Friday, 18 December 2015

Looking forward

As another year draws to a close I'm already planning my hobby direction for the year ahead. Since discovering WW2 wargaming I have probably played more games in the last few months than I had done in the previous few years, and what's more my enthusiasm remains very high.

A game of toy soldiers!
The delights of 'skirmish' style gaming has also renewed my passion for individually based figures in the larger scale 28mm. I can't help smiling every time I set up the Bolt Action table, because the big tank models really do look and feel like toys, as one of daughters remarked the other day "Ah, look at the car going down the road" in a slightly mocking tone of voice. I told her it was actually an armoured half track, and her expression in reply was a picture.

I know it's not right for every period, but moving individual figures feels right for this period, and I'm increasingly aware that it would work well for the AWI too! It's still probably my favourite historical period and I have done it many times before, never quite feeling that I was getting it right, and certainly the Commands & Colors experiments did not produce the sort of game I was looking for so I sold it all off. However, I'm drawn to 'Sharpe Practice' as a second project to run beside my WW2 stuff, as it has loads of excellent AWI scenarios available, and the concept of 'big Men' (characters) and small companies of troops.

Another decision I have made is to box up all of my Flames of War stuff for a short while and to focus on Bolt Action. While I enjoy FoW tank battles, the infantry rules, especially the assault rules, are a bit more challenging, plus I'm duplicating in two scales, both figures and terrain. The Russian front beckons and I plan to start with 28mm, prefer metals of course BUT the Siberian Veterans box set looks so tempting.

Anyway, more BA shots, new test game, first moves all complete, order dice back in the bag ready for turn two.  Armour on the table for the first time so running through some new bits but all reads straightforward enough and easy to follow. I plan to expand the armour for both sides and have a second Sherman on order. German armour does need a repaint later to soften the camo pattern and to this end I have been doing a bit more research.

US Airborne defend unpainted obstacle!

'Bolt Action' down the table this time.

US infantry with MG and mortar teams in support.

German Grenadiers enter on a 'Run' order, the sniper team takes up a position in the (as yet unpainted) building.

The StuG rolls forward supporting the infantry as was it's historical roll. With it's heavy anti tank gun it has a range of no less than 72" and anarmour penetration value of 6  which also makes it an ideal tank killer. Even it's machine gun has a 36 " range!

The completed 8 figure 'inexperienced' recruits squad featuring those 'youth' castings. As usual red blossom denotes NCO.

Lots of blonde hair to be seen.

First time in action, supported by a Regular squad on their right plus a Panzershrek team.


  1. Nice set up and game. I love Bolt Action too but don't play it as often as I'd like, we always play Napoleonics which I love BUT maybe a second nights gaming each week would allow me to get a few more WW2 games in.
    Have fun, best wishes,

    1. Thanks Jeremy,
      I'm new to BA but really enjoying it.

  2. For me, there are so many options, routes and opinions that the best measure of gaming approach, rules etc is: "Does it feel right to me and give me pleasure?".

  3. Defending an unpainted obstacle - can they do that...?

    1. Hi Tony,
      You are right, plus 1 for defending unpainted obstacle or building!

  4. Lee, your BA table looks really good and will only get better as you add new terrain pieces. The infantry are also great paintjobs – plans to add new units to your Krauts and Yanks, or just sticking with the new Soviet additions? 2016 will see me working on my own Late War Winter BA project, so I’ll be watching your progress for inspiration!

    My enthusiasm for Flames of War has dampened some of late as well. Then again, I’ve been playing it for around 4 years now as my main game and I think I blew my drive to play out. My stuff looks pretty enough in my display case in the meantime, perhaps a future new release will rekindle my desire to play. Those assault rules are a right pigs ear to learn and after all my games I’m still to learn the minutia. Here’s hoping that a 3rd edition rules set release has assault rules that are not so finicky!

    Merry Christmas sir to you and yours.

    1. Dai, Cheers for the words, as for my plans I'm certainly planning to add more terrain bits in the New Year as well as expanding both German and Yank forces.As for the Russians, well I'm thinking possibly'Gates of Berlin' with a more urban layout, but the temptation to do a 'Winter' landscape is also very tempting.

      Flames of War, until I hit those assault rules I was flying along. I'll take a break and then come back to it later.

      Merry Christmas to you too :)


    2. Funny, my bolt action force is a Vistula-Oder offensive themed force. Kicking the Nazis in the face, late war style.

      I'll not be making any terrain pieces for this project anytime soon though... so many other projects on the go!

  5. Really lovely layouts and troops. Can't wait to see your AWIs if this get of the ground. Nice and shiny, I hope!


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