Tuesday 30 May 2023

Origins of World War 2


This week’s game was Jim Dunnigan’s Origins of WW2 as published by Avalon Hill. As with the earlier Origins of World War One, Russell had adapted it to play over Zoom.  It has similarities with the earlier game but there is a lot more going on. And it moves far more quickly!  Tonight’s game with a full five players took only 75 minutes - impressive especially considering that none of us had played it previously!  

As you can probably tell from the photo, I played the Soviet Union and managed third place behind the perfidious British and the decadent Americans. We’re playing it again tomorrow when I’ll be recast as that great enthusiast for liberal democracy, Ribbentrop.  Anyone want to buy some champagne?

Monday 29 May 2023

More reinforcements and a rout.

Last week I had cause to visit fellow blogger Trebian.  As usual, he entertained me with a game using his own rules.  The report of battle of Prestonpans can be found on his blog. Modesty prevents me disclosing the outcome.  Actually no it doesn’t. I put more than half of the Government army to flight.  My subtle plan of ‘f*&k it, let’s charge the b@$tards’ seemed to work rather well. 
Also, as the game took place in Northamptonshire I got a lot further south than Charles Edward!  
Here are a couple of my photos. 

The toys used were all Trebian’s 1/72 plastics - the Government infantry were all veterans of the Airfix ‘Washington’s Army’ set while the Jacobites were all more recent (Strelets?) figures. And very nice too. 

As well as raising the clans I also raised some more manpower for my 54mm WW2 project as Trebian kindly presented me with a box of his old Airfix 1/32 toys. Refurbishing flaky paint and basing is currently underway. 

Saturday 27 May 2023

A tale of some toys.

 As I’ve had a few questions about the vehicles used in my recent WW2 game (see here Link), I decided that a separate post was in order.  Here then, is the eclectic selection.  

All three T34s are 1/56 scale plastic kits by Rubicon. 

The Lone Star Carriers were covered in this recent post ( Link) They scale out at 1/40. 

BA-64 is a Tamiya 1/48 scale plastic kit. It’s a lovely little thing. 
Kubel is plastic & diecast by Victoria in 1/43. 
More 1/48 Tamiya kits - above the Horch kzf70, below the Steyr 1500A.  Very nice kits. 

Here they are in company with (centre) a Solido Citroen C4 van. 

The Panzer IV is on the face of it a fairly nasty toy, but after ripping out the friction motor and repainting it looks fine. Slightly smaller then the early war Solido Panzer IV which is 1/50 scale. 

The Corgi range of 1/50 scale military vehicles is usually very expensive but they occasionally crop up at palatable prices.  They are lovely -  none more so than this Panther.  A better model than the still very nice  Solido version which is a bit too wide. 

The diecast and plastic 1/43 GAZ-67 is from one of the partwork ranges.  
Finally, this Sdkfz-10 with 20mm Flak gun came in a batch of other stuff some years back. It is both nasty plastic tat and a rather nice model. I think it would benefit from a repaint.  

Thursday 25 May 2023

Veteran Waffen SS Kompanie

 A couple of weeks ago Martin R dropped in for a game and very kindly gave me a box of his old 54mm WW2 Airfix figures.  Most have now been passed on to Russell but I was very taken with some of the figures Martin had painted many decades ago.  I managed to salvage most of the original paintwork on a company (or Kompanie) worth of SS troopers.  The extremities were a bit flaky and I also repainted the helmets but most of the paint is original, albeit with some touching up.  On seeing the revamped figures, Martin commented that his hand must have been a lot steadier in years gone by!  

Sunday 21 May 2023

The three stages of defeat

While packing away the German figures from the past week’s games it occurred to me that I held in my hands the three stages of the German defeat. As I was entertained by this you might be too. I knew these figures would have a purpose. 


Saturday 20 May 2023

A hard morning on the Eastern Front

Following the evening game this past week, I set it up again for Russell and I to run through.  

This time I allowed the Sovs to deploy across the whole table width.  While I took the Germans, Russell commanded the Sovs and took the wise decisions to not only commit his forces en masse but to concentrate on the German infantry rather than the more exciting business of AT gunnery.  This made a lot of sense as when the two German companies were worn down I would no longer be able to hold the ground.  

I went for a forward defence - the Panther platoon can be seen arriving. 
From my point of view there were a LOT of those bloody Russians! 

Advancing under cover of tank, mortar, infantry gun and MG fire, the Red infantry soon reached the German front line. When the T34s broke into my positions the game was pretty much up and it was time to head off. On the other hand, I claim the destruction of the BA-64 armoured car troop by my Panzerschreck platoon as a great moral victory!  
A very satisfactory game which took less than 2 hours to play. 

The Germans heading west. 

I also include some of Russell’s photos:

Friday 19 May 2023

Dodgy diecast delivery


A good crop of post today!  A box of diecasts included these splendid Corgi toys. I’m particularly pleased to have the steam lorry (about 1/50 scale) and no doubt a lucky senior officer will be glad of the fine Mercedes motor car. 

Thursday 18 May 2023

A tough night on the Eastern Front - part 2


We convened for a second evening's gaming and the Panther platoon soon opened the batting by seeing off the half-company of T34/85.  Thus ended the Soviet armoured thrust!

The Germans moved up their second MG platoon next to the Panthers  - just in time as the forward MG had taken some hits. 
While the Sov rifle company near the tanks continued to bravely advance, their comrades in the centre took a pasting from mortar, MG and small arms fire.  The other two companies seemed rather shy.
The Sov support platoons dismounted and the MG gunners were soon laying down a withering hail of fire.

Even the Sov CO visited the front to provide encouragement.
The Soviet IG and mortar plts shot off all their ammo in an attempt to soften the German line.

A dramatic moment was the successful close assault carried out by the now very weak lead rifle company.  Having successfully overrun the German AT plt they baulked at assaulting the MG plt and ran off, expiring in a hail of MG42 rounds.  At that point we drew a veil over proceedings.

An overview of the endgame.

Russell and I are planning to try another game on Friday.  Here is the NKVD loudspeaker van touring the Soviet rear areas to stiffen resolve before the next attack.

Wednesday 17 May 2023

A tough night on the Eastern Front - part 1

This week we're trying out another scenario with my work-in-progress WW2 rules.  I set up the terrain on my 72x40 inch table and the players joined me by Zoom.

The German opening positions.  They have two infantry companies, one deployed and the other in it's transport, a support company, AA battery and two tank platoons.
The Sovs.  A 4-company rifle battalion, with platoons of MG, ATR, mortar and infantry guns.  And to lead the assault, a company and a half of T34 and a recce platoon in BA-64.
Another view of the Germans.
Soon the Germans were joined by a Panther plt.  On the left of the frame the MG platoon has suffered from Sov artillery fire.

The German HQ atop the church tower.

More Panther porn.

The Sovs led with the armour - which suffered under a hail of fire from panzers and the AT detachment. 

The surviving T34 soon claimed revenge on the Panzer IV.

By now the Soviet infantry advance was gaining pace

The Sovs were soon under German MG fire

Bonus Panther porn.  The action continues this evening.  Place your bets now on the final score!