WWI/WWII
Tiger On the Prowl: A 15mm WWII FireFight! | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Wednesday, 23 January 2008

More than sixty years after the Tiger first prowled the battlefield, we’re hearing more and more armchair generals question the validity of claims about German tank engineering. One need only go to the source to find that in the case of the Tiger, these claims are very valid. Certainly everyone that fought these big cats feared them, and that says a lot.

 


One of each tank in this review.

While the Tiger had some problems that were never quite worked out, these issues were no different from those encountered by other countries making heavy tanks in World War II: limited range and wear on the drive train from the massive weight, around 61 U.S. tons in the case of the Tiger, and being too heavy for many bridges. It was a fearsome beast though, with reports of its powerful 88mm shell penetrating clear through Sherman turrets and shooting through buildings to destroy Shermans. Both German and Russian accounts relate the Russian cry of “Tigri!” as being used to warn the front to retreat in the face of this tank, most notably Franz Kurowski in Panzer Aces II

Considering the Tiger’s popularity on gaming tables—where its shortcomings are often under-played—and the lasting notoriety of this tank, we decided to bring 15mm mid-production Tigers from every major vendor into our painting area and let you know the strengths and weaknesses of each.

Our thanks to Scott Washburn of PaperTerrain for reading this one for us.

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Supersize It: A 15mm WWII Panther FireFight! | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Sunday, 13 January 2008
When the Allied Powers had their first run-ins with the Panther, they mistook it for a heavy tank. That’s no surprise—for its time, this cat was a monster, weighing in at an impressive 45 tons, as opposed to the Sherman’s 33 tons and the T-34’s 29 tons. It was big, mobile, packed a powerful 75mm weapon, and boasted some of the thickest sloped armor to be found on the battlefield.

 


This review’s vehicles advancing. 

The Germans, however, considered her a “medium” tank. The view of the German high command was that armor would continue to thicken, and gun sizes would increase proportionately. Thus, they called a tank that in some respects was larger than a Tiger a “medium” tank. The weakened state of German production and this designation meant that the Panther was soon the primary tank in its armored divisions.

We brought in all of the Panther D models we could get our hands on and painted them up to help you decide if you want to upgrade your tank divisions.

 

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Camelot 15mm Sdkfz 223 Command Radio Vehicle | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Tuesday, 01 January 2008
Command Radio Car

The Camelot Sdkfz 223 adds radio in the desert or the steppes. 

The Sdkfz 223 was a command adaptation of the German Sdkfz 222 that included a machine gun as the main gun and a bed-frame style antenna above the vehicle. Some claim that the bed-frame antenna was rapidly replaced by an aerial, but even if true, that wouldn't look nearly as cool on the table, now would it?

We got our hands on the Camelot Miniatures version of this vehicle and painted it up in a nice neutral color suitable for use in Africa or Russia. 


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Army Boxes 4: The 15mm Resistant Roosters Japanese Army Deal. | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Unto Death, with Honor


The Entire Japanese PBI Army (about half the supplied figures) with Artillery add-ons

While hopping the Pacific, US and allied forces gained grudging respect for the Imperial Japanese Army. Much of this respect was based on the fact that Japanese soldiers would fight to the death, viewing surrender as a personal and familial failing. With little or no armor support, these stalwart troops fought to the best of their ability time and time again, on island after island.

Because of the relatively small numbers of troops employed, the Pacific theater is often downplayed. Since casualty rates were higher in the Pacific, this is an odd phenomenon. Testament to how much more difficult the Pacific was, three US Medal of Honor recipients earned their award in the first 72 hours of the Tarawa invasion alone - and this being on the island of Betio, only about 1 mile square.

Nearly a year ago, we picked up a Japanese army from Resistant Roosters with the intent of painting them up for fighting against our US Marines. We finally pulled them out and painted them up, forming a PBI army from about half of the figures and some of the artillery from our Japanese artillery review. Though Resistant Roosters has since been purchased by Historifigs, this same army is still available, and the prices referenced at the end of this article are current prices from Historifigs.



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Through Sand and Wheat: Battlefront Panzer IVH Platoon Box | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Friday, 30 November 2007

The Panzer IVH was the workhorse of the German army in mid-to-late World War II, with more of this version of the tank made than any other. The vehicle saw duty on every German front and fared relatively well against allied rivals, except for the most heavily armored Russian tanks and very-late-war American and British tanks.

We brought the new Battlefront Panzer IVH box into our painting area to give you an idea of what it will take to put a few of these popular tanks on your table.


The box from the topic of this review.

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