In looking at their growing military range it would seem Preiser are trying to portray the German Third Reich soldier in every possible way. There is already a good range of such figures in combat, so Preiser have made a number of non-combat sets, including this one of soldiers on home leave. Of course such figures will also be useful for anyone modelling a German civilian scene (such as a railway station) during the 1933-45 period, when men in uniform would have been in abundance.
Only having six figures in this set is not a good start, although obviously you wouldn't normally expect to group large numbers together as you would on a battlefield. However there are actually only three figures of soldiers on leave - the others are of two military police and a nurse. Looking at the soldiers first, we find three men in regular army tunics and wearing the peaked field cap. Naturally they are unarmed and are encumbered with various packs and parcels, but surprisingly one still retains three ammunition pouches on his belt. Two wear the older calf-length army boots while one has ankle boots and canvas anklets which appeared later in the war. They are all in walking or standing poses, as might be appropriate for men on their way home.
The two Feldgendarme wear army greatcoats and have the gorget on their chest. The poses suggest a patrol, with one man checking papers while the other waits. The nurse is dispensing drinks from a jug, and is in typical costume of the time. She has a coat draped over her shoulders to keep out the chill. All six figures are authentically clothed and are in nice relaxed poses.
This particular set has a high number of pieces, with every figure having separate heads, arms and items of kit. For our picture we assembled them as suggested on the box, but by looking at the complete sprue it can be seen that there is some scope for variation. However there are no major spare parts such as arms in this set. What there is is a separate sprue of small items of kit like gasmask canisters, bags and entrenching tools, so it is possible to kit these men up to virtually battlefield spec if desired.
The standard of sculpting on the figures is excellent, with plenty of well realised detail everywhere. There is no flash and no mould marks or excess plastic, and the hard plastic means the parts, which fit together well, also stay together securely. The only omission is that there are no bases, nor in this case any material from which a base can be fashioned. However anyone wanting to utilise these attractive and interesting figures should not let that small inconvenience get in their way.