Thursday, 11 January 2018

Anthony O - Papuans, Germans and some Space Marines - 180 Points

This week has proven to be a good week for me. Being the last week of holidays I put in some hard yards and managed to complete a bunch of miniatures including Papuans and Germans for WW2 and some more Marines for my Wolfspear Chapter of the Space Wolves.

The Papuans are up first, these 20 troops are 28mm from the new Australian range from Warlord Games and join my Australian Commandos on the finished shelf . All of a sudden I have half of a Bolt Action army done in two weeks. I like how they came out and are great miniatures, painting darker skin was a challenge though and I have a bit more to learn here.

Next is some Germans from mostly Warlord Games but also a Panzerschrek team from Artizan. These guys are the mop up from a previous project and will be finding a home with a friend in the next few months.

Finally I have some Games Workshop Pimaris Reavers and an old school Dreadnaught. The colours are my own version of the Space Wolves however, according to the Lore the Primaris Marines with the Space Wolf gene seed were formed into a successor chapter called the Wolfpsear. There is almost no information on them so I am finding my own way. The dreadnaught was a blast to paint it I think really fits in with the new Primaris marine scale.

So that 33 x 28mm equaling 165 points and I consider the dreadnought to be a vehicle so all up that's 180 points towards my 1500.

I do like those Papuans - forgive my ignorance, but what theatres were they involved in?  They look pretty mean and really give the Aussies commandos a run for their money in the tough stakes!  Really pleased to hear you've got virtually a whole new army..... Can I suggest you now need to make the opposing army up, with some scenery, as it would all be more points in the challenge ;)

I'll admit that even as a GW fanboy the primaris marines absolutely baffle me... How would old marines feel about being replaced? Are they a slightly cynical attempt by GW to sell more stuff to space marine fans who already have too many marines?  Or has the new plastic technology finally given them the opportunity to make marines as large and imposing as they always wanted to, but couldn't do so in metal?  Whatever the answer is, these are first rate examples - I absolutely LOVE dreadnoughts and this one is humdinger, he certainly has the look of a Dread who's been round the block!  I've scored the mortar as a 28mm figure too, so 34 figures and I think Dreads are scored as Guns at 10 points, so 180 points scored in a slightly different manner!

From GregB: Cold War Bundeswehr Armour in 15mm

Bundeswehr vehicles in 15mm from Battlefront, ready for "Team Yankee"

It's time switch painting gears! After several submissions focused on my Franco-Prussian War project, the animal spirits which drive my brushwork were keen for something different, a familiar subject which I had not touched for some time.  I dug into my pile of shame (the large amount of figures and models which are assembled and primed but have not seen a paint brush for a year, or more!) and came across these vehicles.  I love tanks, and I love gaming the "Cold-War-Gone-Hot", and so here is an assortment of West German armour for the Bundeswehr in 15mm! The models are all 1/100 scale kits from Battlefront.

We play quite a bit of Battlefront's "Team Yankee" in our gaming group.  The rules certainly have  warts, and playing this particular period in 15mm has issues, but man, is it FUN! I am always foisting tank battles on to my friends from different periods and in different scales (Curt can attest to this) and "Cold-War-Gone-Hot" are some of my absolute favourite, favourite themes for games. "Team Yankee" delivers, with burning equipment all over the table by the end of the second turn.  Thank goodness these encounters are fictional!

I have large collection of Soviet models in this period and scale, and a much, much smaller NATO collection.  I wanted to do up NATO forces, but as my great friend Dallas here in Winnipeg had rapidly painted up a nice force of West German armour not long after the models arrived in 2016, and you don't actually need many NATO tanks for a large game. I settled for painting up the infantry only - these were finished in late 2016, just prior to the start of AHPC VII.  I thought I would paint the armour to accompany them during the last edition of the Challenge, but instead focused on other interests (mostly 30k) as I didn't really "need" the models in the group for "Team Yankee". My only nod to the Cold War in the last Challenge amounted to a single IFV painted in a theme round.

A further delay was a block in my mind that I would use an airbrush to paint these. Byron had helped me use an airbrush to prime them, and I told myself these would be the vehicles where I would finally overcome my airbrush issues and use it to paint them...but I still haven't cracked open my new airbrush.  I will someday but...that's another topic.  The point for this post is that these models have been sitting for over a year! Shame! Time to get them painted...and here you are:

Marder infantry carriers - three vehicles per panzer grenadier platoon
Leaving aside my airbrush issues, I stuck to my plain old paintbrush-brushes to apply my best approximation of the three-colour scheme used by the West Geman forces, and dove into painting up some tanks, my first ones in over a year! I dislike modern camouflage - the worst part is that use of templates would mean it should look broadly similar pattern-wise on each vehicle...tricky to do while painting freehand, but in the end, it turned out OK.

