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Regarding Reviews

Discussion in 'Reviews , Video Reviews and Open Book' started by Guy, Jan 30, 2011.

  1. Guy A Fixture


    Recently, on other forums, there has been some controversy about my reviews and how I acquire the kits I have reviewed over the years here on PlanetFigure and on other sites. I started out doing reviews of my own kits and suddenly manufacturers started sending me review samples for me to do a review for them. Now let’s look at what samples are.

    Sample kits – They are kits that are sent to me without any cost to me at the time I receive them here at home. They are what some people call “Free” or “Freebies” as other people call them. But this is where the definition of “free” ends. It takes me an average of 3 hours to complete each review. The process starts with the photographic work which will entail about 45 to 60 photos taken for each 30 picture review. Quite often, I will take the kit parts out to my shop and remove carefully the casting blocks so that the reader of the review can see the kit dry-fitted together. Next I process all the photographs through a photo editing program to crop the pictures and size them for the forum. I then pick out the best 30 photographs to use in the review and arrange them in sequence that I will use in the review.

    At this point, I have only 3 hours of my time involved, on average. Some kits are more complex and therefore require more time. During this 3 hour time, most of you would be painting figures which is what I also love to do. The reviews take away from me many, many hours of time I could be painting as well.

    Another aspect of “Sample Kits” is the fact that it gives the forum member more of a diversity of subject matter. If I only reviewed kits I bought, you would just have reviews of Indians, Mountain Men, Vikings and Mongols. But I do review many historical subjects that I have no interest whatsoever of painting. Every once in a while a sample comes through that I just can’t wait to paint myself.

    Now, over the last 6 or 7 years of doing reviews, I have accumulated many Germans, Napoleonics and Seven Year War figures that are stacked everywhere in my den. Many of them get traded, sold or donated to others to help pay the cost of cameras (on my third one now), photographic lights as well as Photo editing programs for the computer. Do many of you know how much the Photoshop Program costs? It is not cheap.

    Many of my friends hit by the recent economic recession have received kits from me to keep them in the hobby. I can remember a good friend from Tulsa who left with over a dozen kits and another friend in Norman, Oklahoma who left here with about the same.
    Buy— yes, I do sell many of the Samples because after the work I put into each I have earned the right to do so. By now, I have earned that “Free” sample many are crying about. So you see after all, nothing in life is free.

    Many have also criticized my style of reviews. I do Photographic reviews and if there is a seam line on a figure you can bet I have a photo of it in the review. Unless the manufacturer sends me a historical note I do not do historical research for each review. I am reviewing the figure…..not the history. If you want to know more about the history, google the subject and read it yourself….I’m not.

    On many figures, I recommend the figure for those interested in the subject matter. Even though it may have seam lines or casting blocks I will still recommend it…….all figures have these things. There have been a few figures where you saw no recommendation made by me. Duh……what does this tell you? And a few who I have recommended not for you to buy. Most of the castings nowadays are much better quality than back when I started.

    Some people have questioned the qualifications needed for a review to be made by a person. I have 39 years in this hobby and if that is not enough qualification, you need to research back and see if Mark Twain did any figure reviews.

    I am on my 483rd review and now all of a sudden this crap comes up. I am so glad those people woke up and started criticizing reviews, of which none of them have ever done themselves.

    Now, if you don’t like my reviews……tell me now in this thread. But tell me how or why they need to be changed. And hey, if you do like them and appreciate them…..let me know that too. It might keep me doing them.

    Also thanks to Jim Patrick for defending me yesterday. Much appreciated that there was one willing to come forward to do so.

    Last but not least, why do I do figure kit reviews? So many of this rare breed of figure painters have never been or will ever have the opportunity to visit a hobby shop that carries figures and be able to open the box before handing out their hard earned dollars for a kit. Much less attend a figure show and see all the painted figures and shop in the vendor’s area. But they do have the internet or access to it through their work or a local library. These reviews are for you guys…….I was one, once too.
  2. housecarl A Fixture

    Guy, I like your reviews as they're impartial and show the figure warts and all. For me researching the subject is also part of the fun, so there's no need for you to do that, so thanks. So what if you do end up with the figures, I would say that's a perk of the job. After all that's what it has become, giving up your free time to provide a service. So if you ever have any that you want to part with let me know. I would say that the detractors are a little on the jealous side.
    Keep up the good work, and b****cks to them,
  3. Jim Patrick Active Member

    WELL SAID!!!!!!!

