The Muster of the Loyal: Royalist and Reactionary Progress for VBCW!

Ready to fight for the Throne and Mosley!

WW1 British recruitment poster: PropagandaPosters
The Royalist Cause may very well re-use WW1 Recruitment Posters!

It’s been a long road on my VBCW journey. It has been slow but steady progress since the Lockdowns of last year started this “little” project. I still have some more to paint, but I’ve hit a watershed moment; I have more painted then unpainted models in the collection!

I started on some Territorial Army infantry earlier this week, and decided to try something I don’t usually do; batch painting! I hate doing it, and honestly I got pretty burnt out by the end of it, despite it only being 21 models. But after I got them mostly done today(the base rims need to be done!) I decided a parade was in order, to see what I got.

I was pleasantly surprised! The collection looks great massed on my spare table. I still need to build a sleepy English village to fight over, but I have many more models then I really need to play!

First up, lets look at the models I got done this week!

First up, a section of infantry! Most of these poses are repeats, so I’m focusing on the unique ones.
The Corporal keeps his section moving at a good pace! A great pose, a simple but effective one!
This soldier is lobbing a Mill’s bomb at the enemy, and has many more at his disposal in his sack.
The Lewis gun gives the section some serious firepower.
Next up was the another Section of infantry!
This corporal is looking ahead with his binoculars, planning the attack!
A pretty great pose this!
This soldier is throwing a stick grenade!
A lone Lewis gunner. I forgot to take a picture of the loader!

Next up, I did another Officer. I’m swimming in these, as I got both the Battalion command and regular, company level officers. I forget which pack this Officer belonged to, but he has a yet another great Woodbine Design pose!

“Can’t take down a Rebel trench without this!” Wielding his walking stick as a cudgel, this officer draws his pistol…probably a more lethal implement.
A lovely side profile. I’d follow this chap anywhere!
Requisite arm-band so he doesn’t get shot at by my own side!

Finally, I laid out all my painted models on my spare table! Lets see how the platoon(s) looks like all together!

Oh yeah! It’s all coming together. A solid 50 men, of which ten are Grenadier Guard’s on detached duty, and ten Indian Army regulars.
A Vickers Machine Gun and Vickers 6-ton are ready to support the Poor Bloody Infantry.
Watched over by King Edward himself, I have my officers and warrant officer.
Militia cavalry form on my right flank, ready to charge in!
A Vickers Medium MK2 and a Peerless Armoured Car, even more British Steel to bring the hurt on.
The Territorials make up the bulk of my fighting men.
My Rajputs and Grenadiers are tough, hardened troops. They’ll stiffen the line.

I also decided to bring out the BUF, and line them up as well. Unsavory allies they may be, but for now they are all fighting together.

Thirty BUF and their support. Useful idiots one and all.
These fanatical but unreliable troops give me a reserve force, just in case the Regulars can’t cut it.
Another Vickers Mk2 and a Cruiser tank give the Blackshirts some support.
A Vickers, because no platoon is complete without one it seems!
My Command section! A banner, a Lewis, and two Sergeants help to keep the boys in line.
A lesser officer and JFC Fuller himself!
A BUF Assault Section with Body Armour and Submachineguns, just what is needed to break a trench-line.

And finally, a complete army shot! It’s been a year of work to get this far.

Watch out Anglican League, we are coming for you!

All in all, I’m really chuffed with this whole force. I have some more to paint, namely a section of Territorials and the Grenadier’s second section and support elements. The addition of a Boy’s Anti-Tank rifle or two will not be amiss either…

Now that the UK is allowing travel from Canada again, I’m considering flying out to an event in the UK. I just need to wait and see if the Delta Variant doesn’t lock down either country again, and in any event I’d have to save up, and talk to the community to see if someone can’t show me around.

Either way, I have more then enough to play games, and to make a good showing in a larger game as well!

But that is all(!?) I have for today. I hope you enjoyed this project progress, and I’ll see you in the next one! Happy War-gaming wherever you are, and God Save the King!

Clipity Clopity get off my Property: Royalist Cavalry for VBCW!

Sure, this will work against Vickers guns!

Definitely not the noblest cavalry in all Europe…but they are still probably the worst led.

Cavalry! As much as tanks and machine guns rule the interwar period, there is still very much a place for the ‘humble’ cavalry(ha!). While relegated mostly to scouting for larger formations, they can still catch poorly disciplined troops off guard, and are great for taking advantage of breakthroughs. In Very British Civil War, cavalry are very popular among players for looking dashing, anachronistic, and a great chance to stretch your painting muscles for something unique.

I had bought these Great War Miniatures Early War British Cavalry, which I chose to get with swords, on a lark a few months ago. While really nice sculpts, I expected a lot of work on them, and with my life getting very, very busy lately, I just didn’t have the time.

Or, so I thought. It turns out that these are amazingly easy to build, posing little to no trouble!

A little bath to get any leftover mold release off, and straight to gluing together. Took less then 30 minutes!
And built! Luckily, I had a bunch of square bases a friend was getting rid off handy, and I put them on my preferred raised bases! They have quite a classic look to them!

The next trouble was how to paint them. I figured I would start with an English Uniform spray, as if nothing else the horses would be easy. Then I posed the question to the VBCW Facebook page. I got many great suggestions, and the one that I went with was looking at Yeomanry regiments! I wanted to avoid red uniforms, as my buddy Ty over at https://hussarsandhandgrenades.ca is doing Mounties eventually.

