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Let's talk about Army Men

AntimatterAntimatter Devo Was RightGates of SteelRegistered User regular
edited October 2008 in Social Entropy++
No, not the video games, silly, the toys that inspired the games. These things are a blast, and this website can show you how to do proper battling. http://www.thortrains.net/armymen/ Not only do they have normal army men, they have pirates, Indians, Cowboys, Scuba Divers, Space Men, Dinosaurs, Farm animals, Knights, Vikings, Romans, Monsters, Cops, Robbers, Firemen, and Ninjas. They are cheap, cheap, cheap, and pretty durable unless you screwed up with them big time. Army men are similar to Lego. There is no way that you can outgrow them.

For those too lazy to click a few links, here's the basic rules for fighting with Army Men, which you can change per your whims:

Original Introduction
There are many ways to enjoy Army Men. The simplest and most common involves a sandpile or dirt backyard, small garden trowel and wood twigs. You can dig bunkers, fortifications and trenchlines.

Using them with electric trains (only larger O and G scale trains!) is fun. Soldiers ride in hoppers and gondolas. Do not stuff them in boxcars because it is hard to get them out. Note that a train can crash a tank, but a tank cannot crash a locomotive. So don't be a dummy: never put tanks on train tracks.

Outdoors, soldiers can be bombed with 'enemy dirt bombs." Small, dry clumps of dirt will seem to explode upon impact.

Scale
The average Army man's scale is 1/35 to 1/25. Though most wagons, jeeps and trucks were close to scale, some were not. Tanks and half tracks were almost never to scale. Do you insist on scale accuracy? Then get into HO scale model railroading, because you won't find it around Army Men!

Historical Accuracy
Are you kidding? Knights, Indians and several other types of Army Men are the embodiment of Anachronism. And how many WW2 play sets came complete with post war tanks like the M41, M47 and M48? And helicopters? If you're into historical accuracy, take up scale models and prepare to overpay and overpay for toy soldiers that you wouldn't dare play with.
Troops
US soldiers: US Army, US Marines, Norwegian Army, Danish Army, South Koreans, ARVN, Canadians

Germans: German Army, Swedes. Some companies now sell green Germans as modern US troops in the new helmet.

British: British Troops can be used for Israelis if they are molded in Green, and Arabs if they are molded in tan. Even though the Canadians used to have British uniforms, it is considered prudent to use US troops for The Great White North's army.

Foreign Legion: in a pinch, Foreign Legionnaires can be used as Union troops.

Civil War: Union troops can substitute for foreign legion. Grey Confederates can substitute for Germans.

Cowboys can also be used for Alamo Texans.

Russians: Russians can substitute for Poles, North Koreans and Red Chinese

Japanese: it is allowable to use Japanese for Red Chinese, North Koreans or VC.

Mexicans: Alamo Mexicans can be used as War of 1812 guys. Blue go with the US, red with the British.

Pirates: Pirates can be used as Revolutionary War and Civil War sailors, and as Alamo Texans.

Commandos: a small group of soldiers, if molded in a distinctly different shade of green than your regular Army Men, could be used as Commandos or Rangers.

Special Forces: it was allowable to paint ten soldiers' helmets red and designate them as Special Forces. They acted as Commandos.

A medic can heal a man who was shot by taking out the bullet. He cannot do this if the guy was bayonetted or bombed or fired up.
Vehicles
Both sides had to have a fair share of vehicles. Green vehicles were generally US, and grey were German. Later, some tan vehicles were also German or Japanese. If you had only green vehicles, some had to be given to the other side. A few companies molded them in blue or other colors. Blue could mean Navy or Air Force, but usually they became the Enemy. In a pinch, which was most of the time, they enemy had Green vehicles, too.

Jeeps: a machine gun could knock out a jeep, but jeeps could drive many places. The power of Jeeps increased after the series Rat Patrol made its debut, and then a Jeep with a machine gun could knock out a half track or open self-propelled gun. You could mount a machine gun, mortar or bazooka on a Jeep. You could tow a cannon with a jeep, but not mount a cannon on it.

Trucks: trucks only carry men and tow cannons.

