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I paint small metal and plastic figures and rarely get to play with them. But that is fine with me.

28 August 2017

Comrade! (Part 23 - Soviet Veterans Squad WIP) [And a wee distraction]

Not had much energy for painting of late, so these have sat in a "mostly done" state for a while, until this last weekend.

These are the first five of Warlord's Soviet Veteran metal sculpt squad. A nice set with some crisp interesting design elements. The only complaint about these minis is that there is no obvious loader mini for the LMG team. I sorted that out though by lazily sticking a plastic LMG magazine pouch onto one of the most likely of them to be the loader. (He's being painted up right now though)

Lighting's not great, but you get the idea.

The distraction was this cheeky impulse buy, a see-thru green plastic Reaper Bones mini called "The Summoning" (I believe). I just liked the sculpt and knew it'd be a fun exercise in Slapping on washes and harsh highlighting. I think I got the look I was aiming for. No idea what it'll be used as, but it looks cool in the display case so that's enough for me. :)

The sculpt is supposed to depict three nude ghostly girls/ladies all entwined in spirit smokes or fire, etc. 


14 August 2017

Comrade! (Part 22 - M3 Half-track Done!)

Painting progress Comrades!

The M3 Half-track is done. Think I went a little overboard with the snow effects, but otherwise I’m happy enough with it. The model is a resin by Blitzkrieg Miniatures and required only a little clean up, mainly on the underside where there were some semi-ugly mold plug things, but aside from those just some slight resin flash. My only real criticism of this model is that it didn't come with any crew minis, but I just went and made a driver out of a plastic soviet tank commander with a headswap. Painting was all done with a brush and markings were unused decals from my T34/85. 

There was a picture of the back end too, but when I got to work to do the picture editing, I then realised it was out of focus. So, meh.

Action shot with some troops for fun and to show the scale of the Half-Track.
Here's the current standing of the Winter Soviets project in my display case:

What do I have planned for the gap at the front? Well I am happy you asked, because....

I also got these 5 painted up and since taking these pics have dressed their bases. Five to go and then  the squad of 10 will be done and I’ll start working on some Winter Germans which will be a nice change of pace. 

Switched up the Winter-white painting recipe a bit by applying a thinned layer of  brown wash to the creases. Liked the result so much I grabbed my squad of Scouts from the display case and spruced up their Winter Onesies with the same method and they look SO MUCH better for it too.

03 August 2017


Last night Densmol came over for Beer, BBQ and Bolt Action. (Hence the post title - clever eh? Okay, probably not)

We played a 1000 points game with my Soviets versus Densmol's Germans. The mission was an objective grab and hold affair from the main rule book called "Key Positions" and we rolled for 3 objectives total. In lieu of cheesing about the place and dropping them in convenient areas of the table, we decided to stick them in nice non-preferential spots on the centerline of the board and I added some fun crates, etc to give further credence as to why our commanders would have us grab them in the first place. Once turn 6 comes around (And a potential turn seven, dice roll dependent.), who ever holds more objectives uncontested wins.

Densmol's list was (to the best of my memory) as follows *All Regulars aside from Veteran SS*:

  • 2nd Lt + 2 Adjutants
  • 10x Heer inc Panzerfaust and LMG 
  • 10x Heer inc Panzerfaust and LMG 
  • 6x SS with Assault Rifles and 4 x Panzerfausts 
  • Medium Mortar
  • 251/1 D half track
  • Tiger 1E (!!!)

I decided to use my list I had hoped to take to the tournament last month (But never did.) *All Regulars aside from Free Inexperienced infantry*:

  • 1st Lt + Adjutant
  • 10x Guards with LMG and Panzerfaust
  • 10x Guards with LMG and Panzerfaust
  • 7x Scouts with SMG's
  • 8x Tank Riders with SMG's and LMG
  • 12x Free Inexperienced with rifles and Molotovs
  • Sniper Team
  • Medium Mortar with Spotter
  • Truck with MMG
  • M3 Half Track with HMG
  • M3 Stuart with 5 (!!!) MMG's

So his 7 order dice versus my 11. 

