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Category Archives: Warlord Games [WG]

German Infantry for Poland to Barbarossa

German Infantry for Poland to Barbarossa

Now this is part of a big project I have been working on since last fall. A complete German army for use with the Battlegroup rules for the period from the invasion of Poland (Fall Weiß) up until the first months of the invasion of Russia (Operation Barbarossa). Given that this would also make them suitable for the invasions of Denmark and Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium and France and Greece, this will make them extremely versatile. That being said, this will also make them a huge project, since except for a couple of PzKW 38(t) and PzKw IV I have nothing suitable for it. This will mean, that I need command units, an Infantry platoon (there were extremely large for the invasion of Poland) with both truck and half-track transport options, a Kradschützenzug (motorcycle platoon), PzKw I, PzKw II (in two different versions), at-guns, artillery, specialist vehicles and aircraft. With such a daunting project you have to start somewhere. For me this was actually the Kradschützen, but since only the soldiers are finished but not the motorcycles, my second step will be the first shown to you… the infantry platoon (still without their transports). For these photos I have arranged them according to the TO&E that was in effect during the invasion of Poland. For later operations, some of these subunits would have been bigger or smaller, but there is enough models for all possible TO&Es. I would only have to rearrange some minis.

All these minis are by Warlord Games. Most of them plastics (some of them slightly converted) and a few metal ones mixed in.

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa infantry command

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa infantry command

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa medic

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa medic

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa light mortar team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa light mortar team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa light mortar team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa light mortar team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa spotter team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa spotter team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa spotter team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa spotter team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa sniper team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa sniper team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

The LMG team above is my personal favorite from this platoon. Most likely, since I converted it to look like this. I always loved the looks of the LMG being fired over the assistants shoulder from a kneeling position. Since there was no such model available, I had to build one myself. What I found very funny is, that the assistant is actually a running pose, but it turned out, this was the easiest to convert into a kneeling position.

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa MG32 team

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa rifle squad

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa rifle squad

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa rifle squad

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa rifle squad

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa rifle squad

Blitzkrieg to Barbarossa rifle squad

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8,8cm PaK 43 auf Kreuzlafette

Playing late war games in a World War II setting, especially on the eastern front large-caliber Panzerabwehrkanonen (PaK / anti-tank gun) are a must to give you some edge over the heavily armoured tanks like the JS-2. The long-barreled PaK 43, both on a Spreiz- and Kreuzlafette are perfect for this.

8,8cm PaK 43 (Kreuzlafette)

8,8cm PaK 43 (Kreuzlafette)

Playing in 1:48th scale, the later is not too easy to get. But some years ago, I had the good luck to get my hands on the, now long OOP, Verlinden model. It is a very nice model, but even by modeling standards it is not an easy model to build. So I had to make some modifications to the connections between the gun and the shield to make it work out and stand the rigors of game play. But even that way, it will better be picked up by its base and not the model itself. Fortunately I have decided to base all my future AT-guns and indeed put all my old ones on bases for Battlegroup, so that will not be much of a problem.

8,8cm PaK 43 (Kreuzlafette)

8,8cm PaK 43 (Kreuzlafette)

Like the Jagdpanther, this was a testbed for the new weathering methods and I have to say… I feel it turned out exceptionally well on this model.

The crew itself is the 8,8cm FlaK crew by Warlord. It is a bit small even for their own 1:56th scale models, but I feel it still looks OK. While the gun was painted this winter, the crew was done about 15 years ago. I only redid the skin on the minis. I think that is where my technique changed the most during that time and I wanted them to blend in with my current models.

8,8cm PaK 43 (Kreuzlafette)

8,8cm PaK 43 (Kreuzlafette)

 

Pegasus Bridge, a Horsa Glider and other things

Pegasus Bridge, a Horsa Glider and other things

As you may know, we wanted to host Pegasus Bridge at Crisis in Antwerp this year (and eventually we did so). Between the three of us we already had a lot of buildings, hedges and so on. But this still required some more terrain.

Not many buildings for the vicinity of the bridge were required, but I wanted some more variation. Since I still had the château from Sarissa Precission around, so that seemed like the natural option. It had been a nice kit to assemble and was a nice kit to paint. If I was to do it again though, I would probably leave the first floor windows and shutters off for easier painting.

