A month or two ago I was lucky enough to pick up this Corgi Transport Through The Ages collectors set from a wargamer in Australia. It is a Limited Edition Military Transport Set consisting of an A.E.C. Omnibus and a Model-T Ford Ambulance. They are nominally about 1/56th scale so in theory ideal for 28mm figures and will be ideal for use with my World War I forces in the Middle East & Africa (ANZACs & Colonial British) and the Ambulance should be useful for the Eastern Front too (for my Russians). The bus is actually from Flanders 1914 and the BEF but I’m sure I can fudge it into some scenarios in other theatres somewhere! Perhaps the Russians had omnibuses?
Following on from my order from Lancer Miniatures I previously posted about, as mentioned I had ordered buildings from several other manufacturers as well, and my order from Area 9 arrived a couple of days after the Lancer one. Area 9 is a comparatively new manufacturer that’s started up in 2010 – in fact I only stumbled over them a couple of months ago thanks to a post on the Crisis In Alcovia blog earlier this year! They have some very nice looking stuff, and in the 20mm range I couldn’t resist ordering one each of their three buildings, and an assortment of wooden paling fences…
Right now my 20mm WW2 & Modern era buildings are rather bare on the ground – I have a couple of very nice larger 15mm TimeCast buildings (a Belgian Townhouse and a Petrol Station), and a 20mm bombed out German HQ Building from ESLO. Otherwise I have some plastic kits awaiting completion (Airfix Jungle Outpost & the 2 Italeri Farmhouse & Manor kits) and a 20mm resin Jungle Building from Frontline. So my existing Western Europe and new Eastern Europe theatre troops desperately need buildings for their games – not to mention long-term Mediterranean/North African and more Pacific/Burma stuff! Consequently I have been purchasing several new Western & Eastern European buildings from about 5 different manufacturers (i.e. Lancer, Area 9, Hovels, TST, Sentry) – and where possible have chosen to purchase them pre-painted to save time, and get some terrain (especially Eastern Front) usable as promptly as possible. The first of these to arrive are from Lancer Miniatures in the UK, which arrived promptly in NZ just 1 week after ordering.
Yes, they are here, masses of Soviet Samokhodnaya Ustanovka (SU) Assault Guns and Tank Destroyers – part of (a larger than planned) arsenal I’ve been accumulating for my 20mm scale World War II Russian forces for Crossfire! The real bonus is being able to obtain off EBay 4 Forces of Valor model 85041 SU-122 models (representing a vehicle of an unidentified unit on the Eastern Front, Winter of 1942/1943) – and at a reasonable price – they are rather rare (as they were only ever manufactured in limited numbers by all accounts) and usually quite expensive (due to their collectability) – most recently someone was trying to sell a single model on EBay for as much as US$90 (although about US$40-$60 is more usual)!
Somewhere in Galicia in sight of the Carpathians, 1916 – the Brusilov offensive is in full swing and the Austro-Hungarian front line has temporarily collapsed – The Russian forces are pouring into and across Galicia rapidly and in huge numbers… Brusilov has achieved a stunning success (advancing up to 40 miles on a wide front in just a few weeks)… The Austro-Hungarians are in turmoil, and Archduke Josef Ferdinand has only just escaped Lutsk by the skin of his teeth as the speed of the Austro-Hungarian line’s disintegration meant Cossacks had already entered the city before the Austro-Hungarian Army Command realised the extent of the breakthrough!
Following on from the World War 1 Russian Artillery my unit of Siberians is now ready for action – although I plan to ultimately rebase these off those dreadful plastic Games Workshop Warhammer bases and onto good quality Litko plywood ones. Although the could actually be nearly any Russian Infantry unit in winter clothing (e.g. Regiments from Moscow wore similar dress just with less ‘woolier’ papaha hats). As with many of my WW1 Russians these were an opportunity buy from another Colonial/WW1 Gamer, and as a result most of the figures were painted to a very good standard. However as with the artillery battery some additional touch up work has been done to these chaps. Siberian Rifles (all Siberian Regiments were designated Rifle Regiments rather than Infantry or Line Regiments) and in cold weather typically wore a great coat called a shinel (which was often a greyish-brown colour).
