Monday, 27 April 2009

A trip to the killing fields.

Last week Tim Gow brought a WW1 variant of 'Hordes of the Things' down to the club. Well, not exactly a variant, just HoTT played with WW1 stuff, so infantry were 'hordes', cavalry were 'riders' etc. It was an entertaining diversion, although unfortunately both HoTT and DBA tend to bring out my wargamery competitive side, and I ended up crushing Tims general in the infamous 'buttocks of doom' as I managed to park my 'flyer' right behind his HQ before attacking it.

Otherwise I've been busy painting phase I of my 20mm WW2 stuff. I've done all the infantry and had good fun refurbishing some of the old vehicles and guns I've got lying around. The vehicles are mainly done now, and I spent particular care on my old Jagdpanzer IV (converted from an Airfix Pz IV) and did it in a rather spiffing ambush scheme. Had some trouble getting a decent shade of Field Grey as a lot of my old Humbrol paint has run out now, but in the end I heavily drybrushed light grey over a black base and then washed it with the horrible thin Tamiya Field Grey and the uniforms came out OK. Just a few details to finish off now (I can't find the divisional insignia for 85th ID, so they might have to be 89th ID instead), then it is on to varnishing and basing.

Hope to be having a trip to Aden this week, and I've been sorting out the toys for that. Got a scenario done and we'll see how the rules go. I've been a bit distracted by researching the Canadian 1st Corps attack towards Bergen-op-Zoom, and I'm torn between doing that as my next Megablitz game or the IInd SS Panzer Corps counter attack in Operation Epsom. As I've not painted my new Panthers yet, I guess we'll be off to Holland first.

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Lets go shopping

Not done much wargaming recently, but I did help run the WD Display Team (North) participation game at Triples on 4th/5th April. This was Tim Gows 'Sturmstaffel, covering Luftwaffe heavy fighters taking on hordes of B17s in 1944. The game went down well and we had a steady stream of players, at least ninety over the weekend. I also had the opportunity to do some shopping, mainly picking up some extra 20mm WW2 stuff to flesh out my Megablitz forces, but I also got some Old Glory ultra-modern British troops including a pack of WMIK Landrovers.

I found that I had enough unpainted 20mm Germans to put together another infantry division, plus the bulk of the kit required to turn them into a panzer grenadier division if required, so I mainly needed a few extra vehicles and some Corps assets. There were zillions of cheap plastic tanks on the bring and buy so I ended up getting enough Panzer IVs and Panthers to make up two extra late war panzer regiments for my existing panzer divisions, and also got some extra British kit to fill in some gaps, including a rather nice Churchill AVRE. Pride of place was a plastic kit of a 100mm K-18 gun, manufactured by some obscure east european company.

This week has been spent assembling the old junk I've been accumulating for a few years and rummaging through bags of old figures. I converted an ACW artillery limber into a limber for the divisional artillery, assembled some old Frontline trucks, found an FAA bicycle for the Fusilier bicycle recce company and dug out an old Russian 76.2mm gun for the divisional artillery regiment. At Triples I'd picked up an Airfix Pak 40 kit, so I built the gun, along with a Chinese copy of a Hasegawa 8ton halftrack (with no instructions!) to tow it. In the end I decided it was too big and relegated it to Corps artillery duties and found an old Matchbox Sdkfz 11 instead. The Opel truck I plan on converting into a radio truck for Corps HQ, but I haven't done that yet. I also came across an old Jagdpanzer IV in my bits box, a conversion from an Airfix Pz IV I'd done back in the 1970s and decided to refurbish it, as I can use it with 29th Panzergrenadier Div to replace their Nashorn. So after a week of sticking things together, I've got a fair old amount of kit to undercoat and paint.

Phase II will be to do the Corps assets and extra panzer units, but I'll have to assemble the K-18 and do the Opel Radio truck conversion so that can wait a bit. I've also got to build an AA gun to go on the back of a Frontline Flak lorry. Phase III will be the extra British stuff, as along with the tanks and vehicles, I just 'happened' to pick up some more infantry so I'll do another nine infantry battalions to convert 1st Armoured Div into an infantry division, should I require another infantry division.

So, plenty to be getting on with then, and I haven't even started on the modern Brits yet.