Sunday, May 29, 2016

Artizan Designs WW2 US Infantry Miniatures for Memorial Day

US Infantry supported by an M18 Hellcat approaching a hamlet
In honor of Memorial Day here in the US, we are focusing this post on the foot slogger and backbone of the army, the infantry! There are many companies who make miniatures of US Infantry, the one we are going to focus on for now is Artizan Deigns. We'll also share some great images of the infantry from World War 2 with you.

US Infantry in Greatcoats advancing down a lane in Normandy
Artizan Designs specializes in producing 28mm metal figures, designed to the highest possible standards. Their figures are of Historical subjects, and some of the ranges include:The Renaissance, Vikings, Arthurian Dark Ages, World War One and for today's focus, World War Two

US Infantry move cautiously through a French village
The World War 2 range includes American Forces, British and Commonwealth Forces, French Forces, German Forces, Soviet Union Forces, Italian Forces and Resistance & Partisans. The miniatures are perfect for use in table-top wargames like Bolt Action and Rate of Fire
All the figures come from the talented hand of sculptor Mike Owen. Their WW2 US Infantry is broken down into three groups, U.S in Greatcoats, U.S. Airborne and  U.S. Infantry You can also find The Devils Brigade, First Special Service Force figures. Here are three figures all in greatcoats, one with Sub Machine Gun, one with Rifle and one with a BAR

The BAR was given one to a section of GI’s where possible and was a partial counter to the feared light machine guns the Germans carried. Although heavy they were well liked by their users and often others in the section carried spare ammo for the BAR gunner.

US Infantry figures are suitable for American forces in North Africa, Italy, Sicily, Normandy and North-Western Europe. The Infantry in Greatcoats are good for representing winter battles in the Ardennes or anywhere across Northern Europe. Here is an image of two blister packs contents of US Infantry in Greatcoats with SMG and a FSSF pack with rifles and parkas.

This is an Artizan Designs US Infantry 30cal Machine Gun Squad in Greatcoats situated on a 60mm base ready for painting.

And here it is in action with the runner bringing in a replacement ammo box.

Pfc. Terry Paul Moore of Albuquerque, New Mexico. He was number one Browning Automatic Rifleman in 2nd Platoon, Company 'F', 184th Infantry Regiment of the US 7th Infantry Division and is lighting his first cigarette of the day on the island of Okinawa soon after the dawn attack on the town of Yonabaru. In the early morning of the 22nd of May 1945

The veterans of Company I slog through the mud and ruins of Jungersdorf at the end of their tenure in the Hurtgen Forest. There would be no respite for these men. Fresh from the horrors of the Hurtgen campaign, they were thrust into the path of the 6th SS Panzer Army and played a key role in the defense of the Bulge’s North Shoulder during the German Ardennes Offensive which started less than a week after this photo was taken.

US 3AD soldiers, Cpl. James L. Gregory and T/5 Omer G. Taylor of ‘C’ Company, 1st Battalion, 36th Armored Infantry Regiment, 3rd Armored Division seek shelter behind a M-4 Sherman tank while under German Artillery bombardment at Geich, near Düren, Germany, on the 11th of December 1944. [Colorized by Jared Enos]

A US 7th Armored Division 3-inch M5 towed antitank gun covers the approach road near the Railroad crossing at Vielsalm, Belgium. 23rd of December 1944. [Colorized by Jared Enos]

U.S. Infantrymen of the 55th Armored Infantry Battalion and a tank of the 22nd Tank Battalion move through the smoke filled street of a small village in Bavaria. Wernberg-Köblitz, Bavaria, Germany. 22 April 1945.

Remember those who served!
The Old Crow

Sunday, May 22, 2016

New Release WW2 Soviet Infantry From Eureka Miniatures

Eureka Soviet Infantry
Invade Finland or defend the Motherland with Eureka's new World War 2 Soviet 28mm infantry.

New from Eureka Miniatures, these are their first releases for the Second World War. Heavy weapons teams are to follow soon. These guys can be fantastic to add character and bolster your Bolt Action army.

Eureka Soviet Infantry
The backbone of the Red Army was the basic rifleman and their 2 new rifle squads consist of 11 figures each, wearing a mixture of the gymnastiorka tunic and the telogroika padded jacket.