Whilst the Yeomanry themselves had mostly been converted over to other roles by 1938, I figured that the very flashy uniforms would be popular among militia units who want to look ‘dashing’, ‘cavalier’, ‘bold’. I looked at first the Dorset Yeomanry, as my VBCW takes place in a fictional town in that region.

http://www.uniformology.com/ is where I grabbed this uniform plate! I like it, but the red wouldn’t look as striking with my pudgy fingers!

I then looked at the Hampshire Yeomanry, which have a simpler, but just as dashing uniform! I was quite taken with it, and while in the end I just used the pants, it was the primary inspiration.

A simpler cut, but one I prefer! Quite bold!

With a paint scheme mostly decided, it was time to prime…and it being a beautiful day in my part of Canada, I decided to prime all the remaining VBCW figures I owned!

First, the stars of our story. A nice smooth Vallejo spray was just the ticket.
And all the civilian LDV militia and villagers! I went with grey because of the civilian clothing I will have to painstakingly do.
And the rest of them! I lied a little…I ran out of spray for the banner bearers.

With a productive day well spent, I figured I’d start the militia cavalry early the next day.

Now these may be militia cavalry, but they are Royalists fighting for King Edward. So with that in mind, I got cracking on the painting, and learned something really annoying half way through; there was a massive mold line running right down the face of half the models! But, c’est la vie, it was too late. So I just hunkered down and finished them.

Lets have a look at the finished unit eh?

Not too fancy, but the pants look pretty neat! The horses were fun and easy to paint, aside from their tack and harnesses.
I did a blue band around the service cap, and a white button. I kept them pretty simple. The regular cavalrymen all carry rifles, and I will buy the dismounts to allow them to act as Dragoons later.
Excellent and characterful faces, which I just slapped paint on and called it done.
The officer! He’s got a custom uniform, because of course he does, its VBCW! I originally had him all in blue…and he looked like a police constable. So I repainted his tunic to match his troop.
He’s not carrying a rifle. He’s got people for that.
He’s got a smug look about him. I like it!
The bugler! He is carrying both a bugle and a trumpet, no idea why, but the sculpt had it.
He’s not got a lot going on this side. I made sure to include armbands for easy recognition on the table, and it matches the rest of my army.
Just a hint of his blonde mustache.
Another cavalryman with a very, very bright mustache!

All in all, a solid two days of work from blister to fully painted. They are not the fanciest cavalry ever done, but they were meant to be a relaxing build and paint, and who knew, they turned out to be!

Now for some alt-history for them! These fellows will be members of a fictional unit.

The Loyal Dorset Dragoons are a volunteer militia unit raised by General Fuller’s command as they move toward Harrington on Sea. As the local gentry and aristocracy holds a lot of sympathy for King Edward, many have snuck past the Anglican lines and been given basic cavalry training. Acting as local scouts for the army, their job is to report troop movements and harass the local Anglican forces.

If only someone told them that! The rascals of the Dorset Dragoons tend to pillage Anglican settlements, hitting hard and fast before the LDV can muster in full to see them off. More interested in loot and glory then acting as scouts, they often neglect to report even their own movements, much to Fuller’s annoyance.

They also tend to neglect their rifle training, preferring the sword. Many have grown up on their grandparents tales of glorious cavalry charges in far flung parts of Empire. While these tactics worked well on less well equipped foes, and have proven effective against the LDV’s they encounter, it may well be the end of them should they try it against the hardened Anglican and Albertine forces mustering at Harrington On Sea.

Their uniforms are ‘officially’ just khaki service dress, but many have chosen to wear fancier, Yeomanry inspired trousers. Their service caps have a bold blue stripe and white button for the enlisted, and blue caps with a white stripe and silver button for the officers. Completely against uniform standards, but the General has better things to do then to reprimand them.

And that’s all I have for them so far! Who knows, they may just prove decisive, or be shot down by machine gun fire. It’s anyone’s guess!

As my 100th post, I’m quite happy with this! The whirlwind last two weeks have proven crippling for my view count, but that is okay. As long as my peer’s both here on WordPress and over at the Facebook page for VBCW enjoy the content, I’ll keep making it!

But for now, that is all I have. Happy War-gaming wherever you are, and God Save King Edward!

My Kingdom for a Truck! Next Episode of the Podcast is out!

https://thefightingdice.podbean.com/e/the-fighting-dice-podcast-episode-two-my-kingdom-for-a-truck/

In this episode we discuss our lack of vehicles outside of armoured ones, and our newest completed units and where we intend to go next. We also discuss some other games we are keen on trying, namely Oathmark and Shakos and Bayonets.

I hope you enjoy!

Might of the Royalists: Grenadier Guards, Part Two!

“Proper Bloody Guardsmen!”

A section of the King’s Finest, ready to fight!

I decided a little while ago to take a tiny break from VBCW and get some other stuff painted. I had gotten tired of painting uniforms, and as I’m playing the Government aligned forces there were a lot of them! After a short trip to Middle Earth, I’m back with some Grenadier Guard goodness!

In my last post about these guys, I had just assembled them. I did paint one and show them off on the Facebook group, but that is where I stopped. If you didn’t see my last post on them, a quick summary; I got the heads done for me as a private commission(a free one, as it turned out, thanks to the generosity of my friend who made them), and I slapped them onto some Warlord Games BEF models.

