19 July 2017

West German Marder W-I-P - Part 1

This will be a very short work-in-progress update with just one photo.  I'm currently working on a commission job of some Revell Marders for a mate.  And he wants a lot of them...  So here's where I'm currently up to:


The two at the back have just been built.  One of them is likely to get a pretty full on cam net treatment.  Two in the front row have already been cammed up, and all three obviously have their black cam lines painted on.  I now need to add the NATO brown patches before I start weathering them.  Its a bit of a slow process, but it all looks pretty reasonable in the end.

Hopefully I'll be able to show some good progress over the weekend.

Have fun

Richard

12 July 2017

Danish Battlegroup

OK - back to 20mm, and back to the Danes for the last time for a while I think.

When finishing the Centurions I thought it might be nice to take a couple of photos of all the Danish armour finished thus far.  So without further ado - here we go:




Front Row Left to Right: 3 x S-Model M113 forming a Danish Mechanised Platoon, and a S-Model conversion to a M150 TOW Carrier

Back Row Left to Right: 2 x Airfix and 1 x Britannia Centurion forming a Tank Platoon, 2 x Warmaster M41 Walker Bulldog tanks to field as individual light recon tanks.

I've built an Italeri M106 to add some mortar support to my force, and will also be adding a couple of Unimog trucks, which can play a couple of roles.  One day I'd like to add a platoon of Leopard 1A4s as well - maybe when PSC does the Leopard 1 in 20mm.

Anyway - it's likely you'll see West Germans next...

Thanks

Richard

08 July 2017

An After Action Report with a (sizeable) difference!

So something a little different this weekend.  Before I start a little history.  I used to play a lot of 15mm World war Two.  It was my scale of choice for about 10 years and when I decided to expand into Cold War I looked around in 20mm and was not 100% satisfied with what was available at the time.  So I jumped into 20mm and have never really looked back - not until this weekend at least.

A couple of my mates have bought into Battlefront's "Team Yankee" in a big way.  Miniatures-wise at least.  And why wouldn't you - it looks like BF have done a very nice job on the figures and vehicles they have bought out.  I swore I wouldn't jump - as I have committed way too much time and money on 20mm Cold War - and I am satisfied with the games I get out of it.

So one of my mates has got a bunch of stuff ready and asked if we could play a 15mm Cold War game, using his models and "my" variant of Battlegroup: Cold War.  I also supplied the terrain (apart from one BF building my mate bought along to show me).  Just to have a go we also used some official playtest ATGM rules to test them out.  I should note that all the vehicles you see int eh game are from Battlefront, Peter Pig or QRF.

So here's the table - 10' x 6' - from the Soviet (my) end:


And from the American (my mate's) end:


This won't be a proper battle report as I didn't take enough photos - but I'll try and give you a flavour of what happened.  Before I jump in I'll fill you in on the two lists

Soviet - 1439 Points - 74 BR - 8 Officers
Forward HQ - 1 x T-72AK
Artillery Command Post - 1 x BTR-60
T-72A Company - 10 x T-72A
T-72A Tank Platoon - 3 x T-72A
T-72A Tank Platoon - 3 x T-72A
Motor Rifle Platoon - 3 x BMP-2
1 x ZSU-23-4
1 x SA-13
Off Table 2S1 Battery - 3 x 2S1

US Army - 1440 Points - 67 BR - 4 Officers
FHQ - 1 x M577, 1 x M1
Mechanised Infantry Platoon - 4 x M113A1
M1 tank Platoon - 4 x M1
M1 tank Platoon - 4 x M1
Self-Propelled Mortar Battery - 2 x M106
M901 ITV Section - 2 x M901
1 x M163
Off Table M109 Battery - 2 x M109

So all up we would have about 40 vehicles on the table - 9 x M1 vs 17 T-72 (I miscounted during the game and only fielded 16 T-72... only!  Ha!)  That's a pretty big game, and certainly the biggest I've played one-on-one.

The Soviets got the first move and rapidly bought on a couple of platoons of T-72's



One down each flank.  The US force countered and bought of a couple of M1 sections, plus another M1:


One section came down the main road, while the other, with the tag-along moved up my left flank:


This would almost mark the furthermost extent (plus a little bit here and there) that the Americans advanced - as they settled in to start taking long range shots at the Soviets.

More Soviets arrived and pushed forward.  My Shilka came on to prep in case any fast air arrived:


Later it would be joined by the SA-13 Gopher - so I was pretty well defended against fast-air - which never turned up (of course).


Other Soviet units moved onto the board.  Here you can see my Artillery Command Post vehicle parked behind a building when the FO spotted for the whole game.  T-72s are moving past up towards the battle area.


My leading platoon moved forward and 2 of them went in behind a hill - which would be my jump-off point when I was ready to jump.




I moved forward down the other flank as well - a little too far forward,  These tanks would pull back to a better position int he next turn.


Meanwhile, the Americans were doing pretty much the same thing.  Here their mortars set up, ready for a fire mission:


While his M163 waits on ambush fire


Ahead of it is one of the American objectives.  More American units would move up in the centre of the board, and on my right flank


They threw a mech squad into the mix on the left flak as well.  they ended up in that small house and it surrounds.


My Artillery Command Post got into action and started with this:


Then this:


And finally this:


I was ready to start my advance at this point - left flank:


Right flank



Most action was on the left - 1 M1 had come forward and I thought I was in a great spot to isolate and destroy him.



It was not to be for that turn, as I rolled a hilarous amount of 1's (it wasn't so funny at the time, but the Americans had already had their turn of rolling ones so it all evened out)

So here is my swing left:


And here is the result:


Not quite enough though as the Soviets eventually started to overwhelm the Americans:



I ended out knocking out 2 M1s and a M113, along with the Dragon fireteam and most of the next fireteam. The little blighters in the house took out one of the T-72s with a M72 LAW in the side!

