[Surprise Attack!] Warsenal Review Smorgasbord

Hey, hey kids! Here we go this time with another round of my patent-pending combo of shitty photography joined to brutally honest opinions. The victim: Warsenal, who are currently my number one pick for all my lazzzzer cut needs. Unlike seemingly every other laser-cutting company out there, they’re based out of the US of A.

Florida, to be exact. This is awesome because to hell with exchange rates:  and £ were my one and two least favorite things to see on the internet. But then I saw this this:

DIE XENOS SCUM
Okay. So now they’re maybe my second and third least favorite things to see. 

Back to the subject: an acrylic/MDF manufacturer in my time zone gets my immediate attention and spurs me to action. Before we go any further I’ll do the obligatory disclaimer alert and settle this right now: No, I was not compensated in any way, shape, or form for this, although I did do the gentlemanly thing and give Warsenal a heads-up before I wrote this and where they could find it when it was done. With me, as always, is my trusty sidekick Lucky the Paratrooper to provide scale. She finds much more use doing this than her usual role of getting blasted in the face.

Now jump!

If you’re living in not-America, this still might interest you because, seriously, the prices are low as hell. Low enough that you might pick them over their counterparts in the business, shipping charges be damned. I also found a way to stretch that value even further so stick around to the very end for that hot tip. Heh…hot tip at the end…anyways, the other big name in the fast-paced, cut-throat, and sin-filled acrylic/MDF laser-cutting hobby industry is Customeeple (not counting Litko here because they’re more of a tokens and counters company, not terrain, but I’ve picked up some of their stuff and its good). I’m not a particularly big fan of Customeeple. This isn’t a diss on them, I love their products and the quality. I just happen to think they price those products like they’re out of their motherfucking minds. Wait until you see what five acrylic disks with custom faction engraving will cost you at Warsenal. Hint: It’s measured in pennies, not Euros. More on that later. I should also point out that Warsenal and Customeeple are not, strictly speaking, “competitors” since they are both official Infinity partners and actually mention each other’s products in a positive manner on their respective websites. They just serve different parts of the market. Maybe they fly across the Atlantic and drink beers with each other at the end of the workday, I don’t know. Warsenal has a tutorial video for any item that could possibly need it, here’s the link to their YouTube Channel.

Moving on, then. Up first: The very thing that sucked me into entering my credit card numbers, the “TO Camo Markers”. I run a lot of Camo in Infinity. By “a lot” I actually mean “I have a problem”. I have to number them all and keep a detailed record of what goes to what. So, a pack of the TO Camo came my way. Then another. No, not the dinky little 3-pack. You wish! They also make Regular Camo Markers that are a sort of smokey gray, but I liked the TO ones better. The pictures online don’t do them justice, for once in my life my photography skills might be better than the official version. Yes, the blue comes off. See below.

The Verdict: Very happy with these. Functionally they are the right height for game purposes (the official cardboard cutouts that you glue on a 25mm base aren’t), they break down into their two different parts quickly so they’re easy to lay flat and transport without snapping. No glue needed. They’re pretty damn cheap, and they look cool. I don’t think I’ve played a game yet where someone didn’t want to get their grubby mitts on them for ogling purposes, and they get borrowed a lot by other players if I’m somehow not running a 16 Camo Marker list. Hey, some of those are only mines. Don’t judge. As a side note, they come with plastic sheathing on the bases that tricked me good. I even went “Oh, that’s just the protective sheathing” and scratched at it to try and get it off. Nothing happened, so I figured it must actually be ugly blue plastic. I emailed the owner asking why the bases were ugly blue and not crystal clear as they were advertised, and I got a quick reply back that the blue does come off, I just need to try a little harder. And that I shouldn’t feel bad, it happens all the time. Which was quite polite of him considering it was very stupid of me. The few times I’ve dealt with “customer service” (I’m guessing it’s really the owner or partner considering the probable size of the company) they’ve been Super Cool Dudes who resolve whatever comes up, and they do it with a human touch.
The markers come with a numbering system engraved on the clear base, but if you want to go higher than that you might want to try this: Spray paint it a solid color like black and then stencil your own numbers. You might want to spray paint it black, anyways, because I’ve noticed that the clear markers dissapear easily when viewed from above, and I tend to spend a bit of time searching for them on the table.

One thing I definitely want to bring up is that everything comes packed very well. It’s all wrapped individually, then the whole bundle gets wrapped together with shrink wrap. Then it has a ball of bubblewrap holding it in place inside the box, kind of like those balls of dough that come on top of delivery pizza. The box is sturdy. Acrylic generally comes with the plastic sheathing to keep it from getting scratched, but small stuff like orders counters won’t. That’s fine, they don’t need it anyways.

