Saturday, December 31, 2011

Gaming Days at the Sterling Heights Library

     I just got a note in the mail from Metro Detroit Gamers saying that the Sterling Heights Library is hosting gaming on the following Saturdays; 14JAN12, 18FEB12 and 17MAR12 from 1030hrs to 1630hrs. The Sterling Heights library is located at 40255 Dodge Park Road in Sterling Heights MI 48313. No phone contact is listed but there is a website for further info; This is a good opportunity to go out and meet some other local gamers for anybody living in the North Metro Detroit area. Beat the winter blahs and go meet some other gamers.

And the Distraction wins!!!

     Thursday night after dinner I was bemoaning the lack of worthwhile television so I betook myself to the workroom. There on the table were two piles; one of Vikings, the other the Western Town from Game Craft Miniatures that my son Pat had given me for Christmas.

     I dutifully began painting faces on Vikings but the lure of the finely crafted buildings kept capturing my imagination. In nearly no time at all I found myself gluing together the model I had test fitted a few days earlier. That sealed the deal and I decided the Vikings could wait another few days. With a decision in hand I grabbed my trusty camera to record the festivities and set to work on the models. I chose to use regular wood glue for the assembly as I have had spotty results with superglue on wood models and I hate fiddling with epoxies.

     I chose another of the smaller/simpler models to assemble first. There is no designator or model number on the bags so I am just calling this one the Dry Goods Store (because it reminds me of one from Cross Roads Village , a local historical attraction of period homes and businesses). It is a single-story building with a false front and peaked roof. I chose to begin with the roof as the long narrow glue joint would require a bit of time before being stong enough to handle.

the handy square assured me that the roof was right

the front of the building has two parts,
the peaked inner wall and the the fancy false-front

Thursday, December 29, 2011

An Open Invitation

    In the past month or so I have noticed that we have gained a number of new followers in this little corner of the web. In checking them as they signed on I have noticed that a goodly few have blogs or websites of their own (you can check them out yourself if you wish by clicking on the followers icon in the sidebar). It has occurred to me that they, and other readers, may wish to have a larger presence here so I am going to list the followers that have blogs/websites and link to them in the sidebar.

      Anyone else with a wargaming/modelling blog or site that isn't a follower of this blog please reply in the comments section below (list your web address please) and I will see about adding your site as well. This will expand our information base and cross-fertilize the hobby a little bit more.


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Distractions from the Viking Project

     My son, Pat, has an uncanny ability to distract me from one project by the placing another (equally interesting) item before me. Last year it was the Dystopian Wars Prussian Fleet as you can see from the  pictures they took a bit of painting. The models were lovely and the rules are a blast. This year he chose to place under my tree an unassuming box that smelled slightly of burnt wood. Inside I found a most amazing set of model buildings. These little beauties are the product of Game Craft Miniatures. A complete Old West town laser cut out of wood (which accounts for the scent). As I opened the bags containing the models I noticed that they are devoid of saw-marks of any kind, every cut has been executed with a laser, this creates very close tolerances and perfect fit. I took one model out and assembled it, the parts fit together smoothly with no need to fiddle or sand the joints to ensure a good fit. I have put together expensive plastic models that didn't come close to this perfection of fit. I will be doing a full write-up on these when I get to building/painting them. In the meantime enjoy these photos.

the models came carefully packed in individual bags

Progress among the Vikings

     Now that the dust from the Christmas festivities has settled a bit I spent some time digging deeper into the pile in the "toy room" and uncovered more Vikings (as well as some hapless victims). To my sorrow I also found that I didn't have as many longships as I first thought (unless the others are hiding deeper in the vault), but to my surprise and amusement I found that the project that Pat had undertaken a few years back had gotten farther than I remembered. He had painted sixty or so Vikings to a near-complete status as well as a couple of dozen Vikings that were  looting and some Saxons that were, well, loot themselves. This greatly accelerated the establishment of the Viking forces. Unfortunately the French were in bare-metal status while, worse yet, the Saxons were still all in bags. I assembled the materials on the gaming table to get a look at the dimensions of the undertaking; it looks a goodly task but not insurmountable.