Things were also happening on my right flank - side shot!


Not the greatest result for me though


Another T-72 on my right, spent the game immobilised by long range fire.  The one at the bottom of the picture.


The right ended in a point-blank brawl - only 1 tank in this pic is operational - an M1


The game ended back on the left flank - another point-blank shot into the side of an M1


This also allowed me to capture on of my objectives and force another chit on the Americans.

We had pretty much run out of time by this point, but the game was pretty heavily leaning towards the Soviets at this point.  The Americans had 2 M1s remaining out of 9 M1s (22% by my crap maths) with one of these bailed.  They had lost 44 BR leaving them with 23.  The Soviets were well inside their lines and were about to clean up a M106 battery and more in the next turn.

The Soviets on the other hand had 9 T-72A remaining out of 16 (should have been 17) which is 56% by my count.  They had lost 20 BR leaving them with 54.  They were in a much better position to win from there.

So it was a really good game.  Closer than it looks as I believe I had more luck than my mate (e.g. my communications checks to link up with my arty never failed while I think I got hit by the off-table M109s maybe 3 times in 7 turns, due to failed comms checks).  If he had pulled a plane or helicopter and ended up with an A-10 or a Cobra, it could have swung the game back in his favour.

The new ATGM rules worked well and were simpler than mine.

Having 39 or so vehicles running around on the table was definitely great.  It never looked cramped nor did we have the rolling tank park look.  A 10 x 6 table certainly gave plenty of manoeuvre space for both sides.  Playing in 15mm gives you greater scope for playing larger games.  I think if we had played a game with my normal 20mm points size (around 500 pts or so) the vehicles would have looked lost on a 10 x 6, while playing 1440 pts in 20mm on the 10 x 6 may have looked a little cramped.  We'll see...

Anyway - starting to waffle now - so time to wrap it up

Thanks and good gaming to you

Richard







04 July 2017

Danish Centurion Platoon

OK - so there are some benefits of getting sick and having to spend a couple of days at home.  For one, despite the remnants of a killer headache, I was able to spend a bit of time and finish off the Centurion platoon.

So - let's get straight into it then:

Centurion 1



Centurion 2 (Platoon Commander)



Centurion 3



So Centurion 1 and 2 are Airfix, while Centurion 3 is by Britannia.  It appears that I completely forgot to green stuff the Britannia tank, which I'm both annoyed at and thankful for.  Annoyed that I forgot to do it, and thankful I didn't, coz I'd still be doing it months later!

All the tanks have AB Figures crew and S&S Centurion smoke dischargers.  Centurion 1 also has an S&S turret bustle.  The LLTV sights were scratch built by me, along with the turret bustle on Centurion 2 and some other bits and pieces on the two Airfix Centurions.  I added all the camo nets of course.

Finally some shots of the Platoon together:





02 July 2017

Danish Centurions - Work-In-Progress - Part 5

Well my plan to have these finished about a week ago got interrupted by real life, Battlegroup: NORTHAG and plain old end-of-financial-year exhaustion.  So things have not progressed as quickly as I hoped, but over the weekend I made some progress.



First thing you'll notice is that I'm back to 3 tanks.  I followed the advice of Rolf from a week or two back, and covered the tacky tracks with undiluted PVA glue (and then threw away the brush!).  I left it to dry for 24 hours and lo and behold, it was no longer sticky!  Yah!  So the Centurion on the left is the one I put to one side previously, but is now returned to the fold.

The central tank is the Britannia one.  It comes with the driver hatch open and crew figure molded in as part of the resin tank.  The driver was missing most of his head so I loped it off long ago.  I decided to replaced it with a AB Figures head (to match the rest of the crew), but after chopping up the AB figure and cleaning up the head it just didn't look right.  So I decided that I needed to clean out the whole driver and put in a new Britannia 1/2 figure.  So I did that, then decided he would look out of place and decided to do another AB half figure.

So long story short, once I stopped dithering I started work on all the crew figures, which should be ready for the next photo.  Before I add them I have to decide on decals, then do the weathering, and then add the crew.

So maybe next week... who knows... obviously not me!

Thanks

Richard

23 June 2017

Best News Ever

Best news ever!!!!  Battlegroup NORTHAG is coming!!!


This was announced last night (my time) on the PSC Facebook site along with PSC's standard website.  On the website is says this:

I have given the go ahead to finish off Battlegroup Northag - a cold war version of our popular Battlegroup WW2 rules system. We have a "work in progress" set of rules and army lists, the basis of which has very kindly provided  by some Battlegroup enthusiasts.


I don't want to brag, but I'm relatively sure the "work-in-progress" set of rules and army lists mentioned here by Will Townsend are the ones I've been working on for a while now and supplied to Warwick Kinrade and Piers Brand earlier this year (and the rules again on Friday my time - houre before the announcement when another copy was requested).  At the very least, my rules and lists have contributed to their WIP set of rules and lists.  Apart from the rules I've supplied them over a dozen army lists.  Anyway I'm more than a little chuffed by that and hope to be involved into the future.

Again in super positive news PSC have decided to release this:


3 x T-55 in a box! I believe it's up for pre-order now and as soon as they get 200 orders they'll start producing it.  PSC have also announced they are working on a plastic 15mm Leopard 1 kit that you'.. be able to make a huge variety of kits from.  It the 20mm T-55 kits sell well, they'll produce the Leopard 1 in 20mm as well.

So enough gushing from me... Go order your 20mm T-55 box sets now!!!

Thanks

Richard