So I spent a few hours building my Raider and some parts of the Kabal Warriors I have today. Figured Id give my input on the models and what they are like to build.
Before I start I have to comment on the plastic, Ive build hundreds of GW models but I have never experiences their plastic being like the one in the Dark Eldar kits. The plastic itself is much more elastic, when building an IG tank the sides are really sturdy and you cant really bend it at all but with the Raider you could very easily bend all the pieces.
They almost have a slight rubbery feel to them, they are still very sturdy but nowhere near that of say the side parts of a leman russ battletank.
Another really interesting quality about this plastic is that I have never experience such a strong bond between plastic parts using plastic glue before. When I realised I would not be able to prime the model correctly I had already glued in the front gunner and driver bits, they had only been glued in place for less than 1 min but I really had to use ALLOT of force to get them off the raider side bit. If I would have pulled in the wrong direction I could easily have broken the parts I was trying to get lose.
Maybe its just me or maybe GW is trying out some new plastic, either way I think its superior to anything they have used before. Its more elastic so it wont break as easily when models are dropped or handled inappropriately and the bond between bits is the strongest Ive seen in years.
I will start with the Raider.
Ive never stung myself on a model so many times as Ive done with this kit, it has spikes and sharp pointy ends everywhere, some of my blood can actually be found on my model too...
From a modelling point of view its pretty straight forwards if you follow the instructions, I actually think its the biggest manual to date for a transport vehicle at least.
If you dont prime your sprues and prefer to build the model and then prime it I suggest you do it in steps. I build as much as I can then prime the model because I just hate when you can see gray plastic sections of a model if you look close enough.
Priming the sprues work best since you can get every single nook and cranny primed this way but you waste allot of primer doing it this way.
Anyways, when I was building the model I had to split it up into sections. The Hull section was basically just the floor and one side glued together, you have to put the stand the driver and the front gunner stands on before you glue the other side together with it. The problem is those 2 bits are like mesh netting you can see through. So if you build it all together you can only prime the model from above to hit the interior but you will never be able to prime everything under the mesh netting (unless you spray enough so it pours into every nook and cranny).
If you prefer to build your models before priming I would suggest you prime these pieces at least before putting them together.
Next part is the middle sail and control panel, its pretty straight forward putting it together and you get to chose between 2 different sails (the shark fin or the Zoidberg inheat fro).
You dont even have to glue down the sail because the fit is really tight so you can move it around as you see fit.
I did encounter a slight problem when trying to dryfit it onto the ship floor. Its a REALLY tight fit, at least this kit was for me. When trying to push the 2 pins into the holes I almost broke the thing in half, they are just really thin plastic pieces holding it together so its really easy to break. Im just going to magnetise it so I can remove the part for transport since I believe its the weakest section of the whole shit yet its the tallest as well. If you drop the model in the floor or use poor transport this part is the first thing that will break.
3rd part of the model is the underside and main engine (the thing actually has 4 small and 1 huge engine). Really easy to put together as everything fits just perfectly but I suggest you dont put in the 2 small engines (can be rotated etc) and prime everything once built so you dont have any grey plastic spots when you turn the engines around.
You get the option to put some blades and hooks on the underside of this piece.
1 main blade front (2 to choose from) and 3 at the back (4 blades, 2 hooks on chains).
I was a bit worried about the 3 back parts because you basically just glue them to the hull, not sure if it will be strong enough or if these pieces will easily come lose.
Might want to pin them for extra security. Then again this new plastic recipe might be able to cope.
Thats it for the model itself, you cant put in the rudder (you get 2 to choose from) or the front ramming bit (you get 2 to choose from) on the model without gluing both sides together which I wont do until I have primed everything.
I did not want to build all the raiders themselves because Im building an all female army, you only get 1 single female torso with the Raider kit (there are 5 crewmen in total) so I only built the girl with the spear hanging from the side.
At this point I opened up the Kabalite Warrior box and had a look inside. As I said before there are 4 female torsos and 6 male in the Warrior box (6female, 4male in the wych one). So Im using the 4 female torsos to complete the Raider crew, the problem with the raider crew bits are that some are almost completed meaning they are both legs and torso put together. This really sucks because there driver and gunner both have very straight legs and there are none like that in the Warriors box. Another problem is that not all the legs have a skinflap piece hanging in between the legs, just this bulging crotch protector. So wanting to create an all female army had already hit a few obstacles. Some X-Acto action and the crotch problem was solved but I did not want to butcher the 2 standing models just to get the correct legs for the driver and gunner.
I started putting together some warrior legs and torsos when I noticed a huge flaw in their design.
Each set of legs and torso comes in 2 pieces; Legs and accessory part you glue to the ass, Front torso and back torso.
The legs are numbered 1-5 and the accessories are A1-A5 if I remember correctly.
Accessory piece A1 has the most stuff on it, cool knife, some belt parts, ammo things and a small pouch. Legs 1 are just a pair of legs with a huge bulging crotch. So I figured I would use A1 accessory bit with legs 5 which have a really cool skin cloth piece so it would look really cool with the best accessory bit on it.
DOES NOT WORK!!! A1 does not fit on legs 5, they are designed so that each goes with their corresponding number. 1+A1, 2+A2, 3+A3, 4+A4 and 5+A5, I tried putting together different ones and the funny part is A3 fit with pretty much all of them but the rest only either fit 1 other or not at all. Im sure you can get it to fit if you butcher them somewhat but you could say that with anything.
Basically the legs parts come in 10 different pieces yet you are only meant to build 5 sets of legs with them. I dont understand why they didnt make it so each bit fit any other like with the torso bits.
The torsos come in the same way, 1 front and 1 back piece, yet you can put every single front to back as far as I am aware. I had no problems what so ever fitting them together.
The torsos had one flaw Im really annoyed about, you get 2 "special" back pieces which have a small hollow in the back, one is to be used for your squad leader and the other one is to be used for you heavy weapons guy.
The leader can have 3 different types of backpack bit, cool sword bit, something that looks like 2 horns (as in musical instruments) and a small banner of sorts.
The heavy weapon can put a powerpack into his, this is what I find REALLY annoying.
You get 2 Heavy weapons with the kit, one is a Dark Lance and the other something else but you only get 1 single power backpack and only 2 back torso pieces in the entire kit.
Not sure if its this way will other GW kits as Ive never experienced this problem before, in say a Tactical Space Marine box, you get a plasma cannon and a lascannon right? Both use the same backpack as far as Im aware, do you only get a single backpack in those kits as well?
Anyways, the thing that REALLY REALLY REALLY gets me with this is that when you look at the sprue and where the powerpack is located there is an empty place just the right size to fit another one into!
Powerpack is in the top middle and to the left of it is an empty hole where they could have given you another...
So once you have built everything you will have many bits left over, this usually isnt a problem as you could just buy another kit and use them all up but in this case there will never be enough special backtorso bits for all the options that they give you.
I bet the special back torso bits will be some of the most expensive ones to buy from bits sellers alongside female front torso bits.
Another annoying bit with the Kabals box is that even though it comes with 4 female torsos there is only 1 head that could be classified as female of the bare ones. The rest just look too male to me.
Anyways, like I have said before Im looking to trade male torsos for female ones if anyone is interested :D