Today, another seven new 15mm vehicles aimed at Hammer’s Slammers:The Crucible hit the website. To be strictly accurate, they’re actually seven configurations of the same vehicle family – the Centurion Large Transport Vehicle.
The Centurion is a large multi-role wheeled vehicle system designed around a common family of components. Each vehicle is composed of multiple ‘segments’ that are combined depending on the battlefield role. The vehicles are especially popular with mercenary units which lack a permanent base, as their size compared to other wheeled vehicles gives the troops an increased level of comfort and space during deployments. They are generally used as infantry transports, command and communications vehicles or in non front-line combat roles such as artillery, mortar or anti-missile, where their size again comes in useful allowing them to carry more ammunition. The twin-wheeled independent axles give them a degree of mobility that belies their size, although negotiating narrow streets can be an issue with the larger models.
They range from the smallest model, the stubby C400 utility carrier, up to the enormous articulated C4F6 and the C4H6 heavy artillery Hog. Many turret options are available from a simple commander hatch with a tri-barrel, various light and heavy support weapons, through mortar and artillery turrets, calliopes and on the C4H6 a huge 20cm artillery turret.
We’ve listed each vehicle on the website with multiple turret options – in some cases for two different weapon mounts, front and rear. These options have mostly been driven from the detachment lists, but if there are additional options or other turret types that you’d like to use, please drop us a line and we’ll do our best to help. The turret mounts on the Centurions will take most APC-sized turrets from our 15mm Hammer’s Slammers and generic sci-fi ranges.
Next off the 15mm conveyor belt are three new wheeled vehicles – the Odyssey, Catapult and Broadsword. The primary users of the first two are the Apex Dragoons, while the Broadsword is much more widely used, being fielded by the Han Black Banner Brigade and the Hindi Army amongst others.
The Odyssey is a medium-sized 6×6 personnel carrier, generally lightly armed with a pintel weapon or a small remote mount.
The Catapult is essentially the same vehicle as the Odyssey but with a rear turret ring allowing to carry a heavier armament, albeit at the expense of troop carrying capacity.
The Broadsword is a much larger multipurpose 8-wheeler – big enough to act as a tank when fitted with the right armament. Tank destroyer, multiple rocket launcher and artillery versions all exist along with more lightly armed infantry carrier variants.
I’ve recently been painting a couple of 15mm Lightning Division detachments for Hammer’s Slammers:The Crucible; these are both upgraded units after the division re-equipped with blower tanks. Some LD units still field the older tracked vehicles, and we’ve now released vehicle options that will allow you to field a pre-upgrade LD force (with a bit of tweaking of the detachment lists).
At the heavier end of things is the Kraus tank. This is a modification of the Neo-Soviet Bars tank hull with a Bizon turret and the gun and gatling turret from the Kurt blower. You will need to do a little bit of filing to make the gun fit the turret and attach the gatling, so please be prepared for that. Also available at the same time is the Zaporoskiye version, called the Barzon, which retains the Neo-Soviet tribarrel secondary turret and Bizon gun.
Smaller than the Krauss is the Falchion light tank, which is armed with a 6cm railgun. It shares a chassis with the Fauchard light APC, equipped with a light railgun turret. The latter also comes with a twin-barrelled mortar turret option which is still in service in re-equipped LD units.
The Falchion and Fauchard are also used by other units in The Crucible – the Nonesuch National Guard and Guardforce O’Higgins use both, while the Prosperity Rebels only field the tank in several variants. These units have other variants such as a light artillery tank and other APC weapon options. From the website you can choose different weapon options (for example, the Fauchard mortar carrier has single and twin turret options), but if you’d like to swap in a different turret from our range that isn’t listed, contact us and we’ll see what we can do to help out.
Today sees the start of a minor deluge of new 15mm Hammer’s Slammers releases, spread out over the next couple of weeks.
First off the production line is the Br64/68 Viking half-track, used by both the Thunderbolt Division and the Wolverines mercenary units. The Thunderbolts use the Br64 Viking armed with a heavy support weapon in recce units and also to tow the Varningr trailer fitting with a multiple rocket launcher system. The Wolverines use both the Br64 and the missile-armed Br68, either to carrying single infantry teams or as a tractor for a towed powergun model (you’ll have to wait a little longer for that one, but it’s in the works).
The Varningr trailer comes in three variants – the afore-mentioned MRLS system, a plain cargo trailer and a towed calliope. The latter is used by Hampton’s Legion. The cargo trailer is just a handy, general purpose bit of kit with multiple uses.
The German Aeronef Fleet is the latest one to be updated, with the existing battleship and battlecruiser models replaced with new designs. In addition, there are two new models, the Derfflinger class Battlecruiser and Weser class Carrier.
