Tuesday 15 May 2012

Hermann Göring Panzergrenadier Company - Part 1: The Plan

The plan is...there is no plan. As with most wargaming projects I start, something catches my interest and a few days later I'm drowning in research material, writing list after list trying to fit in everything I want (what I want in the force, what I need, what is too cool to leave out) and planning purchases. It's a disease I tell you.

After establishing that I am going to do this. For real. Unlike the 20 or so other "planned projects", each of which has a folder with pictures, resources, books lists, relevant websites saved, and so on, and which I was equally serious about at some time or other and might still do in the future. Honest.

A quick look at the Battlefront figures and list in Dogs and Devils and a plan starts forming. Another infantry force, joy. Still, this one rates pretty high on the "cool" factor, and besides, they can "morph" quite easily to other HG and Luftwaffe ground forces in other theatres without being too inaccurate. Having Anzio and the subsequent breakout battles in mind as a setting for the initial force, they will work alright for HG troops after the division was transferred to the Eastern Front, the battles on the Vistula against the Soviets (and beyond), as well as for earlier battles in Italy (Salerno and beyond) and at a pinch for Sicily and Tunisia. I don't intend doing tropical uniforms for the latter two, though the units will be correct in number and organisation if not in uniform details. They can also be used for a Mid-War Luftwaffe Field Company for the Eastern Front. That is about as far down the "specialised force" road I want to go. Self-justification is an art.

Having a look at the examples on the Flames of War site, for instance the HG Panzergrenadier Platoon and HG Panzergrenadier Company HQ painted by Matt Parkes, the figures have a very "part historical, part aesthetic" look to them, something that appeals to me as a painter. Luftwaffe splinter mixed with some Luftwaffe blue item creates a very attractive mix to me, even if the amount of LW blue items are perhaps over-represented for later periods. Despite the fairly rushed nature of some parts of the painted figures (e.g. the quick splinter camouflage) the figures have a certain "pop" to them by the addition of line highlights over a simple single colour or at most two. Many are similar (if not identical) to the Luftwaffe Field Platoon figures I painted ages ago: cartoony in sculpting style, if quite easy and enjoyable to paint.

A few excellent colour plates by Dmitri Zgonnik (really amazing artwork) of Luftwaffe Ground Forces for inspiration...

...fantastic. I'm wishing my ordered figures were here already.

All for now.


Wednesday 9 May 2012

US M5A1 Stuart Light Tank Platoon

A platoon of M5A1 Stuart light tanks, Battlefront vehicles. The whole "individually sculpted" thing is pretty poor on these, nowhere near as good as the M4A1 Sherman box for instance.

Still, pretty good models, my only complaint is concerning the track sections which are not identical in length: one side (can't remember which side now...) is about 1-1.5mm longer than the other. I've tried to hide this in the front and you can't see much difference in the pictures though with models in hand it can be seen. Not a "huge problem" (aka the Easy 8 tracks) but nonetheless an annoying one when paying a premium for five small light tanks. Also, the 37mm barrels BF supplies are complete and utter rubbish: replaced here with barrels made from clipped metal spears, the one Northstar Miniatures sells. Not a perfect re-production and a pain to do, but far better than the alternative.


Sunday 6 May 2012

Mediterranean Commando Platoon

A few quick shots of some Mediterranean Commando figures. Figures by Battlefront, from their BR blister. Painted here to match previous stuff.

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