Half Tracks: they can go anywhere and run over Jeeps and Trucks. Half Tracks can even mount a cannon. The second best vehicle on the battlefield.

Tanks: Tanks can go anywhere, knock down any building, run over any other vehicle except another tank or a train. To blow up a tank, you need another tank, a big cannon or a bazooka.

Self-propelled guns: they are like tanks, but they have an open top and can be blown up if a guy throws in a grenade or drops a mortar on them.

Helicopters: these are rare. They could carry soldiers and drop bombs (remember - we hadn't seen Hueys gunships or Cobras yet!). They could be knocked out with machine guns or cannons.

Airplanes: airplanes could carry paratroops, strafe and drop bombs. They could be knocked out by machine guns and cannons.

Rockets and Missiles: they had the same firepower as cannons, but could be shot up and come straight down into a bunker.

Armored cars: like tanks, but could not ride all over and were vulnerable to having their tires shot out. Armored cars could only go where trucks could go.
Weapons
Weapons have distinct powers and liabilities. Know them, and make sure you have enough when you go to battle!

A rifle could shoot one guy at a time.

A submachine gun could shoot up a bunch of guys or a jeep.

A machine gun could shoot up troops, jeeps, trucks, half tracks and aircrafts. If fired from above, like on a hill, it could also blow up a self-propelled gun.

A mortar could drop bombs and blow up anything but tanks and aircraft.

A small cannon could bomb anything except tanks.

A big cannon could blast anything. Of course, its crew was vulnerable to everything out there.

A bazooka could blow up any vehicle. However, it did not blow up a bunch of troops.

A flamethrower could burn out a tank.

A missile was like a big cannon.

Hand grenades are like a mortar, but they are thrown at close range.

Airplane bombs could blast anything except tanks.

Civil War, Revolutionary War and Pirate cannons could not harm tanks, half tracks, armored cars or self-propelled guns.

Civil War mortars acted like regular mortars.

Nukes destroy both sides, so nobody can use them.

Civil War
Cowboys, Pirates, Davy Crockett guys and Alamo Texans could be used to supplement either side. If a figure was molded in blue or grey, however, he had to go to the appropriate side.

Cannons could blow up anything on the Civil War battlefield. If you used Civil War cannons to supplement a modern war, however, they were not able to penetrate armored cars, self-propelled guns, tanks or half tracks.

Alamo Mexicans could be used to supplement Civil War armies. Blue always went to the Union, Grey to the Confederates, and red to whichever side needed more men.
Space Men
Pistol-size ray guns can take out other spacemen, very small rockets and jeep-size vehicles.

Rifle-sized ray guns can take out big vehicles - anything except half tracks and tanks.

If you use tanks with spacemen (they didn't make many space combat vehicles) their cannons automatically become super ray guns.

You can use missiles, but regular guns and cannons do not work in space.
Knights, Vikings, and Romans
Knights in plate armor are like walking tanks. It takes a lance on horseback, an axe, a mace or a direct hit with a catapult to down one with one shot. Sword and spear guys have to gang up on them and stick them through openings in the armor.

Knights in armor cannot swim or ford waterways.

If confronted by a gun, it takes 3 shots to knock down a fully-armored knight. A burst from a machine gun works, too. Fully-armored knights are vulnerable to all heavy weapons, including grenades. Flamethrowers wreak havoc on them.

Vikings are so cool that they can beat a knight as if he were an unarmored man.

Romans only have half armor. They can be used to supplement knights' armies.
Terrain
Houses can stop bullets, but a hand grenade can blow a door open.

Tanks can knock down any house.

Stone walls stop everything

Wood only stops bullets

A wood fort can stop bullets and old fashioned cannons, but can be penetrated by grenades, light modern cannons and all larger weapons. Tanks and half tracks can drive through wood forts.

The easiest way to beat walls is to fire over them with mortars and grenades.

Some stone forts can be breached by tanks. Big cannons can put holes in stone forts, since a stone fort is not the same as a stone wall.

A soldier with a flamethrower or machine gun can fire through vision slits on pillboxes, if he is close enough.

Tanks plow through almost anything!

