19 February 2019

Flames of War - New Plastic Soviets

Have you ever wanted play a Soviet Mid war army but because you are weak there's no way you could transport 50kg's of lead from place to place?

Well have I got news for you the new Mid-war Soviet range is all plastic. Battlefront were nice enough to send me some samples I was expecting maybe a sprue or two but imagine my delight/horror when this arrived...


Well shoot now it looks like I have to start a Soviet Army...again. 

Affordability

Back in 2003ish Battlefront released the very first Stalingrad book for Version 1 I splashed out and purchased a full 1500 point army boxset I think it set me back about $370 in the day but I got a lot of stuff.


Did you want an army or a hernia? Why not both?!


Now to get the equivalent in the new plastics would cost around $290 (I substituted SU-122 for SU-85's) giving me saving of about 30% so not bad on savings also we're comparing 2003's buying price with 2019 and I'm not going to get into inflation. So the new Soviet army ticks the affordability box however it's always going to be more expensive than it's German equivalent simply because you need more but a sub $300 army to choke the guns of the fascists is worth it!

Quality

A scary man once said the quality of quantity has a quality of it's own which is a Russian for they'll run out of bullets before we run out of bodies. I had the chance to open and assemble the Storm Group box as it contained a bit of everything.


Coming to an occupied building near you!

Firstly we should compare them to the first lot of blue plastics the British Infantry ( Video ) figures are light years a ahead in detail and crispness they even have paintable faces! 

Clean up is a breeze using the hard edge of my scalpel it was a simple matter of light scraping and the excess plastic came off for larger bit the blade is used but go lightly as a sharp scalpel is likely to bite and gouge.

One issue I did happen upon was bending and this was with a few of the PTRD teams their guns because of the way they're packed have a tendency to bend.

 It's for shooting tanks around the corner!

The great news however a quick dip in hot water and a small bit of manipulation and they're shooting true again compared to the orginal metal PTRD's which were prone to mold slippage and a thin barrel that would bend and never be able to be put straight. You also get more 6 large bases for $18 vs $13 for 4 medium bases so bendy barrels is a small price to pay, or lack thereof.

How do they compare with my old Soviets?

To be honest great actually really well so much so that from a distance you'd have trouble figuring out which were old and new. I painted up a base to show as a comparison below. 


Asides from one being made of metal and the other plastic is that there is a coat of matt varnish on the metal one.

Final Thoughts?

The new Battlefront Soviet flexible plastic infantry are a vast improvement over previous offerings. The details are solid and they take paint exceptionally well and are great value for money. Although they may be prone to bending this is easily rectified and they only thing I dislike is that I have to paint so many. Definitely worth the money. 


18 February 2019

Flames of War - Great War


"I think a curse should rest on me - because I love this war. I know it's smashing and shattering the lives of thousands every moment - and yet - I can't help it - I enjoy every second of it." - Winston Churchill

"Come on, you sons of bitches, do you want to live forever?" - Daniel Daly at the Battle of Belleau Wood.


In 2019, we return to the trenches of Western Europe with a new version of Great War from Battlefront. Over the coming months, a dedicated team here at Behind Enemy Lines is going to take you through the process we take to get our forces battle ready and get some action on the tables for you, both in text and also on YouTube.

Great War gets a new lease on life with the latest updated version bringing Great War into line with the current V4 rules, much the same as the updated 'Nam book. It provides a single volume containing the rules, missions, special rules and force lists to players along with the associated card packs so you should simply be able to pick up your existing Great War forces and start gaming under the new rules. Easy as that!


The new volume contains full lists for the German, British, French, American and Belgian forces taking part in the Great War with new V4 points levels and updated rules. Players who are already familiar with Flames of War should have no trouble getting straight into Great War...it's the same game, just a different war!


As stated, new card packs will be available for the five forces listed to bring existing models into line with the new rules. As well as these, there will be army deals available to get people right into the fight with only a couple of purchases.

The rules contain 13 missions centred around the kinds of conflict seen on the battlefields of Western Europe, including trench fighting. The initial three missions; 'The Big Push', 'Through Mud and Blood' and 'Green Fields Beyond' allow you to fight an almost campaign-style series of battles typical of a Great War operation.


