Sunday, 10 January 2016

Breaking up 'line of sight' for Bolt Action.

With the festive season now behind us and the Flames of War trim down going well I thought it time I finally made up my mind to commit fully to 28mm scale and get going on upgrading the terrain. A few play throughs of BA have convinced me that I need to break up the table far more in terms of sight lines, to avoid those long range shots knocking out tanks before they can really get going! To this end here's what I plan to do during this week:
  • Raise the hedge/bocage height from 30mm to 60mm. This has required the purchase of a further 8 bags of tree clump foliage, bringing total to no less than 12 bags used so far (£1.70 per bag). I'm pinning the new foliage on with cocktail sticks, once done all will be given a spray of mid green and then highlighted once dry. Bases will be improved by adding stone around the bottom to give that 'bocage' like look.
  • Remove the old smaller trees from the bases and use them to create a modular apple orchard which will also break up LoS.
  • Purchase new taller/chunkier trees from S&A Scenics to create new woods.
  • The cornfields will be given an additional layer to raise height to around 40mm which again breaks up LoS. I spent a lot of time thinking how best to do this as I was reluctant to start again, it suddenly struck me how simple this could be to do this by just adding layers and painting the top layer, from wargame distance it really does not notice much at all and looks far better :)
  • Frame the table edge with pine, in order to allow those 'head on the table' LoS views I'm going to keep it just 50mm high, enough to stop me knocking figures off onto the floor and to look quite smart.
  • MDF buildings. I just don't like the plastic ruined houses made by Warlord for BA, I have used them but can't find the enthusiasm to paint them. I always felt that the MDF buildings were really too big for 15mm being much more suitable for 20mm. By raising them on a 10mm plinth they scale up pretty well for 28mm and look so much better to my eye. I also intend to make small modular bases for the buildings, so that when a squad occupies such a base it is defending the base which offers 'hard cover' protection to those on it. This is a compromise between playing 'around' the buildings as allowed under BA rules, and physical occupation of the buildings, which can get fiddly, those on the base are in hard cover.
  • River sections with banks also on the list.

This will become an apple orchard with removable tree sections.

An unpainted extra mat layer added to raise the crop field height.

Work in progress.

The house bases under construction.

That's going to keep me pretty busy this week, but I'm sure it will be worth it. I'm also keeping in mind that down the line I'll need to use the terrain for the American Rebellion, (I like that, I think I borrowed it from CK), which will involve lots of fence building etc. 

I now have my copy of 'Sharpe Practice' but only really had time for a flick through. Looks good though, written in typical 'Lardy' language and humour, hand to hand fighting becomes 'fisticuffs' for example. I'm still going with Fife & Drum with the focus on the Philadelphia campaign of 1777 and 1778, Brits in cut down/ de laced uniforms with overalls replacing knee breeches etc, can't wait!

Finally, I'm about done with BA purchases, just need to add a couple of artillery pieces and possibly a Typhoon ground attack aircraft. Tanks are progressing well with the three Sherman's close to completion, I'm tempted to add a Firefly or M10 to add a bit more punch to the Allied armour. A second StuG assualt gun and a Panzer III are awaiting construction.

Sherman's coming along, I have plans to weather and further detail these. They still feel more like 'big toys' though.

The horrid plastic commanders will be replaced with metal Warlord crew.

I know that I already have my German command figure but I just could not resist this portly chap! What a character, I broke my own rule and paid £4.00 for him, but he will paint up beautifully as do all of the Warlord castings.

'Cavalier 2016' is not far away and this year I will be there for the first time in several years, looking forward to it.


  1. I didn't think your plinth idea would work for buildings, but it looks great.

    1. Thanks CK, I'll disguise the plinth as far as possible, but I'm pleased with the result.

  2. Jeepers you're productive! Did the beer help?
    You'll have an amazing table with close lines of sight in no time.
    Have a great year,

    1. Thanks Jeremy, I just want to get the table finished now so I can play more games. Beer always helps :)

  3. Great post with loads of very nicely done stuff. This year will see me working on my own Warlord Soviets, though I'm not sure I am up to trying to create a load of 28mm terrain as well...

    1. Cheers Dai,
      Upscaling the terrain was something I would have rather avoided, but decided to just get on and do it! My lovely Shermans were being knocked out too easily from the other side of the table, so breaking up the sight lines should produce a more balanced game. I look forward to seeing what you do with your Soviets, they are something in mind for the future for me too.


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