Monday 14 December 2020

Great War - German Granatenwerfer 16 and Snipers - 28mm

This time we have some more German support elements for my Great War collection.  The Granatenwerfer 16 was a spigot mortar with a range of around 300 yards. It was a clever design which suited static trench warfare but could also be broken down into several large parts for rapid carriage for more mobile operations. A section would serve this weapon with the greater number of men acting as ammunition carriers.

The rest of the section is currently on the painting table but the main stand is here and has already seen action in a rules playtest.  I intend using the WW1 modification for 'Chain of Command' rules for these.

The figures are all by Great War Miniatures.  They are really well sculpted and I just enjoy painting them.  I might have mentioned that previously!

As the British have their Mark IV tank (shown in an earlier post), I have added a Mauser Tankgewehr M1918 to give them a further chance of knocking it out.  The rifle is precariously posed on a pile of bricks which I suspect would not stand the shock of firing without toppling over.  To give the illusion of it being a beefier support, I have added thicker foliage and broken tree stumps around the bricks.  The impression made by the bricks of it being in a fully urban setting is also dissipated which means it won't appear jarring when on a green field environment of the 1918 breakouts. 

Great War Miniatures also produce a sniper pack and these figures really deserved some time with the paint brush.  The additional armour on the figures is really interesting to see.  The figure is cast on a base with sandbags already in situ.  I just needed to build the ground up around his upper body and elbows to allow him to have sunk in a little.

The sniper figure below again comes on a base with some interesting cover already in place. Bricks, wood and corrugated tin adorn the base, giving the sniper some cover and plenty of  painting interest.  The armoured shield is a great addition and is based on examples in photos.

A kneeling sniper with additional helmet armour and also a standing sniper in face armour and home-camouflaged coat/zeltbahn make up the remainder of the pack.

I have had two solo-playtests of 'Chain of Command' for the Great War at the weekend, and these were a great success. I was slightly afraid of not liking the rules after so much effort gearing up towards it. But they are brilliant. Lots of tactical choices to be made every turn without getting bogged down in silly detail.  It does feel like a Platoon Commander's battle and that made it really interesting.  More next time!

Sunday 6 December 2020

Great War - 3.7cm German Anti-Tank Gun and Flamethrower - 28mm Great War Miniatures

More progress has been made with my Great War collection in the last week.  Some models take on a life of their own very quickly and just fly along with painting.  That's what happened with these.  I found I couldn't wait to apply paint to them.

This 3.7cm Anti-Tank gun was needed as a counter for the Mark IV British tank that I added recently.  The gun was added in the last weeks of the war and fired a purpose made armour piercing round with exploding charge rather than being solid shot.  The low silhouette must have made it deadly.  It was capable of penetrating 15mm of armour at 500 metres.

Initially I painted the gun in field grey and I found sources showing random daubs of a brighter paint (possibly a dark yellow) applied in splodges.  However, on a model this can just look awful and I was also struck by the gun on the North Star website where the Great War Miniatures models are shown.  This pattern was used on their model just looked so interesting to replicate.

It's one of those really interesting things, that near the end of the war when there were so many desperate shortages of materials and no time to dally about, that the Germans spent so much effort applying complex paint patterns. A contrast somewhat to the WW2 Soviet method!.  It does make it interesting for the wargamer though.

The Germans have a few choices of weapons to take on the British tanks now.  This flamethrower team of the III Garde-Pionier-Battalion will be sure to make its presence noticed on the battlefield.

The black epaulettes with red lacing for the pioniers, Garde Litzen lace on the collars and flamethrower specialist badges on the sleeves identify the troop type.

I must admit to not getting bored with painting German WW1 troops.  There is a lot of potential to make little changes in leather and fabric colours.  So far the AK paints WW1 German Uniform shade is pretty spot on, though I find the highlight a touch too light so I apply a light wash of the main colour just to tone it down a fraction and also help to give a more woollen look.

With the chronic fabric shortages, re-issues of the older tunics was quite likely and much patching and repairing to keep uniforms going longer. So some of my 1918 troops (such as the Junior NCO with the gunners) has the older tunic of a greyer shade.

There will be more German to follow soon and then I might have enough troops - a platoon each side plus supports, to modify the Chain of Command rules for the Great War and give them a go.

Note mainly for self on photography: First pic used the 'M' setting and flash with daylight bulb above and in front.  Seemed to be much brighter and clearer than the usual settings. More experimentation seems to work as it might mean that buying a light box is unnecessary!