I’ve recently stumbled across some YouTube work by a user named yolkhere. Yolkhere makes videos by joining electronic music to historical footage. My favourite is the video for the BT-7:

– that music is fantastic to listen to when assembling model kits, when painting model kits or when playing World of Tanks.

The three other notable videos are –

the KV-1:  ;

the T-34/76 (model 1942/43):  and the T-34/76 (model 1941/42):  .

I went and made all four into a playlist, I was so impressed.

I hope you enjoy them, too.

***

Peter and I did have a game last friday night. AAR to come this weekend or so, OK?

 

Trainee Funker was not obeying any orders for a while during last saturday morning and I nearly didn’t get to go to Bayonet Military Model Club’s modelling competition & swap ‘n sell YET AGAIN…however, he finally responded to discipline and so I was able to hit the Western Ring Road and Princes Highway down to Werribee.

The trip is worth it for the B-24 Liberator alone. Here are my photos – approaching the restoration hanger (the competition and swap ‘n sell is inside, along with the plane):  , and now inside, looking at real, restored history:  ,  ,  ,  ,  , some of the business purposes of the vehicle –  , great campaign pitch  – hard to say ‘no’ to that!,  ,  , “pilot to gunner!” –  ,  ,  ,  , again the business reasons –   , their contact details on their advertising trailer if you want to find out more:  .

I scored pretty heavily at this swap ‘n sell:  .

  • 2 T-34/76’s (in 1:76 scale, though) to add to my existing 8 which gives me a complete company;
  • 2 250/9’s which added to my existing kits now gives me two platoons and a spare of these recon vehicles;
  • 2 recovery KVs for particular scenarios;
  • 3 KV-2’s which, if I add to my existing 3, gives me more than a company. But the first three KV-2’s I assembled and painted weren’t painted very well, so I might just give them to Trainee Funker when he’s older and start afresh with these;
  • 3 ISU-152s to add to my existing three which gives me a company plus a spare;
  • a total of five KV-1’s (there is no real difference between these two kits) which is a whole company straight off. I already have a whole company of KV-1’s, in the same situation as my KV-2’s. Two companies? Or one for me and one for the Trainee?

Pretty darned good, if you’ll agree. Plus, all those PST kits were a paltry $5 each, all sealed and in perfect condition. So, $65 bought 13 kits. All the above cost a total of $99.

Here are ‘drool’ photos of some of what was available:  (a fair whack of this stuff can home with me – this was taken upon my arrival at the venue);  ; wow, 1/ 6 scale stuff!:  ;  ;  ;  ;  ; even 1/1 scale stuff for re-enactors…  .

A great way to spend a morning. See some real history and buy some small-scale plastic replica history. Thanks for organising it, Bayonet Military Model Club, and I hope to attend every year from now on!

I completed my Soviet Armoured Car Company, bringing it to the recommended strength of five vehicles thanks to finishing the final three earlier this week. The final three are a BA-I (БА-И), BA-6 (БА-6) and BA-10 (БА-10). You’ll recall the first two vehicles of this company, finished back in February, were a BA-9 (БА-9) and a BA-6M. Here’s the whole company:  and from the air:  .

Here are the three recently completed vehicles together:   .

Here’s the  BA-I (БА-И) by itself:  . Now the BA-10 (БА-10):  . Lastly the funky-looking BA-6 (БА-6), first from the side  and then three quarter profile:  …great idea, just to whack the tank turret from the T-26 onto the armoured car body…

I really like this camouflage (камуфляж) scheme, that I got from this link: “BA-6 from the Separate Recon Battalion /1st Tank Division/1st Mechcorps, The North-western Front, Krasnogvardeysk (Gatchina) region, August 1941″ – it’s lots of fun to paint.

If you look closely at those trees in the background, you might recognise some of them from this earlier post of mine.

So, in the space of a few months I’ve added two more companies to my Soviet forces. That’s enough for now, as they are not my primary army. It’d be good to pick up a couple of Airfix T-34s (as kits or assembled) so I could complete my company of T-34/76s, but I’ve not seen any at the swap & sells this year…funny, as there were plenty of them around in the previous few years.

