Category Archives: WW2

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I continued with my late war Germans and completed the infantry support units. From start to finish the force took me 6 weeks of building and painting 64 figures, amounting to 300 points in Battlegroup, a squad level engagement. Costing £27.50 for two sets of figures (plus £2.50 for the German Field Grey Vallejo paint), this is probably my cheapest and quickest playable force so far. Going smaller scale, plastic and Army Painter dip in a historical setting really makes a difference for getting things done.

German medium mortars Normandy 1944

I put together two medium mortar teams with loaders, two MG42s on tripods, an additional grenadier squad with an MG34 on bipod, plus MG ammo carriers. I still have a spare medium mortar and MG42 but felt it’s unlikely I would every use those. I also didn’t build the 120mm mortars since I would rather have them as off table support.

German MG42 machine guns Normandy 1944

German grenadiers Normandy 1944

Two panzerschreck teams, a medic and enough grenadiers with panzerfausts to equip every squad complete the infantry element of this army. Next up, armoured support and possibly some halftracks.

German panzerschreck teams Normandy 1944

German medic and soldiers with panzerfaust Normandy 1944

Beyond the Beaches

For the longest time I have been contemplating which scale to collect World War 2 forces in. A while back I bought the Battlegroup rule set thanks to its good reviews and the nice presentation. Its miniature photography is really the best in capturing the eye level view of a soldier in the field that we are hoping to recreate with our wargames (well, I am anyway).

The choice then came down to either 15mm or 20mm scale, and I opted for the larger of the two. Since I am more interested in infantry engagements over tank battles, individually based soldiers appealed most to me. I wasn’t going to go with 28mm since I wanted more room for manoeuvre and more realistic weapons ranges on my usual 6’x4′ gaming table, in addition to cheaper armies that would be easier to store.

I kicked off my collection with a platoon from a German infantry division fighting in Normandy 1944. It is based on the army list in Battlegroup: Overlord – Beyond the Beaches.

German infantry platoon Normandy 1944

I am only going for reasonable representation with regards to colour schemes. In terms of accurate base uniform colours, the opinions online are already divided. I opted for Vallejo’s German WW2 Field Grey. All other colours are chosen from the range of paints I had in my collection for all-round use.

The figures are kits from the Plastic Soldier Company. They are easy to assemble hard plastics. Details are a bit soft and there were some mould lines to scrape off but I am happy enough with the quality to keep using the range. All figures come with integrated bases, so after gluing them to 1p and 2p pieces (40mm Renedra plastic bases for the MGs) I used Polyfilla to blend them in. This provided a good ground texture at the same time.

I simply applied a layer of base colours over a white undercoat and then brushed on Army Painter Dark Tone. My usual grass mix works in this scale and setting I find. After giving them a dusting of Testors Dull Coat they are at an agreeable gaming standard for me.

The only ‘conversion’ I did was replacing the antenna on the radio operator (which broke off anyway) with a plastic broom bristle.

German infantry platoon command Normandy 1944

German infantry squad Normandy 1944

German infantry squad Normandy 1944

The platoon contains three bipod mounted MG34 teams. I painted up two in deployed mode and one advancing for now, to give me some variety. For gaming later on I will probably want all three deployed. First off, I am going to work on various support units though.

German MG34 team Normandy 1944

German MG34 team Normandy 1944

Salute 2019 – World at War

Gringo 40s put on a colonial game at Salute 2019 in the unusual setting of the Tonkin Campaign. In a combined naval and land action, French troops and their allies went up against the Black Flags.

Colonial French in naval and land action against the Black Flag Army
Tonkin 1885 by Gringo 40s at Salute 2019
Colonial French in naval and land action against the Black Flag Army
Tonkin 1885 by Gringo 40s at Salute 2019
Colonial French in naval and land action against the Black Flag Army
Tonkin 1885 by Gringo 40s at Salute 2019
Colonial French in naval and land action against the Black Flag Army
Tonkin 1885 by Gringo 40s at Salute 2019
Colonial French in naval and land action against the Black Flag Army
Tonkin 1885 by Gringo 40s at Salute 2019
Colonial French in naval and land action against the Black Flag Army
Tonkin 1885 by Gringo 40s at Salute 2019

Ardhammer created a battle on the ‘Highway to Hell – the Road to Nanjing’ during the 2nd Sino-Japanese War in 1937.