the entire project, may have to add a couple of extra longships

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Viking Project; Figure Painting Techniques

     There are times when I really enjoy painting minis and other times when it is simply a chore (it can switch from one to the other in mid-stride, so mayhap it is that I am bi-polar and painting is just painting). Certain things are more likely to make it a chore; such as painting forty figures with brown trousers and red jackets. Conversely when I am looking at dozens (or hundreds) of figures that are dressed in an irregular manner I am often at a loss as to how to organize the work. Too organized and it may as well be uniforms, too chaotic and it looks as if the troops escaped from Cirque du Soleil (as well as being dreadfully slow to paint). If I try to paint figures one at a time I find that I have gotten a dozen or so finished and a month has passed. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

My Winter Project

     Scanning the vast mounds of unpainted miniatures that forty years of wargaming has provided me with I contemplated a winter project, a single undertaking that I could use a a guiding star through the dark months ahead. My attention was captured by an opened box of plastic Vikings that I had raided for figures for my Barroom Brawl game some months ago and had just left the unused portion in the box. This teetered precariously on the stack of boxes of plastic minis that were awaiting assembly and paint. I decided that the Vikings would be my winter project at that moment.

     A week or so later it turned out that the Tuesday gaming group was meeting at my house and consisted solely of Joe and myself, rather than play we assembled some of the Vikings while discussing the pros and cons of Two Fat Lardies rules. By the end of the evening we had built a box of Vikings that were ready for paint. I do like the plastics as you can make simple and subtle adjustments in the posing of the figures so that no two models are the same.

Wargames Factory Vikings, the painting begins

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Kit Review, the Plastic Soldier Company Stug III 15mm 1/100

     The long awaited Stug from PSC arrived at Michigan Toy Soldier the other day and I went there straight-away to get my grubby paws onone. This kit is up to the usual standard of PSC models (or about an order of magnitude or two better than most others). The kit is cleanly molded in a light olive and the kit contains five sprues that will build either the F/8, early or late model G and the Sturmhaubitze. Truly a workhorse of the German war effort the StuG III went everywhere that the German fought, this model will provide WW2 gamers with a core component of the German army. The kit provides the two different upper hulls and assorted gun barrels to accurately recreate the listed versions.

the box art, much better than the effort on the 251 box

the contents

Monday, December 12, 2011

B'Maso: The Rhodesian Light Infantry Strike Back!! 15mm African Wars

     The day after the Great Hospital Raid the Rhodesians decided that the ZANLA guerrillas had gotten completely out of hand and, rather than relying on the local Constabulary, they called in the big guns; The Rhodesdian Light Infantry. This crack force of highly-trained, ultra motivated and very well equipped troops were deployed to reduce the level of rebel activity in the area. The mission was to recover the hostages (the ZANLAs had been collecting them over the past week or so), discover and destroy the rebel supply base, detach the rebels from sympathetic villagers, and kill or capture as many guerrillas as possible. The R.L.I. took that lengthy list in stride and mover swiftly into action.

    Below we find the area of operations, this zone is known to be thick with ZANLA troops and there is evidence that the villagers are actively supporting the rebels.

                                                           Click on the pictures for a larger view

north is at the bottom of this view

north is to the left of this view

Friday, December 2, 2011

New Subject, book reviews

     OK, I confess; I am a book junkie. I have tons of books on subjects military from prehistory to the Second World War. I have a particular soft-spot for Osprey publications (I still have one or two that I got "back in the day" when they didn't have numbers, from the Squadron Shop, it is priced at $1.95 US, my how the dollar has fallen) and have aquired a good many over the years.