French Chateau

French Château

French Chateau

French Château

But we also needed a Horsa Glider for the game. Martin had a model by Grand Manner around. Martin was unsure if he could give it due credit, so I painted it up. I Ieft the landing gear off to me the model fit the scenario since the Gliders used for the attack on Pegasus Bridge all had rough landings and ripped their landing gears off. It was nice enough to airbrush up, but I think the dimensions are somewhat off. The lower hull and underside of the wings were painted in a dark green, the top in camouflage. So I started by doing the camo and then taped the edge off. Which is when I realised that something was amiss. For example I used the forward doors and tail wings as a guide, but under the main wings the lines ended up too low. But I felt this was acceptable, since people could hardly see this spot. So the lower half of the glider was painted in dark green and filters and washes applied. Now I taped off the invasion stripes and again, I noticed that something was not quite right, for there was too little space on tail. In the end the RAF roundels on the tail ended up overlapping the invasion stripes for that reason. To finish things off, I placed chalk markings on the flank saying “Lady Irene” to make it match the glider Major Howard landed in.

Horsa Glider

Horsa Glider

Horsa Glider

Horsa Glider

Horsa Glider

Horsa Glider

Horsa Glider

Horsa Glider

And up last, the most importer building for the game… the bridge itself. Again this was a Sarissa kit. I had been too lazy to assemble the model, so I bought a model that had already been build and sold my kit on. In retrospect, this did not make things that much easier, since it had not been assembled as clean as I would have done, so I had to do a lot of sanding and so on.

I wanted to keep it in the very light grey of the original, but in the end, this seemed a little bleak to me. So I added rust marks to the model, which gave it a lot more character.

Pegasus Bridge

Pegasus Bridge

Pegasus Bridge

Pegasus Bridge

If you want to see some more detail shots of the bridge, those can be found in my post about the British Paras.

In the, it turned out to be quite a nice game. We used the Battlegroup Overlord rules and they worked very well even at this small size. It was especially interesting to see how different tactics played out. If the British went for a defense in depth, it usually went well for the Germans, since they could usually wipe out the British first line of defense (after stumbling into it) and then using the superior range of their SP gun(s) (,depending on how many survived the PIAT,) to destroy the rest. If the British went for a strong first line of defense, the Germans were too weak to protect their SP guns sufficiently and took too many loses to take the bridge. It will be interesting to see how future games play out.

So I am leaving you with a (very) few pictures from the game at Crisis.

Pegasus Bridge

Pegasus Bridge table

Pegasus Bridge game

Pegasus Bridge game

Pegasus Bridge game

Pegasus Bridge game

Pegasus Bridge

Pegasus Bridge table

 

 

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

Part of the reason things were this quiet lately are these minis. Earlier this year we decided to do the “counterattack” at Pegasus Bridge for Crisis in Antwerp. Everything seemed quite fine. I had done the bridge earlier this year (pictures to follow when I finish the banks of the canal after my holidays), we had vitally all the Normandy terrain we would need and I had enough minis. So it was all easy-going. Well that was until we did a test set-up late August and I realised that I only had support weapons, heavy weapons and officers done for the Paras, but virtually no grunts. So that had to be remedied and here they are.

All the miniatures are from Bolt Action, sculpted by Paul Hicks. And I have to say I really love them. Amongst all the great minis he has been doing in recent years these have always been my absolute favourites since they have so much character. So it was a pure joy to paint them.

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

British WWII Paras

This last guy is no Para, but a commando. Due to the similar clothing on the mini I decided to paint him up while I was on it anyway.

British WWII Commando

British WWII Commando

 

Murillo Gladiator (Gambler theme rounds entry for the 6th AHPC)

Murillo Gladiator (Gambler theme rounds entry for the 6th AHPC)

I have to say, this theme round, as well as the theme for this year in general gave me huge headaches. So from the start it became clear, that this year I would enter my Curtgeld into the theme round. But what was it going to be. After long deliberation, I came up with this…

Gladiatoren-pollice-verso-1872-arena

A Murillo Gladiator. IMHO a Gladiator is a gambler in many aspects. For one, you are gambling with your life the moment you enter the arena, for essentially you are dead and are fighting to get your life back. You are also taking a gamble, based on your class of Gladiator and the class you are facing, for some of those might leave you at a huge disadvantage. And I think this hold especially true for the auctorati, free (wo)men who chose to give up their freedom to live as Gladiators. Sure you were well cared for outside of the fights you had to perform, but was it worth risking your life?

