Back and in Normandy
Well that was a long break. Sorry about that but I just felt like taking a little breather from the blog and I guess I had burned myself out a bit on the Infinity minis, so I put down the brushes for a little while.
Well I’m back now and have been working pretty hard putting together a load of World War 2 28mm stuff. I’ve wanted to play some WW2 (and Weird War 2) gaming for ages so it was nice that I could get some interest from a couple of friends in trying Bolt Action, by Warlord Games. It’s a simple 28mm ruleset that seems like an ideal starting out point for some historical gaming in the period.
The game feels a little like 40K in Normandy – there is some heritage with Rick Priestley’s involvement, I suppose – but also enough differences to make things interesting. It has a very interesting order activation mechanic whereby you pull faction-coloured dice from a bag to decide which unit will be activating next. The dice are then placed face up next to the unit to mark out which action was performed. A neat and fun mechanic. Pinning and suppression is a key element to the game also so it’s not just about killing the enemy but also keeping their heads down while you achieve your obectives.
We had booked December 28th for our first couple of intro games so I had a tight deadline to get enough terrain done to suitably cover a 4ft square board, as well as field 500 points of German Heer infantry miniatures. I’m happy enough to play the bad guys when I wargame and in the case of the Germans it means I get to play with all those cool vehicles!
Apologies to Mrs Von D who became a bit of a hobby widow as I spent all my evenings foam-cutting, gluing, texturing, painting and flocking but it all came good in the end and I was rather happy with the resulting tabletop. One of the main reasons I enjoy this hobby is for the aesthetic after all, so playing a game on a cool and realistic looking tabletop has always been one of my dreams.
There’s still plenty of tidying and finishing to do on the terrain but for our first game it really enhanced the experience, I think. Sadly it did mean that I had to field only base-coated miniatures but they looked fine enough and I look forward to speed-painting them to be ready for our next game.
Over the coming weeks I will feature the terrain pieces I made in a bit more detail but for now here’s an itemised list of what I made – mostly from scratch:
- 6ft of sealed road including a couple of junctions and bends
- 9ft of Bocage Hedgerow
- 12″ of barbed wire fence sections
- 16 x deciduous trees on six magnetised forest bases
- 3 x wooden gates
- 2 x ruined farmhouse buildings (Warlord Games plastic, as seen in the picture above)
- 2 x small sandbag positions (pre-cast resin)
We played two games and both were filled with cool and cinematic moments. In the first game my Germans took an early smash ‘n grab lead to capture a downed officer in the centre of the table. Having a half-track really helped me get there quickly and establish a firebase to cover the escort. Tom’s US Airborne started to pull things back but then a freak incident put paid to his plans as his forward observer mistakenly called an air strike on friendly forces – causing all of his units to dive for cover as the Typhoon fighter-bomber strafed them with rockets.
In our second game, seeing the Germans launching a counter attack against James’s British Commando defensive position, we learned how brutal close assault was and how tough the Tommies were when they had their gander up. My regular Infantry squads were no match for the Commandos and their blood-curdling charges! Still lots of fun and again nicely cinematic – especially as I’d found the Where Eagles Dare soundtrack on Spotify!