Manufacturers take note: This is what right looks like.

Next!
Orders markers. Ah, yes…some Infinity players, and I’m not saying I’m one of them, may run lists that have a…how can I put this?…a “strong depth of orders pool”. Yes, that will do nicely. A strong depth. This poses the problem of keeping track of such an unfortunate situation to be in, thus the orders marker was invented. Multiple colors available, but more importantly they have the three official colors: Red, yellow, and green. For a quarter each! A quarter dollar! Not a whole Euro! So cheap that I ordered twenty green, ten yellow, and ten red. For ten bucks I now have an order marker(s) for every model in my Ariadna force, one for every model in my new    CENSORED    force, and even some left over for other players to use if they wish. That ain’t bad. For my Ariadna force with the, ahem, “strong depth” I took an engraver and wrote what unit owned that order and its now easy to keep track of twenty-five orders across two combat groups. Not that I ever do that. Each mini has its own dedicated order marker that sits nestled with it in the carry case, and as they deploy for battle the order goes in the pool. Green for regular dudes, impetuous troops get their yellow and red, troops with frenzy have their impetuous order under their irregular order so I don’t forget to give it to them when frenzy kicks in. And it will! Oh, yes, my worthy foe…frenzy will kick in eventually. As they die, it goes back in the carry case. Makes it easy not to “accidently” forget to remove that order from the pool when a guy dies. Hey, I’ve done it, and it really was an accident. Now it doesn’t happen anymore. Yay me. For this and all other markers, take a black crayon and rub it over the top so the lines stand out better.

It’s also worth mentioning that, last time I checked, Warsenal is willing to do custom engravings and cuttings. I haven’t looked into it or priced it out, but it’s an option for you.  

Template Pack. Also one of my first purchases. Nice bit of work, but if you grade on the curve it’s one of the least cost-effective items on the site. That said, I’m really just a whiny bitch because $14 for a template pack is cheap. The official Micro Art one is what…$25? $30? The small one fits inside the big one for storage, and the circular template has a hole in it. Why, you ask? See below, my worthy foe…see below.

 

Smoke Markers. Fucking GENIUS. I’ve noticed that when smoke grenades come out to play, they come out by the dozen. If you only have one template, that’s a problem. Just drop compact discs on the table, I suppose, if you don’t mind being seen with something as 90’s as a CD. Loser. That still doesn’t solve the problem of  fitting a big template into a small alley. Ha! That’s what she- HEY LOOK AT THAT DOG! Wow, a dog. Okay. Where were we? Oh yeah: So just put that small smoke marker anywhere you need to mark the spot where smoke lands, and bring out the circular template to drop on top of it if you need to measure the exact radius. Yeah, they’re a buck each, but suck it up princess that’s like 1/2 a mini and if you use smoke you’ll need them. Lots of them.  

O Marks the Spot

Bring in the circular template to check the radius
And a few shots of them in use during a game:

Suppression Markers. Ho…lee…shit. 

If you’ve ever, even once, tried to untangle the snarled web of Spanglish that is the suppression fire order…I feel your pain. We are the same, you and I.  So believe me when I say this will help. It’s the exact shape of the firing lane, so just drop it on the table on the azimuth you want your overwatch suppressive fire to be aimed at and you’re set. So much easier. By the way, if you want to see the Infinity equivalent of “How many angels can dance on the head of a pin”, go the the suppressive fire threads in the rules forum. 

$7.50 for a three-pack, and worth every penny. I would sell my firstborn kid to make the suppressive fire madness end. Kidding…? Anyways, if you were rich enough you could have multiples of matching colors so you knew who had what fire lane. Red went with this guy, blue to this guy, etc…Tempting, but no. I will waste my money elsewhere. 

Like on this! Billboards. They do what it says on the tin, no complaints. Only $5 for two? Why not. Okay, actually I have two small ones: They are a little fussy to put together, but that’s probably just me using wood glue and not the recommended tacky glue. They also balance forward of center and have a tendency to tip on their face when startled, but that’s easy to solve. They do come with nifty little orange acrylic “lights” for the front that are a nice touch.  