Murmillo

Murmillo

And in a way, this mini was a personal gamble for me. A few years back I asked Curt “what will the theme be for the next installment?” Reason being simple… the last show I attended that year was a couple of weeks before the start of the Challenge and I wanted to go shopping there. So Curt said, “probably Gladiators, but I cannot guarantee.” In the end it turned out not be Gladiators, but I had bought this fine Murillo from Warlord Games. And I thought that after 2-3 year of spending his life on the lead mountain, he finally deserved his moment of glory in the Challenge. So here he is.

Murmillo

Murmillo

Paintjobwise, he is quite simple,but what was to be expected with a mini that is mostly skin and loincloth. I chose to do the manica and ocrea in steel rather than a bronze colour. I wanted him to be an old Centurio who had to leave the Legions at the end of his tour of duty, but who had whored and drunk up all his money and had chosen to become an auctorati. So he was making use of some of the equipment he had to buy for his army job, which would most likely be less ornamental and more functional.

Murmillo

Murmillo

 

Our game at Crisis 2015: Battle of Berlin

Our game at Crisis 2015: Battle of Berlin

So, after keeping you all excited for days now, here are the game shots from our Battlegroup: Fall of the Reich  demogame at Crisis this year.

To be honest, it is hard to make a coherent game report out of the game, due to all the chatting with people, explaining the mechanics, answering where the vehicles and models came from and so on. But I will at least try for a very short synopsis:

The Germans were a mixed Battlegroup formed around a nucleus of a Volkssturm platoon, beefed up, by a squad of Hitlerjugend tank hunters, a squad of SS Panzergrenadiere in a halftrack, some Wehrmacht Pioniere, a SS sniper team, a Pantherturm, 8.8cm Pak “Scheunentor”, a Borgward Wanze, a Panther and a Tiger II (Commander).

The Russians had a Platoon of rifles, with Maxim, Ratsch-Boom AT-gun and AT-gun team, an artillery spotter team for their onboard mortars and heavy artillery, a squad of Assault Pioneers, one of Scouts, three T34/85, two JS-II tanks and a lone T-34/76 (Commander).

Julian and I started the game in quite classic fashion. The Germans waiting for the Russians to run into the traps they had laid and the Russian tanks trading were shots with the Tiger and Pantherturm at long-range, while waiting for the infantry to catch up and protect them from the pesky Panzerfäuste.

During this time not much happened. Much like the Demo last year, both of us managed to alternate at rolling bad so we did not take out much with our long-range shots. (The funniest exchange was between the Pantherturm and JS-II who had problems spotting each other and one of the JS finally did and hit, he got a snake eyes for the penetration roll [he would have needed a three on two D6] only to roll a twelve the next round.) The most impressive exchange was the Russian sniper and one of the SS snipers killing each other, which left the lone German sniper to kill one the artillery spotters, pinning the other. When the Russina infantry command was also pinned, this effectively rendered the Russian mortars and Artillery useless (especially since the the participation gamers would continuously forget to unpin them). We also found out that a fanatic squad of Hitlerjugend can well take out a squad of Soviet elite scouts at short-range with their SMGs and a little help from the Panzergrenadiere. And that even with our gods eye view of the battlefield, it is easy to drive a T34 around a corner only to find the road blocked with Czech Hedgehogs and becoming a prime target for a PaK as a result.

Obviously things really picked up once the first participants came and played along, driving their tanks and infantry on without regard for losses. At that time tanks started blowing up all around the table and infantry perished left and right. This was also the first time I saw man-pack flamethrowers in use in the game and boy are they deadly assaulting buildings, especially on a squad sporting a fair amount of SMGs! All in all we had a cracking day and I hope the players had one, too. I will leave you with the pictures!

Der Russe kommt!

Der Russe kommt!

