Belgian Colours

We’ve been sent a number of photos of some excellently painted examples of our 28mm Great War Belgians by Sven de Braekeleir. He’s very kindly allowed us to use them on the website, so we’ve updated a number of the photos of various codes including infantry in shakos and the mounted lancers. Please go and have a look at Sven’s Facebook page where you can find more samples of his work, both on our figures and many others.

The Fall of General Ander

Ander’s Legion is a combined arms mercenary unit that makes an appearance (of sorts) in the Hammer’s Slammers story Paying the Piper. They were fighting alongside the Slammers on the planet of Plattner’s World in the pay of the United Cities, facing (amongst others) the West Riding Yeomanry and the Apex Dragoons. General Ander and his troops should have been dug-in, ready to support Lt Arne Huber’s company of combat cars, but failed to appear to spring the planned ambush, leaving F-company badly exposed. This resulted in the unfortunate General being arrested by his UC employers for failure to follow orders (who, just to be sure, sub-contracted the actual arrest to Major Joachim Steuben and his White Mice field police unit). While in custody, the General chose to take his own life rather than face the Bonding Authority tribunal – or at least, that’s what Major Steuben would have you believe…

General Ander studies his options, shortly before his ill-fated meeting with Joachim Steuben. The general was not seen alive again by any of his unit…

The Legion is a mechanised unit, fielding mainly tracked or semi-tracked armoured vehicles, along with quick-reaction infantry units on one-man skimmers. Following the death of the General, the unit chose to retain its name but re-equipped with newer vehicles. The older Uralvagonzavod Cutlass tanks and Halberd tank destroyers were sold on, replaced by TF Industries’ Rapier MBT and the new Xiphos series of self-propelled guns. The infantry’s Dragoon half-tracks were traded in with Scania for the later Dragoon II model. The scout section was upgraded with Viking recce half-tracks and the brand new Kopis recce tank.

We recently released several new Ander’s Legion vehicles in 6mm, and now it’s the turn of the 15mm models. The Dragoon, Viking and infantry skimmers are already available, and today we’ve released the Rapier and two variants of the Xiphos.

The Rapier is a heavy tracked tank with a long-barrelled 22cm DS railgun, light Manta missile pod and bow gatling. The model features a resin hull and tracks, with a (huge!) metal turret and weapons. There are also two air-defence variants, known by troops as the Machete – one with four 2cm tri-barrels, and another with a mixed laser-missile system.

The Xiphos comes in two flavours – a tank destroyer with a 20cm HI powergun that will give any opposing tank a headache, and an infantry support variant called the Palintone with twin breech-loading mortars. Each vehicle also has three tri-barrel 2cm powerguns, giving it additional firepower equivalent to a combat car! The open superstructure is protected from shell fragments by a beryllium mesh screen that runs on roof rails and can be retracted into the back of the engine compartment, much like a giant roller-blind. The Xiphos model has a resin hull and tracks, a 3-piece metal superstructure plus roof rails and weapons also in metal. The splinter screen is provided in the form of an etched brass piece. This will cover the whole of the open rear deck, it can be omitted to represent a retracted screen, or, if cut somewhere along the length, can represent a partially deployed screen.

As a final note, we have resupplies of our very handy etched brass turret baskets – you can find those under 15mm Accessories.

HS15-3611 – Rapier Tank – £8.50
HS15-3611a – Machete P/4 with tri-barrels – £8.50
HS15-3611b – Machete LM/2 with laser/missile system – £8.50
HS15-3612 – Xiphos Tank Destroyer – £8.00
HS15-3612a – Palintone Mortar Support Vehicle – £8.00

HSD15-3601 – Ander’s Legion Infantry Detachment – £36.00
HSD15-3602 – Ander’s Legion Recce Detachment – £41.00
HSD15-3603 – Ander’s Legion Mechanised Detachment – £63.00

Keen readers will have noticed the absence of the previously-mentioned Kopis from the release; don’t worry, it’s coming. But it arose at the last minute from a brief discussion on Facebook, and there wasn’t time to get a model designed and into production to join the other models. But rest assured, we already have both 6mm and 15mm masters in hand – the resin parts for the 15mm version have already been moulded.

Black is Back

Having been out of stock for a while, we’ve just received a big consignment of flying stands including several thousand black ones, so those are now back on sale on the website again (woo-hoo!). This means that spaceship squadron packs will also ship with black bases again instead of the clear ones we’ve had to use lately.

