I've never been much of one to play with figures other people have painted. I've bought and used a handful of used units before, and I've sent a few units to Fernando Enterprises, and one thing is clear to me: I just don't enjoy my miniatures as much unless I have painted them. Plus, you tend to have the additional cost of painting labor on top of the figures themselves, making the whole thing more expensive. Yet I finally broke down and bought an entire army.
Our Trucidos campaign, like most campaigns, stalled and died. However, unlike most campaigns, where one or two players get tired and quit, we had one get fed up with the hobby altogether! He kept saying he was going to sell his army off, and I kept telling him not to, but to make sure and come to me first if he did. He had painted these figures in a burst of productivity (which maybe burned him out on it altogether) alongside us, and had done a really good job on the figures. After trying to get him back into it and letting him know I'd rather he kept them and played, he seemed insistent that he wanted to be rid of them, so I made an offer, and bought my first army.
It's around 1,500 points of 40k Imperial Guard. That's an army that has appealed to me, since the figures could be used for just about any Sci-Fi game, but it's one which requires a lot more figures than most, so I've never seriously considered it. I sat down and figured that if my 2009 painting rate persists, it would take me approximately 16 years to paint this much stuff.
Which, frankly, made me rethink my whole distaste with the idea of buying painted miniatures.
Maybe at this stage of my life, it's actually cheaper just to buy my way into a game. I mean, clearly, it's cheaper to buy the metal unfinished-- but not if I never finish them and never actually used them. Maybe just not buying unpainted figures and buying a painted army or two a year is a better way to go.
I'll be mulling this over for a while...and not buying any unpainted figures for a while as I horde my pennies...
Anyway, here are some pictures of my new IG army. It feels like it was worth the money right now.