While I won't go into detail on them, the kinds of lists you can expect to field for each of the major nations featured in Great War are:

Germany

For the Germans, you will have access to:

- Infanteriekompanie, the stalwart German infantryman and the massive array of support options to assist them in their fight.
- Stosskompanie, the German assault troops combining speed and mobility to get right into the enemy lines.
- Jagerkompanie, veteran German soldiers trained in a range of tactics.
- Siegfriedstellung, the hardened trenches providing greater protection are a facet of the troops in the Siegfried line.

You also have access to support options including the massive A7V tank as well as captured British tanks.

Britain

To take the fight to the Hun, British players can employ:

- Line Division Rifle Company, the backbone of His Majesty's forces.
- Elite Division Rifle Company, the more battle-hardened troops able to withstand great punishment.
- ANZAC or Canadian Rifle Company, the forces of the Dominion came forward to take the fight to the enemy.
- Cavalry Squadron, while the tanks may be on the field, the cavalry reigns supreme!

The British also have access to the support of their tanks and mighty artillery.

France

The French Empire has not been idle in it's defence. Taking to the fields, you'll have:

- Compagnie de Fusiliers, the French rifleman ready to defend their home.
- Colonial Compagnie de Tirailleurs, France's colonies stand ready to fight alongside their masters.
- Escadron de Cavalerie, France's mounted shock troops.
- Compagnie de Fusiliers Russe, France's Russian Foreign Legion, hardy assault troops ready to take the fight deep into the trenches.
- Harlem Hellfighters Rifle Company, African-American troops helping in France's defence. 

France has also developed their own tanks to fight alongside their valiant warriors.

United States

While a late belligerent into the Great War, the Yanks are ready to fight!

- 42nd Infantry Division Rifle Company, the more aggressive troopers of The Rainbow Division.
- 1st Infantry Division Rifle Company, the more tentative but just as ready warriors of The Big Red One.
- 4th Marine Brigade Rifle Company, the Devil Dogs.

US support consists of French equipment having been trained and readied on the new weapons upon arriving in Europe.

Belgium

Like the French, the Belgians were stalwart in their defence of their lands.

- Compagnie de Infanterie, Belgium's infantry troops stand ready to hold against the Kaiser's forces.

Belgian support will assist them in their defence.




Hopefully this quick article has piqued your interest in Great War. Keep an eye out for up-coming articles about the nations we'll be building forces for!


26 July 2018

Back to the Eastern Front

It was only a matter of time, we all knew it. We're going back to the Eastern Front next month with the releases of Iron Cross and Enemy at the Gates!


























Over the next couple of days, we'll have an in depth look into each of the books and what kinds of forces you'll be able to build from each of the volumes.

Today though, we're going to have a look at all the cool kit that's coming along with the releases!

Starting off is the new 2 player starter set, Stalingrad! Now, let's be very clear here. This is by no means intended to be a "buy me and get 2 armies straight from the box" offering. You get a sampling of things from the books to try out at a reasonable price to see if you want to dip your toe in.



So in the box you get a couple of German tanks in the Panzer III and Panzer IV and some Soviet armour too, the KV-1, T-34 and Valentine. This also comes with a Flames of War mini rulebook, unit cards, terrain cards and dice.

If you want to dive straight in, there are also two new nation-specific starter boxes.



Nikolay's Steel Wall gives you some KV-1's, T-34's and some gun sprues allowing you to make either 57mm or 76mm guns. You also get unit cards, a rulebook and decals.




Dietrich's Ghosts will supply you with 3 Panzer III sprues  and 3 Panzer IV sprues which allow you to build the differing variants of each chassis as well as 4 10.5cm gun sprues. Rulebook, unit cards and decals are also in the box.


There will also be a massive release run for both books as well. Let's start with the Germans...

The new Panzer IV box comes with 5 tanks which you can build in the short 7.5cm or long 7.5cm gun depending on your needs.




Alongside these, there is also the new Panzer III box which again has 5 tanks inside with all the trimmings to build all sorts of Panzer III models!





PLASTIC 88's!!!