    I have no problems with your reviews Guy. Our reviews are different (WHEN I DID REVIEWS!). It doesn't mean one is better than the other. It just means that they were different. I personally like the reviews.

    To the membership and readers at large: If you don't like the reviews, then now's your chance to speak up with your CONSTRUCTIVE critisim. Better yet, what is stopping all of us from doing our own reviews? It's not an admin right. Each of us can produce our own reviews of whatever subject we choose and present it in any format we choose. Just either offer Guy advice or we can produce our own.

    Jim Patrick
  4. dArtagnan A Fixture

    Hi Guy,
    I'm with Carl, I like your reviews and have purchased many kits after seen them here in the box, because our nearest miniature store at 80 km has retired, so I like your work here and all the rest is not of mine or anyone's business. So, please don't stop, I think your review work is important for many of us! Heads up, where with you,
    All the best,
  5. Guy A Fixture

    Thanks Carl, Jim & Eddy. I also emailed a link to this topic to each manufacturer who has sent me samples in the past so they, if they choose, can weigh in on the review samples they have sent me.
  6. gordy Well-Known Member

    Guy, the popular feature you have provided for planetFigure with your reviews is under rated and much appreciated.

    Few understand the level of effort that goes into each review in just the preparation that's not counting the coordinating the body of work into a format friendly for posting on planetFigure!

    Thanks again Guy for all the hard work and excellent service! (y)
    John Bowery likes this.
  7. akaryu PlanetFigure Supporter

    Guy, just keep them coming! As most of us have only internet shops to buy from, reading your reviews and examining the close up photographs really helps!
  8. milminwh Member

    The reason why so many suppliers want you to do the reviews is because of the concise product descriptions, photos of the box, instructions, and close ups of the individual pieces you always do. It is obvious (IMHO) to any of us that you take such care in doing these reviews, and as a figure painter myself, much appreciated.
    The years I've been dealing with you are now starting to add up, and each time, I know I'm dealing with some one whose opinion I respect, and a person with a nice combination of integrity who can also be quite humble.
    I know a lot of the guys that post on timelines, and at least all of the people I know are honestly a bunch of nice guys. I think that site is a bit smaller than this site, but it does seem to have a lot of regulars who post a lot, and this eclectic group (IMHO) meant no harm towards the many (and much appreciated) reviews you've done over the years. I dont believe any of those guys are vindictive (although some may be bordering on "mental!") ;)
    I hope you continue to do these detailed reviews, as I always look forward to reading them.
  9. Meehan34 A Fixture

    Your reviews are good for the manufacturers business. Without your reviews I wouldn't have bought many of the figures I have painted. please keep them coming.
  10. Dan Morton A Fixture

    Guy - I've always found your reviews invaluable. They've always seemed to be impartial, objective and unbiased and very constructive in terms of critique. Keep 'em coming and thanks!

    All the best,
  11. Steve Well-Known Member

    Guy, having seen your review operation up close I know how much work you put into it. I cannot imagine a more effective nor fair way to review anything: simply take easy to view, comprehensive photos of the item being reviewed and then let the photos speak for themselves and the viewer draw his own conclusions. No personal opinions, no bias, just facts. What is to criticize? Personally I thank you for the work you do for the Planet. It would be a much less interesting place without it.--
  12. stu A Fixture


    You is the review man,,,,, and the best by far although a few are catching up with you, Hehe.

    I have sent review samples before and will carry on in the future, infact i have a couple I cant wait to send you. Your reviews show people the product like they are looking at the kit themselves in a shop and will then choose to buy.

    A case in point is Youngs recent bust with the panther cupola, before the review it was ooogh thats expensive, after, that is one hell of a great kit I want to buy. Without your review we would not have seen this awesome kit.

    What you do with the kits is up to you , you have earned your samples as far as I am concerned.

    I bet there is not one manufacturer that is not greatfull for one of your reviews, they are the best.

    Many thanks for all you do for us all on this site, we are all figure modellers whether we manufacture or not.


  13. pmfs A Fixture

    Hi Guy!

