Wednesday, July 23, 2014

4Ground: 15mm Terrace Type1

As our Lenino to Berlin campaign proceeds into urban area of Eastern Poland, we needed to quickly collect some new terrain features (mainly buildings) for our 15mm urban table.

Neither me nor Kondziu has enough time to paint buildings nowadays, so we started to intensively looking for some pre-painted and reasonably priced buildings. Initially, I was thinking about resin models, however, once I saw laser-cut stuff from 4Ground I knew it would be our choice. At this point of the review I have to place a disclaimer - I wasn't paid and I didn't receive anything from 4Ground, dot. Just in case you may think it is an advertisement ;)

To pimp our table in one shot, we decided to buy couple of sets from 4Ground, I will review them in the forthcoming posts:
The models belong to the Europe at War series. As you see our order was quite impressive ;) I have to praise 4Ground for the service. They sent the parcel via UPS! We got it within a week of time.

I have to admit that once we received the shipment two things came to my mind - the first one - ooh man, the buildings are more beautiful than I thought, uuuuh I thought they will have less parts to glue.

I started assembly from the 15mm Terrace Type 1 model. I have to admit that I hadn't had so much fun with modeling since my early childhood, when I assembled many paper models of ships.

The design of the model is incredible. Each convex element is made from a separate part. As you can imagine, this makes a huge number of parts altogether. Fortunately, they fit each other perfectly (OK, almost perfectly in one case). It won't take you more than hour or two to assemble the set.

The building consists of three sub-buildings in one line. Let's follow the assembly of the buildings. I think it will give the idea of how nice they are ;)

First of all, the assembly guide is very good - it shows the process step by step.

It's time to build the ground floor and the passage.

The walls are made from two layers. The inner one has windows, doors, etc.

The outer layer has texture and details.

The assembly of the first floor is similar.

The upper floor consists of the base and three parts of the roof. The piece on the right was the only one that didn't fit very well to the roof piece.

It's almost ready...

Finally, windowsills and jambs.

This is it. Isn't it beautiful?

Monday, July 21, 2014

Skytrex - Command Decision: 15mm Infantry and guns review

I'm sure that many of us from time to time look for some alternative providers to Battlefront, although they provide great minis in 15mm. We do it either to make our small armies unique or just because of budget issues.

Today, I would like to share with you a short review of Command Decision miniatures available from Skytrex. The motivation of buying these minis was quite the same as with previously bought QRF models. We recently play lots of Battlegroup Kursk (BGK) games and I needed to adjust my Flames of War set of minis to fit  BGK rosters. This is how I found Skytrex miniatures.

During our recent Lenino to Berlin campaign I had an opportunity to play infantry formations for the first time in BGK. It revealed that in my collection I lacked AT and infantry guns. I only had PaK40s, which are quite expensive in BGK.  I wanted to add a famous PaK38 and the prettiest infantry gun I've ever seen - 7.5 cm leichtes Infanteriegesch├╝tz 18. I didn't need a whole batteries of those guns, so I started to look around to find some cheaper options. And this is how I found these two sets:
The price is reasonable (6 GBP), however, you get only the guns without crew. What delighted me the most, was that one of the guns in the set is in limbered position (wohaa!).

The 75mm guns are casted as single pieces. Their limbered and unlimbered positions are the same. The PaKs 38 has a lovely feature. Its carriage is casted as a single piece and the gun with the gun shield as another one. This makes it possible to have the gun rotating its gun shield a bit - that looks great. I used a small magnet to make it detachable. Great piece of work Skytrex- really!

The second set I bought was the CD GS05 Panzer Grenadier Platoon HQ 43-45. I needed them mainly because of the Panzershreck team and 5cm mortar. I used the rest of the minis to create one more base of platoon command.
The minis are very nice - especially their poses. The guy with binoculars is the killer one... The only drawback was the Panzershreck itself. It was a little bit too short. I decided to add some combustion fumes made with greenstuff to make it look reasonable.

The third blister was the CD GS16 Light Machine Gun Teams. It consists of three LMG teams. This is the main adjustment you will have to make to switch from FOW to BGK. Each German Squad is divided into two units: 5 men standard team and 3 men LMG team.

A mixture of CD and Battlefront's figures
Finally, the CD GS22 Stretcher Bearers & Casualties. This is a true eye-candy. I don't know if I will ever use them in the future (yes, in BGK you can!), but I just had to take them together with the rest of figures. I also used the wounded guy to make a medic base.

Medic - made from FiB and CD (wounded) figures
To sum up, I have to say they are very nice minis in 15mm scale. They have really nice (uncommon) poses and they are clearly casted. When compared to Battlefront's I would say they are less bulky, so they probably shouldn't be mixed on the same bases with BF minis. However, you can easily mix bases if they stand next to each other.