A while back we looked at the Armies Army Chieftain, since then it has received a re-sculpt upgrade so we thought we would check it out.
What has changed?
I’ve laid out the components of both the old and new Chieftain, so that you can get an idea of one of the changes. For me a very welcome one, is that the bazooka skirts are now a separate item in the newer version. Previously they were part of the track casting and although aesthetically there is little difference, it does mean that, if, like me, you prefer to paint and weather up your tracks separately then this can now be done.
New on right, old on left
There are also some welcome changes to the old cast too, the “new” Chieftain has a better splash skirt on the hull and a little crisper detail on deck and better rear detail, although still missing the gun cradle. Most noticeably, there are no pour marks, which is great.
Much better detail and casting in the new version
The new version on the right’s detail is crisper with a well rounded splash skirt at the front
For me a another welcome change is the fact the turret baskets are now cast into the turret, rather than being metal additions, it just makes assembly that much easier.
The kit also comes with options to make all the crew hatches open or closed, which is great news to those that like to have crew on display. I use it as a way of identifying which are platoon commanders or formation commanders, although being a bit of a stickler the Troop markings would tell me that (but not all my opponents, understand the nuances of British markings).. There is also a correctly sculpted GPMG for the commander’s cupola. The smoke dischargers are nicely done and don’t need to be stuck on separately. Instead they are part of the turret cast.
In all this is a great kit, perhaps not as much detail on the surfaces as BF’s Chieftain, but so much faster to put together being resin and metal (along with that nice ‘weight’ as well). A future addition that would make life easier would be moulding an indent in to the hull, deep enough to house two rare earth magnets (the turret can’t be moulded, as this is where the casting plug is). I spent ages drilling and gouging out holes to fit the magnets in, as these are heavy pieces and this will enable safer transportation to and from gaming venues.
Once these are painted up they look great and it is actually difficult to see which is which. Although the crisper detailing on the “new” Chieftain is noticeable once you look.
Below is one of the new turrets (WIP image) on the old hull. As well as a comparison between the both versions.
The crisper detail is evident on the turret as well (old hull).
Once painted up its hard to tell the difference, however the new right hand has crisper detail.
As you can see in the comparison picture above, once painted the differences are not huge especially a few feet away during a game. However the extra detail and crispness is there when you look closely, the whole cast is just better. Are the differences enough that you would go and re-buy the new version, well honestly no. But it is nice to see that Armies Army is not purely focusing their new casting abilities into new lines, they are obviously improving the existing range (and without increasing the price). With these improvements in only a few months it will be interesting to see where Armies Army is in a years time.