     The Men-at-Arms series has been a stand-out feature over the decades, I think that I have all of their WW2 and earlier issues. Three of the newest releases were of particular interest to me as they covered small and relatively obsure campaigns; #471 Armies of the Adowa Campaign, #472 Armies of the Irish Rebellion 1798 and #474 The Chaco War 1932-35. All of these off the beaten path subjects peaked my interest and I picked them up from Michigan Toy Soldier as soon as they were placed on display. They also fall into an odd place in the Osprey pantheon, sort of a campaign book, sort of a uniforn guide but not enough of either. I wish that Osprey would start an "Obscure History" series that combines both aspects in a format like their Essential Histories series.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Building the Plastic Soldier Company Sdkfz 251c

     Today we will take a look at building the PSC Sdkfz 251c, you can see my review of the kit here. The model went together without a hitch and none of the track issues that came about with the tanks models (not that they were a problem, they just weren't made clear in the "instructions"). For once the assembly instructions were adequate to the task. I must comment on the precision of the casting and the near total lack of warping and flash, the company casting these models does a fine job and should be commended.

the chassis and suspension parts

the tracks cannot be assembled the wrong-way-round (I tried, just to be sure)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A peek at the 28mm Austrian Landwehr Mounted Officer from Victrix

I just couldn't resist putting some of these beauties together and I think the officer is very nice indeed.

the parts,
when you are working on only one figure the number of parts does not seem so overpowering,
the plastic is fairly soft and easy to cut, the few mold-lines cleaned up easily

Building the Zvezda Panzer 38t 1/100 15mm

    This was so simple and straight-forward it almost seems silly to do a post on it, but here we go anyways.
As we have become used to the kit is cleanly molded and in a box with excellent artwork.

first step was to free the parts from the sprue, all six of them

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Plastic Soldier Company Sdkfz 251 / D 1/100 15mm

    Just in at Michigan Toy Soldier the latest addition to the ever-growing PSC stable the 251/D is the later war simplfied construction version of the iconic 251. This kit measures up very well compared to it's older brethern. Molded in a light olive color plastic and cast without any trace of flash and only the faintest hint of mold-lines this is one fine looking model. Replete with the level of detail that has become the standard for PSC this kit is a must-have for anyone playing late WW2 Europe in 1/100 scale. As always click on the pictures for a larger view.

it seems that they are starting to "phone-in" the artwork

Victrix Austrian Landwehr 28mm

      Fresh from Victrix is the Austrian Landwehr, this completes their issue of 28mm Austrian infantry (I can only hope they do the artillery and cavalry in plastic as well). Crisply cast in a peculiar buff plastic you will get two sprues of command and seven of line troopers in each box. I grabbed these from Michigan Toy Soldier as soon as I spotted them ( I have plans for running a 28mm skirmish game set in the Tyrol and these will be the basis for my Tyrolean militia).

the front of the box

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Dystopian Wars Prussian Fleet Near completion

     A couple of weekends ago we played Dystopian Wars, the rules are fast and fun and have an interesting take on "guns vs armor" resolution. After I got the hang of the rules it was fun. I have to admit that I was somewhat shamed by the shabby appearance of my models so I upgraded their look with additional work. There still is a long way to go before they are finished but I have made some progress. Click on the pix for a close-up.

the Blucher class dreadnought, a massive kit

Saturday, November 5, 2011

And now for something completely different..........

      A couple of years ago Pat ran a Gorka-Morka campaign (free rules here) for quite a while. We had a blast clobbering each other's gangs while searching for scrap metal on the blasted landscape of the planet Gorka-Morka. Everybody else ran an Ork gang, but being a contrarian I chose to use a Grot mob. This had its advantages, for starters I had eight members when everybody else had four or five, Grot stuff is cheap and they have some interesting special rules. The downside is that they have limited improvement potential and that they die easily.

     The backstory on the Grot mobs is that they are runaways from the oppression inherent in the system of Ork rule, which is (of course) the strongest rules. Particularly distressing (to the Grots that is) is their exclusion from boarding the great spaceship that the Orks are building to carry The Wahhh to other planets. These runaways have organized a collective society a long distance from the main Ork settlement and now are running a competing scrap collection operation. As they are styled on a Marxist model I chose to mimic the Russians and named all of my Grots after Communist Party members (well, the ones that mattered at least, members of the Proletariat only got numbers.....they died too quickly to merit names) .