On their own
With advertisement decal and acrylic lights

The Communications Array, AKA the objective marker for every game you have, or will one day own. Not bad, but I’m a little split on it. $10 is a pretty decent price, but it has its problems. It’s bigger than it looks on the store page (that’s a 40mm base it’s on, and it now comes with a circular one), which is a nice perk. If you like the acrylic screens they’re available for purchase separately. I do not have any completed pics because I’m still working on it and this article has waited long enough to see the light of day. On a personal note, it’s only a matter of time until I snap the two hair-thin acrylic rods in the kit. Le sigh…

Who let that Kazak in here? BRING BACK LUCKY.

Comes with all this.
Super flimsy connection to rest of the piece.
Even more flimsy. Not amused.

It looks cool, but goes together weird: You will need to watch the video. It also can be fussy getting the acrylic panels on once you’ve primed and painted it, the gap tolerance is tight. All the little bits that hold the acrylic panels on also tend to pop off easy and get eaten by the Carpet Monster.

No, I said…whatever. Fine. You can stay.

Wound Markers. These come in handy from time to time, at least they do for me because I have giant goddamn multi-wound werewolves running amok, and one or two doctors who can heal guys instead of just tossing them back into my army case. Same price as the order markers, shown here with and without crayon enhancement. By the way, I had a different pic in mind for “Carpet Monster” but I’m trying not to get banned from the interwebs. Not just yet, anyways… 

Normal Version
More Amazing Version

Gamma Building.  Well, I told you I was saving something good for last, and this is it. 

What dreams are made of? Let’s find out. 

Most of the other buildings I’ve seen in the store are pretty good, but for those prices I can get more of other stuffs from the range, or even subjectively better MDF terrain from other suppliers. 

$30 from Warsenal
Either of these, $35 from Spartan Scenics.

Where they make up for this shortfall is the Gamma Building, a late addition to their catalog. The labeling is a little confusing but makes sense: ‘Gamma’ is the building shape, and ‘Alpha’ is the facade type. A lot of their stuff uses the same system. In this case the Gamma building has the front facade option that match the style of the Alpha kits. It’s nothing terribly special to look at: It’s your basic boxy shape with some detail doo-dads, its actually meant to be a connector piece that joins some of their other buildings. The clear canopy is the most exciting part. The removable roof is a nice touch but expected these days. Like all of Warsenal’s buildings it has pre-drilled holes to put in magnets so you can join buildings together. Pretty cool, I dig that. It didn’t warp much after painting, just the tiniest bit on the roof piece and it’s barely noticeable. There are pre-drilled holes for magnets there, too, so if its a concern for you you can always have the magnets hold it even with the main body and that will keep things square during drying. Assembly is a bit of a bitch, you’ll need to watch the videos. 

You…will…need…to…watch…the…videos. Especially for the facade.

That’s my major beef with this kit: You have to jump around looking at different videos to get a complete assembly guide…and its the only option, there’s no written diagrams. I think it was three videos: Two for the building and roof, one more for the Alpha facade (which took some detective work on my part).
That’s the only serious complaint about it, the rest is gravy.
What makes it stand out is two things: The price, and what you get in the kit. 

Price: It’s fifteen frigging dollars. 

Yeah. $15. That’s a pretty good fucking deal you get right there, pardonnez mon Français.


Here’s the basic shape, assembled. Two doors, no windows. You can keep the doors on, or punch them out.

 So, a pretty decent sized building with a nice look to it for fifteen clams. I like that. One very important point to consider is that the clear acrylic comes with that protective sheathing on it and DO NOT remove it until you’re done painting. Otherwise, you have to re-mask it like I did.

Dang it.

At this point in construction I realized that the three badly interwoven videos for assembly weren’t enough to decipher the mysteries of the facade on this thing. Not happening. So, I put stuff where I thought it looked good and called it a day, then took stock of what I had left over. Two punch-outs of MDF that were the size of Warsenal’s large billboards, two that were the size of their regular billboards, and bunch of leftover punchouts and facade pieces that didn’t make the cut. From those, I made these:


That’s right, two full-size billboards and two half-sized ones (they’re shown front and back, so don’t go thinking there’s twice as many). At $5 bucks a set that’s roughly $7.50 of value thrown in to a $15 purchase for nothing. It’s also a sweet treat that they can be placed on the roof top to perfectly match each length and give every side full cover. Intentional or not, it’s a rock solid kit for a hell of a price. I hope Warsenal sees this as a glass half full bonus that will attract more purchases, not glass half empty where they give product away for free. Seriously, if you were gonna get the billboards but knew you could get a building to go with it for just a few bucks more, you’d do it, right? Right. Me too. Either way, it’s a deal and a half so BUY THIS NOW.

That’s all I’ve got, here’s some funky fresh jams to listen to while you chew on your paintbrushes, courtesy of KHOP Pirate Radio.

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