I have a bunch of them, enough to field a sizable force given the scope of the game. But, they will more likely see the field in sections at a time, as the Grenadier Guards are a particularly strong unit with modern equipment for the era, and would mostly likely be split up to ‘stiffen’ up other units. This first section will slot in nicely with my already completed Royalists until the rest of the Guardsmen are completed.

Lets have a look, shall we?

The NCO. This is a photo some people have seen before, but for sake of completeness I have included him here. A nice model wearing a leather jerkin underneath his webbing.
The face detail on the 3D print isn’t that great, a fault of my printing not the file. But its the price I pay for having simply epic hats!
Lots of detail on his webbing. Pattern 37 webbing is rare in VBCW, but a unit like the Grenadier Guards would be among those wearing it.

Now, the NCO has been seen on the internet before…so lets move on to the Bren Gun team!

It’s not too clear, but he’s carrying a Bren gun magazine in his hand. A simple running pose, to keep up with the rest of the section.
Still, simple doesn’t mean boring. Lots of neat detail here. The SMLEs on these models have been my favourite to work on in 28mm so far!
His pack is chock full of detail as well!
Dakka Dakka Dakka! Wait, wrong game! Still, there is just something about a machinegun being hipfired…
More detail on the back, and I do love the little enamel tea-cup!
Walking fire toward the enemy barricades, this Guardsmen doesn’t mess around.

Now onto the normal Riflemen! These are the unsung heroes of any army list, putting down effective rifle fire and doing the most of the work.

A little(a lot) blurry. But this kneeling riflemen does the job. Nothing too fancy…short of his enormous hat!
The hint of an armband adds the obvious affiliation to these units…although with the hat is it really needed?
Another enamel mug!
A Guardsmen lobbing a Mills Bomb someplace!
The enamel mug strikes again!
Some of these heads don’t work quite as well…but that is the cost of having a unique unit!
I must say I like the 303. rounds in a bandolier on some of these guys, a great character detail!
Another Guardsmen closing in for bayonet-fightin! A good view of the face; nothing to write home about but considering most of it is covering the eyes…
The ever-present armband. Don’t leave home without one!
I love these SMLEs! So much chunky detail that takes the paint wonderfully.
Probably my favourite! Some bayonets with guts behind it will carry the day, anyday!
Even the cameraman was afraid to take this photo…at least that’s my excuse for blurriness!
The enamel mug strikes again! Tea time? In my VBCW? It’s more likely then you think!

Since two poses are repeated, I left those out. I had a great time painting this section. Nothing too difficult, and a nice days relaxing painting. The bearskins will certainly draw my opponents eye when I play them! As I play using the Bolt Action ruleset primarily, these guys will ranked as Regular(no Veterans in our VBCW!) but will feature a variation of ‘tiger fear’ as the enemy gets spooked by their presence enough that they focus too much on them. Mind you, only solid playtesting with my friend will iron out the kinks in the unit…it very well might be too powerful!

I was recently given a copy of the ‘Went The Day Well’ ruleset, a classic in the Very British Civil War community. I do wonder how my friend Ty and I will get on once we try them, and how our rather more military forces will play out. As we both play ‘Government’ style forces, Bolt Action seemed like an easier fit…but the Went The Day Well ruleset looks flavourful and fun, and is actually meant for the setting entirely…now just to print up a copy of the random event decks!

I do have a lot of civilian models to paint up, and a whole wack of Socialists to do as well. I just got an order of paint so that’ll be in the works shortly!

But for today, that is all I got. I hope you enjoyed the Grenadier Guard, and more of them will follow when…well I feel like it! Happy War-gaming wherever you are, and God Save the King!

Huzzah! The Grenadier Guards for VBCW Part One!

But of all the world’s brave heroes, there’s none that can compare.
With a tow, row, row, row, row, row, to the British Grenadiers.

They look so plain, without their signature headgear. Lets fix that!

When I first introduced VBCW content to my blog, I mentioned that I wanted to do Grenadier Guards in full combat kit but with their distinct headgear on. Of course, that turned out to be a much harder task to accomplish then I could have imagined. A years worth of searching turned up nothing that would work to my exacting standards.

It was in the course of printing some stuff for a friend that I realized this same friend was a 3D designer, and I asked him nicely if he could make some Grenadier Guard hats for me in exchange. He agreed readily, and was willing to waive any commission fee as a “I really want to help your project” sorta deal. Here is what he knocked up for me!

Oh yeah, the plan is coming together.

Now I wanted them to go on bodies that would suit what I wanted to use the Grenadier Guards for, which was heavy line-breaking infantry. They also have the newest gear, including Bren Guns, and are wearing the dumpy Battledress uniform that many, especially Guardsmen, hated, to the extend that one Guards Major went on record as saying “I don’t mind dying for my country but I’m not going to die dressed like a third-rate chauffeur!” in the Second World War.

This contrast between Dress Uniform pomp and combat equipped, well drilled soldiers, was what I wanted to show. These guys are trained and drilled to the highest extent of the Interwar British Army, and they had to look it. I as such used Warlord Games British Expeditionary Force as the base model.

Great looking models! And this is a great box to get a lot at once!