Hitlerjugend tankhunter squad besides destroyed Tiger I

Hitlerjugend tankhunter squad besides destroyed Tiger I

Pantherturm and Volkssturm MG-08 team in the front, Tiger II in the rear

Pantherturm and Volkssturm MG-08 team in the front, Tiger II in the rear

AT-gun position with the Volkssturm command looking on

AT-gun position with the Volkssturm command looking on

SS sniper in one of the tall buildings

SS sniper in one of the tall buildings

The Panterturm again

The Panterturm again

LMG position

LMG position

JS-II advancing

JS-II advancing

T-34s advancing

T-34s advancing

Hiding behind the rubble

Hiding behind the rubble

Hitlerjugend about to take out the Soviet scouts

Hitlerjugend about to take out the Soviet scouts

Russian Pioniere about to assault

Russian Pioniere about to assault

Enemy at the doors

Enemy at the doors

Volkssturm advancing

Volkssturm advancing

The 8.8cm PaK

The 8.8cm PaK

T34-85 taken out by the PaK

T34-85 taken out by the PaK

The end of the Pantherturm

The end of the Pantherturm

Tiger II waiting behind the barricades

Tiger II waiting behind the barricades

 

Battle of Berlin infantry… scraping the barrel

Battle of Berlin infantry… scraping the barrel

So in the effort to catch up with all the stuff done in recent weeks for the battle of Berlin game, here is the first step… the last additions to the German infantry.

After having played WWII for well over a decade now, I have been in the comfortable position not to need too many new miniatures for this years game. Having nearly 300 Russians and more again when it comes to Germans (regular Wehrmacht and SS), there was not much to do there. Except for some of the more uncommon troops that were sadly thrown into the meat grinder during the last weeks of the war.

I know many people have reservations about using these units in their games and for some time I contemplated this as well. But as sad as the use of children and the elderly in fighting units may have been, it is still a part of history. And at the same time, very few of us (as long as we play ancients) have reservations playing Spartans, who were taken for training as soldiers at a far younger age, or Romans, who would eventually sell their vanquished foes as slaves. So I made the decision to use units of Volkssturm and Hitlerjugend in the game as well.

Before I start with the pictures, please note, that some of them have been edited (blue dots) to be in line with German law. Here it is a criminal offense to show certain symbols in public on models and such.

Up first are a few Volkssturm I did about a decade ago, which formed the nucleus for the force (and which I wanted to show for completeness sake). These are all Victory Force miniatures. The NCO wears the uniform of an Allgemeine SS NCO. Probably someone who managed to evade being send to the front all war long and now finds himself leading a squad of Volkssturm during the final days. And who will probably disappear to “get some orders at HQ” when the bullets start to fly. This model is a Wehrmacht mortar operator with his uniform repainted. All the rest of this squad are from the French Resistance line. Some had their headgear converted to make them look less French and more German and all have had the Volkssturm armbands sculpted on.

Volkssturm

Volkssturm

Up next are a bunch of vintage Bolt Action Volkssturm miniatures. Always loved the guy with the old WWI Bavarian helmet and was very pleased to finally paint them up, after they collected dust for ages. The guy with the Greatcoat came unarmed, but I felt he did not look like a medic, so he got a Panzerfaust from Victory Force.

It was actually pretty funny when Paul hicks passed by the table at Crisis and actually spotted some of his old Volkssturm and Russian minis.

Volkssturm

Volkssturm

Now I needed some numbers to field them as a complete Volkssturm platoon under the Battlegroup rules, so more minis were needed. These days this is easy, with the set from Warlord, although I still needed a Wehrmacht LMG team. So all the minis in the following pictures are by Warlord. Some of these are regular SS or Wehrmacht soldiers, but those either served as NCOs for the platoon or as part of the Panzergrenadier squad also used in the game.

And these later minis are up first. I had some bad luck with the fat SA officer, since the mini was slightly miscast, but Warlord send me a replacement in time. The battle never got close to him on Saturday, but if it had, I bet he would have joined the Allgemeine SS NCO from above to get some new orders at HQ. The NCO in the middle and the soldier with the Luftfaust to his right feature heads from West Wind productions. At one point I had used up all the not-so-cartoonish heads from the Warlord set and had to find something proper. The gas mask on the Luftfaust seemed proper. I know some soldiers operating the Panzerschreck without the blast-shield would wear gas masks to protect against the backblast, so it seemed sensible for this mini as well.