    Sometimes, I posted here some reviews of figures that I buy, and as you say, the work on the photos and everything else are tremendous.
    I like very much your reviews, and try to learn with them.
    I am 39 years old and when I born in 1972 you were already in the hobby:eek:. We the newest guys like me, still have much to learn from you the older ones.:cool:
    I want to continue for many years to seeing your reviews Guy.
    Thanks for showing to us the great creations of our hobby.(y)

    Kind regards,
  14. 1969 A Fixture

    I think you are doing a Stirling job Guy and it never ceases to amaze me the amount of reviews you put out. As for `FREE` well you put that one to bed, if an employer was paying you for the hours spent on a review that money would cover the cost of you buying that kit so you have payed for it in my opinion.

    keep the reviews coming and I hope you will be reviewing my figures soon also.

  15. tonydawe A Fixture

    Hi Guy,

    I was unaware that anyone had been critical of you and your reviews, but it makes no difference to me. I love your reviews and get immense enjoyment from being able to see close up photographs and detailed descriptions of all the parts. Your reviews are one of the features that make Planet Figure the only figure modelling website worth joining.

    As for what you choose to do with the "freebies" you are given, well that's your business and nobody elses. It sounds like a bunch of "sour grapes" to me. Obviously the manufacturers believe there is value in sending you a kit to review, so you don't need to justify what you do with that kit once you've reviewed it. You've earned the right to dispose of that kit anyway you like, and those who criticise you are ignorant and jealous of your high standing and reputation in the figure modelling community.

    Please don't allow the ignorant views of a few jealous morons upset you mate. Keep up the good work.
  16. Mark S Guest

    Re: Regarding Reviews - A review of Guy Herrick.

    Guy Herrick.
    his mom and dad.
    Scale: 1:1
    Made from tough stuff.


    We can see here that our much appreciated reviewer requires minimal clean up and is totally deviod of visible seam lines.
    This reviewer brings many years experience to his detailed reviews which have become a valuable part of planet figure forum.
    This expert reviewer is highly recommended for those who appreciate the value of being able to very closely examine a figure before purchase.

    Thanks Guy,I'm one of those who appreciates your detailed reviews very much.Please continue to post them.

    P.S.I might need some more practise before I can claim to be a reviewer.
  17. housecarl A Fixture

    Looks a great kit. Although it appears to have lost some details off the top of the head.;)
    Keep them coming Guy,
    Ineluki, Dennis, yeo_64 and 1 other person like this.
  18. Roman Active Member

    Guy makes the best reviews. With out his reviews I would have to say bye-bye and close my company. I'm grateful to him that he found time to make reviews of my products a small and unknown company. I shall never forget his kindness. I hardly can understand the problem he has with some jealous idiots who do not see the great work he has to do to prepare a review for so many company's. I would only be happy even to pay for his work not only send a free sample. I think we owe to Guy, not the opposite. When I close my eyes and try to imagine how many work is needed to make a review, I'm truly impressed for it can be comparable with sculpting a good figure. And I know what I'm writing because I once had the oportunity to make a review for a hobby magazine in my country. After that I told myself - never again, back to the easy part of the hobby, sculpting figures. Many, many thanks Guy for your hard work and for your love for figures and as a client I'm greatful that you give me a chance to know what I'm about to bye. Never forget that 99% of people are with you and I think we are all thankful that you share your precious time with us. Don't care about idiots for some are allways among us.
    John Bowery, yeo_64 and gordy like this.
  19. chrisalis New Member

    This is the first time I have posted on PlanetFigure, although I have been reading the daily posts for a couple of years. It's interesting and a fantastic resource for someone like me who wants to learn about figure modelling. Regarding your reviews, Guy, I didn't realise that there had been some problems. Sounds like sour grapes on somebody's part. I have a drawer full of kits ready to make, some of them bought after reading your posts, which are excellent. Please don't stop doing them as they are much appreciated.

    Blind Pew and gordy like this.
  20. moore Active Member


    I find your reviews helpful and informative.
    I know the time you put into them. This is something
    I could never do.. so someone with your experience is
    what is needed for us to see the kits and all the parts.
    But most of all... I want to paint and not spend my time
    reviewing kits as you mentioned.

    Please keep the reviews coming.


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