Copyright © 2011-2024, Paul Scrivens-Smith

Copyright © 2011-2024, Paul Scrivens-Smith

All rights reserved. This work may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without the prior written permission of the creator.

Saturday 31 July 2021

Tirailleurs Sénégalais into action


It's been a long time coming, but the Tirailleurs Sénégal that I painted back in 2019 finally hit the table on Thursday evening when James came around to ours for some dinner and a game of Chain of Command.

I had already set up the table that morning, we just threw a few extra trees on.

While Victoria put the finishing touches to the chili James and I randomised that we would be playing the Hasty Defence scenario. James would be attacking using a platoon from an Army Group A Second Wave division while I would defend with my Tirailleurs Sénégalais.

For my supports I chose a Hotchkiss MMG, an adjutant and some Francs Tireurs. James had much more to spend (14 points to my six) and chose a MG34 MMG, an adjutant, a fifth columnist Shabby Nazi Trick, a pre-game barrage, a section of entrenchments and a Panzer III.

With dinner over we settled into the game.

I got quite far forwards in my Patrol Phase and the Germans ended up with a cluster of three Jump-off points quite close together while I had a couple in the village, one each on the left and right side and another behind a wall on my left flank.

The Germans took the first move and although my Francs Tireur caused some initial disruption they were soon leapfrogging forwards with one unit on overwatch while another advanced and the preliminary bombardment kept my heads down. 

It was then revealed that the helpful garage mechanic was actually a dastardly fifth columnist constantly misdirecting my chaps trying to form a defensive line.

My plans were also rather thwarted by the number of times that Bosche maintained the initiative! 

However, I was able to eventually get some troops into action and they cut up badly a section of Germans caught in the open, leaving only a handful of survivors who dashed to cover behind a high wall - loads of fives and sixes thrown, but bugger all in the way of shock!

Oh merde!, Fritz revealed his hand and a lone Panzer III was pushed up in support, my lightly armed Senegalese would not be able to offer much resistance against this beast.

Those badly cut up Germans were able to link up with the fifth columnist and eliminate the jump-off point before being finished off by my Hotchkiss as they tried to make cover.

In the end although I had wiped out completely one section of Germans and wounded the CO, the combination of a lower starting force moral (9 vs 11) and the loss of the jump off point, a section of Tirailleurs and the V-B section saw my force morale collapse to zero.

I really enjoyed playing Chain of Command again and using the Tirailleurs Sénégalais for the first time.

Monday 26 July 2021

Bundeswehr Force for Seven Days to the River Rhine

These past few weeks I've been getting on with some West German Bundeswehr to be able to either play against my own Soviet forces or for those games when my opponent fields their own Soviet force.

As usual, I've burst right through the usual 600 point force that you need for gaming, but at least I'll have plenty of optional variants to choose from.

The Battlegroup HQ is a Infantry team in a M113, I like to add a command vehicle to the HQ to help remind me which it is during the games. These are from the Timecast range.

The first unit is a platoon on Leopard 1A1A1 from Timecast, I went with the older tanks and APC's as I want to base my force around a unit of reservists rather than regulars.

A second platoon of Leopard 1A1A1 complete the tank contingent.

The main force of the battlegroup is three platoons of reservists in M113 APC's each platoon supported by a Milan ATGW team and a M3 MG in sustained fire mode.

Again all the infantry and APC's in these three units are from Timecast.

Like the armour I've used older equipment and not gone for the NATO three colour camo scheme that started to be introduced around this time to reflect the second line nature of the troops.

Indirect fire support is provided by a pair of M113G Panzermörser, again these are from Timecast.

Armoured reconnaissance assets are represented by a trio of Spahpanzer Luchs armoured cars, these models are from Red3 and fit in really nicely with the Timecast stuff.

There is also some heavy support in the form of a Gepard and a Jaguar 2, these are both 3D prints provided by chum Martin. My ham fisted clean up job means that I've had to hide some damage I did to the running gear on them both with basing materials.

I've done some 'soft' reconnaissance units too, three sets of infantry scouts, and two units in VW Iltis jeeps, this is a lovely model again from the Red3 range. 

The final grouping is a mixed platoon mounted in a pair of Fuchs wheeled armoured personnel carriers and a Unimog truck. The Fuchs with the Milan mount is another 3D print from Martin while the other Fuchs and the Unimog are again from Red3.

As I do over-do things there were far too many Milan teams purchased, these last four will likely never get used in any games, as four is more than enough, realistically two is enough.

A few close-ups of individual vehices.

The vehicles are done from a grey primer then base-coated in Mig NATO Green, the tracks, wheels, weapons etc. are painted in VMC Black Grey, and the entire thing dirtied up with a stipple of VMC Flat Earth.