Volkssturm (leaders and NCO)

Volkssturm (leaders and NCO)

SS Grenadier with curved barrel attachment on his StG-44

SS Grenadier with curved barrel attachment on his StG-44

SS Grenadier with curved barrel attachment on his StG-44

SS Grenadier with curved barrel attachment on his StG-44

And now the regular Volkssturm.

Volkssturm

Volkssturm

The guys on the left and right got field cap heads from Victory Force. Again, I had only the cartoonish faces left for the set, so this seemed sensible. Plus if you look at the guy on the right, he is sculpted in a way, not a single helmeted head would have fit him. Even with this one, he still looks a bit like Quasimodo. Anyway, between these three, the one in the greatcoat for the vintage Bolt Action set and the one from Great Escape games (see below), there is almost a whole squad in greatcoats, which is nice, too.

Volkssturm

Volkssturm

The platoon also needed a HMG and I loved the option to give them a MG-08. Rummaging through my boxes of minis, I found a WWI HMG team from Renegade Miniatures. The size of the minis was right and since they were lying on their bellies, no huge difference in their uniforms could be seen. So I just took their heads off and replaced them with ones from Victory Force. At first I had decided to just paint them in the brownish Feldgrau uniform, to represent the cheap uniforms made with cheap dyes late in the war and given to the Volkssturm. But with their regular headgear and a lack of rank insignia (the lowest Volkssturmmann would not get any) I felt they could still be mistaken for regulars, so the armbands were a late addition.

Vollkssturm MG-08 team

Vollkssturm MG-08 team

Vollkssturm MG-08 team

Vollkssturm MG-08 team

And last, some Hilterjugend (and Flakhelferinnnen). 6 of the boys and girls would form a tank hunter squad, with the rest of them (and the Volkssturmmann) beefing up the numbers of the Volkssturm.

Up first is the set from Great Escape Games, which was easily my favorite from all these minis, for all the character put into the youngsters.

Hitlerjugend and Flakhelferin

Hitlerjugend and Flakhelferin

And the remaining minis come from the Warlord set once more.

Hitlerjugend and Flakhelferinen

Hitlerjugend and Flakhelferinen

 

All the little things

All the little things

As indicated yesterday, there were a couple of things, that I simply could not post lately, so here is another go at catching up.

First of all, there were a few small items I wanted for Crisis. One of them were dead cows. I have had some live ones for years, but if only looks at contemporary pictures from Normandy, there was lots of livestock killed by the fighting, so essentially they were a grim part of the scenery. So when they were released a couple of years ago, I bought two sets of dead livestock from Warlord Games, cleaned them up, primed them and forgot about them! But this fall they got their outing again. All in all just a simple fast paint job. I decided not to go for the typical breed of cows found in Normandy, but rather the breed found in a lot of Europe (but also in limited numbers in Normandy), to keep them generic for other settings as well. I based them on old hotel key cards cut to shape. Three of them got stack grass to match my game boards on their bases the other one was painted to match my dirt roads:

Dead cows

Dead cows

The next item I wanted to tackle were burning tank markers. In the past I had just used cotton wool airbrushed red and black. While not too bad, neither did it look good. A huge number of blogs over the past few months have started using fake candles (electric candles) lately and I thought… why should I not do the same. So I took a few candles I had lying around, sprayed the candles themselves black (most likely redundant), glued some cushion stuffing to the candles and gave the whole thing a light spray of black. Nothing too inventive, but I like the effect. I have also included a short video showing them in use… first in normal “daylight” and later in dimmed light:

Fire marker

Fire marker

Crisis 2014 - A bridge too far for this Sherman

Crisis 2014 – A bridge too far for this Sherman

And one more… I alway wanted a tabletop periscope. At times it can be hard to see if your model actually has LOS to a target or not. A laser can help, but not always and for those cases (and to get a real soldier view) I always wanted one. But I always shied away from it. I guess the basic build is not too complicated, after all it is just a box with two holes, but what always made me think twice were the mirrors. Those have to be a perfect 45° angle for it to work (at at least at combined angle of 90°) and I was never too sure if I could get that 100% right. Walt from Commission Figurines had a periscope for me at Crisis and I really love it ( as did many people passing by my table). As far as I know, they are not yet available on his website, but you can already contact him via eMail to order one. If I remember correctly, the price for a fully assembled one was roughly 20 GB£ fully assembled:

Periscope front

Periscope back

Periscope back

View through the periscope

View through the periscope

 

And last but not least… in a recent post on von Peters blog, he showed a picture from the Perry Miniatures site, showing some of their new Bavarians. I commented, that I would love to mix some of those in with my (Perry designed) Foundry Bavarians to get more diversity. So at Crisis I took a look at the new Perry Bavarians with a Foundry Bavarian to compare. As could be expected, there is a visual difference in the size and heft. Foundry are smaller and bulkier, Perry taller and slimmer. I would definitely put the former in the 25mm field and the later in the 28mm. So I did not buy any… nah, I did. I think with some card slipped under the Foundry ones, one can mix them in. Not the most pleasant idea since I wanted to mix a few Perrys in with the huge numbers of Foundry I have, so this will mean slipping a lot of card in on the bases, but I really want to get away from the cookie cutter look of the Foundry Bavarians and Front Rank are simply even bigger. So to make sure everyone can decide themselves… here is a comparison shot:

Napoleonic Bavarian comparison shot

Napoleonic Bavarian comparison shot
[Foundry in the middle]

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2014 in Terrain building, Warlord Games [WG]

 

Crisis 2014 – Our game

Crisis 2014 – Our game

OK, now that things have settled in a little bit more, here are some pictures from our very own game at Crisis too.

We did run a demo for Battlegroup: Overlord. All in all the game was quite uneventful. A British unit consisting of two Troops of Shermans, a Troop of Honeys, three sections of Motorized Infantry and the usual support up against German ad hoc defenders from a Wehmacht unit with a few Panzer IV, a Panzer V, a 5cm and 8,8cm PaK each, Infantry and Panzerwerfer. The Brits had to expel the Germans and if possible destroy them. In the end both sides traded shots over the river. The Germans seemed unable to hit the broad side of a barn and the Brits were able to hit, but their shots simply bounced off the German armour (and not just the Panthers armour). All the while the British off-board artillery did a good job at pinning German troops, which in turn did a good job at recovering. In the end the only casualties were a Firefly (which took a direct hit from a Panzerwerfer rocket) and a Sherman taken out on the bridge by a Panzer IV.

Before I give you the pictures, I would like to say thank you, to the Tin Soldiers of Antwerp for running another fabulous show. As usual I am really looking forward to next year. I would also like to thank Julian for being my partner in crime this weekend. Also thanks to all those who stopped by to ask about the game and the nice comments! Also all the friends (not going to mention any names, since there would be more than two dozen and I would not want to miss anyone) who came by or into whom I ran at the show. It was just great chatting to you guys!!!

Crisis 2014 - The whole of the table

Crisis 2014 – The whole of the table

Crisis 2014 - Sherman troop on the move

Crisis 2014 – Sherman troop on the move

Crisis 2014 - Panzerwerfer firing

Crisis 2014 – Panzerwerfer firing

Crisis 2014 - Firefly taken out be a direct hit from a Panzerwerfer

Crisis 2014 – Firefly taken out be a direct hit from a Panzerwerfer

Crisis 2014 - Panzer in defensive positions

Crisis 2014 – Panzer in defensive positions

Crisis 2014 - British Shermans driving up to the bridge passing the burning Firefly

Crisis 2014 – British Shermans driving up to the bridge passing the burning Firefly

Crisis 2014 - Moving up to engage

Crisis 2014 – Moving up to engage

Crisis 2014 - A bridge too far for this Sherman

Crisis 2014 – A bridge too far for this Sherman

 

Panzerwerfer 42

Panzerwerfer 42

 

 

 

First of all, sorry for the lack of posts (and the lack of comments on your blogs in recent weeks). Life has been pretty hectic lately. I will re-open my practice in November and the preparations for that take their own sweet time. I also build some custom furniture for our living room, prepared my tax statement for last year and helped Prodos Games at Spiel in Essen for 5 days last week. So I had my work cut out for me.