These are excellent models in their own right, and come with loads of head options. Which I proceeded to toss directly into my bits box. My printers produced me a nice tub of heads to work with, and I got cracking. This wasn’t easy; The head joins on these models are slightly different then the test model the file was designed for, so careful trimming and sanding was needed to fit them. The superglue I use fills gaps pretty well, so I’m hoping that is enough to make them ‘look convincing’

The idea behind these models is that they started the VBCW quite practically, ditching their bearskins for steel helmets except on special occasions. While on ceremonial duty guarding one Lord Cirenchester, they were attacked by a force of Socialist militia. With no time to switch back into more practical headgear before being overrun, the Grenadier Guards went into the fray in full battle kit but with Bearskins on. The Socialists, with a shout of “Bloody hell its the Grenadier Guard!”, broke and ran instead of giving battle.

The lesson was learned. Against militias and non-regular armed forces, the morale shock of fighting one of the feared Guard Regiments has made the practice of wearing the hats a field expedient tactic to break poor quality militias. And if the foe doesn’t break, the full force of modern warfare can be leveraged against them, proving that they are not just Palace Guard but well trained, modern soldiers.

Lets have a look at what I got done!

Section leader for the 1st Section. This Guardsmen has the standard issue rifle alongside standard issue ‘NCO pointing arms’
An Officer in the Guards. His Webley drawn as he walks, not runs, towards the foe.
An average, if that word can even be applied here, Guardsmen with his SMLE.
They don’t like it up em! This Guardsmen is ready for some close-in action.
Fix Bayonets! This Guardsmen is looking over the field, bayonet ready for the bloody task at hand.
Sometimes the job just calls for good, aimed, rifle fire.
Yet another bayonet charging Guardsmen. My kind of man!
Sometimes enemy tanks will make themselves known, and out comes the Boys Anti-Tank Rifle.
A Bren gun ready to lay down supporting fire.
And here, with his loader.
That hat looks heavy…
Vickers crew ready to lay down accurate, precise, and deadly fusillades.
And the whole force. An elite force…we shall see how Harrington On Sea does repelling their attacks!

All in all, a really fun nights work. Tomorrow, weather permitting, I will spray a few with English Uniform spray, and get a head-start on this cool looking force!

That is all I have for now, but there will be more tomorrow. Happy War-gaming, wherever you are, and God Save the King!

Comrades, Come Rally! Part One!

The Internationale Unites the World in Song! The Socialists arrive for VBCW!

The research begins! Or, rather continues. I’ve read this over a dozen times!

For Very British Civil War, it was only a matter of time before I would start a Socialist army. The army reminds me of the heady days of High School, where I was, at least for a time, a massive communist. Time has tempered my politics a tad, but the stirring tune of the Internationale never ceases to make my heart sing for a while.

I had focused on the British Union of Fascists for a spell, to get them done. The Royalist force is something of a favourite of mine, but it is still an army of the Government, the ‘Man’ so to speak. There is something about the little guy trying to get their voice heard that is very heroic.

Now, there is no shortage of great metal models to build one a great Socialist army for the period. But, as a bit of a challenge and inspired by others using the great Wargames Atlantic French Resistance kit, I wanted to try making this out of plastic.

The kitbash, ironically for being for a socialist army, would make any capitalist happy as I spent a tidy sum collecting the parts, far more then intended. I used the basic Wargames Atlantic kit for the heads and bodies, but didn’t use the arms at all, since they were mostly later era weapons from WW2 that wouldn’t suit the period. I instead used Warlord Games Soviet Infantry, specifically the Siberian Veterans kit(more on why later!) using their arms and weapons to make a distinctly Soviet-influenced force.

Now I haven’t begun to paint them, which is why this is Part One. And I have a bit of backstory as well before I get to the models. The Harrington On Sea Workers Defense Corps are led by a former International Brigade member, Comrade Harry Price. Price is an ardent socialist, and enlisted in his native Canada in the Mackenzie Papineau Battalion.

The experience in Spain however, especially the ever-present influence of Stalinism in the International Brigades, has soured him a tad. And the WDC, because of his influence, had eschewed full Soviet support. The weapons may be of Soviet make, but are supplied by a gun-runner from the Liverpool Free State. The WDC pays them in supplies acquired by sympathetic farmers in the area, and in return get some of the Soviet weapons that Liverpool has in abundance. This trade is under the table, and the powers that be in the Liverpool Free State would probably not be happy with this arrangement.

Okay, enough wasting your time with fluff! Onto the models!

The first section! Armed with Mosin Nagants, and further equipped with one PPD and DP-28 Machine Gun, they are ready to take the fight to the Fascist dogs!
I particularly like this section leader. He’s got his PPD at the ready, and is pointing out a target to his comrades.
The DP-28 offers the section some serious firepower. However, with ammunition low, they haven’t had a lot of practice with it!
The ever-present Petrol Bomb makes for a decent Anti-Tank option in a pinch. With General Fullers armoured push on its way to the sleepy town, this worker will need to aim true…
This comrade is a former British International Brigade member, and wears his old hat. Here he is giving a rousing speech to his fellows, fist raised!

The first section was a dawdle to assemble, and some real characters were able to be made. I’m quite pleased with them. I had a comment on the Wargames Atlantic Legion Facebook group that they looked like Soviet Peoples Militia, and they definitely can pass for that! Onto the next ten!

Much the same as the first. Still, they don’t look exactly the same which pleases me to no end.
Another section leader, and this one also has a PPD. But he is instead firing it at the enemy. He has nicked a Brodie helmet from the Anglican LDV, giving him a bit of protection against shrapnel.
Another petrol bomber, and this one looks determined!
Hang on, that’s a beret! It looks like a Frenchie has snuck into my Militia. Still, as long as he hates the Fascists as much as the rest of the Corps, he can stay. This one likes to point and yell excitedly in French, much to the confusion of his Section.

