Monday, August 5, 2013

Breaking: Bastogne Church Delayed!

(Ed: in my haste, I spelled Bastogne wrong. Fixed now)

Yllanes, one of the forum denizens over at, just received an email saying that the paint quality on the first building in the new round of Battlefront's building subscription system for Flames of War, the Bastogne Church, was painted so poorly they're actually sending them all back to get repainted. It'll take 2 months to get them done and out the door.

Three things here: 

1) Kudos to Battlefront for owning up to it and communicating with its customer base. 

2) I can't even fathom how this got by the factory. Do they not have in house quality control?

3) BF is going to do a small run for us subscribers so we, who foisted up a ton of money up front, will only have to wait a month or so for the church. 

Here's the full text of the email that Yllanes posted up on the forum:

Dear Valued Customer,

I wish I was communicating to you today to share with you good news but unfortunately I have to be the bearer of bad tidings. After working so hard with our manufacturing partners in China this past year to improve the quantity and maintain quality at the same time on our Battlefield in a Box range I was angry and disappointed to discover today that the delivery of our first premium house, the Bastogne Church, that has literally just arrived around the world in all our offices is well below the expected quality level. 

The castings of the model are fine but the paint jobs are so bad I cannot fathom how this has happened. After thinking it might be just a few we checked the deliveries in each office and have unfortunately found nothing to suggest this terrible lapse in quality is across the board. I have a few images below to show you just what we are talking about and given you are probably an owner of some our range already you will quickly see just how bad these are. They are not even close to the master sample we approved and even the dry brushing shade is the wrong colour so something has seriously gone wrong with our run.

Working in China certainly has its issues but we have had relationships with two companies these past five years that

we use for the larger scale items that we cannot make ourselves and everything from Gothic buildings to woods have come out as expected. Given the long timelines and payment up front you must make to do anything in China there is always a risk that what you paid for is not what you get but having spoken to the owner of the plant who did this job even he was stunned looking at the images at what has happened. We have already agreed that the run is to be returned for re-painting which will delay the release of this model now for almost two months. We also agreed that I will now be sending one of my senior managers from our own factory in Malaysia to inspect the future shipments before they leave. This will not impact future planned releases in this range as they will be now be checked thoroughly before they leave so I see no reason why number two onwards will not arrive as scheduled. 

You have made a serious commitment to us for a subscription and we are not happy with the idea that you wait for another eight weeks so we will instead be making a new small run of buildings immediately and having them air-freighted out to us for shipment to you. This is the fastest way I have at my disposal to get you the model you have paid for in good faith assuming we would deliver to you as agreed.

Based on the information I have right now this will take another three to four weeks to get made, painted and shipped so right now to be safe I will say that we will get you your Bastogne Church in the first week of September at the latest and if it looks like it will be sooner we will let you know straight away. 

We will be making this public tomorrow as we communicate with our stores and the world at large but I felt it only right for you to find out directly from me before the news breaks.

I know this is frustrating and I can only end by saying on behalf of myself and the company we are very sorry and regret that this failure diminishes your trust in us and our reputation that we have worked so hard to earn.


John-Paul Brisigotti

Managing Director

The whole thing just makes me feel like this: 


  1. Thanks for the update on this. It is good to know what is actually happening. I wouldn't mind seeing the pictures so I could see just ow bad the paint job is. I take it the limited run will only be for those who have paid up front. For those of us on subscription which requires payment when invoiced, I assume we have to wait.

  2. I'm posting the pics up now. But yeah, it's awesome that they're being up front about it. It's better than they did on the first round when it was late and it's the right thing to do. Apparently it'll only be a 4 week wait for us subscribers.