Saturday, 30 June 2018

Grand Alliance Vignettes


This post is, alas, the swan song of this particular collection. A few months back I received an offer that was "too good to refuse" for the whole lot. They are now campaigning in Germany under a new owner. These vignettes are just a few odds and ends of figures that I had kicking around, so decided to paint them up for old time's sake. They will doubtless make their way onto EBAY in due course. It was a difficult decision to sell them all - around 1,000 foot and 300 mounted (!!), but it is one of the facts of life for a professional figure painter. Never mind, the cash will be re-invested in future projects I am sure!










 




 
Speaking of which, terrain, WWII, Napoleonic, AWI and Italian Wars are all competing for valuable hobby time. No matter how hard I try, I can't seem to focus for too long on one period - easily bored I suppose. One thing I am particularly keen on at the moment, is trying to adapt TFL's Sharpe Practice for larger (2-300 figures a side) AWI games. I think the mechanisms really lend themselves to this period. Whether I will be able to make them work, only time will tell. Will certainly report back if I do. The WWII rules are still under development, but the response from the lads has been very positive so far. Progress has been halted somewhat by playtesting Olicanalad's 18th Century rules - his adaptation of the Piquet system - for Roger and Mark's growing GNW collection. I have to say that they are looking very promising. I was fortunate enough to have an earlier run out with James himself using his quite superb SYW collection.

Anyway. Will report back when I have news. For now, here are the links to the blogs concerned.

http://olicanalad.blogspot.com/

http://gapagnw.blogspot.com/

Saturday, 9 June 2018

FBB Flak Regiment (1)


Sorry it has been a while. Have been pretty busy with commissions and my own terrain boards (of which more anon). I have also been playing about with different ways of doing trees and bushes for my 20mm and 28mm collections; again more anon. Below is the latest addition to my FBB project: the first element of the Flak Regiment, which was such a powerful component of the brigade, vital for dealing with all the enemy jabos that were knocking about towards the end of the war. The vehicle itself is a die cast model acquired from EBAY and re-painted with the airbrush. The crew are mainly AB miniatures.






Monday, 19 March 2018

FBB Panzer Flak Company


This is the final component in my Fuhrer Begleit Panzer Regiment: the regimental Flak Company. Consisting of a Wirbelwind and Mobelwagen (each representing 4 vehicles in the original unit), it is quite a useful addition. It will need to be in view of the overwhelming allied air superiority at this late stage of the war. The next part of the project will be elements of the panzer grenadier regiment. Most of the vehicles are already done, but are without their crew figures, which are a real pain. I reckon I will need 80+ for the vehicles of the 1st (armoured) and the 2nd (Schwimmwagen-borne) battalions. This is the equivalent of a battalion and a half of infantry - a lot of extra figures that don't actually fight. The thing is that the vehicles just don't look right empty, so needs must, but it is one of those jobs that I keep putting off! The infantry figures for the two battalions are pretty much done.

 




Friday, 16 February 2018

Another Late War AAR


Not my own work this. Old wargaming friends Roj and Mark came round to playtest my WWII rules again. We concentrated more on the infantry and indirect fire side of things this time. Roj has done a great AAR on his excellent GA PA blog. Hope you enjoy reading it (I did). The rules seemed to work pretty well and no major tweaking has been needed so far (early days).
  
 
 


Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Grand Alliance Vignettes


Here are three little vignettes that I did a few weeks ago, since sold to a gentleman in Belgium. The figures are a right old mix of Warfare, Foundry and Redoubt. I quite like to "dress" my wargaming table with a few non essential but visually pleasing extras such as these.






 
 

Friday, 26 January 2018

Let us Pray


It is a while since I did any work on my German buildings and this church is a welcome addition. Another EBAY purchase, it has been sitting around half finished for months and I though I had better get on and complete it. It made its debut in a WWII game last night, with old wargaming mates Richard Croisdale and Andy Lawson, who are gamely helping me to playtest my WWII rules. Also making a first appearance was the newly painted panzer regiment FBB. Fittingly the 2nd Abteilung, commanded by yours truly, got absolutely battered by Andy's deftly handled Soviet armour. Tragically I forgot to take any photos for this game!! Richard did his best with the 1st Abteilung, inflicting some loss on the enemy armour facing him, but he couldn't make up for my dismal showing on the left flank.

We have tested out the rules for armoured vehicles and they seem to work pretty well, as does the overall concept. We all felt that it was now time to concentrate on other aspects of the rules, especially infantry fighting and indirect fire. Next time I will revert to umpiring and leave the fighting to others.







 
 
 


Saturday, 13 January 2018

The Fuhrer Begleit Brigade


All the way back in 2011 (yes really!) I put on an Ardennes 1944 game at Partizan. It was fought out between a scratch force of Americans and a battalion of German Volksgrenadiers, supported by elements of the Fuhrer Begleit Brigade (FBB). For this game, the whole table and most of the figure bases were covered in snow. Six years on, I have decided to build up a more serious representation of the FBB, without the winter bases.

Why the FBB? Well, the name is quite catchy, but mainly because it was one of those oddball units that I always enjoy playing with. Its composition is a matter of some dispute, but the Flames of War suggestions seem plausible. As you can see, it is quite a mixed bag with a strong but unusual panzer regiment, an equally unconventional panzer grenadier regiment, decent artillery provision and a very impressive Flak regiment on top. Rather than go into too much detail here, take a look at the Flames of War PDF, which is free to download:

http://www.flamesofwar.com/Portals/0/Documents/Briefings/Fuhrer-Brigades.pdf

I am aiming to do most of the panzer and panzer grenadier regiments, with a good helping of flak and supporting artillery. In reality the infantry component is basically three battalions of infantry with varying modes of transport: armoured, schwimmwagens and bicycles! I will probably do the first two and simply field the 3rd battalion as infantry when required.

First up is the (slightly reduced) 1st Panzerabteilung, comprising two companies of  two Jagdpanzer IV/L70(a) assault guns and a company of three panzer IVs. The regiment's 2nd Abteilung, which was composed of the 200th Assault Gun Brigade, has a total of five Stug IIIs (again slightly understrength). Along with its regimental flak component of a Mobelwagen and Wirbelwind, it should be a formidable force.



The Panzer IVs are from PSC, the Jagdpanzers are from the Ready To Roll range carried by Colin Rumford's Valiant Miniatures. I am particularly fond of this latter vehicle, one of the many German improvisations as they sought to fill the ranks of their armoured units. Here are a few shots of them in action.





Below is the  2nd Abteilung's  Stug IIIs. Whilst not as powerful, it still packs a decent punch. These are also from the ever growing PSC range.




The Flak vehicles are done, but still awaiting their crews.