I've gathered a group of mainly plastic Orcs to make another horde of sword and shield warriors, but I found myself a couple short of the full forty, and fancied the idea of some classic metal models to lead them. Of course trawling around ebay for classic metal miniatures is a business that's normally a major risk to your wallet; so it was with a degree of suspicion I clicked buy on a set of Orc Big Un commanders for a mere £2.50!
Am I going to get shafted in some way I thought, are these ever going to appear, or will the vague listing turn out to only be for one of the three models? In fact neither of these happened; but when the Items arrived I did postulate one other reason for the price being so low...
In principle, forgery is, I guess, criminal. And of course if these are fakes someone is profiteering from the IP of another business. But to play devils advocate for a moment, GW will never make these models again. It is possible the moulds are worn out or even destroyed anyway. If you want them now you have two real choices: buying often extortionately priced pieces from an ever diminishing supply, or taking your chances with knock-offs. Now if a figure company keeps product in manufacture, forgeries are unacceptable, of course; if a manufacturer sells its' licences or designs on, fine. We all know this is not how Games Workshop plays of course; and this is what leads to a black market for fakes.
Would I personally go looking for fakes? no. You are only going to get inferior product one way or another; but sometimes inferior is not substandard enough to throw away on sight. I would always prefer to know I was paying for the real thing. But, if these are fakes they are good copies, if they are genuine, they're not GW's best, and the seller doesn't understand their worth. It's a compromise either way.
It'll make me look more carefully at 'too good to be true' deals online, but if occasionally I get a dubious bargain, I'll just have to tolerate it. After all I can't know if I haven't ended up with the odd fake in the past and not even spotted it.
Any opinions yourselves?