Also coming in plastic are:

- 3.7cm Tank-hunter platoon
- 5cm Tank-hunter platoon
- 7.5cm Tank-hunter platoon
- 10.5cm Artillery Battery
- 15cm Nebelwerfer Battery
- Grenadiers, Panzergrenadiers and Assault Pioneers
- sMG34 HMG
- 8cm Mortars

There will also be re-boxings for:

- Panzer II platoon
- Sd kFz 221 & 222 Scout platoon
- Sd kFz 231 Heavy Scout platoon
- StuG Assault Gun platoon
- Marder Tank-hunter platoon
- Sd kFz 10/4 Light AA platoon
- 7.5cm Infantry gun
- 15cm Infantry gun


On the Soviet side, we'll be seeing a heap of cool new toys as well.

KV-1 tanks are coming in plastic! The box will give you all the bits to make the KV-1, the KV-1s and the KV-8 as well! Nice!!


Plastic early T-34's are on the way as well. This will also allow you to build the OT-34 as well....flame on!



Plastic lend-lease tanks are also coming too with both the M3 Lee, M3 Stuart and Valentine tanks coming to bolster the Soviet arsenal.







And finally, FINALLY!! Plastic Katy's as well!



Other plastic releases here are going to include:

- Tank Killer company, allowing you to make the 57mm and 76mm variants
- 122mm Artillery battery
- 45mm Anti-tank company
- Rifle company, SMG company and Storm Group
- Maksim MG, PTRD AT Rifle, 82 or 122mm Mortar companies

And re-releases for the:

- T-60 Tank company
- BA-10 Armoured Car platoon
- DshK AA MG trucks
- Shturmovik


All in all, some really awesome releases there and with the majority being in plastic, the cost of getting a new army should really come down as well.

Coinciding with the army releases are a HEAP of new terrain as well, so you can really get your Stalingrad tables looking the business. We'll be seeing:




And, what I think is, the coolest new addition, the Stalingrad ruins sets:


These are going to look AMAZING on the new double-sided mat as well. One side is green grass while the other has a town road layout, perfect for urban battles...hint hint!

So there you have it guys. We'll take a look at the forces from each book in a coming article, but this should get you thinking about what could be going on.

19 July 2018

GO SOUTH!!!


Things get pretty exciting around Behind Enemy Lines HQ in July and when things get that exciting, it usually means one of a couple of things:

1. A new shiny that we're particularly keen on is about to drop,
2. We got some free stuff in the mail, or
3. IT'S ROAD TRIP TIME!!!

It's number 3 this time around and last weekend, we all piled in the Grumpfwagen and headed south to the dizzy heights of Palmerston North for Panzerschreck! The weather was looking good which meant we shouldnt have to detour through Stratford this year! You know how we roll here....it's photo time. I'll put some words in where I can...




It was going to be a foggy start though...




No snow down to ground level this year, so no snowball fights... :(



Obligatory tank shot...



And we made it....

We settled in with a few drinks and some Rick and Morty before turning in for the night. The gaming would begin in earnest soon enough...


This year's event was back to Late War, 900 points per team member so 1800 points in total. Some pretty interesting lists this year as well.

Damo and I paired up this year and took Kampfgruppe Hummel Tigers with some Nebs and a FW.

Dan partnered up with Bob who took pretty much an identical list...something we'd planned right from the start!



Keep Summer safe Gav...


Battlefront was also in the house!




Also great to see some Star Wars: Legion being played as well!



NERDS!




Some rounds finished quickly for some people...




Eleeefants!!



Serious gamers...



Choo choo!!




Some people are just nuts...










Day 1 rounded out and we headed back to Casa de la Pearce for a catch-up, pizza and movies...as well as banter!



OVER THE FENCE PYLE!!!

Day 2 typically starts out with the beauty parade so the judges can find a winner for the Best Painted award.












Dan's Tigers.



Bob's Tigers.








Brian's Best Painted winning Panzers.







And now back to the action...!



Tiger Rush!

















You'd think someone opened a chip packet with this many seagulls...


And then it was time for prizes..

First Place: FerteeforTeeFerteefor



Second Place: Phila


Phil did have a partner who had to leave early.

Third Place: Trolley Man Dollies! Gav kept Summer safe!!


Best Sports: LOCO



And...the all important Spoon...

Yeah, we got it...and we lead the room in an impromptu Viking clap thanks to Damo!



Once again, we had a fantastic weekend! It's great catching up with good mates for some great gaming.

Massive thanks to the MDS for putting the event on again! We can't wait for next year!  TEAM YANKEE!!