Very nice plastic kits from Battlefront - I hate plastic, and STILL like these very much!
This angle shows a bit more of the access for the grenadiers - ramp on the back and hatches on the top

Up first are the Marder infantry fighting vehicles, the troop carriers for my panzer grenadiers. Sleek and sci-fi-looking, the Marders are great (where the M113 is soooooo lame), and the plastic kits from Battlefront are a real treat - this from someone who absolutely despises plastic kits! That 20mm turret is super-menacing...there are enough Marders here to mount two platoons, plus a separate one for the company commander - so the core of my Bundeswehr panzer grenadier company is ready to roll.

The captain's ride...I left the flaps/bazooka skirts off this one to help make ID on the table easier - also popped a commander out of the hatch, something I like to do to help command vehicles stand out

Up next are Jaguar AT missile carriers.  The Jaguar is the final evolution of the tank-destroyer (don't those silhouettes look a little familiar to us WW2 gamers?) but the mechanics of the gun are all gone, replaced some more amour and the techo-arcana of a 1980s guided anti-tank missile system.  These vehicles provide a relatively armoured and stable, mobile platform for specialized AT purposes in support the panzer grenadiers.

Armoured missiles carriers for the Bundeswehr - Jaguars

Firing spooky missiles in a somewhat-safer armoured can see some of the gaps on the models caused by crummy quality control from Battlefront...

These models show that Battlefront still has many production weaknesses - these were mixed metal and resin, and the fit was very, very poor - some pretty big seams in spots, but hopefully paint and distance obscure them.  You will also see I used the wrong front plate (there was a slight variant between Jaguar 1 or 2) - this is thanks to an error in the instructions Battlefront includes with the kits - that's on me, though, they are always f***ing that stuff up, I should have double-checked online before I got out the glue...oh well.

Essential protection for any West German forces...the iconic Gepard flakpanzer
Continuing along there are two Gepard flakpanzers.  These are iconic Cold War weapon platforms, and in "Team Yankee" they play a key role in keeping the deadly Soviet helicopters and aircraft away from the panzer grenadiers. Check out the firing sequence in this video...yikes!  I would think of somewhere else to fly too...

Big seam on the track with this model, but overall the quality on these was much better than the Jaguars

These are mixed resin and metal kits from Battlefront, but fortunately the quality was much higher than on the Jaguars.  The only tricky part was getting the gun barrels to attach in a straight way so they align with the base of the cannons, which are cast in resin on the turret - I didn't totally manage it, but didn't totally screw it up either...this is a standard I pretty much consistently strive for when it comes to model assembly :)

Keep watching the skies!

And of course, as a wargamer, I am always wanting to use these against ground targets.  Not many motor rifle companies will stand a chance against these guns...

And last, but not least, a platoon of deadly Leopard 2 tanks.  The penultimate main battle tank design, the Leopard 2 is an incredible machine, an ideal combination of every aspect of the modern battle tank.  Great mobility, armour and incredible firepower, these things can rip out the guts of a Soviet armoured manoeuvre in just one volley!  They will be the mobile, hard-hitting fist of the panzer grenadier company.

A zug of deadly Leopard 2 panzers....
These tanks are also plastic models from Battlefront, and while the quality is excellent, the MG mount on the cupola is hilariously weak and they will break off before long.  As a nod to this, you get two MGs on the sprue, but still...wish Battlefront had through that through a little more...

Once more a commander in the cupola is used to mark out the platoon command tank on the table

Very nice kits, although the MGs on the cupolas are a bit stupidly fiddly...

Love the deadly silhouette of this vehicle...

All that firepower!! As I said, thank goodness this conflict is just fictional...

And I can't resist some propaganda photos! Here are the vehicles together with the infantry painted in 2016.

The full panzer grenadier company, ready for action!
Now that they have  ride to take to battle, they really are "panzer" grenadiers
Infantry AA missile teams go along with the Gepards
That's 14 vehicles in 15mm, so should add another 84 points to my tally.  Let's see how long this little Cold-War-Tank-Painting jag will last...

Now these chaps will show those pesky Prussians who's boss and may turn the tide of the war against the enemies muskets! They'll definitely be the..... wait....... what?  Ahem.  I see.  Almost slipped that past me.....

