Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A repost.
The heroes of Quatre Bras, the 92nd foot, Gordon Highlanders.
More Gordon's.
A shot from a recent solo game. Marshal Ney surveys the battlefield. Brunswick militia occupy the farm house ahead.
British Guards

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Some German Guns.
The Big Kahuna, the 88mm, the most feared gun in WW2. Behind it is the tractor which towed it, the SdKfz 7

From left to right:
3.7cm PaK 35/36,
15cm (that's big!) sIG33,
7.5cm leIG 18

Staff car behind.
Here's some German Wermacht. Again there's lots of these guys, these are just a few examples of a few guys. Really, there's lots.
One thing that annoys me is that when I first started down the slippery slope into WW2 mini's, someone at the local game store asked me what army I was building. When I replied 'Germans', he rolled his eyes, like I was another Naziphile or something. The fact is, you can't really fight WW2 without the Germans. I got the same reaction when I started building a French Napoleonic army. "Everyone wants to be the French", not exactly. It would be pretty hard to wargame the NAPOLEONIC period without NAPOLEON. Thank you.
Back to the future: Here's some German MG42's. I enjoy being able to make a little diorama out of each base. If you look closely, you'll see the 'logs' some of these Germans are hiding behind are tiny sticks fom my backyard.
Here's a shot of some Fallshirmjeager. These guys look really cool on the tabletop.
Here's a shot of various IJA soldiers. In the foreground is the ubiquitous 70mm battalion gun and though you can't see it very well there's a 75mm mountain gun in the back next to the Type 95 Ha Go. I'll have to get better pictures of both. The rest are PBI. As with the Indians, I have HMG and 81mm mortar groups that are still only primered or still in the package. Got too much to do, but I'll get it all done.
Tally Ho lads! We'll be behind shedyule!

The astute observer may recognize the fellow on the left, even though he is out of focus: he's the vicar who was diving for his communion set in the movie 'The Longest Day'. The chap on the right is leading the charge with his umbrella, you know, stiff upper lip, there's a good gentleman. What?

Obviously these are my British Airborne whom I have been fascinated with for quite some time. I have lots, these are but a few, I will get more of them on here sometime.

British Airborne: a 6pdr and jeep, a Vickers HMG in the foreground and a few of the Red Devils
German Pioniers make their way through rubble strewn streets. There's a Goliath and a Flame Thrower and a few MG34's.
Close up of the Pioniers. Maybe I'm learning to use the damn camera after all.
And who doesn't like bikers?
Soviets in the rear and Fallschirmjeager up front.
For a little change of pace, here's some WW2 vehicles. Most of these mini's were purchased for
the Flames of War system. However I soon realized two things about that game. 1. It's a very good and clean system that works very well. 2. It has nothing to do with WW2 or WW2 combat. It's unfortunate for me because I need a game to 'feel' right. I need to be faced with the same decisions as a commander from the period I am playing or I lose interest in the game real, real fast. Let's face it, while the system works very well, FoW is still Warhammer 40K with WW2 equipment.

It still serves it's purpose though as I believe it draws people into historical wargaming from the fantasy side/science fiction side.

Since I stopped playing FoW, I started with Rapid Fire. IMO, a great tactical game that is simple but not simplistic, and the big kicker for me; provides reasonable results. No more lining up my tanks fender to fender, and having to buy 6 guns to be able to field a unit. The game has realistic scenarios based on history so if one side had *one* tank, then that player gets *one* tank.

Just about everything is taken into consideration so there are rules for everything from dogfights over the battlefield to naval bombardments and everything in between.

Look for a few more posts featuring my WW2 minis.
The picture above is of a British Sherman ad Firefly with D-Day markings.
On the left 2 German Wespes and Soviet SU76's on the right. Always had a soft spot for SPG's.
Soviet SU85, cool, huh?
Soviet T-34, along with the German MkIV, the two AFV's that just say 'tank' to me.

The big cat, the German MkVI Tiger.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Here's my Post Mongol Russian army for DBA, army list #IV/44b, 1381AD-1533AD

Here's the general, 5th from left, surveying his boyars.
Here's some shots of the Russian cavalry.

Born and bred on the steppe, these Light Horse now fight for the Third Rome.
The war wagon.

An overview of the Russian camp.
Every day, feed the damn pig. That's OK because he's gonna feed me all winter!

Home sweet home has no back door.
"Now what do those guys want? Uh oh, quick, hide the pig!"

Nappy Pics

The Grand Battery
Garde Chassuer



7th Reg Hussar Skirmish Cavalry

Marshal Ney giving somebody the business.

2nd Chevauex Legers

Lately I have been trying my hand at Napoleonics mini's. Now this is kind of a long story. I have been fascinated with Napoleonic warfare since as a kid my older brother received a book titled something like 'The World's Greatest Battles'. There was a chapter on Borodino that caught my attention and never let go. For years I have enjoyed everything about Napoleonic warfare from the uniforms to the tactics and have board gamed it a few times (mostly due to lack of opponents), but not nearly enough. I always wanted to do it in miniature but frankly was scared to go that route and have to worry if the turnbacks were the right color for 1809 and these guys changed buttons after 1806 and that isn't the right color stripe on that cossak's underwear. (eew) Also was the need to paint thousands of mini's to get the right feel for the sweeping battles of the period, and to be honest, I have too many other interests to paint that many guys. After all when you think about it, after you paint a thousand French, then paint a thousand Russians, then all you can play is French vs. Russians! What about the Austrians, English, Spanish, Portugeuse, Brunswickers, Hannoverians, Bavarians...? You get the point. Simply put, that way lies madness.
Enter DBN and Ebay.

I purchased a few painted French an Prussian infantry and found De Bellis Napoleonicis, a Napoleonic version of DBA. The game is played with only 12-18 stands of dudes for each army. Perfect for the ADD gamer/painter like me. I have already completed a French and Prussian army and am 2 stands away from an English army with German allies. (All 1815) I wanted to paint some Brunswicker Uhlans and I did; 3 of them, not 30. Some may argue that the game does not match the granduer of more sweeping game systems with thousands of mini's but it looks pretty damn good to me. I won't argue that there is nothing like seeing those huge games at cons, but DBN allows me to play a few games at a sitting and still provide reasonable enough results and require reasonable amounts of Napoleonic tactics to leave me more than satisfied.

The one thing I want to mention is that I take pride in my painting skills. I know there are thousands of others out there who are better and that's cool with me because I get to see their stuff on the internet and conventions all the time. But I like my style and I like to do things well. As a rule, I always use at least two colors per surface, even if it's the face of a 15mm dude. (Bronze flesh base coat, elf flesh highlights) Anyway, the guys I bought off ebay were not painted that well and I had a decision to make: paint them all again or simply paint what I would need to a lesser standard. Well, I bought the damn things because they were painted, so I decided not to do highlights on what I would do to complete the armies because I wanted some symmetry on the tabletop. Anyway, this is kind of an apology for how these guys look. I mean, I know they look OK, but they are not up to what I consider my ususal standard. I will be posting some other photos soon that hopefully will confirm what I mean.