Tents do not stop bullets.
Battle Tactics for Plastic Soldiers
Troops can take cover in narrow places

Good cover is essential when under attack

Bricks make for a solid bunker

Even on flat surfaces in patios, army men can find solid cover.

Moving alongside a solid obstacle provides cover and concealment.

When attacking a brick bunker, lower unit provides covering fire. Advance team crawls forward as far as it can, then dashes forward to the next position with cover.

Having taken cover, one unit provides supporting fire while the other advances. Men crawl close, then dash to take cover being a brick while throwing grenades. Flamethrower is useful for attacking rifle ports.

Grenade throwers attack from one side while the rest of the squad comes around the back.

The M-15 Plastic Minesweeper not only detects mines, but defuses them.

Enemies of your troops
Ice cold - when cold, some brands' plastic got brittle. Whack them with a hammer and they shatter

Fire - when subjected to fire, Army men burn and melt.

Firecrackers - firecrackers will shatter a soldier in close proximity.

Teeth - dogs and baby brothers can chew a toy soldier into an elongated mess.

Guns - a 22 caliber bullet will usually pass through Army Men doing little more than making a big hole. Unless it hits an arm, leg or head, which it will sever.
So let's discuss and enjoy these awesome figures. If you really don't know how to get them, just go to a dollar store. They usually have fifty of each team in one bag, as well as accessories and vehicles.

Antimatter on

Posts

  • CrossBusterCrossBuster Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Those poor bastards never lasted long when I had them, especially after I got a BB gun.

    CrossBuster on
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  • PotUPotU __BANNED USERS regular
    edited October 2008
    I loved playing with those! They were awesome!

    PotU on
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  • Garlic BreadGarlic Bread i'm a bitch i'm a bitch i'm a bitch i'm a Registered User, Disagreeable regular
    edited October 2008
    You're putting too much thought into army men toys

    Garlic Bread on
  • Garlic BreadGarlic Bread i'm a bitch i'm a bitch i'm a bitch i'm a Registered User, Disagreeable regular
    edited October 2008
    I need a seven page dissertation on Lincoln Logs by next Thursday

    Garlic Bread on
  • J3pJ3p Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Lightbulb always won

    J3p on
    +./\ 50 ?. 50
  • WallhitterWallhitter Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    My friend and I used to have Army Men Vs Kinex robots.

    Seriously epic battle, folks.

    Wallhitter on
  • PotUPotU __BANNED USERS regular
    edited October 2008
    I always played this with my brother and we used dices to see if some soldier got hit. Tanks had more health.

    Or we threw stuff at them and everyone that got knocked over died.

    PotU on
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  • AntimatterAntimatter Devo Was Right Gates of SteelRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Keith wrote: »
    You're putting too much thought into army men toys

    I wasn't the one who came up with this stuff, but I thought that it was neat and felt like sharing.

    Antimatter on
  • StealtharcadiaStealtharcadia Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Me and my friends used to battle by smashing the other person's army men with bricks. We mangled hundreds of those guys.

    Good times.

    Stealtharcadia on
  • JedocJedoc In the scuppers with the staggers and jagsRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Rubber bands and army men were meant to be together. The game generally lasted until either me or my cousin was losing and decided to take out the general rather than the grunts. Then we usually got sent outside.

    Good times.

    Jedoc on
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  • WallhitterWallhitter Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    My friend and I would basically decide by making machine gun noises and flicking over each others figures.

    There was also the unwritten "Last Stand" rule which would basically consist of the last remaining dude killing fucking everyone.

    Wallhitter on
  • GRMikeGRMike The Last Best Hope for Humanity The God Pod Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Our dachshund ate all of my army men in one afternoon.

    GRMike on
  • WallhitterWallhitter Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Did it shit little green plastic lumps?

    ...just curious.

    Wallhitter on
  • GRMikeGRMike The Last Best Hope for Humanity The God Pod Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I was too young to remember the shit.

    We got rid of it when my kid sister was born. I don't exactly remember the reason but I knew I blamed her for a long time.

    GRMike on
  • Saint JusticeSaint Justice Mercenary Mah-vel Baybee!!!Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I think it'd be fun to use Army Men for target shooting. My friend just picked up a Sig P22, perhaps I shall pick up said Army Men and have a little "live fire exercise".

