The HMG arrives in a small Spartan box with some appealing art work on the front.
As is standard for Spartan the back has a detailed list of the box contents, a render and some fluff.
The HMG has a crew of two detailed metal models
The HMG itself has a surprising number of parts
Which combine with the kneeling crewman to form the model
The only difficulty when constructing the model was the small lever, though this is pictured on the front of the box.
Here is the lever and the gun barrels
The lever attaches to the side of the barrels on the right, there is a short extruding pin there that fits into the round hole on the lever. To form this:
Also included in the box is a round base, a smaller round base (not pictured) and an activation card:
Contents as list:
2 metal crew
1 50mm round base
1 30mm round base
Quality:This model is of the high quality expected of a spartan model.
The HGM reminds me of an organ (instrument) with its multiple long barrels. I find it a little difficult to imagine exactly how it maintains a high rate of fire, however I like that it is different to the HMGs of other nations. It also works thematically with the British ships in Dystopian Wars which have several barrels for each turret. All of the loaders (man holding the ammo box) are identical which means that if you deploy three HMGs then you end up with three identical models stood next to each other.
All in all I rather like it.
Tabletop usage:The HMG can be deployed in one of two ways:
Attached to a mainstay (rifleman) section:
Here the HMG is added to the mainstay section in place of two riflemen. Used this way, the HMG brings the firepower of three riflemen at a slightly smaller cost. The slow speed of the HMG means that any mainstay unit it is attached to is best used as a stationary fire base. This would ideally be coupled with a nearby officer using focus fire on the section to increase the combined firepower even further.
Personally I think the HMG is a good upgrade to make; unless the player feels that the unit needs the flexibility that the slower HMG will deprive it of.
Used this way, the HMG attaches very nicely to the eight strong mainstay that is included in the starter box.
As a section of HMGs:
1 to 3 HMGs can be deployed together as a single section. This, however, uses up a heavy support choice; of which the player does not have many.
Regardless of how many HMGs you take, they can reasonably expect to earn their points back in three of four rounds of shooting against enemy mainstay sections. A smaller section is a cheap activation and command point capable of harassing fire from a location away from your main force. A full section is capable of tearing into sections best deployed as your central gunline with officer support; compared to a full mainstay section the HMGs produce nearly as much fire, have a greater range, are more resistant to enemy fire and cost fewer points!
However you use the HMG it has the potenial to form a solid anvil onto which the rest of your army can bring the hammer down.
Per model price:at £9 or £8.10 from TheTrollTrader or firestormgames the HMG is an ok price for a metal model.
Price per section:A single HMG can be deployed as a section in its own right, however it is more likely to be attached to a mainstay or combined with two other HMGs giving a section cost of £24 or £27.
The HMG is a nice model deserving a round 8 out of 10, were spartan to release a combined box containing three HMG each with a different loader at a reduced cost (say £24?) that would be a Great 10 out of 10.