Eureka Soviet Infantry
Eight riflemen with Mosin Nagant rifles are supported by a 2-man Degtyaryov LMG team

Eureka Soviet Infantry
Plus an NCO waving them forward with his PPSh 41 sub machine-gun.

Eureka Soviet Infantry
Rifle squads are available wearing helmet or Pilotka side cap.

Eureka Soviet Infantry
Two 8-man assault squads of sub machine-gunners for close quarter fighting are also available, once again wearing helmets or Pilotka side caps. All are equipped with the rugged and fast-firing PPSh 41 SMG.

Eureka Soviet Infantry
As the war progressed more and more Soviet units were entirely equipped with this weapon, perfect for storming buildings and trenches and launching crushing assaults while yelling the Red Army battlecry "Oorah!".

Eureka Stalingrad Childrens FountainEureka Stalingrad Childrens Fountain
Not only are they releasing infantry but also the Stalingrad Childrens Fountain. This was featured in the movie Enemy At The Gates and Alan Marsh has sculpted the children, crocodile and frogs, while Battlefield Accessories have designed and cut the fountain base for Eureka.

Eureka Stalingrad Childrens Fountain
The whole Soviet range, which can be ordered from Eureka's Online Store, was inspired by Mike Parker of Battlefield Accessories and his enormous game held in Canberra in January this year. Their other Stalingrad terrain can be found on the Battlefield Accessories web site.

Eureka Soviet Infantry Casualties
Eureka's Soviet Infantry, including these casualties, were sculpted by Kosta Heristanidis. Kosta has also added some images of these new Soviets on his own Flying Gorilla Blog.

Eureka Soviet and German Markers
We'll leave you with these great markers, Russian and German rifles and helmets.

Have A Great Battle
The Old Crow

Saturday, May 21, 2016

M3A1 Half Track from Warlord Games! Transport for the Yanks or Tommies

As our forces grow, we found they need to get where they are going faster. Thus the M3A1 Half Track. Fantastic for almost any Allied force. Building up your US and British armies, it can serve you in both. Who is only building one army?

One of the most iconic pieces of hardware in US Military history, over 40,000 M3 half-tracks were produced during World War II. Many thousands were supplied to allies including Britain, France Russia and Poland.

The M3A1 is ideally suited to rushing your troops to the front lines and through gaps in the enemy formations. With a top speed of 45 mph, and armored enough to keep out most small arms fire, they performed well in this role and can for you on the tabletop.

They had a crew of three men and could carry ten fully equipped troops. In Bolt Action it can hold 12 men, a driver, Machine gunner and 10 passengers. It can also tow anything other than a heavy howitzer.

The box set includes two part sprues, decals and instruction sheet.

There were many variations on the chassis including tank destroyers, mortar carriers and ambulances, but most frequent by far were the M3A1 with its armament of a heavy .50 cal heavy machine gun and two or more .30 cal machine guns.

In Bolt Action it has one pintel mounted Heavy Machine Gun (360 degree field of fire) and up to three additional pintle mounted Medium Machine Guns. One for each firing arc (left, right and rear).

Assembly is easy enough with a couple options for the windshield and front bumper/tow cable. The rear three machine guns can be left off and added in game as you have the need. At 15 points per gun, adding all three can cost you more than you want to spend.

There is plenty of room for stowage and packs. Check your leftover sprues from infantry box sets to see what extras you have around. We added British pack, helmet and extra PIAT rounds to this one.

Mount up, boys!

Have A Great Battle,
The Old Crow

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Cromwell & Firefly From The Black Bull Division for Bolt Action

We have progressed a bit on the Bolt Action tank front. We completed one of out British Cromwells and the Sherman Firefly. Here is the Cromwell, ready for action and given markings for the British 11th Armoured Division, The Black Bull.

Both the Firefly and Cromwell are from the 23rd Hussars, A squadron. You can see the Firefly build here.

These guys have seen action already, now they will look the part. The Firefly has distinguished itself in the current ongoing Tank War.  More battle reports to come.