Battle on the road to Nanjing
Highway to Hell by Ardhammer at Salute 2019
Battle on the road to Nanjing
Highway to Hell by Ardhammer at Salute 2019
Battle on the road to Nanjing
Highway to Hell by Ardhammer at Salute 2019
Battle on the road to Nanjing
Highway to Hell by Ardhammer at Salute 2019
Battle on the road to Nanjing
Highway to Hell by Ardhammer at Salute 2019

TooFatLardies presented ‘Malaya 1942’ using their Chain of Command rules, pitching Australian forces versus Japanese. Thank you undeadhighelf for the close-up shots.

Australians fighting Japanese in the jungle
Malaya 1942 by TooFatLardies at Salute 2019
Australians fighting Japanese in the jungle
Malaya 1942 by TooFatLardies at Salute 2019
Australians fighting Japanese in the jungle
Malaya 1942 by TooFatLardies at Salute 2019
Australians fighting Japanese in the jungle
Malaya 1942 by TooFatLardies at Salute 2019
Australians fighting Japanese in the jungle
Malaya 1942 by TooFatLardies at Salute 2019

Peterborough Wargames Club staged D-Day landings by US forces on the beaches of ‘Bloody Omaha’.

US landing on Easy Red sector
Bloody Omaha by Peterborough Wargames Club at Salute 2019
US landing on Easy Red sector
Bloody Omaha by Peterborough Wargames Club at Salute 2019

Pendraken Miniatures demonstrated a 10mm scale WW2 battle using their rules set Blitzkrieg Commander.

World War 2 battle in 10mm scale
Blitzkrieg Commander by Pendraken Miniatures at Salute 2019
World War 2 battle in 10mm scale
Blitzkrieg Commander by Pendraken Miniatures at Salute 2019

Salute 2018 – World War 2

World War 2 with its plethora of rules systems and miniatures ranges was a popular topic again at Salute 2018.

‘The Battle of Foy’ and its portrayal in Band of Brothers was the setting for a winter engagement using Bolt Action rules.

View over a snow covered forest towards a small town
The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action
Infantry advancing from woods into open fields covered in snow
The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action
Outskirts of a town in winter with tanks on the streets
The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action
Tanks on a street outside a church
The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action
Infantry in winter gear occupying a house ruin and trench
The Battle of Foy for Bolt Action

A Few Brits and the Hobby built an impressive table for ‘Operation Taifun – The Battle for Leros 1943’. The game was played using Battlegroup rules with the Torch supplement.

Coastline with a warship, fighter plane and infantry making landfall
Operation Taifun by A Few Brits and the Hobby
Warship moored at a small jetty with infantry disembarking
Operation Taifun by A Few Brits and the Hobby
Infantry advancing over rough ground with scattered bombed out buildings
Operation Taifun by A Few Brits and the Hobby

Also using Battlegroup Torch were Ironfist Publishing themselves with their battle in Tunisia of 1943 to take Kasserine Pass. Thanks to undeadhighelf for the additional photography.

North African settlement surrounded by desert and some irrigated fields and palm trees
Taking the Kasserine Pass for Battlegroup by Ironfist Publishing
Military vehicles and soldiers in terrain around a settlement
Taking the Kasserine Pass by Ironfist Publishing
Small town with white adobe buildings and a minaret
Taking the Kasserine Pass by Ironfist Publishing

Warlord Games’ Blood Red Skies was used to simulate an attack on an aircraft carrier during the battle of the Philippine Sea in ‘Sink the Hornet’.

