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Brigade Games Gaslight Minis Review

Great Service. Superior Products. Period

Besides being a first rate US based retailer of many excellent miniature lines, Brigade Games also produce their own miniature ranges, one of which is the 28mm Gaslight line. The aim of this range is to satisfy a niche in the market and centers around the alternate history American Civil War as described in the Gaslight rules. Of course these figures are also perfect for use with Deadlands/Great Rail Wars or generic VSF rulesystems.

With the exception of some characters, most Brigade Games Gaslight figures are sold in sets of 10 figures, consisting of 1 Officer, 1 NCO and 8 Troopers which is the standard unit composition in the Gaslight rules. There are no doubles in the packs and all figures are different, although some parts like heads and legs are of course used on more than one variant. Being priced at 10 models for $15, they are good value for money.

Up for review are ACW jump-pack infantry, Fire-rifles, Iron Brigade and a reb with demolition charge. Let's start with the general characteristics. The models appear to be clean casts, with little flash and no heavy mouldlines. Most of them are cast in a dull grey metal which gives them a slightly rough appearance, with exception of the Iron Brigade figure which looks to be made from a different more shiny alloy. They come with solid bases which are reasonably thin.

ACW Jump-pack Infantry Unit

Now let's look at some specific examples of the range, beginning with the jump-pack unit. All are equipped with a Jump-pack as defined in the Journals of Victoria Hawkes ACW by Gaslight Scenario Book. They are sold in a bag of 10 different models, of which a selection is shown here. From left to right are two troopers, the officer, the two parts that make up a jump-pack, the NCO and another trooper. In most cases the main body of the jump-pack is cast on to the figures, with a few exceptions (the officer and NCO). Each figure comes with a separate handle to be attached to the jump-packs and by which the soldiers operate them. The officer comes with a separate pistol hand the pin of which fits perfectly in the hole in the arm. I have attached it for this picture without gluing and it remains in place. Sculpting on these figures is on par with most 'regular' ACW figures out there, with a good variety of poses, although some heads are recurring more often than others. Only reservations about these figure is that sculpting on the officer appears a bit stiff (despite the dynamic pose).

 ACW Fire-Rifles Unit

Next is the fire-rifle (flamethrower) unit. All are equipped with a fire-rifle as defined in the Journals of Victoria Hawkes ACW by Gaslight Scenario Book. Left to right are two troopers, the NCO, officer and another trooper. Again there are 10 different figures (one standard Gaslight unit) which appear to be sculpted by the same sculptor as the jump-packs. The variety of poses is good, with a nice selection of heads and I'd say slightly better than the jump-packs. Most figures come in two parts, the soldier himself and the cannister of whatever flammable substance he uses and must be glued to his back. There are some loose bits like the officers hand, which unlike the jump-pack officer has no pin & hole to attach to. Their is less uniformity in headwear which would suggest these soldiers are more likely to be dressed in grey over blue. Like the previous figures the uniforms display a certain crumpled look at times which is particularly apparent in the officer figures.

 "Iron Brigade" Infantryman by Mike Owen
Reb with TNT charge

Second picture above is an Iron Brigade soldier, the first in a series. Those tough soldiers from the Iron Brigade suited up in steam power driven "iron" suits armed with steam assisted cannons. This model was sculpted by Mike Owen and unlike the more common troopers discussed above, this figure is covered in detail. It is a one piece cast of a man in an iron suit and the only thing that ties this figure to the real world Iron Brigade is the hat with one side turned up. Sculpting is very good, with crisp detail and is at least as good as the best ACW or VSF figures on the market.

The last figure is a rebel with TNT charge kneeling down ready to push on the ignition box. As can be seen this figure comes in several parts with some accessories. Both arms are cast separately from the main body, as well as the detonation device and a pile of TNT sticks to place in the area of intended destruction. This appears to be an older figure, as the sculpting, particularly for the head seems inferior to the other models in the range. The fairly unique (and yet indispensable) subject however makes up for any shortcomings in its design and execution.

ACW Trooper Size
Iron Brigade Size

No review would be complete without an indication of the size of these figures. Most of them seem to be in the 28mm scale, measured from sole to eye (click picture to enlarge). This means they are slightly taller than say a Foundry ACW fig, but not so much as to be incompatible (and they are not likely to be placed in the same unit after all). The Iron Brigade figure is slightly shorter at 27mm (but then he's not standing fully upright), which along with the added bulk of the armour makes them scale up nicely to the aforementioned Foundry figures.

General opinion: Despite a few dodgy early attempts, the bulk of the range is made up from good quality figures covering a rare subject with a good number of variant poses. The price is more than decent for what you get and if you have an interest in alternate history ACW or Wild West, these figures are must haves.



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