      Having agreed to the campaign I found that there was a serious shortage of models of Grots (the game having gone out of production years ago) and I had to dig around a bit to find them. The Grot vehicles were also nearly impossible to find and, when found, ridiculously expensive. Not wanting to spend a lot of money on what was an amusement I decided to model my own. As my Grot mob grew more numerous the models got bigger and bigger until the Great Land Cruiser was launched (impressive as it was it still crashed or blew up nearly every game).

perhaps the best model of the lot was the first, the Sand Skate,
it was sleek, small, and seemed to lead a charmed life (never having been blown up)

Friday, November 4, 2011

Zvezda Panzer 38t 15mm 1/100 kit review

       Our Russian friends have produced another fine-looking model in their 1/100 scale early war series, the Czech-built 38t. This was a product of the Czech military and was a top-notch design when it entered service, in fact there are many that would say that the German Blitzkreig would have not been possible without the products of the Skoda works. Various versions of the tank were in service through1942 and the chassis was the basis for further designs all the way through the war.

     The kit is molded in a flash-free hard gray plastic and is a snap-together model, the plastic does take normal styrene glue however. The only real downside is that, in their efforts to produce a snap together model, they have cast the turret in one piece, this leaves the sides of the turret lacking the trade-mark rivets. Not a huge problem for me, but others may not be happy. Click on the pictures for a larger view.

box art, as always well-done

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Getting ready for Dystopian Wars on Saturday

      I have been working (ever sooooo slowly) on my Dystopian Wars models. I have the Prussian Fleet but I added a giant walker that I found on sale at Pro or Con (it was way too cool to pass up). The level of detail on the models is absolutely amazing, which makes them difficult to finish painting as there is always one more detail to pick out with the brush. The rules are fast and fun and the models are cool, more after Saturdays's game.


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Pro or Con, Some general shots

    Here are some general shots of the Con, they are not really sorted or anything. I am not sure what the "local" cons elsewhere are like as I have only ever been to the ones in and around Metro Detroit. This takes place in the facilities of the University of Michigan Dearborn Campus. A clean,well-lit, temperature-controlled facility that can comfortably accomodate the games and dealers. There is loads of free parking and easy access off of State Highway M-39 (that is the Southfield Freeway for you locals). The Pro or Con group works very hard twice a a year putting these cons together and I heartily commend them for their efforts.

the DBA tourney in progress

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Pro or Con battle report, Crimean War

      Brad Northrop brought his Crimean War 28mm game the con, and it was a pretty thing indeed! I wasn't able to participate as I was involved in another game but I did get some pictures. Enjoy!

one of the last European wars where they used flags,
I miss flags

very simple but effect terrain

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pro or Con Battle report

     For the first time in ages I chose not to run a game at Pro or Con. This left me free to play in a couple of games and spend some time checking out the dealers and the flea-market (bring & buy for you Brits out there). Rather than try to pick and choose between the many good games and dozens of photos that I took I have decided to break the report up into a few separate posts.

   I had the pleasure of playing in Ray Bramer's World War One trench attack game. I have always enjoyed Ray's games that he brings to the con; nice effective terrain and hordes of well-done minis combined with a simple, easy to play rule set that gets things going right away and keeps you on the edge of your seat until the last turn. This game did not disappoint. Click on the pictures to enlarge them.

the set-up, 
the Germans thought there was too much open ground,
the Brits despaired at the quantity of cover,
that means it was just right

the Germanic hordes

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Warstore has Point of Contact models on sale

     The Warstore has announced that they are offering Point of Contact 1/100 scale pre-painted plastic models for sale at the frankly silly price of $19.95US for five models. I have some of these kits and they are useable right out of the box. All sets are five of the same type of vehicle and the same style of paintjob. They make Shermans, Tigers, SDKFZ 251s and M-3 halftracks. As with most pre-painted models they would be greatly enhanced by some careful weathering and an ink wash, but I did use mine the first time straight from the box without feeling ashamed. If you are building a US or German force for WW2 you should take a look at these.