Model of an aircraft carrier with planes on deck and over the surrounding sea
Sink the Hornet by Warlord Games
Several squadrons of fighter aircraft over open water
Sink the Hornet by Warlord Games

‘Seagull Day’ was set in the alternative timeline of A Very British Civil War in 1937 and brought to the table by the Gentlemen’s Wargames Parlour.

Display boards with historical posters and memorabilia
Seagull Day by Gentlemen’s Wargames Parlour
A small airfield with biplanes
Seagull Day by Gentlemen’s Wargames Parlour

The ‘Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright’ participation games by Crawley Wargames Club had multiple T-34s trying to corner and destroy a Tiger tank.

Damaged industrial buildings and train tracks with tanks moving in between
Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright by Crawley Wargames Club

Abbey Wood Irregulars staged a battle during the Normandy campaign using Mission Command rules.

Top down view of a road leading through fields and hedgerows with tanks moving around
Mission Command Normandy by Abbey Wood Irregulars

Salute 2017 – World War 2

World War 2 was the theme of many wargaming clubs who had brought their tables to Salute 2017, spanning multiple theatres of operation.

A lot of attention to detail had gone into a scenario during the Japanese invasion of the Philippines in 1942 which was hosted by the Crewe and Nantwich Wargames Club.

Wargames table with tropical terrain and fighter jets circling above
Japanese Invasion of the Philippines by Crewe and Nantwich Wargames Club
Tanks and infantry crossing a bridge
Japanese Invasion of the Philippines by Crewe and Nantwich Wargames Club
An artillery position
Japanese Invasion of the Philippines by Crewe and Nantwich Wargames Club
Japanese infantry advancing
Japanese Invasion of the Philippines by Crewe and Nantwich Wargames Club
US vehicles and infantry on the outskirts of a small settlement
Japanese Invasion of the Philippines by Crewe and Nantwich Wargames Club
Cavalry moving through a village
Japanese Invasion of the Philippines by Crewe and Nantwich Wargames Club
View over marshes and fields with infantry and military vehicles
Japanese Invasion of the Philippines by Crewe and Nantwich Wargames Club

Ironfist Publishing fought in the Battle of Tobruk using the Battlegroup ruleset (my current forerunner in rulesets if I were to ever start a WW2 collection).

Desert wargaming table with tanks advancing and a plane above
Battlegroup Tobruk by Ironfist Publishing
A Middle Eastern adobe building compound
Battlegroup Tobruk by Ironfist Publishing
Artillery position at a river bent
Battlegroup Tobruk by Ironfist Publishing

A very different take on the subject came from the Gamers in Thanet Society. Here escaped POWs needed to evade capture in a lovingly modelled town.

Multi storied town houses
Papers Please by Gamers in Thanet Society
German kuebelwagen on a cobbled street
Papers Please by Gamers in Thanet Society

The unusual battlefield of the Babaoshan Golf Course was the setting for an engagement during the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.

Infantry and cavalry moving up a wargaming table
Pin Hai, Battle for the 18th Green by Ard Hamma
Infantry defending a building and forecourt
Pin Hai, Battle for the 18th Green by Ard Hamma

The Tunbridge Wells Wargaming Society led a Russian counterattack on a prepared German position in 1942, using 15mm armies.

A defensive line across a green landscape
Russian Counterattack Near Rogochev by Tunbridge Wells Wargaming Society
Tanks and infantry massing around a hamlet
Russian Counterattack Near Rogochev by Tunbridge Wells Wargaming Society

There was even more variety on display, with battles in the air, at sea and across the seasons.

Map of southern Britain with plane models above
Battle of Britain by City of Henfield Squadron, RAF Fighter Command
Warships and an aircraft carrier
Lefthand Down a Bit (or Sink HMS Eagle) by Gentlemens Wargames Parlour
Infantry and tanks facing each other across a river in a snowy landscape
Russians vs Germans presumably in Bolt Action
Landing craft delivering infantry and vehicles onto a coastline under bombardment
Sword Beach 1944 by Herts Volunteers