The G3 stocks and tool handles are picked out in VMC Beige Brown. Tarps, camouflage nets, etc. are painted in VMC German Uniform, VMC Khaki or VMC Camo Beige, the mantlet covers on the Leopards are also painted VMC German Uniform. Once dry the entire thing is given a light dry-brush of VMC Iraqi sand.

They are set-aside for at east a couple of hours and then the whole thing is washed with AP Military shader and again set-aside to dry. The VMC German Uniform, VMC Khaki or VMC Camo Beige are over-painted and highlighted and then the vehicles were based then finished off using the Dark Sand powders from a Tamiya Model Master kit and a couple of coats of matt varnish applied.

I'm pretty happy how they came out, I think that the photos show them a bit lighter than they are in the flesh.

Sunday 25 July 2021

Grotty Hovel

It's been quite a while since I added any new 28mm Terrain, but this had been sitting in my backlog for about a year assembled and painted a dark chocolate brown.

The base of it is a pair of Warbases lean-to's glued back to back in a L-shape, slathered in caulk and stuck on a plywood base. The stone wall around the small exterior yard is built up from pebbles, while the roof is cut from cereal packet.

The cobbled area is an off-cut of a Wills sheet. A quick and dirty paint job and it is ready for our game later this week.

Saturday 24 July 2021

Somewhere in Northern Spain


Yesterday evening Tom bought his Peninsular British over for a game of Sharpe Practice against my French. 

The table was set up as below, the forces were the "British Regulars" pitted against "French Regulars to 1812" Tom was reinforced by another Lvl 1 leader and a unit of British Line Infantry while I added a Lvl 1 leader and two units of French Line infantry. We would play the Encounter scenario.

I was busy chatting and looking up rules that I had last played in - checks blog - May 2019, no wonder I was rusty.

Initial blood was to the French when a Lvl 2 French officer leading the skirmishers was felled by volley fire. Both sides shuffled towards each other slowly, the French because they had to ford a stream, the British appeared to have forgotten their shoes - never seen so many twos, threes and fours rolled on 2D6 for movement.

Both sides eventually established a skirmisher advantage on their right flanks, as the infantry trudged together in the centre.

Superior British firepower soon began to tell and the French line started to thin out although they were able to manage their shock well as they closed the gap with a coupe of Pas De Charge.

It was not to be though, officer casualties among the French mounted and a clash into combat by the French line saw a desperate struggle that eventually saw the British coming out on top.

It was good to get a refresher in, next time we should play a scenario and I'll be a little less rusty with the rules.

I'm sure that Tom will update his blog soon.

Monday 19 July 2021

Pravda: Crushing Soviet Victory

In a continuation of our strike back against the pig-dog capitalist aggressors our forces pushed on towards Hannover brushing aside the NATO opposition.

The game happened between James and I at the club on Thursday, James played the Soviet Warsaw Pact force while I played the FDR NATO Defenders.

The site of the engagement, Warsaw Pact forces would strike from the bottom left.

  • Four T-64B
  • Six infantry in BTR-60PB
  • One Saxhorn in BTR60-PB
  • Two BRDM-2
  • One BRDM-2 Spandrel
  • One ZSU-23-4 Shilka

Marigal Automotiv Gmbh would be hotly contested
West Germans:
  • Five Leopard A1
  • Six infantry
  • Two Milan teams
  • One Luchs (Fuchs in disguise)
  • One Jaguar 2
  • One M113 Panzer Moerser

NATO prepare to counter the Soviet strike

Soviets advance along the road

Final deployments

First casualty, the BRDM-2 Spandrel is taken out by the Jaguar 2

Soviet tanks push on

This small holding was one of the Objectives, the Soviet armour is close already 

The Fuchs masquerading as a Luchs is the first to secure Madrigal Automotiv Gmbh

The Soviets are soon contesting the facility

Much of the action took place at very close quarters either side of the road that bisected the table

German armour takes position on high ground overlooking the battlefield

This knocked out T-64B proved quite the obstacle, at least two Soviet tanks failed their bogging test to pass it

The Leopards take their first casualty from a Tank Missile launched from the opposite hill

Knocking out the Jaguar that has cause them some pain, Soviet armour pushes up the road.

One of the Leopards moves up to support the infantry in the centre but is taken out by a T-64B

Losses to the armour on both sides is likely unustainable

The Soviets secure Madrigal Automotiv Gmbh

James and I played out five turns before we ran out of time and had to call it a day, neither side had broken the other, but the Soviets held three of the four objectives so despite the boasts from Pravda it was only a technical victory to them, I think a couple more turns would have had the West Germans in the ascendance.