We’re often asked about the exact dimensions of the bases so while I was updating the website I added a couple of photos to make the sizes clearer (these show clear bases, the black ones are exactly the same size).

Fallen Giants

I recently made some wreck markers for a game of Imperial Skies; they don’t serve any game purpose, but they look good 🙂

I was fielding a small but powerful French fleet, so I modelled my two capital ships (a Gaulois dreadnought and a Massena battleship), and while I was at it I added a Loire and one of the new la Verde class Italian battlecruisers.

The resin hulls were cut off at odd angles and the Gaulois was cut completely in half. They were then severely distressed with knives, clippers, files and a Dremel fitted with a grinding head. Some of the turret mountings were drilled out and gun barrels removed. The metal turrets, funnels and other bits were similarly attacked, gun barrels and masts bent before sticking them to the hulls.

They were based on textured plastic Land Ironclads bases, and the Massena’s tail was cut off and stuck at an odd angle.

Everything was sprayed black before they were given the roughest of rough paint jobs – just two additional colours, deck and superstructure. I didn’t bother painting details such as windows that I’d normally spend time over. I gave them a similarly quick drybrush rather than the usual edge highlighting, then lots of dark washes hid the rough edges.

The bases were painted in sea colours and a wash of GW Coelian Greenshade gave a suitably oily-looking surface to the water. The final touch was some fibre stuffing which was lightly sprayed black then superglued to represent smoke billowing out of various orifices.

Although they were just for aesthetic purposes in our game, they could be useful as objective markers in a game – retrieving vital papers or a VIP from a downed ship.

Through the Ages

We have a number of new items in the Small Scale Scenery range today; they span almost a millennia from the Iron Age to the early middle-ages.

First up is this very flexible 25-piece set of roundhouses and other huts. There’s a mix of styles and sizes, mostly roundhouses but also including rectangular and oval structures. It also includes a Crannog, a small Celtic settlement which would be built on an artificial island in a lake. Although we’ve labelled them as a Dark Age village, the set would be eminently usable in other settings, for example the roundhouses would make a great African tribal settlement.

Largest of all is this one-piece resin village. It consists of a number of roundhouses along with small store huts and a central chieftain’s house, surrounded by a stone wall.

This odd looking structure is a Broch. They were built in the first centuries BC and AD in Scotland and surrounding islands – estimates for the number built vary between 100 and almost 600. Although they look like fortifications, they seem to have held a small village under one roof and their exact use is shrouded in some mystery.

Finally for this week, and dating from the 9th to 12th centuries AD, a number of tall Round Towers were built in Ireland. Again their purpose seems muddled – their Irish name, Cloigtheach, means ‘Bell Tower’, so they could simply have been belfries. But they’re also known colloquially as Priest Towers, and it has been speculated that they were used as refuges for the clergy from pillaging Vikings.

SSS-8139 – Dark Age Walled Village – £2.50
SSS-8140 – Dark Age Roundhouses – £5.50
SSS-8141 – Broch – £0.50
SSS-8142 – Priest Towers (x3) – £1.50

Croiseurs Français

This week we’re updating all of the cruiser classes in our French Aeronef fleet. This includes the cruisers Jeanne la Pucelle and Formidabile, and the commerce raider classes L’Epee and Fléche. Whenever we release one of these updates we always try to add something new as well as replacing the older models; the British got the Minotaur Armoured Cruiser earlier this year and the Germans the Lützow Fleet Cruiser and Hansa Torpedo Cruiser. The French are no exception – they get the brand new 6-turret Jules Ferry Armoured Cruiser class.

French heavy cruisers patrol off a Mediterranean coastal town, watched over by a floating battery
Commerce raiders move to intercept two German merchant vessels under escort.

We’ve followed the layout of the older models for the designs but in detail they’ve all changed considerably (for the better !). All of the models feature one-piece metal hulls and separate turrets. Our existing French fleet packs will have the new designs instead of the old ones.

VAN-403 – L’Epee class Commerce Raider – £4.00
VAN-404 – Jeanne la Pucelle class Cruiser – £3.50
VAN-406 – Formidabile class Light Cruiser – £2.50
VAN-416 – Fléche class Light Raider – £2.50
VAN-421 – Jules Ferry class Armoured Cruiser – £4.00

Heavy Fighters

Following on from last week’s release of the Eaglewing VTOLs, we have more air support options in 6mm – but this time of the heavier variety and more suited to deep space than nap of the earth.