These are absolutely lovely with your usual attention to detail and crisp style.  I didn't know the modern thing (yes, the 80's still counts as "modern" - at least it does to me!) was to paint the camo on each vehicle in EXACTLY the same pattern.  When I read that I spent a far bit of time staring at how you'd managed to get exactly the same frickin' pattern on each vehicle - I was entranced!  That must have driven you absolutely potty doing that.... my usual approach to camo is just blobbing it on and hoping for the best.  What a delightful array of different vehicles providing all sorts of battlefield roles - The Leopards are soooo dangerous looking too, and I thought the Panther had a menacing silhouette...

Anyway, for doing such excellent (bonkers) work on the camo, I'm wielding the power vested in me by the internet to round your points up to 90 for such dedication - NATO salutes you!

From MarkW : 28mm Sedition Wars (80 points)

Hi Everyone,

Thanks to everyone for the great welcome and comments on my previous (and first post) to the challenge. It was a real boost and finally, I have managed to catch up with where I wanted to be last week and get the first batch of painted miniatures fully based up.

This submission is for  16 28mm miniatures from the Sedition Wars range by Studio Mcvey that were manufactured I think in 2013. The background on them is not so clear to me, but you are basically looking at the stereotypical futuristic special forces. 

The one element of the background that does stick in my memory about them is that the operators are all "sleeved" and "backed up" before they make planetfall.

 If you have ever read any of Richard Morgan's Takeshi Kovacs series this will be familiar (but if you haven't don't worry the first book Altered Carbon is coming to Netflix soon anyways).

In Richard Morgan's series, special forces types called Envoys would have their personality and memories digitised and stored (the backed up bit) then squirted through wormholes from one end of the galaxy to the other because its cheaper and quicker than physically travelling. At the far end they would be downloaded into host bodies called Sleeves. Interestingly these could be custom built bodies or even criminals who give up their bodies for "community service".

If you like cyberpunk or hard scifi in general I strongly recommend them - but only after you finish the challenge of course. 

(oops, the front shot of these 4 was too blurry to use - shot of the back only )

Anyway, back to the models themselves - I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with them to be fair. The concept and the design is first rate but they were disappointingly cast in restic that does not capture the detail and was an absolute nightmare to clean up. 

Add to that huge mouldlines with ill fitting components and it was probably my worst hobby experience just getting these guys and girls ready to paint. And then, to top it all off, the green base spray gave them a grainy finish -  like the gods of miniatures was conspiring against me. 

They languished, unpainted, untouched and unloved in my hobby tool box for over three years until the challenge. Now I see them together in the group shot its been worth the effort. Not the best paint job I have ever done but its 80 points in the bag. I am sure you will all have similar horror stories about miniatures that feel like they just are never meant to be painted. 

But they have been, and here they are together. (The sharp eyed of you will see the count is 17, but I could not resist putting in the lone trooper from last week in the group shot)

The plan now is to finish the last 9 of them and support weapons before moving onto the creature feature of their adversary on the planet Alabaster...............The Strain. (no relation to the TV show)

16x 28mm infantry from Studio Mcvey

Welcome back Mark and great to see that you managed to get the rest of the Samaritans finished!  As with last week, I'm a fan of the warm armour tones with the cooler visor colours.  I also like the mix of male and female sculpts, which adds variety.

I'm a fan of the Takeshi Kovacs books, so it's fun to see the same tech used here!  Are there any hero figures to accompany this lot against the Strain?  I am looking forward to the gribblies making their appearance shortly as I seem to recall there are some absolute monsters in the range..... 80 points as you state for these chaps and long may they push the rule of the benevolent corporations!

Thursday Throwback time!

The response to seeing Mr Motivator last week was so gratifying (at least 15* participants emailed me personally to tell me it had got them motivated to exercise like Mr Motivator and then paint more figures!) that I just had to dig in the archives for another similarly motivating image.... and here it is:

Image result for sooty sweep sue

Now why would these three fur clad individuals be motivational at this point in the challenge when the sheer scale of what you've all signed up for has just hit you like a freight train?  You remember what they used to say don't you?

"Izzy, Whizzy, Let's Get Busy!"

If you didn't grow up with Sooty, Sweep, Sue and Matthew this link will explain almost nothing about them  (go to 1m30s if you're the impatient sort)

But I think there are a few Thursday People who have been listening to them and boy have they been getting busy with the brushes..... Three on the books so far and I'm all a-quiver with anticipation for any others that show up during the day.....

* Figure accurate to within 15 of the actual figure