Now, with the Lockdown still in effect, getting grey spray to start on these fellows could take a while. I promise I’ll show them off painted as soon as I can!

While that is all I have for the Socialists, for now at least, that wasn’t all I was working on this week. My friend playing the Albertines/Anglican league side of the defense needed some proper armour. The Renault FT was nice, but he wanted something a bit bigger, more like a proper tank.

For this, we turned to the French. Specifically, a Somua S35. This was obtained as a file from Eskice Miniatures on MyMiniFactory, and while it took forever to print it turned out nicely.

The supports that come with the tank looked a bit flimsy, and the tank wasn’t hollowed. I hollowed it in Chitubox, and added my own supports. While most of the S35 looks fine, the tracks are a bit rough. Nothing mud can’t fix!
A beautiful tank, one of my favourite from the Interwar-Early WW2 period. A design ahead of its time, it was poorly used in the Battle of France and were mismanaged badly.
Lots of great detail on the back!
Scale wise it seems alright, at least for the usual ‘slightly too small’ Bolt Action style I have going on already.

Hang on, is that another hull in the back?

when there is one too many | Prequel Memes | Know Your Meme

Yep. I couldn’t let my friend have all the fun. I’m not sure what I’ll do with the second one, and it very well might end up in my Socialist list. I’m keen to paint it!

One is good, Two is better!

As you may have noticed, there is a third tank hanging out in the back. The BUF couldn’t just let the Socialists steal all the fun, and an A9 Cruiser Tank came off the printer as well. Luckily, I have lots of black paint, so it got painted right away!

Ah yes, more free-hand. Still, doesn’t look too shabby!
With three machineguns, this lightly armoured tank certainly isn’t lightly armed!
Scale-wise, it is still a tad small. But its good enough for gaming!

Finally, a bit of a Royalist surprise. Another friend of mine needed some printing done, and being that he is a 3D artists, I asked him to make me something. I expected to pay a commission fee, but out of the goodness of his heart he made it for free!

Oh yeah, its Bearskin time.

I finally got my Grenadier Guard/Coldstream Guard bearskins! I have a kit on the way that these heads are destined for, but for sake of example, I have put one on a spare WW1 British model.

Unwieldy. Top heavy. Utterly ridiculous. Beautiful.
These guys will be my Royalist shock troops, supremely well disciplined, and savage on the attack. However, they are few in number.

I’m very excited for the bodies to arrive from Warlord Games to stick these heads on. They will look every bit the elite unit they are supposed to be! Unfortunately, I cannot share them; I’d need his permission, which he would probably give, but we used a paid file to make the faces, and therefore I’m limited to just using it for myself. I apologize in advance!

It certainly has been a busy week! Lots of projects to work on, and just because I’m a massive sucker for punishment, I have also got myself a Soviet Winter Army Starter from Warlord Games. A store in Canada had it for a great low price, and the 80+ Soviets in the box will kickstart…my Stalingrad project. I have loads of destroyed buildings, and I’m excited to hold off the Fascist invader. There is no land beyond the Volga River! There will therefore be some regular Bolt Action goodness coming up, so stay tuned!

Anyways, that is all I have for you fine people today. I hope you guys enjoyed the read! Paint will come, as soon as I can actually get some! Happy War-gaming wherever you might be, and have a good day…Comrade!

A ‘Self Portrait’ in Miniature: 3D printing myself for VBCW!

Heroforge ain’t just for D&D!

Here I am, or at least a decent facsimile of me in the 1930’s! I’m quite chuffed with this!

Sometimes I plan for days what I am going to write for this blog of mine, and sometimes ideas or inspiration strikes and I just go for it, and today was very much the latter.

I have played around with Heroforge quite a bit, but never ordered any. I was never quite pleased with how the bases were integral, or that it was a primarily ‘fantasy’ oriented tool. However, earlier this year, I had noticed a rather nice addition: modern weapons! With an accompanying amount of modern clothing to go with it, I played around with making a couple Zona Alfa characters….but I got distracted with other things and never quite pulled the trigger.

Someone on the VBCW Facebook page had made a Socialist banner bearer for her VBCW project using Heroforge however, which piqued my interest, as I had never considered using the program for such a purpose. In hindsight it appears rather obvious, as there is a lot of ‘Pulp’ options in the program now that really suit the Interwar period.

So, I had another go this morning. I had nothing else to do; my foot is healing rather slowly after my surgery so I’m mostly stuck in bed, with limited mobility. I hit upon a rather silly idea…what if I made myself? After fiddling with the options for a good couple hours, and figuring out how to make myself a little more round around the middle(I’m definitely no Conan the Barbarian, which seems to be the default setting!) I was pretty set! I had a couple things I wanted for sure: A Thompson submachinegun, a tobacco pipe, and a Mk1 ‘Brodie’ helmet, and civilian clothing.

After another hour, I had this!

A nice static pose. I like to imagine I’m taking a nice smoke break after a skirmish.

I had to sacrifice one thing: no glasses! Glasses on miniature models can look dodgy, and 3D printing is no exception. So I left them off. I’ll be sure to give myself a -1 to hit penalty for nearsightedness!

Of course, this was just the start. You can choose to print without a base now, and I took that option, as none of the Heroforge models I have been asked to print with the bases have ever turned out alright. After purchasing the STL, I had to wait about 15 minutes, but the then the file was ready for me. A few minutes supporting it in Chitubox and I slapped it on my printer. Two and a half hours later I had this!