    Saint Justice on
    Some people play tennis, I erode the human soul. ~ Tycho
  • GoatmonGoatmon Companion of Kess Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Army Men had some of the baddest commercials around.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MRxIikFok1Q

    Goatmon on
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  • TardTard Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    God damn.

    Mr.Sexy was going to get laid.

    Tard on
  • JedocJedoc In the scuppers with the staggers and jagsRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Yeah, but fucking teddy bears is way against park regulations.

    Jedoc on
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  • GoatmonGoatmon Companion of Kess Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I can't find my favorite one on youtube.

    A guy is watching Ballet on TV, and the classical music is being heard all around the house.
    An army man is watching from across the room, with a radio in hand.
    A little green helicopter pulls up into the living room where the dude is watching TV.
    The army man talks into the radio "Turn that (bleep) off."
    And then the helicopter launches a missile and blows up the TV.

    Goatmon on
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  • Penguin IncarnatePenguin Incarnate King of Kafiristan Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I should get my nephews some army men.

    Penguin Incarnate on
  • GoatmonGoatmon Companion of Kess Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    ahahahaha I forgot about this one

    "Nutcracker"

    Goatmon on
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  • RockyRocky Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    ahh damn, I haven't played with army men since I moved, that was like 12 years ago.

    My goal for next year is to fill my dorm with army men.

    Rocky on
    LOTRO: Hurindar Halimhar
    GW2: Hurindar
  • DavoidDavoid Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    These were always the best toys.

    They made any elementary school diorama worthwhile.

    Davoid on
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  • WallhitterWallhitter Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Does anyone remember that fucking huge army men airplane? Or the gigantic tank? God, those were awesome. Especially the tank, which in many of the confrontations between my friend and I, would fulfill the role of an "Uber Unit"

    We had an awesome setup, honestly. Would even use his model railroad set.

    Wallhitter on
  • RockyRocky Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Wallhitter wrote: »
    Does anyone remember that fucking huge army men airplane? Or the gigantic tank? God, those were awesome. Especially the tank, which in many of the confrontations between my friend and I, would fulfill the role of an "Uber Unit"

    We had an awesome setup, honestly. Would even use his model railroad set.

    HOLY SHIT I had that Airplane, that thing was fuck awesome, I mean damn you brought back the best memorys, I had that and a base and some miniture starwars figures and they hated eachother. Then whenever I played with my cousin he would whip out the dinosaurs and holy shit jurassic park.

    Edit: looking through that website I just found out the majority of my army were "low-grade clones" my parents couldn't afford real army men :(

    Rocky on
    LOTRO: Hurindar Halimhar
    GW2: Hurindar
  • TalonrazorTalonrazor Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Man we need another Army Men game. I fucking love those things.

    Talonrazor on
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  • Penguin IncarnatePenguin Incarnate King of Kafiristan Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    You're a bad liar, Talonrazor.

    Penguin Incarnate on
  • JedocJedoc In the scuppers with the staggers and jagsRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    One year the library I was working at got invaded by army men. Somebody purchased about twenty dollars worth of green and tan army men (which is a shitload even at today's prices) and set them up on shelves and display cases and basically every flat surface all over the library. Some of them were engaged in skirmishes, some just looked like they were out on patrol, and there was a pretty impressive battle scene in a conference room down by the AV department.

    The librarians had the cleaners throw them away that night, but on some of the higher shelves in the less-traveled sections of the library they lasted a long time. A line of greens along the top of a map case in government documents hung around for a year, and were still there when I moved away.

    It was a pretty magical thing there for a while, for reasons I can't fully explain.

    Jedoc on
    GDdCWMm.jpg
  • GoatmonGoatmon Companion of Kess Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Jedoc wrote: »
    One year the library I was working at got invaded by army men. Somebody purchased about twenty dollars worth of green and tan army men (which is a shitload even at today's prices) and set them up on shelves and display cases and basically every flat surface all over the library. Some of them were engaged in skirmishes, some just looked like they were out on patrol, and there was a pretty impressive battle scene in a conference room down by the AV department.