As things slowly progress with my 28mm World War 1 forces for TSATF the Russian Artillery Battery is now complete and awaiting basing. It consists of 3 (what I believe to be are) 7.62cm Putilov Field Guns. However the long barrels on the Battle Honors models are a bit of a mystery as the standard M1902 model had a relatively short barrel (you can see some good images of the M1902 at the Landships Website). Each model represents 2 actual real guns, so this represents a battery of 6 actual guns (the Russians actually had 8 gun batteries in their Infantry Division Artillery Brigades, but I think 4 models in a typical TSATF game is getting a bit hardcore). Anyway here is an assortment of photos of my artillery battery (along with a General)…
I have not decided whether the General shall be my Russian C-in-C, Infantry Battalion Commander, or (as depicted here) the Artillery Battery Commander…
One of the really great Model Manufacturers around is MMS Classic Models – they produce some really high quality World War 2 vehicles and guns for 20mm scale (I believe they are nominally very accurate 1/76th scale on par with Milicast and Cromwell – but don’t quote me on that). Anyway on their site they list all their packs numerically rather than by Nation or any other logical order – this drives me mad!
So I’ve done my own listing sorted by Nation and then logically within each Nation by type of pack.
The Russians and Austro-Hungarians arrive!
The latest addition to my World War I stable has been both Russians & Austro-Hungarians – which will be ideal for not only the Carpathian Campaigns & Brusilov Offensive; but also the Russians will also serve for Caucasian Campaigns against the Turks; and as allies for my long planned Rumanian Troops which the Austro-Hungarians will provide opposition for! I’ve taken some quick preliminary photos of these chaps to get a basic gallery up until such time as I have reorganised them and/or played a game and taken photos…
As mentioned in previous articles I’ll be using the TSATF (The Sword and the Flame) for my 28mm WW1 gaming and as such troops will be organised into Infantry Companies of 20 figs each, Cavalry in Squadrons of 12 figs each, and MGs & Artillery in Platoons, Companies, or Batteries of 1-3 guns (each model representing 2 real life guns).
Date Played: 04 April 2009 11.00am BST (04 April 10.00am GMT); 1230 WCFD Game Time.
Game Report by Martin Groat.
Each side has released their respective propaganda, published with this report (see below), and provided here is also the third “neutral” report, and a discussion of the terrain and scenario.
The Germans were given the task of defending 2 pillboxes sitting on a hill in the North West corner of the board. They commanded a road to the West, off board. This road was of some significance to the games that followed and the Allied forces were ordered to seize the Pill Boxes so as to secure the road.
The following are summarised Game Situation Reports taken from those actually posted to the Crossfire Group during the course of World Crossfire Day on 04 April 2009.
The Allies today launched an operation designed to cut off retreating Germans in the central salient. Reports coming in are mixed:
Game 1 (New Zealand – 0600 Game Time)
A German force was able to inflict substantial casualties on a small British force holding the front in a surprise counter-attack, during which the Germans managed to recover a Tiger tank that had broken down in a depression. Though other Allied forces were within call, no reinforcements were summoned by the local British commander.
Colonial participation game at CanCon (Canberra, Australia) wins ‘best participation game’ of convention. Depicting the feared Russian invasion of Australia, and generously supported by Askari Miniatures who donated figures to promote the game, the guys involved have done a fantastic job! You can see the photos and read more at the Defence of Melbourne blog.
Somewhere near Kursk, during one of the Soviet counter-offensives, Summer 1943…
This scenario is set in the Central-Northern Russian countryside at the time of the great Kursk battles, in 1943. A German attack has been cut in two by the brave Russian defenders of the motherland, and some German forces remain isolated from their main force. A German Heavy Panzer platoon is desperately trying to salvage some equipment and get back behind German lines to lick their wounds.