Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Monday, 28 October 2013

Joe Sacco 'The Great War' Book Review

I got this in the post the other day so I thought I'd give it a quick review. It's the comic artist Joe Sacco's The Great War: July 1, 1916: The First Day of the Somme. Published by Jonathan Cape it retails at £20.00, I got mine from Amazon for a bit less.

I'm a big fan of comic art and wanted to see what Sacco had done with the First World War in this work.

Saturday, 26 October 2013

British 2-Pounder Anti-Tank Guns for Malaya

The latest edition to my growing British force for the Singapore/Malaya campaign project are these two 2-Pounder Anti-Tank guns from Peter Pig. As with all PP figures these are lovely little pieces and are manned by PP's Eight Army gun crew.

The bushes on the fronts of the bases are courtesy of the War Painter, find my review of them HERE.

From the source book, these two guns appear to be the only support the British had during the campaign except some 25-Pounders and they will have their work cut out with the amount of Japanese tanks that were involved in the invasion.

The crew were painted the same as the other British units that I have and I decided to paint the gun in Bronze Green as thought they had been rushed to the east and there wasn't enough time for a repaint. I was directed to this SITE from a discussion on TMP about British equipment colours in Malaya and saw that some of the vehicles were in this colour.

Anyhoo, there is still more to come for this project, but thanks for looking!

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Keeping your bush nice and trim

As I was at a wedding this weekend I didn't get much painted so I thought I'd do a quick product review. I recently bought some grass tufts from the Warpainter on ebay. They were an absolute bargain, at about £7 for over 100 tufts with free postage! Added to this, they only took two days to arrive after I'd ordered them! They arrived in this DVD style box, with instructions of use on the back:

Sunday, 20 October 2013

The Country Pile

Following on from the building of scenery tiles for Square Bashing, I started work on one of the objective squares; the ruined Château. I used this tile in the last game, but this post is about how I constructed it. The objective tiles have dimensions of a 6"x6" tile rather than the usual 12"x6" of the other terrain types.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013


I put the finishing touches to a full size Japanese Battalion for Rapid Fire! recently. They had been largely finished at the weekend, but life caught up with me and I was unable to complete the unit until now. This is the second Japanese Battalion I have completed as part of my ongoing Malaya/Singapore project. However, the other battalion is under strength and will need a few additions to bring it up to proper strength. This one, on the other hand, follows the OOBs as laid out by A. Michael Sayce in his Japanese World War II Scenarios booklet.

The unit consists of:
Battalion HQ: CO + 2IC, 1 Bugler, 1 Standard Bearer, 1 Radioman, 4 Rifles (there should be 2 Rifles and 2 SMG, but I didn't have enough SMG figures, it makes no difference to the rules)
4 Infantry Companies, each with 2 50mm Mortars, 1 LMG team, 2 SMG and 6 Rifles

The nice thing about the Japanese is that I get to make flags, something that is very rare in the 20th Century. The BHQ flag was made with tin foil so I could have it flying in the attack!

The unit is pretty big, with 57 figures in total, including 8 mortars! I pity the British units that will have to face that amount of fire-power.

The battalion is augmented by support from four HMGs, the normal machine gun company consists of three HMGs, but I painted an extra one, just in case... The normal crew for a Rapid Fire! HMG is three, but in the Sayce OOBs this is increased to four and this means that the weapons will take more punishment before they are destroyed!

All the figures are by Command Decision, and these are probably pretty hard to get hold of in the UK now that Skytrex has folded...

I still have another similar battalion of Japanese to finish off, plus some more tanks that are on their way from Peter Pig, along with a couple of British units and A/T guns before this project is totally finished and I can have a game, but the end is slowly coming in sight now...

Thanks for looking!

Monday, 14 October 2013

March 21 1918, the onslaught begins

Another Sunday, another game of Square Bashing. This time I wanted to introduce Dean and Dane to the game, so I set up another Quick Game, with the Germans attacking a British defence line during the Kaiser Schlacht of 1918. The Quick Game has 620 points for the attacker and 450 points for the defender with no assets or pre-game preparation. This translated to a German attacking force of 2 x professional battalions, 10 x regular battalions, 4 x field artillery, 2 x heavy tanks. These were pitted against 6 x regular battalions, 6 x MGs and 6 x field guns for the defending British.

Friday, 11 October 2013

Well, if you knows of a better 'ole go to it!

With my new found love of Square Bashing 2nd Edition, I decided I needed some new First World War specific terrain for the game. In the game terrain is divided into several distinct types and one of these is described as 'broken ground',

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Aircraft Wrecks in the Dark Peaks

My friend Craig called over for the weekend and although it meant that I got no painting done we went out to the Dark Peaks, near Glossop. The idea was to try and find some aircraft wrecks that I knew about from a book on the subject my parents bought me at Christmas. It didn't take long to locate the first one; a RB-29 called 'Over Exposed', which crashed on 3rd November 1948. All the crew were lost in the crash.

The wreckage was spread over a large area and has been left alone by passing walkers.

The next two were harder to find, the first one being the remains of a Lancaster Bomber KB993, which crashed on 18th May 1945, days after the Second World War had ended. Again, all the crew were lost.

The small memorial stone also mentions that a C-47 Skytrain 2108982 crashed nearby with the loss of the crew. We stumbled upon the wreckage of this crash almost by accident.

The wreckage from this aircraft was spread over a wide area as well, maybe because the impact area was at the edge of a deep gulley and some of the aircraft tumbled down there.

Larger parts of the airframe lay at the bottom of the gulley in a particularly hard to reach area.

The trail of debris lay all the way down the stream bed.

The Dark Peaks is part of the Pennine Ridge that is often called the Spine of England and is an area of high ground that rises very quickly on both sides. It seems that these pilots were taken unaware by the steep rise in the ground, especially as these crashes occurred at night or during heavy fog. It is good to see that they are undisturbed by walkers (despite some graffiti on some of the larger pieces) as they are war graves and should be treated with the due reverence that they demand.