    The librarians had the cleaners throw them away that night, but on some of the higher shelves in the less-traveled sections of the library they lasted a long time. A line of greens along the top of a map case in government documents hung around for a year, and were still there when I moved away.

    It was a pretty magical thing there for a while, for reasons I can't fully explain.

    Hahaha, nice. <3

    Goatmon on
    Switch Friend Code: SW-6680-6709-4204


  • OdenOden Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Jedoc wrote: »
    One year the library I was working at got invaded by army men. Somebody purchased about twenty dollars worth of green and tan army men (which is a shitload even at today's prices) and set them up on shelves and display cases and basically every flat surface all over the library. Some of them were engaged in skirmishes, some just looked like they were out on patrol, and there was a pretty impressive battle scene in a conference room down by the AV department.

    The librarians had the cleaners throw them away that night, but on some of the higher shelves in the less-traveled sections of the library they lasted a long time. A line of greens along the top of a map case in government documents hung around for a year, and were still there when I moved away.

    It was a pretty magical thing there for a while, for reasons I can't fully explain.

    Whoever did that should have super glued them down.

    Oden on
  • Meta T. DustMeta T. Dust Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Sarge's Heroes

    Meta T. Dust on
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  • FishmanFishman Put your goddamned hand in the goddamned Box of Pain. Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    My mate and I used to go over to his place every Friday, as he had an empty room and the most epic collection of army men ever.

    We came up with an elaborate battle resolution system involving a pack of cards (representing efficacy and luck) and a die (representing tactics, with a bonus points system based on flanking, pincers, attacking from behind, above, etc.)

    It was awesome, as is evidenced by the fact that I'd go over here every Friday.

    Of course, that was also because his dad worked down the road at the gas station and had the most epic collection of porn mags stashed in his closet and Sam didn't mind sharing (this was in the days before the interweb).

    Fishman on
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  • Burning OrganBurning Organ Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    We used small rocks to emulate bullets. 3-6 rocks for a burst. A tank shell or rocket was emulated using a bigger rock thrown very very hard.
    The bigger the tanks the better the gun was also a good logic it seemed, and we had two tanks that were big as hell.
    I still think our best idea were the NPC's that would hide in the sand and occasionally ambush your troops en route to a war.

    Burning Organ on
  • Clint EastwoodClint Eastwood My baby's in there someplace She crawled right inRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I made a point of painting my Army Men and giving them realistic battle damage*

    The flamethrower guy was my favorite because he gave me an excuse to melt a couple guy's faces off.

    Clint Eastwood on
  • Mister LongbaughMister Longbaugh Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    i took all my tan army men and colored all over them with red marker, then melted a few of them and snapped a few limbs off and voila, i had a zombie horde

    Mister Longbaugh on
  • Volucrisus AedriusVolucrisus Aedrius Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    I used to get sturdy sticks and bury them halfway at about a 45 degree angle at places predesignated as "landmines" or "mortar hits" or what have you.

    And then as battle progressed and a squad would take the area of a "minefield" I would stomp on the stick at an angle, causing the ground to erupt. Dust would go everywhere, armymen would go flying, and there would be a huge crater.

    Smaller explosions could be simulated by digging the end of a stick a few inches into the dirt and then using your hand to flip it upward.

    And of course then dudes would pile into the craters to take cover.


    One time I buried the end of a shovel, the handle end, and then positioned a bunch of army men on it. Then, when everything was in place, I jumped as high as I could and came down on the exposed shovel blade. Dirt clods rained down all over the place, in the grass, on the walkway, on the roof. A shower of dirt pattered on the windows like stormrain.

    And then my mom yelled at me and I got my army men taken away for a week.

    Volucrisus Aedrius on
  • JedocJedoc In the scuppers with the staggers and jagsRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    "It wasn't me, mom! It was Ambrose Burnside!"

    Jedoc on
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  • StraightziStraightzi Here we may reign secure, and in my choice, To reign is worth ambition though in HellRegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
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    Poor bastards never stood a chance

    Straightzi on
  • ShimShamShimSham Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Sarge's Heroes
    I got that, I was probably 13 or so at the time.

    I thought it was fun.

    Oh how wrong I was.

    ShimSham on
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