Now, strictly speaking the rules state that all vehicles in a company must look the same so they cannot be confused as others. I’m going to argue that they all have the same basic body and will play all as the same type, even if they actually are different models that I have. A whole company for $50 as opposed to having to pay full price for the same UM kit new…$225 for a company?! Sorry. I’m on a budget,these trainees aren’t cheap to train.

I’ll reiterate what I said about rubber tyres from the SU-85 kits (those were UM kits; these BA’s are UM kits too and they have real rubber tyres) – great if you can do them perfectly, but I cannot and so I have to paint over them, sometimes numerous times…and the effort to get them onto the hubcabs is a nuisance too. I’m happy with plastic tyres.

 

 

 

First game was on friday. Somewhere on the Eastern Front, early 1945 – probably March. Clear and no wind. Here’s the map: – the Objective was to reach the crossroads in the centre of the map  and hold it, with at least undamaged vehicle, until the end of Turn 10. The map was not too complicated – fields, orchards, treelines, low hills – and on one side, a small power plant: . I had an anit-tank SP company, two platoons of StuG IIIG and one platoon of JagdPanzer IV L70.

TURN 1: Movement. My StuGs race to reach optimal firing positions: while the JgPz stay concealed behind a treeline. The two Soviet tank companies do the same: . After all this movement, there was combat! At the time, I said this was a first, having combat in the first turn…but it may well have happened before, so I’m not too sure. Anyway, T-34/85s on the left flank shoot at the StuGs over there – 2 shots resulting in one kill and one StuG being Tracked  – it’s tracks are hit and it now can’t move. I roll Morale for the Tracked StuG and the crew bail out. I now have to test the Morale of that Platoon – the final result is a 2, and so that Platoon will Flee the battle . I now test for the whole Company – I roll a 10 – that’s fine, they pass.

TURN 2: It is possible for me to try to stop the panicked StuG platoon fleeing the table…I need to get my Company HQ StuGs over to them (to talk some sense to them face to face). Sadly this is impossible – that Platoon is already very close to the edge of the map and my HQ can’t get there in time – so I lose them off the map and out of the game. The PJgPzs stay put. I move my remaining StuGs up to a treeline. The Russians consolidate their positions on the map  and prepare to race to the Objective. A keen T-34/85 tries to shoot a StuG but fails to hit. The Stugs see the muzzleflash (I rolled for it and passed) so now they know roughly where the enemy is on the left flank.

TURN 3: My StuGs lay down a Smokescreen by firing smoke shells with their main guns. While doing so, the enemy opens up on them and one is knocked out of action and a second one damaged so badly that the crew decided to bail out and flee  . I have to test the Morale of this central platoon – they are Shaken for 2 Turns. I test my Company’s Morale – a 5 – low, but OK.

TURN 4: The StuGs have to reverse to try to safely get to a better position. The JgPz IV L70s hold. The Russians race to new positions and also closer to the Objective , also laying smokescreens to shield them from unwanted attention by my boys.

TURN 5: The StuGs continue reversing. The first Russian tank reaches the Objective whilst others try to lay down more smoke.

TURN 6: MY StuG platoon is no longer Shaken. They lay down a small smokescreen that allows a JgPz to move onto the road and the others to break cover . The Russians lay down smoke in front of them so they cannot shoot at the T-34/85s racing in from the right flank to help bolster defence of the Objective.

TURN 7: More movement by everyone. Some jockeying to be in firing positions by the end of the Movement phase.

TURN 8: Lots of movement. A StuG hits a T-34/85 but the shot bounces off.

TURN 9: My Company Commander hits a T-34/85 and Stuns it. The Russians try to knock out the JgPz on the roadside but miss. They now have a good hold of the Objective .

TURN 10: My StuGs haven’t completed their shift to new positions so it’s all down to the JgPz IV L70 on the road to try to shift the Soviet tanks out of position. It fires and wipes out a T-34/76 – sadly not a Company Commander, so the Russians are staying put. That was how the Turn ended and the game too, as the Russians have the Objective and outnumber us 4:1.

Peter had brought along two mates of his whom each took a side and got involved in the game. Both enjoyed themselves.

AFTER ACTION REVIEW: This wasn’t much of a slugfest. It showed the importance of good Movement and positioning. It also showed the value of smokescreens. An interesting game.