The game was lots of fun with some really cinematic events and a LOT of rules referencing due to us not playing for months. We also didn't declare what all the terrain elements were so buggered up there a bit too with some silly maneuvers that wouldn't have happened if "x, y or z" were the case. Regardless it was super fun, lots of dice were thrown and models removed due to outrageous casualties!

Hope you enjoy the write-up and half-arsed pictures! :)

Here's the table layout with the three objectives highlighted with exciting stars. Germans advanced from the north side, Soviets up from the Southern edge.
For reserves, Densmol held off his half-track with his Lt+pals and a Heer squad inside. I chose to have my Scout squad come in outflank on my right side (Not available until turn 3) and my Inexperienced Squad in the truck to shore up any gaps that might appear in my lines. The rest of our stuff came on from our respective table-edges on turn one.

My Stuart with Tank Riders aboard zipped up the left flank along with my half-track and it's bussed Guards Squad. My other Guards Squad headed on foot into the trees, using them as cover to head to either the center or right most objective depending on which looked safer. Supporting them to their right and also in the trees is my sniper team. Off to the bottom left corner of this pic, my Mortar team set up behind the rocky outcrops there whilst their dedicated spotter moved up alongside the woods to the right to offer more targeting opportunities.
Densmol rolled his fearsome Tiger to sit menacingly near the center of the board. supported in the center woods by a Heer squad. His SS moved down the road next to the hovel and his own Mortar team set up behind the orchard with a nice view down the road and beyond.
A better view of Densmol's advance near the hovel.
Guards Squad (Shamefully unpainted) and Sniper team advance through the trees with Mortar Spotter hugging the hedges. 
My Mortar set up safely behind the Rocks as the Stuart and halftrack make a beeline for the left most objective. That Tiger is looking hungry out near the center!

Guards Squad dashes from their transport to claim the objective then hear a giant boom as the Tiger sights on the poor half-track and turns it into scrap with it's 88 gun. First blood to the Bosch.
In a first for me in Bolt Action, my Mortar team spots the nasty SS Vets as they dart down the road and try to range in. I needed a 6 and expected nothing of it but rolled anyway. And rolled a 6! With the nasty Nazis bunched together all of them ended under the 2" blast template and after some very nice damage rolls there were no survivors. My finest Bolt Action moment to date!
Squads on both sides move through wooded areas to keep the precious cover. Densmol's own Mortar fails to range in on my left most Guards Squad holding that objective and he manages to bring on his half-track packed with his Lt and his second Heer squad. The Tiger takes out a couple members of the same Guards Squad, but they hold firm.
On the 3rd turn, my Scouts come in on the right flank and unload into the rear of of the halftrack pinning the occupants. Off-picture, the Sniper add's another pin. In revenge, the Tiger rolled up and unloaded with it's Machineguns slaying 3 of the Onesie-wearing Scouts.
Leaving my Lt+mate to hold the left Objective, I run the remainder of the Guards Squad toward the Central one. I also brought on from reserve up the road (Even tho the stupid arrow in the pic shows otherwise.) my truck containing the Inexperienced squad to bolster them. The Guards are mercilessly shot at by the German Heer along the edge of the woods, but somehow stick around regardless of casualties taken.
The Guards Squad in the woods keep on heading up and try to shoot the Tiger with their Panzerfaust!
And miss.... With the leftmost Guards own Panzerfaust wielder now dead there's very little I can do to the horrible Big Kat except try to ignore it.

Densmol's Heer in the half-track finally get their shit together and hop out to claim the right most objective, the Tiger takes what should be an easy shot at the Inexperienced Squad and misses! The last few members of the Scout Squad are gunned down after failing to move into cover turn after turn.
With a last ditch effort, the Tiger tries to whittle down the Squad in the woods with yet more MG fire, but fails to do any real damage and the German halftrack with the Lieutenant inside attempts to roll over to the Center objective so the Lieutenant can hop out and contest it for a draw. But he FUBAR’s and his driver has other plans, shoving the transport into reverse at top speed!!!!

