Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Streets of Stalingrad, Part 1: A Bolt Action Meeting Engagement

Urban fighting in the streets of Stalingrad have always been a favorite theme of mine and with Bolt Action rules it's been satisfying so far. Some of you may remember a few batreps I had posted in the past with other attempts at wargaming this setting using rules sets like Nuts! and Flying Lead. 

Unfortunately both rules sets mentioned left me confused, frustrated and unsatisfied with their complexities (e.g. Flying Lead grenade rules) and numerous chart referencing thereby resulting in non-resolution of tactical situations. Not so with Bolt Action.

For this game we decided on another meeting engagement with roughly equal sides of infantry and armored support. To master the game mechanics and to ensure a fast flowing game we started with small and simple teams and minimal vehicles. 

Here are the belligerents:
(click on the pix to enlarge)
The Soviet Command Team: 1st Lieutenant (Naval) in the center flanked by SMG armed infantry.

1st Squad with SMG armed NCO, 8 Riflemen, and an LMG gunner and loader. Using the Soviet special rule, this squad is 'free'.

2nd Squad with SMG armed NCO plus two additonal SMGs, 6 Riflemen, and an LMG gunner and loader. This squad is not 'free'.

3rd Squad has the same composition as 2nd squad and has the same points cost.

Weapons support: medium MG with a crew of 3.

Armor support: SU76 aka Suchka (Little Bitch in Russian b/c of her unreliable steering) in the foreground with a T34/76 backing her up.  

The German Command Team: 1st Lieutenant in the center flanked by an SMG and Panzerfaust armed infantry.

1st Squad with SMG armed NCO and 9 Riflemen.

2nd Squad with SMG armed NCO, 7 Riflemen, and an LMG gunner and loader.

Weapons support: medium MG with a crew of 3.
The ever ubiquitous SdKfz251/10 HT for support.

The awesome StuGIIIG!

Coming up next: the encounter!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The most Iconic WW2 Half Track yet!

The ubiquitous Sd.Kfz.251 Half Track by Hanomag is one of the most versatile AFVs in German arsenal and one of my favorites. I also have this vehicle in a few scales. 

(click on the pix to enlarge)

Some of it's variants... 
Here they are in 15mm for use with my Flames of War miniatures in front of some HO scale prepainted buildings I got from my local model railroad and trains store.

In a previous post "More PanzerGrenadiers" (http://thehistoricalminiaturist.blogspot.com/2010/07/more-panzergrenadiers.html) I featured these infantry and half tracks that were acquired from two different sources. They were already painted which suited me just fine. The dunkelgelb (German Armor Yellow) was OK but was lacking due to a typical application of camo on these later paint schemes. 

I planned to repaint them to Panzer Grey. Also the infantry was finished with a semi-gloss which is not to my liking. I prefer all my minis to have a flat matte finish that really helps the weathering effects.

Since these were acquisitions I can only guess who the manufacturers were. My guess for the infantry is Artisan. Company B for the halftracks. Chime in and let me know if you know.

Because of the coolness of the Bolt Action rules and the relative ease of play, my gaming group got some renewed interest in WW2 skirmishing. So that meant that the day finally arrived for repainting these bad boys to my preferred color. Time to get them out of mothballs for a makeover.   

Done and shown here with a mix of my German troops from different manufacturers: Battle Honors, BTD and Artisan(?).

At one point I thought these half tracks were from Warlord but upon my investigation of their site and online store, their models did not come with an integral base, like these models show.

I've since applied matte finish to the acquired infantry and have modified some of them as the gun crew for this 251/10.

They're ready to fight!


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