Not too shabby! Supports came off nicely, but some cleanup was required.
The pipe, probably the most important part, came out pretty good! My face came out as alright as my printer will get it, until I get a 4K printer!
I scaled down the model in Chitubox; I managed to get pretty close, and I’m happy with the scale.

Of course, at this point my foot was really starting to ache, but I found a way to elevate it at my painting desk, which I didn’t think was possible. I hobbled outside and sprayed the model with an undercoat, and decided to paint it! After all, it was better then sitting around in bed even more!

After about an hour or so, I was done! Lets have a look shall we?

Not looking too bad! The Brodie helmet seems to make taking pictures of the face an absolute pain in the rear however!
The white shirt took a few coats, but I got there in the end. The rest of the colours went on super easily, and the detail from Heroforge popped quite well!
Normally I try to keep my fingers out of photos, but I couldn’t help it if I wanted to show off the facial detail. While I can’t paint faces worth a damn, the jaunty expression and round face came out quite well!
The best part about 3D printing miniatures is I can totally print another when I learn to do faces better. As it stands, I’m pleased as punch the goofy expression I put on my face came through!
The Thompson is definitely heroic scale, but the detail therefore popped quite nicely. The pipe coming out at all was great! A nice touch is I wear my watch on the wrong arm, and I was able to reflect that little detail in the model!
The Red armband gives away that I made myself a Socialist! The start of many more to come, I assure you.

As another fun detail, I did the armband Red instead of my usual Royalist white with blue stripe. This is actually the first of my hopefully many Socialist models for VBCW. If I had been around in the 1930’s I definitely would have gotten caught up in the whole volunteering for the International Brigades thing. My character for VBCW will reflect that, being a veteran of the Mackenzie Papineau Battalion, a Canadian contingent of the International Brigades. More on that in another blog post!

I had an absolute blast making this model from online builder to print to paint! The wonders of the modern age indeed! I got so caught up making characters I made my friend for VBCW as well.

My buddies potential model. He’s got a whole 1930’s John Wick thing going on.

It is absolutely crazy to think that this whole thing is possible these days, and I must admit while I’m definitely a fan of the older school metal models, there is something to this whole 3D design thing that almost makes up for it. While the rest of my Socialists will be plastic or metal, at least their glorious leader(humble too!) will be from the new wave of 3D printing.

Anyways, that is all I have for today. I hope you enjoyed this pretty radical departure from my normal content, and didn’t overly mind my narcissism! Happy War-gaming wherever you are, and No Pasaran!

Royal Reinforcements: More Toys for the VBCW Royalists!

And some Video Gaming too!

Some heavy firepower and someone to command them!

My VBCW army is a project I particularly enjoy working on. With such an interesting setting, it is easy to get motivated into getting them done before Lockdown ends and finally use them in a game.

I got a Vickers MMG, a Peerless Armoured Car, and a Major and Warrant Officer done. My hands fought me the whole time, as they were shaking quite badly today. Still, they have a simple paint scheme so they came along quite nicely. Lets show them off!

I do love me a Vickers! With such an iconic look, I had to have one in my army.
Of course, you need the armbands in these times of Civil War. A white armband may be all that saves you from ‘friendly’ fire.
A simple grassy base, with a tuft of yellow flowers for taste.
All in all, a fun little team to work on!

Next up is the Peerless. This was a 3D print I did a few months back, one of my early successes. It is from Deweycat on Wargaming 3D, and I heartily recommend it.

With two MMGs, it can be a nasty mobile pill-box, giving me firepower where I need it most!

A really simple paint job, nothing fancy.
I’m torn on how the identification stripe looks, but at least it will be an obviously Royalist vehicle.
The wash came out quite nicely!
And with sturdy armour, it will take some Molotov’s or Boy’s Anti-Tank firepower to kill it.

Finally, and the units I worked the hardest on was the command team, a Major and his Warrant Officer. They provide my High Command, and since I’m using Bolt Action rules, the ability to activate four other units is going to come in very handy!

I like to imagine that the officer is an old hand, veteran of the Empire. Serving in the Great War was just his last posting. The Warrant Officer puts steel into the Territorial Army troops I field. Together they form a unit.
The Warrant Officer was a lovely sculpt to paint, and didn’t fight me at all to get done.
The small insignia is all that gives away his rank. I love that it actually resembles a crown!
Not as old as the ‘ole Major’, he is nonetheless a veteran of the Great War, and knows how to fight!
The ‘Ole Major’ is getting up there in years, and doesn’t even bother carrying a sidearm. He has people for that! His fighting days may be done, but his oath to King and Country means he serves as best he can.
Lovely detail on his face! I have since cleaned up that armband, and it looks much sharper in other pictures.
The pose has such a commanding presence. Leading his boys from the front, he knows the risks but no longer cares. He’s had a good run.

All in all, a good two days of work! I had a lot of fun painting these guys up. Next up is another squad of BUF infantry and perhaps another squad of Territorials. Four squads will give me plenty of board control!

In non-tabletop news, I am super stoked to see that the Very British Civil War mod for Hearts of Iron 4 has come a long way in the past few months. I’m not affiliated with the project in any way, to be absolutely clear. I’m just super interested in it!

For those of you who are not into computer gaming, Hearts of Iron 4 is a grand strategy game where you control a country during WW2, from industry to fighting with divisions on the front line. The Very British Civil War mod is a hyper focused modification of the game that lets you command one of the factions in the Civil War, and decide the fate of the British Isles!