Recommended,     John

Monday, October 10, 2011

New Wargames Factory Shock Troopers Heavy Weapons in 28mm

     The new Wargames Factory Shock Troopers Heavy Weapons set has arrived and landed on the shelves of my local hobby shop, this set adds to the previous Shock Troopers set and allows you to field a complete force up to what I assume is company level. Well molded in a light gray plastic these are every nicely detailed models with minimal mold lines and no flash. Priced at just $19.95US they are far less expensive than the other widely available plastic SF Imperial troopers figures and should prove popular. Now on to the pictures, remember to click on the photo to enlarge to better see the detail.

the box, the art is still pretty dodgy,
I wouldn't expect a quality product based on the cover

happily the contents is much better than the cover

Friday, October 7, 2011

Wargames Factory War of Spanish Succession Cavalry 28mm plastic

     The new Wargames Factory plastic cavalry are out, just arrived at Michigan Toy Soldier the other day. In the flesh (plastic?) they look even better than the pictures on the website. Molded in a smooth medium gray plastic this kit offers a ton of permutations and will generate a pile of spare parts for you extras bin. The boys at WF decided to include all of the parts you might want to cover nearly every cavalry type in the 1690-1720s era, they have provided different heads, torsos and weapons so that you can build everything from dragoons to lobster-potted cuirassiers. In one box they have taken care of all but the most arcane mounted troops, a decision that makes stocking (for your local retailer) and buying (no need to decide now if you want Horse or Dragoons, you get to decide when you build them) a lot easier. Now on to the kit, as usual click on the picture to get a larger view.

the box-art is improving,
but they still won't win any awards for marketing

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Plastic Soldier Company SDKFZ 251 1/100 15mm

    Once again Plastic Soldier Company has come across with a workhorse vehicle to add to their growing range of wargaming models. The SdKfz 251 served on every front that the German army was engaged on (possible exception; Norway) an was built in huge numbers. This is the vehicle that everyone thinks of when they hear "German Panzergrenadiers", it is simply iconic. I got mine from Michigan Toy Soldier Company today and shot right home to snap some pictures. Needless to say it is a beauty, and comes with a crew (this might not be as happy a news for some, the figures are true 1/100 scale rather than the blobby 15mm size that lead figure companies tend to make). On to the pictures, click on the pictures for a larger view.

good box-art

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Just In; Wargames Factory Greek Heavy Hoplites 28mm

      Hot off the presses and into Michigan Toy Soldier (and thus into MY hands) is the new box of Greek Heavy Armored Hoplites from Wargames Factory.  With a better than average box art I almost noticed when I walked into the shop. It contains parts for 30 figures with loads of extra bits.There are enough square plastic bases included to mount all the figures so they would be useable for WAB of Hail Caesar.  Let us examine the contents of the box;

O.K.,   I guess we will start with the box art

Saturday, September 24, 2011

First look at the Zvezda Panzer IV 1/100 15mm

     I wandered into my local hobby shop, Michigan Toy Soldier Company, the other day and found that the Zvezda Panzer IV uasf D had arrived. I of course needed to buy one for review and promptly secured it. This is another early war kit that can also be used in the Polish and French campaigns as well as the Western Desert through the Fall of Tunisia. As is to be expected it is a snap-together kit and is precisely cast in a medium gray plastic with no flash and few mold-lines. To enlarge click on the picture.

decent box-art

Monday, September 19, 2011

Building the Zvezda GAZ truck 1/100 15mm

   Here I am coming to the end of the "snap-tight-only" experiment with the GAZ truck from Zvezda. As is usual with these products the molding is crisp, sharp and well-defined. This is mostly the same as the Katyusha kit, the only difference being the box-bed instead of the launcher platform.

the cab parts ready for assembly

Friday, September 16, 2011

Building the Zvezda Opel Blitz 1/100 15mm

     Continuing in my decision to build the Zvezda Snap-Tight kits by "snap" alone I turned my attention to the Opel Blitz kit. I must say that this model really is very good, the parts fit is superb and the delicacy of the casting work is amazing.