All of the new models are digital sculpts featuring resin hulls with metal fittings. Turrets are now separate parts along with metal tails, masts and other parts.
The existing fleet packs have been updated with the new models (VANFP-301, 302 and 304, which now contains one Moltke and one Derfflinger) as has the Grand Fleet Pack, and there’s a new carrier pack.
VAN-301 – Blücher class Battleship – £8.00 VAN-307 – Markgraf class Battleship – £8.00 VAN-312 – Moltke class Battlecruiser – £7.00 VAN-323 – Derfflinger class Battlecruiser – £7.00 VAN-324 – Weser class Carrier – £9.00
Having replaced all of the British Aeronef capital ships earlier this year, it’s now time for the carrier aviation side of the fleet to get a makeover. Joining the fleet today is the Furious class aircraft carrier, a long, slender vessel with a full length flight deck. The ends of the hangar deck are open so aircraft can also be flown off the short lower flight deck forward. The Furious is armed with a battery of six anti-aircraft turrets to ward off attackers.
The Furious carries eighteen fighters of new design. The usual mix is twelve single-seat scout fighters, and six larger two-seater fighter-bombers. The latest aircraft to enter service, both specifically designed for the Furious, are the Fitton Scout and the Thornton 2-seater.
A rather more unusual vessel is the Ark Royal class airship tender. This has a huge hangar amidships with space for two fully inflated dirigibles, or as many as six gondolas can be carried with their gasbags deflated – the ship also carries enough liquified helium to inflate them. Converted from merchant vessels, they’re heavily armed with two cruiser turrets for’d and anti-aircraft turrets on top of the hangar.
The Furious replaces the older Albion carrier model which is being withdrawn and will also be replaced by a new model later in the year. We’ve updated the contents of the British Carrier Pack with the Furious and new fighters as well.
Next from the Brigade production line are the small merchant ships which came out at Salute, and I suspect we sold more of those than any of the other new releases on the day in terms of numbers of individual models sold.
There are five in all of different design, none more than an inch long. There’s also a new Merchant Convoy pack which combines these with the larger merchant ships released in 2016.
+++++The Military Space Fleet of the Neo-Soviet Union unveiled it’s latest battleship, the Admiral Zhukov recently. The vessel, along with several previously unknown members of its class has now entered active service.+++++
The new Zhukov went down well at Salute, we almost sold out of the models that we took with us. It’s now available from the website.
I’ve also got ahead of myself for once and created a Starmada:X playsheet which you can find here.
The next item of our Salute releases to hit the website are our Great War Boy Scouts. Although part of our Belgian range (one figure is based specifically on a WWI photograph of a Belgian scout) the similarity in the uniforms would allow them to be used in other countries and periods.
Sculpted by Martin Baker, the three figures depict scouts of different ages (and heights) – the smallest and youngest has his knapsack on his back ready for a picnic ! Another has a despatch bag to carry messages to the front, while the oldest has a Lee-Enfield rifle and bandoliers ready to face the Hun, as in this period photograph.
All are wearing the traditional uniform of shorts, long socks and ‘lemon-squeezer’ campaign hat.
So Salute is over, which is a relief in some ways – the last week or so got a bit manic. We had a good day, saying hello to many gaming friends from all over the country and beyond (it was great to finally meet a Swedish gamer who I’ve corresponded with for over 20 years), and of course also shifting a considerable quantity of resin and metal !
We do have a couple of post-show notices – I think there were two gentlemen who made large purchases and left a small item behind (both my fault – I put the items on the stand and obviously missed packing them into their respective bags at the end of the transactions). In both cases I spotted it almost immediately and tried to find them but they’d already disappeared into the crowd. So if you’re missing a) a Russian Aeronef torpedo group, or b) a pack of satellites, drop me an email and I’ll post them on, or find us at a subsequent show. Unfortunately I don’t have email addresses for you so can’t be proactive and contact you myself.
I’m a little behind with mail order, but should catch up by the end of the week – apologies if you’ve had to wait an extra couple of days, I was hoping to get away with no disruption but couldn’t quite manage it.
OK, onto the main business of the post – the first tranche of new releases from Salute is hitting the website this week. And the very first items are in the Small Scale Scenery range – the City Hall, stone bridges and four lighthouses.
Die Alte Stadthaus is based on Berlin’s old City Hall, but we’ve altered the overall dimensions a bit to make it an 80x80mm square which fits nicely with the sizes of our other City Block models. The real one is roughly that size but isn’t square. It’s a two-piece resin casting, with the domed tower as a separate part.
The pack of stone bridges are the same length (40mm) as the girder bridges, and come cast in metal in four different designs based on UK and European prototypes.
The four metal lighthouses are again based on real world models, two French and one each from Germany and the UK.