Now for some wargamer eye candy! Here’s some detail of one of Peter’s T-34/85 commanders: , here are my haystacks being used as terrain: and here’s another shot of those JgPz IV L70s: . Those JgPz IV L70s are mine, but I didn’t paint them…they were a win on eBay. The StuGs you see early in the post with the two-tone camouflage scheme, full schürzen and loads of stowage are Peter’s mate Scott’s. They are the quality and level that I aspire to in my wargame modelling.

Game report: Game 4, 2011

October 31, 2011

This game was a replaying of the game we played back in August. Nothing had changed except that the map/table had even fewer clear lines of sight (LOS) and I was able to put my completed MiniArt Eastern European House on display. Here’s an aerial recon photo: .

A few things had happened inside my army since the last game – after Peter’s explanation of the difference between Digging in and Entrenching, I had some more points to spend:

  1. The AT Rifle teams went out, Early AT Rifle Grenades were in.
  2. An extra PaK40 went in.
  3. I was only Entrenched, not Dug In.

So, to begin, we established the Weather for the day. It was a Clear day with a Moderate Westerly wind.

TURN 1: Three T-70 light tanks came on to do some recon:  . A Soviet mortar barrage drops smoke down on the crossroads  whilst 122mm artillery rain down right on top of my 81mm Mortars, but good dice rolling on my behalf saw them head down in their trenches and safe.

TURN 2: The T-70s advance. Soviet artillery and mortars continue. T-34s now come on to the table. The Soviets can see two PaK40s on their right flank: .

Stupidly my mortar crew got out of their trench or something as I rolled badly and they were all killed.

As it was likely the T-34s had seen my PaK40s, they got to work right away. They killed a T-34 and Tracked another   , a great opening for me.

Having lost my Mortars, I Test my Morale and Pass. His tank crew Fail their Test and Bail Out, with the rest of that Platoon (one tank) fleeing! Sadly, the rest of the Russians held on to their firm resolve to defeat the Fascists.

TURN 3: The fleeing T-34 passes it’s Rally Test.

The two PaK40s are LMG’d into silence  , but in doing so they pop the turret off another T-34.

Having lost half of my AT Gun Platoon, I Test the Morale of those remaining and get a 4. They are Shaken for 6 turns.

The remaining two PaK40s are on the Soviet’s left flank. As a T-70 is within range, they are forced to fire on it – and kill it  .

It’s a tense game tonight. Can I win from here? I’m denting Soviet armour much more heavily than in the previous game…

TURN 4: The Soviets successfully call down 122mm artillery on furthest PaK on the left flank. The other PaK40 sees a T-70 come within 400m of it, so they flee the gun and it’s out of the game. 9 Russian tanks now try to silence the furthest PaK40 and fail! In reply, they kill a KV1-E  . But then the shells from the artillery land into their trenches and they are lost  .

I have to Test Morale twice now. This is where games are usually lost for me. But I roll a 10 for the AT Gun crew and they are fine – I then roll another 10 for the remainders of my Company, and they are fine! Battle on!

TURN 5: The Soviets continue to advance  , racing forward as there seems to be no remaining German opposition.

TURN 6: The Soviets continue to push forward – remember, their objective is to Break Through my lines. The 122mm artillery is now called down upon one of my rifle platoons, but they are safe in their trenches.

TURN 7: It is clear that the Soviet exit point is too far from my rifle platoons with their AT Rifle Grenades  , so I declare the Soviets to have won. Peter shows me his map with the exit point on it and indeed he is safe and thus the winner.

REVIEW: It was a really tense game. I could see myself winning until halfway through turn 4. I thought I had placed my AT Guns well and they performed extremely well.

However, I chose to ignore Peter’s advice from the previous game about landmines – to my detriment. I really could have used them this time to plug some of the holes in my lines.

2 weeks back Peter and I met for our third game of the year. The period was Autumn, 1942. The scenario was Breakthrough, with Peter’s Russians attacking (breaking through) my defending Germans. The sky was clear and there were light winds. Here’s the map: … a crossroads with hamlets and houses nearby.

No-one had any aerial forces, so we got straight into it.

