Friday, February 24, 2012

Making the grade: Reviews of Companies I have ordered from.

Well, it has been some time since my last post but things have been busy of late in one way or another. Plus my energy level has been low of late which has kicked in the lazy switch. Granted I just got a few of my orders in and a few more are on the way so I now have to step up the pace to get ready to play some games by the end of March.
That said, I figure I would do some reviews on the stuff I ordered from various companies and my experiences about them. You  may notice that on the sidebar will have a few new additions soon to my recommended vendor lists. These are people I have had excellent experiences with and feel you would to.
With one of my purchases being the Foundry Old West figures from the Good, the Bad and The Ugly set. I feel it is a fitting theme for this review.
First up Black Cat Bases, I ordered some pirate stuff from them as part of some delayed Christmas money that finally got to us and I have a second order placed with them for some miniatures for Strange Aeons that should be off in the mail soon.
The Good: The miniatures are of excellent quality and well detailed, some more so than others. The price works out well as Black Cat gives you a fair price for their product. Their turnaround to ship my product was excellent and the packaging of my items arrived with no incidents. Their customer services was excellent as they followed up with my on my mispacked blister.
The Bad: My worst complaint is that I got a mispack on the mixed pirates set as it was missing some left arms thus making it impossible to build anything until I got replacement parts. They did a good job sending me some left arms and some other extra stuff in the end to be able to start work on them now.
The Ugly: My two thoughts here is the US to Pound exchange rate sucks. So, as a US customer it hurts to purchase overseas as our $ is not strong vs. the pound. The second is the wait time to get something overseas, it could take an extra 2-3 days compared to US/Canadian delivery.

Second up, FRP Games, these guys got a mixed bag order from me of both some pirate figures from Foundry as well as some Old West figures from Foundry as well.
The Good: Fast delivery and reasonable discounts on most products. You also have several companies to purchase from all at once in one easy to purchase from location. Why order from multiple spots if you don't have to?
The Bad: Back orders, if they don’t have something in stock or it is a special order item. You will have to wait, I ordered some Old West figures back around the first of the month. So, you will have to decide if the discount is worth the wait or delay in getting your product.
The Ugly: Special orders and Back orders have to be done separate from anything that they have in stock, if you want to get what they have sooner than the other product. They sent my blisters if bubble wrap packaging and arrived in fair shape, the boxes did get battered around some but nothing were damaged.

Third up, Gripping Beast, I ordered the Pirate that looks like Jack Sparrow that was simply a must have model to the collection.
The Good: The miniature quality is amazing, had a note with the other that said thank you that was hand written. A special effort that says they care about their customers.
The Bad: Tiny, even for 25mm it seems a bit small and up against Black Cat and Foundry, the guy is a bit wimpy which a disappointment is.
The  Ugly: Gripping Beast has some great figures at their site, but there are only a few pirate figs to purchase from. Again, the blasted exchange rate works against overseas buyers that have the weaker value in the exchange. Again, a few extra days having to wait to get the product overseas was my only other thoughts on downside.

Uncle Mike Worldwide, Strange Aeons, I just made my Valentines purchase for this and will be starting a new blog shortly that will be supporting this game separate from this blog. Keep your eyes tuned for links to my other two blogs including the new one!
The Good: Excellent customer service, quick to respond to my inquiry and the shipping was fast once it got in the mail. The book is of perhaps one of the best gaming quality that I have ever seen. The miniatures are made of resin and for the most part look good and with the prices of rising metal the resin idea isn’t bad. What is  nice, is there are no bubbles.
The Bad: The resin does have some flash, perhaps a bit more than the white metal version. Ordering to Canada also hurts slightly as Canada has a stronger currency factor.
The Ugly: Well, nothing bad to say here except Uncle Mike became a dad when I placed my order and caused a slight delay it seems. I can’t complain about taking care of family first and the little girl he had Olive is cute as a button.

Tell me your experiences with a company and share it here. I want to hear the good, the bad and the ugly!

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