Xar: Infantry Almost Finished

Quick bit of painting done whilst I wait for my next batch of Poles to arrive: two more nine-man squads of Xar, the 15mm Critters from GZG.

Just one more squad to go (the Critters in hand-to-hand, martial arts poses!) and then I think I have enough Xar infantry for the moment. Just got to think what armour to get them now...

IABSM AAR: The Defence of Arras

Many of you will have seen some of Egg's beautiful models in the pictures from the TFL Painting Challenge. Here's a chance to actually see them in action, with a quick AAR covering Scenario #01 from the Cymru Am Byth Welsh Guards scenario pack: the Defence of Arras.

Click on the pic below to see all:

TFL Painting Challenge: possibly the Biggest Update Ever!

A truly enormous update to the painting challenge this week. I'm just glad I've had a chance to upload it all before the start of the rugby!

Right, here goes:

  • Steve Burt with some Ancients, and I've re-loaded his missing pic from last time
  • Mervyn with some Middle-Earth elves and peacekeeping Crusaders
  • Matt 'the machine' Slade, obviously, with some more Napoleonic Rifles and a couple of handfuls of mythical Greeks: harpies and minotaurs
  • Egg completes (allegedly) his Cold War Brits: lots of squishies and a 'plane
  • Mr Yuengling has gone all Aeroneuf this week
  • Jon Davenport sends in his first entry of the year...and it's enormous: enough 15mm Napoleonics to fill the largest of tables
  • And so does Kev: same century, different era...but enough 15mm ACW figures to fill the other half of the table
  • Mr Naylor pops in some 15mm German weapons teams
  • And Carole sends in a British platoon who might oppose them
  • Mr Plowman sends in his usual eclectic mix
  • Derek Hodge is also of the WW2 mindset, but in 10mm rather than 15mm. Lovely figures.
  • Andrew Helliwell has gone all ACW, with some foot and guns
  • The Mad Padre has been spreading the love with some campsites painted for a friend
  • John Haines is still in the AWI: more British infantry
  • And last, but by no means least, Cabey Cabey has a few more beautiful Nappies for us to admire

So many pictures to choose from...here are today's selection:

A brace of 10mm 88's from Mr Hodge

Egg's Harrier

Reb Commanders from Kev

More Nappies from Cabey Cabey

Mr Plowman's walker

New Scenario Pack for Chain of Command

Chris Stoesen, author of the Campaign for Greece, Call this a Ruddy Picnic (East Africa), and In the Name of Roma scenario packs for IABSM, has just published a new supplement for Chain of Command.

For those interested, here are the details:

"The Campaign for Kharkov contains two pint sized campaigns. One covers the advance of the German 57th Infantry Division and the other the German 101st Light Division. The attack came in October of 1941. This city would be the site of three major battles for the city. The interesting aspect of the October 1941 battle is in the nature of the troops involved. The Soviets had superiority in armor. The Germans advanced with only a single STUG battalion in support of the 57th ID. The Soviets fielded the T34 as well as several improvised armored vehicles such as the KhTZ-16. While not a success on the battlefield, it demonstrated the Soviet inventiveness under the extreme pressure of the blitzkrieg.

"There are twelve total scenarios in the campaign. Full force lists are available for both German Divisions and the Soviet troops present. Maps are based on aerial reconnaissance photographs taken by German troops in September 1941.

"The scenarios are availible from my blog at $6.00 US. PayPal the money to cstoesen@corecard.com and I will email you the PDF. Or you can order them from Wargames Vault for an instant download for $7.00 US.

Note that a Kindle and a hard copy will be available on Amazon within the next couple of days. Stay tuned."

Click to go to Wargames Vault

Click to go to Chris' blog
 

Polish Mounted Commanders

Following on from my "Don't Forget the Officers" post, below, here are three mounted commanders for my WW2 Polish cavalry:

These are not actually Polish officers at all, but the remainder of the German mounted command pack from Peter Pig with a head swap into rogatywkas.

You can't see it very well from this angle, but the headgear they are wearing aren't peaked caps but  rogatywkas: from the other side, they have a lovely mortarboard like flat surface that makes them quite distinctive.

The head swaps are, of course, because Peter Pig doesn't do a Polish range (but maybe they should, eh?) and I didn't want to buy an entire company of cavalry from either Battlefront or FiB just to get a few commanders.

Head swapping, btw, is really easy. All you need is a pair of clippers and a pin drill...oh, and some new heads from Peter Pig. Just snip the old head off, drill a hole where you want the neck to be, glue in the new head. It really is that simple.

Here's the two figures together:

TFL Painting Challenge: Update Seven

A very slightly slower week this week, but still masses of entries.

In no particular order, we have:

  • The Mad Padre with some Falcata Napoleonic Spanish Light Infantry
  • Two Grand Manner manors from Sapper
  • Chris Kay pops in a huge Warbases building and a Humber armoured car, both in 28mm
  • We have some CoC jump-off points from Carole, along with some rather nice late war German infantry, all in 15mm
  • John Haines is back with some early Continental line infantry from Warlord
  • The Great Gatzemeyer has gone all Dropzone Commander on us
  • Cabey Cabey doesn't forget the pawns: some lovely Napoleonic 'minor characters'
  • A fan of Gaming Models, Jon Yuengling sends in three and a gun
  • and last, but by no means least, Mr Helliwell has some AWI Hessians for us to look at

A quick set of today's pictures, as I have AARs to post:

Cabey Cabey's 'minor characters'

Mark Luther's Burma terrain, claimed in the last update but only just now photographed

I do like Dropzone Commander kit, just wish it was 15mm

Some of Carole's Germans

Lebanon 1982 AAR using IABSM/CDS

I'm loving adding all the modern AARs using IABSM and/or CDS: some really nice photography of some really nice models.