New in our Squadron Commander range are two heavy fighters, one for the American Republic and the other German. The Raptor is an advanced single-seat AmRep attack fighter with four X-configured stabilisers. Tucked away between each pair of stabilisers is a 10-round heavy torpedo launcher, with two gatling lasers provided some hefty forward firepower.

The Kondor is an anhedral-winged German strikeboat. The two-seater has a pair of plasma cannon under the forward canards and a remote twin blaster turret, plus a number of underwing missile hardpoints.

SCR-203 – Raptor Attack Fighter – £3.25
SCR-303 – Kondor Strikeboat – £3.50
SCP-203 – Raptor Flight – £12.00
SCP-303 – Kondor Flight – £13.00

Baby Eaglets

Off the production line this week are these two 6mm Eaglewing VTOLs, the Demeter and the Perseus.

The Demeter is a two-seater attack craft while the Perseus is a utility VTOL with room to transport an infantry squad in the cabin.

The Eaglewing is a Hammer’s Slammers mercenary unit equipped primarily with VTOLs that operate almost as ground vehicles, flying nap-of-the-earth in combat zones to keep out of sight of enemy anti-aircraft weapons. Away from the front line they can fly higher and use their high speed to redeploy quickly as required. They also have a small number of conventional ground vehicles for mortar and artillery support.

Other users of the Demeter and Perseus include the 101st Texian Light Airborne, a fully airmobile infantry unit, and the Fianóglach veterans of Guardforce O’Higgins.

HS6-2601 – Perseus HU.1 Utility VTOL – £2.00
HS6-2602 – Demeter Attack VTOL – £2.00

Finally, just a quick notice that I’m away for a couple of days. We’re up to date with orders to the end of Sunday (15th) and I’ll be back on Friday to deal with any that arrive this week so there shouldn’t be much delay – I just may not be able to answer any emails as quickly as usual.

Signature Delivery

We’ve been meaning to do this for a while, and we’ve finally got around to adding an option on the website for tracked/signed-for deliveries. Our current shipping rates don’t normally allow for this, but for customers that would prefer the peace of mind of tracking and a signature, for an additional cost (£1.25 UK/£5.00 overseas plus VAT if applicable) you can select a Signed For service (either First Class Signed For in the UK or International Tracked & Signed overseas).

Right, now back to some proper work…

Anders Plus

We previewed a bunch of new 6mm models for the Joy of Six show – and I managed to get the cooling tower painted and photographed! The first of these have gone onto the website today, along with (thanks to a well timed delivery of etched brass bits) a new vehicle that hasn’t previously been seen.

The Rapier MBT is being phased in by Anders Legion to replace their inventory of obsolescent Cutlass tanks. It’s a tracked vehicle with a large, sloped turret equipped with a heavy railgun and light ATGW launcher.

The Xiphos is a rather unusual hybrid tank destroyer/combat car. It’s an open backed vehicle, with the rear of the crew compartment protected by a mesh splinter screen, similar to those deployed on Slammers Combat Cars. Primary armament is either a railgun (the same calibre as that on the Rapier but with a shorter barrel) or a pair of breech-loading gun-mortars. It also has three tri-barrel powergun mounts – one on the roof operated by the commander standing in the rear, and another pair mounted over the rear wings. Anders Legion are re-equipping with these in place of their current fleet of Uralvagonzavod Halberds. The 6mm model comes with separate tri-barrels and an etched brass piece for the screen – you’ll need tweezers to assemble this one!

Although we don’t yet have the rest of the Flaming Sword of the Holy Brotherhood ready (a bit of a FUBAR with one of the moulds…), we wanted to get the M12 out as it’s a great little model. The M12L14 tank destroyer is a fusion-powered blower, mounting a 20cm powergun and remote-control tri-barrel. It’s used by the Flaming Sword in their heavy detachments and as the primary armoured vehicle of Broglie’s Legion

Finally for this week, a handy little Radome building which makes an ideal game objective. The dome is the same as our larger radar bunker, so you can create a radar array similar to the Fylingdales Moor installation.

HS6-2011 – M12L14 Tank Destroyer – £1.50
HS6-3611 – Rapier Tank – £1.25
HS6-3612 – Xiphos Tank Destroyer – £1.25
HS6-3612a – Palintone Mortar Support Vehicle – £1.25

B300-144 – Radome – £2.00

That’s all for now – see you Sunday!