 

But now it is time again for some miniatures. I know I neglected historical stuff pretty badly this year in favor for Warzone. So now there was some urgent need to remedy that. In this case in the guise of two Panzerwerfer 42 for WWII. The models are Warlord Games 1:56th scale models. As many know, I usually prefer 1:48th scale, but this is the only model on the market and with light tanks or units that operate away from the battle tanks (like artillery) I can live with it. The model itself is really nice. Easy to assemble. hardly anything to clean up and nice crisp castings. So nothing to complain about here. I only did two models. Usually they would operate in larger batteries, but under the Battlegroup rules we are using there is hardly any chance you will see more than two on the tabletop, so this will suffice.

I contemplated for a long time how to paint them. In a simple one tone Sandgelb or with a camo over spray. In the end I opted for the former. Nearly all my WWII German tanks are simple paint jobs, which I want to change in the future (also reworking most of my old models). So I wanted to try out some things like, panel highlighting, pinpoint washes, wear marks and pastel chalks. I did not want to over complicate that by adding camo as well. I was quite happy with how the first techniques worked out, but somehow the pastel messed things up. Strangely enough, I did both launchers back to back, using exactly the same method, but for some reason the Werfer #04 looks better than Werfer #02. No idea why!

Panzerwerfer battery

Panzerwerfer battery

Panzerwerfer battery

Panzerwerfer battery

Panzerwerfer battery

Panzerwerfer battery

Panzerwerfer battery

Ok, so this is good, but if we are honest, what we all want is something more animated for the tabletop. Panzerwerfer give a nice opportunity for that with their very visible firing. So I chose to do some alternative launchers for them. Many thanks to Andy H. at Warlord. When this idea first formed in my mind during our holiday in Scotland, I contacted him to see if it was possible to get two separate launchers and he instantly played along.

So the next step was looking at some footage of the launchers in action:

Which turned out to be quite a let down. For one the rate of fire is pretty slow by modern standards (this is due to the fact that the operator actually had to manually wind up a spool and only when enough electricity had built up would the next rocket fire) and that the rockets seem to leave far less of smoke trail than one would expect. Being a wargamer though, I wanted things to look more impressive, so one launcher (up onto the #02 model for this photo session) is firing three rockets, with one just leaving the launcher and the other two already in flight. In really life the first rocket would already be far further away when the second one launched, but this way it looks better. I also used more smoke for all launchers.

So how was it done? Well the rockets are just bamboo skewers cut to the shape of a rocket and painted in an appropriate colour. The rest of the skewer was just painted off white to hide inside the smoke. The tubes were drilled open, so the would take the skewers. After those were glued to the launchers, I wrapped cushion stuffing around the skewers (good thing I had built the furniture a couple of days ago). For the launcher that was just firing a single rocket this was simple. with the other one, that contained more rockets and ones that were further away, I needed a counterweight, which is a modeled base with a larger rock on it. The base is now invisible under the smoke trail, but I still know that it is there, in case the “smoke” ever shifts. Last I airbrushed the stuffing with VAL Israeli Sand to give it the look of exhausts and that was is.

Panzerwerfer #02 firing

Panzerwerfer #02 firing

Panzerwerfer #02 firing

Panzerwerfer #02 firing

Panzerwerfer #02 firing

Panzerwerfer #02 firing

Panzerwerfer #04 firing

Panzerwerfer #04 firing

Panzerwerfer #04 firing

Panzerwerfer #04 firing

Panzerwerfer battery firing

Panzerwerfer battery firing

Panzerwerfer battery firing

Panzerwerfer battery firing

Hope you enjoyed this! It is only six days now till Crisis in Antwerp and I shall try my best to get some more models done till then (I still need a couple of Honey tanks for my Brits). So I hope there will be more to show over the next few days!

 

[Edit 5th Nov. 2014: I am really amazed… these even got a mention in todays Warlord Games newsletter! Thanks guys!]

 
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Posted by on October 26, 2014 in Warlord Games [WG], Wehrmacht, WWII, WWII: Germans