A good menu! Custom art sets it apart. It’s no Kaiserreich, but its getting there!
Even the menu screens are full of character!
The major players! Everyone important is in attendance, and you can even select smaller factions by hitting ‘select country’
This map is amazing. Focusing only on the UK allows you to focus on the important parts of the VBCW period. This is also a helpful map for the tabletop!
A lovely menu upon start will give you the whole story behind the VBCW, great for newcomers!
This whole ‘tree’ allows you to decide the path and decisions of your faction. This one is for the Royalists!
Clever tech trees allow for some building of WW2 units, should you spend the time researching them.
The one for tanks is particularly interesting!
Cities are multi-stages, as opposed to regular Hearts of Iron. You actually fight for the suburbs first!
London is going to be a hard nut to crack…

Being able to immerse myself both on the Tabletop and now online with friends, really means I can keep the creative juices going on making my tabletop army! I’m also using the mod as a gateway drug to get some other people into the tabletop side of things. I hope that the mod continues its steady progress, and if the guys working on it see this, great job!

But that is all I have for now. Happy Wargaming wherever in the world you might be, and stay safe everyone!

British Steel: Matilda II in VBCW!

And ‘Boney’ Fuller too!

So Majestic! So Slow!

There has been a lot of 15mm Flames of War stuff on my blog recently, but that doesn’t mean I have forgotten my other projects. A setting I was eagerly wanting to return to was the Very British Civil War. But how to make it a nice, dramatic return?

I figured the easiest way was a big, chunky piece of British Armour. After much research to see if it was plausible(more on that later!), I decided on an early Matilda II. These tanks were a nasty surprise to the Germans in 1940, how bad would they be in 1938 in a civil war?

My printing set-up has not dealt with full-plates as well as I would have hoped, and watching this print was nerve-ranking. A corner of the raft was peeling off the bed, yet somehow despite everything the tank printed mostly fine!

Not pictured: A failed print! Huzzah!

Actually, as far as I can tell, it is good enough for table use. This is a file from the legendary M_Bergman on Thingiverse, and was originally scaled at 1:100th for 15mm use. I used Wargaming3D’s suggestion of scaling it up to 28mm, using 178.57% as my scaling guide. While I still think it might be a hair too small, all of my other 15mm rescaled VBCW uses the same scale number so it’ll match.

The file has tons of options, and I opted for a British Expeditionary Force version. I’m hoping that is it is a close enough resemblance to the early marks from 1937-39.

The business end of the 2-pounder. Weak by 1940 standards, but quite powerful for the Interwar period!

Now, this is a controversial tank to use. Most VBCW tanks are much older, 1920’s or early 1930’s designs. However, by June 1938 an order was placed for 140 of these wonderful tanks. Work was slow, and in our timeline only two were completed by 1939.

This early model has a ‘trench tail’

I’m both speeding that up and slowing it down for my particular rendition of VBCW. The first production models were made by Vulcan Foundry in Lancashire. From here on out, it is all alternate history, be warned!

Rather conveniently, Lancashire falls under Royalist control early on. With war kicking off, the Government forces are desperate for these behemoths to enter service, and an inter-service tug of war kicks off on who gets to use these, the BUF’s Armoured Corp led by General Fuller, or the British Army’s Royal Tank Regiment. With two vehicles completed, it is decided that they will see service as ‘breakthrough’ tanks, and General Fuller pushes for the BUF to be granted use of them to break the Liverpool Free State. One is sent via rail to break that Socialist stronghold. The second is sent to the southern front, to be based out of London and sent via rail to where it is most needed. Production is however slow, and reinforcements of this ‘Queen of the Battlefield’ is held up by lack of supplies.

I see these behemoths being used much like a King Tiger would be in Bolt Action; Prohibitively expensive, but capable of controlling the battlefield like nothing else in this timeline can. Short of the French selling Char B1’s to Anglican forces, very little has this kind of armour. However it is painfully slow.

I am considering using this as a scenario only tank, with the capability of it being captured! Those rail-lines are only so secure after all…

With troops next to it!

But wait, what is this?

Oh yeah, its General Fuller time.

This is a fantastic rendition of J.F.C Fuller, who in this timeline is a major player in the BUF military wing, by Footsore Miniatures. I got him with my intial VBCW order, and have been waiting for a moment to paint him up!

Fuller was a major advocate of early modern tank tactics, and helped plan the usage of tanks at the Battle of Cambrai. His ideas were shunned in his own country….but were adopted by such figures as Heinz Guderian in Nazi Germany, who paid to translate Provisional Instructions for Tank and Armoured Car Training into German. He was the only foreigner present at Nazi Germany’s first armed maneuvers in 1935. In 1939, as a guest of Adolf Hitler, he witnessed a parade held in the Fuhrer’s honour. When Hitler asked him “I hope you were pleased with your children?” Fuller responded with “Your Excellency, they have grown up so quickly that I no longer recognise them.”

In WW2 he was sidelined because of his rather obvious Nazi sympathies. In VBCW, he has seen considerably more success. How successful is up to each individual club or groups lore, but as discussed with my friend I have made him a Major General in the BUF, leading a Armoured Corp set up along his doctrines.

