In order to be good, does it have to be a Navy SEAL or other Special Forces operator, bogged down with almost every imaginable piece of gear? Or a highly-detailed SWAT figure or sniper complete to the last detail? What about simple figures? Can less sometimes be more?
I ask this question as a serious question, and not as flame-bait. Everyone has their own opinions. My opinion is basically that it depends on the type of figure being done.
When I do figures, I try to go for historical accuracy. For instance, I have 2 WWII 82nd Airborne troopers and one 101st Airborne trooper as they would have been geared and uniformed for the Normandy invasion, and one 17th Airborne trooper for later in the war. They all have appropriate equipment for their time. The 82nd troopers are displayed dug in a machine gun nest behind sand bags, so they have no mussette bags and very little gear. Since they're static, they would have dropped a lot of it. The 101st trooper is pre-jump ready, so he is equipped with everything, including the infamous leg bag. If it is something a paratrooper would have been issued or acquired, he has it.
The 17th trooper has some different, late-war gear. He's wearing double-buckle boots instead of jump boots, and he has an M1943 jacket and para trousers. All have paratrooper aid kits, and here's where a slight rant begins.
It bugs me to see beautiful Normandy paratroopers with aid kits tied onto their helmet netting. It just wasn't done then, in either division. They put nets and scrim on their helmets to break up the silhouette, and they wouldn't have ruined that by tying aid kits onto their helmets. By the time of Operation Market Garden, though, they were tying the aid kits onto helmet netting. The 17th did it as well, so my 17th trooper has his aid kit on his helmet. He also has his trench knife in the later-issued M-8 scabbard instead of the earlier leather scabbard.
End of rant,...almost. It bugs me to no end when reenactors do it, too!...now, it's the end of rant.
So seriously, what makes a good figure? I have the one in the picture above who is a combat correspondent and photographer. He's got khaki cargo pants, civilian-style boots, a black t-shirt, and a civilian vest for a uniform. For equipment, he's got a military-issue belt, ammo pouch to store misc gear in, and a military canteen. He also has a camera and a laptop bag. He's very lightly equipped, but is done appropriately for who he's supposed to be. Is he a better or a worse figure than say my paratrooper, who in reality would be loaded down with 150 lbs of gear, weapons, and equipment?
Comment if you want. Tell me your opinions. I welcome them all. Am I right? Can a figure be simple but still be good, or does he or she have to be loaded down with myriad amounts of gear and equipment?