Tuesday, 16 December 2014

From Greg B - 15mm WW2 Germans (60 Points)

15mm late war Germans from Battlefront
As noted in Byron's first entry (and seen here and here), we have been doing some WW2 skirmish gaming in 15mm.  Generally not thought of as a skirmish gaming scale, 15mm actually works wonderfully as an economical way to approach skirmish gaming, and also provides a very nice look on the table as the visual appeal of the engagement ranges is increased. Finally, they paint up really, really fast.

This entry has two PAK40 guns with crews, an MG42 team, and an infantry section.  All of these are late war 15mm size figures from Battlefront.

Gotta form that "PAK front"!
These figures are late war Germans, and I hoped to make their bases look "winter-ish" as opposed to full on winter in January, with a hope they could be used on tables/games stretching from the late fall to early spring, while not being too badly out of place on a winter table itself.  In particular I am working on setting up for some "Battlegroup: Fall of The Reich" games, and these figures were painted with that in mind.

Gun number two
For this period of the war, I tend to be completely exasperated with the Germans' bonkers variety of camouflage, as well as their wide spectrum of uniform types (great coats, smocks, helmet covers, reversible smocks, reversible pants etc).  That is another bonus of 15mm figures - I can do a terrible job on the camouflage, and it still looks OK. On some of these models I experimented with a much brighter shade of green to hopefully make the cammo jump out a bit, but I'm not sure it really worked out.

MG42 team ready for a last stand in the Seelow Heights
Even though there is some snow on the bases, and a touch of frost here and there on the grasses, I imagined these troops determining that, overall, there is a lot more brown and yellow around in the terrain than white, and therefore they are keeping their grey/camouflage aspects of their uniform exposed for now. 

Hapless ground-pounders...at least the MG42 teams will come in handy...
For the PAK 40s I split the crew up a bit on to different bases to accommodate different rules systems - for each one the gun commander is on a separate square base, to represent the junior leader in charge of the weapon (needed to use these guns in Chain of Command), and one of the loaders is on a separate base (to represent the option of extra ammo loaders for Battlegroup).  But of course these will still work fine for a game of Flames of War, which I enjoy from time to time.

These late-war guys are some of Battlefront's best castings

Ready to be overrun by like 100 T-34s...
I have to say I continue to be disappointed with the quality of the plastic that Battlefront is using. For the latest example I have included a photo of the gun shield that broke while clipping it off of the sprue - this either happened or nearly happened for ALL of the components, and is a key reason why there are only two guns painted from a box set of four. 

The guns themselves almost broke in two coming off of the sprue, and were quite bent as they were clipped off and had to be carefully bent back.  And this IS with "careful" clipping.  The plastic is brittle sh*t. I have experienced this with Battlefront's other plastic accessories as well - the new plastic German tank schurzen is particularly terrible (and mindlessly complicated for a 15mm size model), as are the half track accessories and other plastic bits. This is pure crap quality, and I really wish Battlefront would do something about it.

A plastic PAK 40 gun shield. Battlefront plastic SUCKS - this happened despite careful clipping - I wish they would do something about their crap plastic
Also, something seems a bit off with the PAK40 model design...there is some kind of bracket or brace or something on the barrel that doesn't match photos I have seen of the actual gun...but there were so many weapon variants out there, I'm not sure...could have been some alternate variant from a different factory perhaps...

Ready for Flames of War, Chain of Command or even Battlegroup

So there are 26 15mm size figures and two guns - I think this works out to 60 points. We are soon to be off on our Christmas vacation, so Merry Christmas to everyone out there.  I'll be packing my paints too, so I hope I can get some more painting done in between bouts of gift-wrapping and eggnog consumption!

From Curt:
Well Greg, even though these Battlefront models you worked with sound like complete crap you've done a wonderful job with the surviving models. Your figures continue to impress with their excellent colours and great shading. I also quite like your 'spring thaw' groundwork - very evocative. As an idea, you might want to try some drops of liquid superglue to create some small ice patches on the bases. We both know how winter has a near-maniacal grip on the ground, even during a thaw.
Have a great Christmas vacation Greg! I look forward to seeing what you fit in between family, food and festivities.  ;)


  1. Excellent bunch of painted figures. The bases work well with a great cold effect. cheers

  2. Shame about the crap plastic but despite that you have worked wonders. These really are exceptionally nicely done. The bases work very well indeed.

  3. These look great. I really like the bases - look more like early winter than spring thaw to me, but what would a Sydneysider like me know about snow :-).

  4. I love the frosted basing Greg. It should fit in well for late Autumn, winter and early Spring.

    Camo is easy on 15mm - you just need to give an impression of the pattern.

    Nice submission :)

  5. Superb work! Got to admit that I'll be taking inspiration from these photo's.

  6. tempting.... i must resist.. great stuff

  7. Nice work! I have had similar struggles with Battle Fronts plastic especially the PaK40 the StuGs went together well but I am over all not a huge fan of that line. I am working on Plastic Germans and Americans at the moment as well as some British Sherman tanks... and I shall be doing some ranting of my own on these lines when they get posted. Again well done.

  8. Nice work Greg - the uniforms look very convincing and the weathering and shading on the guns is very effective. I haven't messed around with BF plastic - I've been satisfied so far with Plastic Soldier Co's products.
    Good entry.

  9. You have done a great job despite the issues of the Battlefront plastic


  10. Nice job on these guys. The basing turned out great.

  11. They are fantastic! Great painting work.

  12. Love those Germans! You really did an amazing job painting those tiny bastards.

  13. Lovely and evocative! And yes, too bad about the struggles with poor-quality plastic, but it's helping me at least--it offsets how your lovely painting and basing is tempting me to jump back into 15mm!

  14. and again - great job! especially pleased red teapot

  15. Great looking Germans! Really enjoy the basing.


  16. Super work Greg. I love everything about them but especially the basing. You've really nailed that IMHO.

  17. Really like the frosty basing - might nick that for an as-yet-undetermined project.

  18. Fantastic job on these figures. I really like the way that you have based them - might have to pinch that idea!

  19. Nice looking unit,Greg! Perhaps my favorite thing about WW2 Germans is their popularity. It does make it very easy to have a unit filled with a variety of uniforms to get a veteran look. Plus you need not have a bunch of fellas charging in, kneeling to fire or any other multiples of poses!