Have A Great Battle,
The Old Crow

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Tank War! Wittmann Strikes! Bolt Action Battle Report

Bolt Action Tank War brings World of Tanks to the table top! In this Bolt Action Battle Report we'll look at Tank Ace Michael Wittmann in his Tiger going up against a platoon of US Sherman tanks. The setup is a small village with a waterway down the center. For this battle the tanks can cross it anywhere. The playing area is 4x6 and the US forces enter from the short Eastern edge and have to exit the western edge. There is a road down the center of the table. Wittman must stay alive and destroy all three Shermans.

Wittman costs a whopping 519 points in the Bolt Action Tank War supplement. However he does have a few perks for the price. Wittmann comes with the special rule "Fierce Ambush" which allows him to fire his main gun twice from ambush. He also has four Skills: Lucky, Hair Trigger, Eye for Terrain and Battle Awareness. Lucky allows him to cancel an enemy damage roll against him. Hair Trigger allows him to shoot after a run move. Eye for Terrain lets him go hidden after a move as long as he is at least 12 inches away from any enemy units and in cover. And Battle Awareness allows him to reposition his vehicle within 12 inches after everyone has deployed .

The three M4A1 Sherman Tanks are regular at 195 each which gives the US total 585 points. A slight advantage?

Turn one starts with Wittman hidden at the top of a small hill on the west side of the board. The three Shermans enter and immediately separate to spread out across the town. The first Sherman does not quite get to cover...

"All right platoon split up!!" bellowed Archie from the command tank. "Charlie take the center through town, Bo break left. I'll take the right side of town. Keep your eyes open, there may be krauts out there."

Wittman briefly surveyed the town below his position and watched the US forces break formation. He calmly stated "Bobby, prepare to fire, lead tank, on mine." The round was loaded and ready and there was only a brief pause as Wittmann waited for the Sherman to make a turn exposing its flank.

"Fire." It was as if the command and firing were simultaneous. Woll had been with Wittman for quite a while and they had developed into a synchronicity.

Charlies lead Sherman erupted in a large explosion as the Tiger's round ripped into it.
"Archie! What the heck was that!" screamed Bo, "Charlies out of action!"

Bo quickly surveys the field seeing nothing. "Could be an 88 hidden out there! Could be armor too!"

"Move out" Wittman calls, "Make for the hedgerow." The Tiger begins its ponderous advance. (Using his Eye for Terrain, Wittman goes hidden in the near hedgerow)

"Bo, use the cover of the buildings, see if you can spot anything," Charlie called out. "I'll swing around and try to get across the stream to flank him."

"You got it sarge" Bo replied, easing his tank around the outskirts of the hamlet. "Be ready on that trigger Stan"

Bo's Sherman crept down an alleyway and as he began to clear the house beside him, "Tiger!" he yelled. "There's a bloody Tiger over there!! FIRE" The Sherman's gun blazed and for the quickness of the shot it was true and hit the Tiger. (The Sherman rolled a 6 and then another 6 to score the hit, a truly lucky shot, but there was no damage)

Wittmann heard the loud clang as the Shermans shot bounced off the armor and he brought his turret to bear.

"Shoot the thing Archie!! For the love of God shoot it!!" Bo exclaimed as the Tiger turned toward him. Archie's Sherman cleared the last building and as he moved to the stream he fired on the run. The shot sailed just over the front of the German Tiger.

Wittmann barely began the order as his gunner BalthasarWoll fired on the second Sherman, hitting it and sending flames erupting from the doomed vehicle. Archie cursed and moved across the stream in an attempt to flank the German armor. Pausing briefly in the cover of a nearby cottage he prepared his crew.

Wittman again moved his Tiger into the nearby foliage and prepared an ambush.

"Alright boys, get ready. We move out, break left and try to get behind that thing. Fire as you have the shot, we won't have that many." Archie said a brief prayer and gave the order.

Wittmann watched as the final Sherman moved out of cover and turned toward him. One more shot and it was over.

Wittman's point value seemed to pay off royally. Although he didn't need to even use all his special abilities. Didn't even get to fire twice from ambush as hi first shot destroyed each Sherman and the others were in cover each time. The dice worked in Wittmans favor too. Three rolls that all hit, three rolls that all penetrated and three destroyed enemy tanks.

We have a couple other tank battles to come! Stay tuned!
Have A Great Battle,
The Old Crow