A gorgeous model, that I hope I even slightly did justice too. His facial features are finely detailed.
I purposely used a shinier wash on his black uniform, as if he is meticulously cleaning it. The badges are sculpted with detail and picked out nicely. The medal bar was harder: I sort of just dabbed colours onto it.
Done up in my traditional basing scheme!

All in all, a productive evening! My hands decided to cooperate today and remain steady, which made General Fuller doable.

We are expecting a large snowfall tonight, so it will be a while before I can get the Matilda painted. Which gives me time to consider which of my VBCW forces gets it! I’m tempted due to my royalist leanings to give it to the Royal Tank Regiment, but Fuller has strings he can pull to procure it for the BUF. I’ll print two eventually, but for now I am torn.

Well, I hope you enjoyed today’s ramblings, and I’ll more to show you folks soon! Happy Wargaming wherever you are, and stay safe everyone!

Day of the Jackboot: The BUF gets reinforcements!

The BUF get buff!

Finally, some BUF progress!

When my friend and I first decided to play The Very British Civil War setting, it was I who suggested I play the bad guys. I will be up-front: I prefer to paint my Royalist contingent, in their old WW1 style uniforms, as opposed to the more striking British Union of Fascists(BUF) paramilitary uniforms.

For example purposes only, a picture of said Royalist uniform.

This is for two reasons, firstly since the Royalists are fairly easy to paint! Nice chunky detail, an easy basecoat, and they take well to washes. The BUF, in black, suffer from all the problems of painting black uniforms: contrasts and an overall flat feeling.

Secondly, my primer. I used Rustoleum Flat Black, which went on a bit satin and overly smooth. Nothing likes to stick to it! All my BUF were sprayed in one go, and all will suffer this problem unless sprayed over with a flat black from a different manufacturer.

Of course, all this complaining is very much a case of a bad craftsman blaming his tools, and it isn’t getting my Fascist jerks painted any faster. So after doing important housework….

Hard to say no to this face when she wants walksies.

And I had at it! Now, I was given some good constructive criticism from members of the Very British Civil War group on Facebook, namely to punch up the contrasting colours to make the black less flat. I’ll let you, dear reader, decide if it was worth the effort.

These guys fought me tooth and nail to get done. It’s almost like they knew they were the awkward cousin no-one wanted at the party. I went for grey jodhpurs to strike up the contrast, and khaki coloured webbing. Their helmets are a nice shade of grey, just for contrast purposes.

Khaki puttees and blond wood Lee Enfields give a splash of colour.
Not my cleanest painting ever, but serviceable. Ready to fight the Anglican League!

Now my painting isn’t as sharp as it used to be, which I suspect is a combination of the bad primer causing issues, and more frighteningly an issue with my hands from medication I’m taking. Hopefully this passes in due time, I got a lot of unpainted models!

Now for comparisons sake, here is a picture of one of my BUF Yeomanry models, compared to a regular paramilitary BUF soldier. I’d like some thoughts on the comparison, especially with the increased contrast! Be harsh!

Left, a BUF Soldier, Right, A BUF Yeomanry constable.

I think the difference is a positive one, but I think for consistency the Yeomanry lads will stay in that colour scheme.

On a different note, I’d like to weigh in on a discussion that seems to come up whenever the BUF miniatures range gets brought up. That is, historical accuracy.

The British Union of Fascists: Newspapers and Secret Files, 1933-1951 |  British Online Archives
The bastard himself! I may hate fascism, but man those uniforms are spiffy.
Australia & the Fascist Idea of Greater Britain – Imperial & Global Forum
However, the average joe made do with a black shirt and pants. Hardly a military organization!

In real life, the BUF were little more than thugs, with a very basic uniform, and they certainly weren’t toting rifles around! For miniatures like this, the range from Warlord for their Operation Sea Lion expansion works really well! And for some people’s Very British Civil War setting, this works. For me, it doesn’t. Allow me to explain why!

BUF Fifth Column – Warlord Games Ltd
Warlords great offering of BUF miniatures, a much more realistic take then the route I took.

In the Very British Civil War, Mosely is Prime Minister. I’m extrapolating here, but I like to imagine that the BUF goes legitimate; an armed paramilitary force for both policing and bodyguard purposes, with elements trying to integrate into the British Army or stand apart as an armed, military wing of the Party in general. For this, Footsore Miniatures offerings are fantastic, a much more wild extension of the historical record, and very ‘Waffen SS’.

For my friend and I’s VBCW, we have gone with the latter interpretation, to make for a neat enemy for his Albertine forces to fight. I’ll be running them as inexperienced, badly trained fanatics using the Bolt Action rules, brave but not particularly well drilled and prone to breaking off an attack if it goes south. Maybe using the Italian rules? They’ll be backed up by Royalists using the British rules, stiffening the back of the army I play as a whole. I want the BUF to be dangerous, but not overpowered.

Anyways, I’ve said my opinion. If you disagree or want to debate it, I’m more then happy to! Just comment away.

In other news…and a little teaser of what’s coming. I’ll leave you with a model to ponder over…

Redcoats? On my blog? Its meant to be!

As well, my battle report from a while back for Zona Alfa was very well received! I won a prize in the associated contest, and got a signed copy of the rules from the author, Patrick Todoroff! I’m quite chuffed with my win, and hopefully I can get back to Zona Alfa fairly soon!

Signed by Uncle Vanya himself! Maybe another Zone expedition is coming?

But for now, that is all I have. Happy wargaming wherever you are, and God Save King Edward!*

*Not Prime Minister Mosely though, he’s an absolute jerk!