Turn 1: The Russians call down a smoke barrage on the wrecked T-34 at the crossroads, neatly obscuring the vision of the PaK-40 I had dug-in behind it. Some recon forces came on to the table:  – T-34s were proxying T-70’s.

Turn 2: The T-70’s continued to probe forward: .

Turn 3: Now all the Russians came on to the table. T-34/76’s and KV-1’s. The smoke barrage was continuing: so my central PaK-40 couldn’t see them. They rumbled down the main road but also through the fields and trees beside it: – my PaK on the left flank found a T-34/76 going right into his bore-sighted path, so it fired and knocked it out of action .

Turn 4: The scouting T-70 on the far right sights the PaK-40 I placed over there. As the KV-1’s on that side break through the treeline, that PaK-40 knocks out a KV-1, which happened to be a Platoon Commander’s vehicle! Good! But over on the left, the T-34/76’s let rip with their hull MGs and my PaK-40 there is out of action. My mortar section try to rain death onto any tank riders, but their aim is off.

Turn 5: The Russians have to grind on if they are going to break through. One body of vehicles pushes past my dead PaK: .

Since I wanted to get my central PaK into action, we had a look at the rules about traversing infantry guns during a game. We were surprised to see some infantry guns could be fired whilst their crews were trying to shift them into new positions! We had to clarify the rules there and then for traversing mid-game: for a size B gun, the first 30 degrees of traversing is free…you can movie it and fire it without penalty. If you traverse it between 31-45 degrees from the original position, you can fire it but you suffer -2 penalty to hit. If you are trying to move the gun more than 45 degrees from it’s original  position you can do so but cannot fire it that turn.

So, back to the game; my right flanking PaK-40 hits a KV-1 and Stuns it, but is LMG’d to death by the rest of the KV-1 company. My mortars on the left flank wipe out a squad of tank riders through some accurate aiming. My infantry kill a few more. My remaining PaK-40 – the middle one, who was trying to traverse so that they could be useful – have to check Morale due to the losses of my other AT guns and fail, so they surrender to the Russkies.

Turn 6: Soviet movement is strong . They push hard and run over the dug-in Germans. All the Germans can  do is try to kill tank riders and weaken Russian morale. For the central force of Germans, their AT Rifles are useless against these medium tanks’ side armour so all that they can do by is pick off Russian infantry riding on the passing tanks. The Russians lose another squad as the Germans do so, but their Morale holds and the tank MGs cut down German infantry.

Turn 7: A lucky German infantryman kills the Soviet infantry company commander who’s riding on a tank: . The Russian Infantry check their Morale and are affected -they are now Shaken. But they are on the backs of tanks, so Shaken effectively means nothing for them. The Russians grind on to their breakthrough point and begin to exit the table  – they’ve won . My infantry are unable to stop them. Another victory to Peter.

~~~~~

It was also scenery-making night at the club that night. Here’s a mate making terrain for Stalingrad and the Eastern Front…burnt-down Russian hovels, where only the chimneys remain… .

I’m not finding so many useful videos now, but thereare some searches I have not tried yet.

Here are three that I have found worth mentioning:

GERMAN PROPAGANDA video newsreel film Film ID:  1129.04 .    Much of it is footage that I’ve already pointed you to through earlier posts…but right at the end is some (so far unseen by me) footage of Russian light tanks and armoured cars in action.

TIME TO REMEMBER – OPERATION BARBAROSSA ( 1941 ) – reel 2 video newsreel film Film ID:  2247.02.    There are some snippets of film you’ve already seen, but also some interesting other segments.
A Panzer II accompanied by German bicycle troops (attention all recon force people!); a long pan across an attack on a small Russian village or small kolkhoz (letting you get an idea of how the main buildings are arranged in a kolkhoz).

RUSSIANS LIBERATE A VILLAGE – 1942 video newsreel film Film ID:  1625.01.   Russian BA-series armoured cars in winter camouflage; a KV-1 in winter camouflage; a T-34/76 in the winter camouflage used around Moscow (mostly white but with bands of cross-hatched green); Russian infantry with a M-1910 Maxim machine gun and its Sokolov mount that have been given winter camouflage by wrapping them in white cloth.