Here's a quick AAR from Jon Yuengling's excellent blog, Basement Games, dating back to November 2010. The IDF are trying to rescue a downed pilot from in amongst the Syrian militia. Click on the pic to see all...

Never Forget the Officer!

Regular visitors will remember that I recently painted up a couple of squads of Peter Pig WW2 German cavalry that I'm using as early war mounted scouts:

Although you can see the squad commanders (two of them, furthest row) you'll note the absence of Big Man to lead the platoon forward. Well that's because as I was ordering them I was thinking that I had plenty of German Big Men, so wouldn't need any more. Problem is, of course, that although I have Big Men, I don't have any mounted Big Men!

This is where Peter Pig really come into their own. You can buy four "German Mounted Officers" in a pack rather than with, say, Battlefront, having to buy a whole blister or make some sort of never-arriving special order.

So here's the Big Man to lead the mounted scouts forward. Face looks vaguely familiar...

Q13: More Xar Line Infantry

Just a quick post today to showcase the latest nine-being squad to come off the Xar production line:

Note that this lot include the first of the squad commanders: painted up with the gloves-of-rank, but without the red edge to the base indicating a Big Man.

Only eighteen more Xar to go to give me two full three-squad platoons!

Cold War AAR using IABSM

Some of you will remember that I use a variant of CDS to wargame battles from the Six Day War. Other people also use the core IABSM and CDS systems to fight other periods in history, especially those campaigns that we wargamers call 'Moderns': Yom Kippur and other later Arab/Israeli conflicts, the Cold War, the Falklands and more.

So today I've added a page where all these AARs can be collected together. It's under the CDS section in the NavBar at the top...and the first AAR to appear is an excellent 1984 Cold War game from Egg:  Stellingbostal.

Click on the picture below to see if the British can hold the village in the face of the Soviet steamroller...

Q13: Xar Officers etc

I'm really driving through the Xar at the moment, mainly because I know there's a big Battlefront order on its way, and I want to clear the painting table before it arrives!

Today's offering are the Xar officers and specialists:

First up are the Xar Big Men (above). Note the natty gloves: they are what I decided to use to indicate rank, as the Xar don't appear to affect any other form of clothing or insignia, and only the command-type figures where gloves.

Next up (below) are half the specialists: probably to be used as FOOs to bring in some off-table artillery.

Then we have some of the most important chaps: the drone operator specialists, along with two general purpose GZG drones that have been, er, purposed for the Xar. 

These look so good, that I might actually get a couple more of each type, giving me two platoons of three drones each. The Xar shown, by the way, is for size comparison only.

TFL Painting Challenge: Sixth Update of the Year

A quieter week this week, but still plenty of new submissions.

In no particular order, we have:

  • Lloyd "The Hat" Bowler with his first entry of the year: a zillion little 'planes and some much bigger Romans
  • Sapper spans the ages: New Kingdom Egyptians, Grenzers and a  couple of cracking 15mm helicopters
  • It's scenery time for Mr Luther: some more for Burma and even more the winter
  • Cabey Cabey submits some rather nice Austrian Jaegers...and their dog
  • Mr Yuengling sends in some 15mm WW2 Home Guard (I've actually just been watching 'Dad's Army' on the tv)
  • Matt Slade has already amassed an amazing amount of points. To this total he now adds some Cacadores and a large number of fantasy figures
  • Andy Duffell also mixes and matches his periods: some great looking 28mm WW2 vehicles accompany a Dropship Commander troopship
  • And last, but by no means least, Mr Helliwell submits yet more Thirty Years War foot 

Today's pictures?  See below:

Cabey Cabey's Jaegers

Sapper's 15mm choppers!

Andy Duffell's 38(t)s

The Hat's fleet of aircraft

Q13: This Week's Xar!

I said I'd finish a squad of Xar every week until I had painted them all, so here's last week's offering: the first of the Xar "line infantry".

I've also managed to take a better picture of the little blighters!

I now have eighteen more Xar to complete from my original batch, plus another eighteen from the new batch...and then some drones and unarmed Xar as well. That will give me two platoons of infantry plus support drones, with only the armour to be decided upon.

IABSM AAR: Winter '41

Monster tanks, heroic last stands, futile human wave attacks and a cavalry charge! And snow, lots of snow.Excellent I Ain't Been Shot, Mum battle report from Iain Fuller's equally excellent Tracks and Threads blog.

The action takes place on the Eastern Front, Winter of 1941, and seems to have had everything: as the author says:  "monster tanks, heroic last stands, futile human wave attacks and a cavalry charge! And snow, lots of snow".

Click on the pic below to read all:

Polish Taczankas

A couple of week's ago, I was complaining that I couldn't find any decent 15mm WW2 taczankas for my nascent Polish army: all that was on offer was the model from True North which was too solid, had four horses, and not enough crew.

Well as I still haven't been able to find any, and need to start play-testing the scenarios from my forthcoming September War scenario book (I've written the scenarios: just formatting it all now), I decided to bite the bullet and see what I could do with the four True North versions that I'd already bought.

So I now have are four pseudo-taczanka that will be fine on the tabletop but won't stand up to close scrutiny!

The base is the too-bulky True North wagon, with its horribly cast crew of two sitting figures, one in a forage cap and one in what I think is supposed to be a French-style helmet. I've cut the shaft (or tongue) right down, and put only three horses in front, evenly lined up as opposed to being driven unicorn.

The sitting gunners are from either the Battlefront or the Forged in Battle Polish MMG set (I forget which); the standing gunner is a spare Battlefront Polish anti-tank gun crew member, kneeling next to the True North (unmanned) MMG.

So I think that they will do for the moment, and can possible be replaced if anyone ever does release a better model. Now on with the play-testing...