At this point, it's the bottom of the 6th turn. The only way Densmol could manage to pull back a draw was if he successfully rolled for a possible 7th turn. He didn't and with two objectives in my hands to his one, the day was mine.

It was fun to finally get in a game after ages and even though we were fluffing our way through the rules and I was swearing up a storm due to his stupid Tiger and it's "Tiger Fear" rule causing me to miss multiple Orders tests, we both claimed a good time was had.

If you made it this far, well done - you win too.

01 August 2017

Needing a little direction

Here’s a bit of a “State of the State/housecleaning” address. 

*No hobby progress, so ignore this post if you’ve no interest.*

My hobby has been sorely lacking in direction of late. Recently, my efforts to paint a “bit of this” and a “bit of that” really hasn’t been satisfying my needs and I’ve been feeling somewhat in a hobby “Limbo”.
Well bugger that lark. Things need changing up around here.

In a previous post I mentioned that I have a large number of unfinished projects, these are in part due to a hobbyist’s nasty dose of “Shiny-itis” - Constantly getting distracted by new things and setting old unfinished projects aside in lieu. This utter lack of self-discipline is a rot in a hobbyist’s core and I’ve decided to set that nonsense aside and finish stuff.

O Inquisimunda.... How have I allowed you to lay idle so?

My number one game to paint for and play (And by “play” I mean, the maybe 3 times this year that I’ve been able to so far…) has been Bolt Action. I’d begun my dalliance into this fun beer’n’pretzels WW2 wargame with my Late War Winter Soviets and I’ve almost gotten to the point of being able to call my whole collection that mystical target of “Fully Painted”. (It’s true, it’s true.) With only:

1x Medic
2x Anti-Tank Rifle teams
1x Light Mortar Team
and the remainder (8 figs) of my Winter Vets boxed set to paint I’m so bloody close to being done with my current collection.

Old pic of my Soviets, though now missing recent additions like my newly painted Stuart and now finished half-track. 

Once I’d chosen the Soviets as my primary force, I knew that I’d want to be able to offer games at my house for mates to play so went and purchased the entirety of a matching Winter themed Late War German force. Thus far I’ve only painted up my Hetzer Tank Hunter and the NCO of a Heer squad for them. What’s left are:

1x Lieutenant+Adjutant
10-man SS squad (Warlord Games SS-Charlamagne minis)
10-man Heer squad (Warlord Games Winter Heer minis - The NCO is painted as mentioned above.)
10-man Volks Grenadiers (Warlord Games plastics)
1x Medic (Warlord Games Winter)
1x MG42 Medium MG team (Warlord Games Winter)
1x Panzerschreck team (Warlord Games Winter)
1x Sdkfz 251/1D Half Track transport (Warlord Games plastic kit)

All of these are primed and based and just sat waiting for me to paint them. I’ve avoided getting back to them mainly due to having never painted WW2 Germans before and being irrationally intimidated by the prospect of painting Camo uniforms. Silly really.

Hetzer keeps Hetzin'. 
The last part of this Winter project is the table itself. No point in my mind to start collecting Winter themed armies for home play and not have a likewise themed table to play on. So I bought a large piece of white felt, snowy trees from China and some lovely Eastern Front buildings by CharlieFoxtrotModels to use as terrain.

This being the 1st of August, that gives me five months to get this all painted and ready for gaming and will give me the chance to call my Winter shenanigans DONE. (And feel like I got something completed for once.) And there you have it – a self-imposed deadline and some much needed direction for my hobby, call it a "pledge" of sorts. Wish me luck!

(Now I just need to find someone to buy all my 15mm Flame of War Commonwealth to make room in my display case for all these Winter projects…)