Thursday, 16 July 2015

Flames of War (again!) and painting Spaniards.

While I continue to enjoy playing Memoir '44 games (and will keep this on my other blog), it has become apparent to me that in order to really enjoy a more accurate simulation of WW2 battle, and in particular tank warfare, I would need to find a second set of rules to play alongside Memoir. I have kept this in mind as I continue to rebuild my FoW forces using Peter Pig metal figures instead of the plastic Battlefront figures.

I'm rebuilding using the 'Open Fire' late war lists, adding a platoon of heavy tanks (Tiger 1 E) and artillery to bring  the Germans up to 1500 points for example. I have found recently that I retain much of the basics of the rules in my head, once you get used to the concept of a target needing to 'beat' the AT of an incoming shell by adding it's own armour rating to a modified D6 throw, (it's normally the other way round!), everything seems to fall into place. The  initial rolls 'to hit' are straightforward, this time depending on the skill and training of the target as they attempt to avoid the incoming fire, with only basic modifiers such as target over 16", target concealed or gone to ground.

Of course I will need to build some conventional terrain. It's very odd playing a game without hexes after so many years. FoW are very forgiving in these regards, for example infantry move 6" as standard with no deductions for rough terrain etc, and as you might only be playing with say five or so platoons there is no mass maneuvering of large armies of model soldiers, so the game flows fast and is easy to keep track of.

I thought a few shots of my WW2 collection as it stands would be good, I'm far happier with the Piggy soldiers, they have a character of their own, especially the faces. I keep looking at the Russians, I know I can't hold out much longer! I'll be adding the small command bases next week.

German.









Allies (so far).









More Spanish infantry.
With the 30th Foot now returned home I have started on two more battalions for Tony. I think these may be units nine and ten?  not sure but I know it took a few units to find the best way to paint these white uniforms and I'm much happier now I have established a reliable method. I know the first few battalions were painted over a white undercoat and then built up from there, but I HATE having to paint black over the white u/coat, infact when I paint over a strong black undercoat I rarely re paint black at all, just a slight black grey to highlight.

The key for me has been Foundry Arctic Grey Shade. I spent a lot of time trying to find a grey that would give the right kind of subtle contrast with white when used as a base coat for uniforms. I now use a fairly dry brush to apply the grey over all of the uniform and belts, straps etc, carefully avoiding the black areas of course and the musket. It's a quick but steady job and once done it really helps the white to stand out by adding contrast.

Below are a couple of 'production shots' (ie unfinished!) of the first battalion so far. I think they illustrate well the perfect contrast between the Arctic grey base shade and the white overpaint. The white will get a further pure coat later to try and add more highlights. Bit to do yet, collars need piping, brass/gold for buttons, musket bands, plume clips etc, but they are coming along nicely.





10 comments:

  1. Hi Lee - your FoW chaps look marvellous. I've never played WW2 - I have always regarded WW2 as too recent, too well documented, for comfort. I've recently been watching (for the umpteenth time) my DVD set of World at War, and, while I find it fascinating (and, somehow, important), I am once again grossed-out by the siege of Leningrad, the Japanese who had to be burned out of the Pacific islands to the last man, etc. On the other hand, your little units here are marvellous - it never occurred to me before, but having figures with personality like these really brings the thing to life, and gives it a human side too. For the first time, I see a 20th Century miniatures game which I would just love to have a go at. Very nice - my compliments.

    First shots of the Regimiento de Burgos very pleasing as well - I've got very used to the quality of your paintwork, but I certainly do not take it for granted. You know these boys will go to a good, caring home!

    Cheers - best regards - Tony

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    1. Cheers Tony. I felt the same way about 'modern' wargaming for years, but FoW are refreshingly different, and the more I have researched, the more interested I have become in this period at the 'common soldier' level. As for the 'tankers' well I have nothing but admiration of the courage of crews of all nationalities. I'm embarrassed to admit, (probably because I had never taken time to think about it), that I did not know that AT shells were essentially 'solid shot', fired at such high velocity that they could punch through a couple of inches of armour, I'm learning a lot!

      Second battalion just started and then I'll pull them all together and with luck you may get back end of the week :)

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  2. Very nice figures. I've potentially a large number of Austrians to paint and I was interested in your technique. Do you undercoat with white or grey and then wash or dry brush with the other as appropriate ? Thanks for your help.

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    1. Hi,
      Thanks for your comment. If you can bear with me I'll take a couple of photos to illustrate how I'm painting white uniforms, but basically it's a flat black u/coat followed by a 'dryish' brush of Foundry Arctic Grey shade as a base for the white and to represent shade, and then a final white highlight. It's much easier to build the white up over the grey, but I have carefully chosen that grey as it works so well with white.

      Hope this helps.

      Lee.

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  3. For rules is it worth looking at Too Fat Lardies I Ain't Been Shot Mum, that uses a card activation system which is perhaps a bit closer to what you're used? I've enjoyed the games I've had with that set.

    I admit I've very tempted by 15mm WWII but then I remember how many 6mm tanks I have....

    Cheers
    Richard

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    1. Thanks Richard. It's a major undertaking for me to commit to learning a new set of rules, and F0W are the first in many years! I have committed so much of them to memory now that I'll stick with them. But I have read good things about the lardie rules, above all that they are good fun, which is what I'm looking for :)

      Cheers,

      Lee.

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  4. Lee - I have some 12mm (1/100th) WW2 forces. I started with Americans and Germans then of course added British (and British paras) and like you, started to think Russians. Once you have Russians and a bunch of T34's you then have to produce enough buildings for a mini Starlingrad! I stopped myself from moving on from that to the Western Desert - this is the problem with the period, too much choice! Oh and Marines and Japs...

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    1. You are right there Ian. The massed T34's are so tempting, I doubt I will be able to resist!

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  5. Great collection :)
    I cannot advise on rules but I do find FoW very uncomplicated when throwing a lot of tanks around!

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    1. Cheers Mike, that's just what I wanted to hear about FoW :)

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