I feel rather like the guy in the insurance commercial who throws his wallet into New York harbor to emphasize a point about wasting money and then says to himself, "Wish I hadn't done that". But the mold image below at least gives an idea.
How flat are they ? Pretty darned flat.
|"Sire, the enemy advance and we can't hit them !"|
Too bad there's no cavalry. Three Heroes also produced some 30 Years War cavalry in a similar style, so perhaps something could be done there, although the visual gap of 100 years in military evolution would be a little jarring. And I'm not entirely sure the figures are currently in production although it would be easy enough to find out.
To sum up, I'm pretty pleased with them. I think anyone wanting to game the early 1500's in 40mm who has been relying primarily on casting and modifying Meisterzinn figures would find these a useful option to pad the ranks of infantry with more variety.