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Is that a Jagdpanzer in your Bush? PDF Print E-mail
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Improve Your Games - Basing Your Figures
Saturday, 01 June 2002 05:50
Article Index
Is that a Jagdpanzer in your Bush?
Preparation and Painting
Basing Your Models
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H&R Chieftains move out of a forestRather than having obscure dissertations of tactics (which I'm woefully qualified to write anyway), or collections of TO&E's (of which there are far better sources than me), I've decided to concentrate on tips for the creation of good looking elements to play with on the table. Its something that hasn't been done for any of the Spearhead rule sets before (at the time of writing), and I feel is just as important as anything else in the game. Almost all of the ideas and pictures on this site are for my 1980's Central Front armies in West Germany, but can be extended to any area covered by the Spearhead rule's series (i.e. Modern, World War 2, or the Great War).

OK, so why would you want to spend the time doing this. Well, it doesn't take that much more time and your fellow gamers say nice things about your figures. Really, it doesn't take that much time, or skill for that matter. OK, fine, don't believe me, have a read instead.

Russian Motor rifle battalion attacking a British defensive line. OK, so its staged!

Initial Planning - So just what the hell are we going to do with all this lovely metal?

Before you do anything like picking up a modelling knife or something rash, first have a stop and a think. what sort of effect are we going for? Pour a glass of your favourite mind solvent and sit back*.

ArrowFirst, what type of element is it. This can have an effect on what the base will look like. Examples here would be anti-tank units, which tend to be well camouflaged in real life should be surrounded by lots of trees and possibly a wall or two. Most walking infantry suit walking across an open field in open order, etc. However, Main Force's infantry (from Hallmark) are supplied lying down, so would be suited to defending a ditch or other linear obstacle.

ArrowWhere in the world are you trying to model. What season? Here, generic greens and browns are best, especially if you don't want to build 2 matched armies for a particular time period. However, don't lest this dissuade you if you feel that you want to model some winter eastern front battles, its just that if you ever play someone else on a green base cloth then guess who's models are going to look strangest.

A well hidden Jagdpanzer Kannone company defends a tree line.

ArrowIf at all possible, try to find some books with decent pictures of the area or zone of interest. See what sort of terrain features are common. Also note the effect of the army on the terrain; i.e. churned up mud, foxholes, and prepared firing positions, etc.

ArrowVery roughly sketch scenes that you think look interesting, and try to work out how you could replicate them. don't try to pick anything too complex initially. As your skills grow you will find yourself relying less and less on the pictures, and more on things you like the look of.

So, now we have a head full of ideas, how do we think about putting them into action?

*Alcohol is a much underrated activator of thinking processes. I can't think of many better ways to relax after a really bad day at work than with a drink in one hand (or close at hand) and a paint brush or book in the other. This does not apply if you are under-age however, but being younger your brains will be sharper and you won't need these things like us old guys anyway, will you?



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