box art

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Building the Plastic Soldier Company M-4A2 Sherman

      This is largely the same kit as the M-4A1 reviewed in these pages a few days ago, I will refer the reader to the earlier article to examine the suspension assemblies matters, This kit comes with the welded hull as opposed to the cast hull of the M-4A1. Two models can be built with this kit; the M-4A1 with the 75mm cannon (with either the narrow or wide gun mantle), and the later, up-gunned version with the 76mm cannon. As you have come to expect this is an excellent kit with crisp details and superb fit (with the one below mentioned exception). It is molded in a (far less alarming) light olive plastic and shows little or no flash and only the faintest trace of mold lines. Click on the pictures to enlarge.

box art

the hull assembly ready for the suspension units

the assembled hull

IDF vs. PLO, Lebanon, July 1982

   Last week, we decided to step into Lebanon again with our second session of “Rock the Casbah”. This time we traded in the scenic fruit orchards of the countryside for the concrete jungle of Lebanon’s urban areas. Dan and John would be running the Zionist pigs, while Brad and I would be running the plucky freedom fighters.

   With long delays on the main roads due to ambush, a platoon of Merkava tanks had attempted to reach their forward position by taking a slight off-road shortcut. Unfortunately, the unit ended up completely out of position on the wrong flank, leaving a noticeable hole in the Israeli advance. To rectify this command sent out a mechanized platoon who, despite multiple ambushes, had arrived near their objective: A crossroad which would allow fast transit for the Merkava unit to speed through. The PLO, as per usual, knew only that the Israelis were advancing on their positions and that they must hold against the Israeli assault no matter the cost.
   Due to the nature of urban settings, the PLO would be particularly difficult to spot: as long as they were in a building, hidden units would not be placed as a blind on a table. This meant that the Israelis could not simply advance forwards and ferret out PLO cells by proximity: instead, methodical spotting and clearing of areas would be necessary. There were also rumors of a media crew in the area, and that they should watch their actions lest they get caught on tape.

Setup, as viewed from the front of the table.
Setup, focusing on the back end of the table.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Building the Zvezda KV-1 1/100 15mm

      Simplicity has its own beauty. This kit is both, simple and beautiful. It depicts the very early version of the KV-1 tank, a monster that baffled the German Panzers and, if it had been used properly, could have posed serious problems for Operation Barbarossa. As it was they were fittered away in penny-packets and had small impact.

     Zvezda has again chosen to opt for the very early war version and modeled the tank with the early short 76mm gun. That makes this kit your go-to model if you are building a Winter War or early-war force. As usual the model is crisply cast and is nearly devoid of flash, Below we see the parts freed from the sprue. Honestly, it took longer to cut the parts out and clean up the flow-channels than it took to build the kit.
All of the parts are designed in sugh a way that there is only one way that they will fit together, making assembly errors nearly impossible. I was intrigued, and slightly concerned, when I saw how the turret had been sectioned up to allow it to snap together but my fears were groundless as the parts fit flawlessly. I had decided to give the "snap-together" thing a try and used no glue during the assembly of this model, look at the photos and decide for yourself if the gaps are too large.

the parts, all six of them

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Building the Plastic Soldier Company M-4A1 Sherman Tank in 15mm 1/100

     This time around we are looking at the M-4A1 76mm wet stowage Sherman tank. Once I had recovered from the alarming color of the plastic I set to work. I always start a model by putting the suspension together as this is often the most time-consuming bit (less so on these smaller scale kits than on1/72 and 1/48 scale kits) and I like to get the fiddly stuff done first. Two things that I noticed were these; PSC doesn't number the parts (it would be easy to do lads, these molds are cut by CNC driven robots who wouldn't mind adding numbers on the sprues) and the level of thinking that goes into crafting the design is let down by the rudimentary effort at instructions. Having dealt with the side-specific track assemblies on the PZ-IV and the T-34 I was on the look-out for similar issues with this kit. The first bit to pay attention to is the front drive sprockets, as in the PZ-IV kit they are made to only fit one way (so that the teeth are positioned correctly in relation to the tracks).

