Thursday, August 4, 2011

Product Review: Secret Weapon Washes

Games Workshops current line of washes is a great product line, useful for most painters and making shading really easy to do. However, with only 8 colors available and some of the rarely used (I'm looking at you, Leviathan Purple), they're pretty limited.

Secret Weapon miniatures has their own line of washes, and they currently have 30 different colors to choose from. With that sort of variety, I had to try them out, so I picked up 9 of their original 20 washes that I thought would be useful for me.

To start off, they're 70 cents cheaper than GW washes and come in 20 mL bottles instead of GW's 12 mL bottles. That's a big plus in my book. The dropper bottles keep them from drying out and make them very easy to mix, though you'll need a wet palette to get the most out of them.

The washes seem to go on just as smooth as GW washes, and they dry waterproof just like GW washes, so you can put multiple layers on a model. They dry with a nice semi-matte finish. Overall, I have to say that they're very similar to GW washes but with more variety and a cheaper price. The only downside I've found is that the washes tend to separate out after a while, which I've never had GW washes do. That's easily corrected by some vigorous shaking.

As far as colors, Dark Sepia is essentially the same as Gryphonne Sepia and Sewer Water is very similar to Devlan Mud. Baby Poop (Secret Weapon seems to be giving GW a run for their money as far as silly paint names) is an intermediate brown, similar to Ogryn Flesh but with a bit more green to it, rendering it unsuitable as a flesh wash. These three make a good set for shading metals, browns, and dirtying up models.

Soft Body Black and Heavy Body Black are similar to Badab Black, but with a lighter and heavier pigment count respectably. I really like the soft black for shading just about everything; it's light enough to shade lighter colors without really changing their color, just adding some depth. I've even used it sparingly on whites. Heavy bodied black is really dark, and I've only really used it to shade darker metals. It gives them a dark, well-oiled appearance.

Stormcloud is a lighter blueish green wash while Sapphire is a very dense blue wash. I bought these two to glaze my Executioners. Neither really were what I was going for, but I found a 4:1 ratio of Stormcloud:Sapphire was just what I needed.

Parchment is extremely light and really only has an effect when painted over white. It would be very useful for producing an off-white shading on white robes. Concrete is a light grey-green wash that I haven't experimented with too much. I bought it to use on my cities of death  buildings, but I've never really convinced myself to paint them.

Anyway, I have to highly recommend the Secret Weapon washes. They look great, have tons of options, and are easy on the wallet.

1 comment:

  1. Cool! Well thank you very much for this, as it seems that I have found a cheaper alternative to GW washes (which aren't too good compared to the old ones).



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