     The tracks are also side-specific and directionally specific as well. The tracks are molded with the guide teeth on the outer edge on the portion that rides over the idler wheel at the rear of the suspension unit and no teeth at all where it passes over the drice sprocket. This means that you not only have to be sure to get the top-run of track the right way round but you also need to be sure it is on the correct side of the tank. This is helped in a small way by the fact that there is a definite direction to US tracks (which is molded in good detail on this model), In the long run be sure to test-fit everything before gluing to ensure that you have it right-way-round. Click on the pioture for a closer veiw,

Saturday, September 10, 2011


     I have a bit of a fascination with all things Steam/Pulp, the old John Carter of Mars stuff and the like. Just a while ago I was wasting time (that should have been spent painting) surfing the web when I stumbled across this litle gem from Lead Bones;

  Pretty, indeed!

 They carry a line of 15mm and 28mm Sci-fi and Pulp that looks very interesting, and the prices seem very reasonable. Take a look.

     If you go to Recreational Conflict you will find even more weird and wonderful models like this:


and stranger still (in the 1970's Cops range from Killer B) it looks as if they have modelled "Carl" from Aquateen Hunger Force:


     They have a good selection of other manufacturers and ranges, some of which I have not heard of previously.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Valuable resource for wargamers

     I have recently come to realize that there are a few wargamers out there who have not yet heard of Warflag. This is a free site that has thousands of flags, banners, standards from throughout the ages all free and ready to download. They are simply beautiful. Here is an example of thier work.

    If you like what you see (and I am willing to wager that you will) hit the support button in the upper right of the frame. This is a valuable resource and I would hate to see it fail for lack of finances.

Zvezda Gaz truck kit review 1/100 15mm

     I got this little beauty from Michigan Toy Soldier a little while ago. This truck is the  same kit a the Katyusha model but has a box-bed in the back instead of the rocket-launcher array. The detail work is very good, the kit is molded in dark green hard plastic. Everything that I said about the Katyusha model applies to this kit, the precise delicate molding and easy assembly will certainly make this a popular model.

the chassis, side A

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Perry Mahdist Ansars 28mm colonial figures

     Every once in a long while you run across a model figure that goes beyond competent, exceeds skillful and transcends accurate. This is what I thought when I first saw the Ral Partha Swiss thirty years ago, it stopped dead in my tracks, I said to myself, "This is real art, not just toy soldiers, this is art!".  

     I had the same feeling when I looked at the latest figures from Perry Brothers Plastic. I sat dumbfounded at the delicate detail, the natural positioning, the complete mastery of the sculpting process that went into these figures. These figures have raised plastic soldiers to an art form.

     But don't take my word for it, look at the models below. In the box you get two sprues of command figures. three sprues of Ansars,  a set of bases and a neat little pamphlet that provides enough information to do a good job painting the models and throws in a set of flags as well.

click on the pictures for a larger view
box front

Friday, September 2, 2011

Zvezda KV-1 kit review 1/100 15mm

     Continuing their list of early war vehicles Zvezda has released another excellent kit in the shape of a KV-I. This was the first truly successful Soviet heavy tank and it served throughout the war. This kit seems to capture the bulk and mass of this early monster. Cast on two sprues (which gives hope that Zvezda will also cast a KV-II) in superb detail this is another happy addition to Zvezda's growing line of 1/100 scale models.
Click on the pictures for a larger view

the box art on the new models is excellent

Zvezda Opel Blitz kit review 15mm 1/100

          Well it had been a week or two since Zvezda wowed me with a new model and then there is this. I found it sitting innocently on the peg at Michigan Toy Soldier and simply had to have it. This is the iconic German truck of WW II the Opel Blitz. It is delicately cast in hard grey plastic, some of the parts are so fine that they look as if they belong in a Swiss watch. The Blitz served on every front throughout the war and this model captures the look very well, it also open the door to an endless number of specialty vehicles that the Germans based on the Blitz chassis. But enough of that, here is the model.

Click on the pictures for a closer view.

the box front