After an intense period of research and consultation we are very pleased to announce the Vpered Na Berlin in now available. Covering the Second World War on the Eastern Front from January 1943 to May 1945 the handbook contains comprehensive force listings for Germans, Soviets, Finns, Hungarians, Romanians and Yugoslavian Partisan forces along with a complete scenario generation system for Partisan warare in the East and ratings for the weapons and vehicles required to fight this exciting and dynamic phase of the Second World War.
At 111 pages this PDF Handbook is a comprehensive document covering some of the biggest engagements on the Eastern Front. The Battle for Kursk, the third battle for Kharkov, the Cherkassy Pocket, Bagration, the battle for Budapest and the drive into the heart of Germany culminating with the battle of Berlin are all covered by the forces included. Here’s a look at what is inside:
Panzergrenadier Gepanzerte Kompanie
Panzer Grenadier Kompanie
Fielding German AFVs
Luftwaffe Jager Kompanie
Partisanenkrieg – Fighting Partisans
Rating Your German Forces
German Weapon Rules
Companie de Infanterie 1943
Companie Vanatori de Munte 1943
Companie Cavalerie Motorizata
Companie de Infanterie 1944-45
Companie de Parasutistii 1944
Fielding Romanian Armour
Companie de Blindate 1944
Companie de Blindate 1945
Rating Your Romanian Force
Romanian Weapon Rules
Páncélos Felderitö Század
Rating Your Hungarian Forces
Hungarian Weapon Rules
Rating Your Finnish Forces
Finnish Weapon Rules
Partisan – Fighting the Invader
Rating Your Yugoslavian Forces
Partisan Weapon Rules
Strelkoviy Rota 1943-44
Strelkoviy Rota 1944-45
Deploying Soviet Artillery
Armoured & Mechanised Forces
Mechanised & Tank Corps Support
Gardesiskii Tyazhelyi Tankov Polk
Rating Your Soviet Forces
Soviet Weapon Rules
Death From Above. War in the Air
This great Handbook packed with information can now be had for just £10 from our web site.
Well, I had a funny day yesterday on Lard Island, I had planned to do one thing but circumstances dictated it didn’t happen, so I seized the moment and had a bit of fun with a box of bits I had bought off EBay for seven quid.
Nothing wildly exciting at first glance, but the contents are really great for anyone seeking to enhance their table or their 28mm model AFVs. It contained a miixture of US and German oil drums and Jerry cans, a dozen drums and thirty-two jerry cans in four different designs. On top of that was a selection of bags, napsacks, bedding rolls and other bits and bobs one can use to add some features toyour 28mm tanks. All of these are, I should point out, in 1:48 scale. Not a 100% perfect match for 28mm toys but is anyone really going to say “That German napsack is 1mm too small”? If they do just punch them right in the mouth; they deserve it.
So Clarkie, what do you want all this old bric-a-brac for? Well, our forthcoming rules for WWII platoon level actions, Chain of Command, use a number of Jump-Off points on the table which we currently mark with some rather spiffing little markers 40mm across and marked with an Allied star of a German Balkan cross (see the bottom row in the photo below). They are pretty enough and small enought, but I thought it might be nice to have something a little more prominent which actually added something visually to the game. And here’s what I came up with.
These mini-fuel dumps used all of the drums and jerry cans in the box, but I think they really look the part. I bought some 38mm washers from the local hardware shop for 20p each (see one in its “naked” state in the photo, bottom right) and added the bits and pieces with a few bits of baggage and road signs to bring them to life. The usual basing mix I use was then added and Bob’s your Uncle.
What I should say is that when one enters the realm of the military modeller you should not expect things to be simple. The jerry cans came as three part kits (why?) , the barrels four part kits. It took me most of the morning to stick these together but you find the right podcast or radio show and it’s no real hardship. So, that’s a full complement of Jump of Points for Chain of Command for seven quid. Can’t be bad.
But there’s more…
Inspired by the stowage provided I thought I’d have a bit of a dabble with an AFV. My old chum Simon Bargery, the original founder of Bolt Action Miniatures and, by coincidence, the man who inspired me to write Sharp Practice (sorry Sean, it wasn’t you!) emailed me a while back to ask me if I’d like some vehicles for Chain of Command. Apparently he had a box of bits in his garage and was happy to see them go to a good home. Naturally, being a poverty stricken rule writer, I bit his hand off; it made a change from Findus horse meat lasagne.
So, Simon kindly boxed up a whole raft of resin vehicles and sent them via Postman Pat. The best bit was a mis-cast SdKfz 251 halftrack with a dodgy back door section. I say “best bit” because I love wrecked vehicles as terrain features but I hate to smash up a nice new kit to make a broken one. So a mis-cast was perfect for me to have a dabble with. Especially as I had just been reading a piece on line by the amazingly talented Troop of Shewe (see his stuff here: http://www.troop-of-shewe.co.uk/ ) where he cut the rear section off an SdKfz 250 and replaced it with an open door and all sorts of other bits.
Well, I am NOT Troop of Shewe. I did do a bit of military modelling when I was a teenager, but that is a long time ago. I don’t have the tools I need to do stuff like this but I had found one sheet of plasticard when I moved my stuff into the new office and that was a good starting point.
I cut the rear section off the halftrack with ease. I was surprised how easily resin cuts so that was a good start, especially once I tidied it up with a sharp knife. Once that was done I used a piece of paper to create a template for the rear section. Fortunately this is the late war model D vehicle so the rear section is a flat sheet with two flat doors. I cut this out of the platicard, cut out the doors and then stuck them on in the open position. I now needed some thinner plasticard to add some details but, as mentioned, I don’t have this sort of stuff to hand. I looked round to find a suitable replacement and used one of the plastic boxes my Artizan figures had come in. The clear plastic was a bit thinner and pretty much ideal, so I added stuff like hinges with that. At the end of the day I am not going to be sending photos of this off to Military Modelling magazine; this will be viewd by my myopic mates on the gaming table so getting the detail perfect isn’t really on the agenda; close is good enough.
You probably can’t see much of the detail here as the thinner plastic I used was transparent, but hopefully when I paint it you’ll see.
You’ll note that I added some baggage from the Tamiya set and then added my own straps from green stuff. I also cut off the front wheel, sliced the bottom section from it and put it back at an awkward angle to show damage. I added the “flat tyre” look around the bottom of the tyre with green stuff. It was a shoddy attempt, but sod it, I will add a silfor tuft strategically and no bugger will notice. Apart from you…
All in all this very minor conversion was a lot of fun to do and I hope it will add a bit of colour to some of our games. Here’s another snap.
So, seven quid well spent and a pleasant use of an unexpected day off-schedule; especially as I managed to cram in a few pints with some mates down the village pub.
Hopefully you’ll be seeing more of these bits very soon as later this week we’ll be recording a preview of the rules for Lard-o-vision TV.
We’re rather new to the world of advertising and Saatchi & Saatchi are out of our price range, but we were able to recruit a couple of stars of West End theatre-land to record our advert for IABSM on Meeples & Miniatures. We wanted pathos, dramatic irony, and above all we wanted feeling! Did we get it? You decide…
It’s here: IABSM Final Advert MP3
It smells of GREAT value! For the rest of February we have reduced the hard copy price of our company level Vietnam rules, Charlie Don’t Surf rules to just £12. With 101 pages containing rules, scenario generator, army lists and our unique dual political and military victory conditions system. These rules have been highly acclaimed for the way they model the asymmetrical warfare of the conflict in a plausible and challenging fashion. The rules won the Miniatures Page vote for the best historical rules of 2010, so great rules at a great price!
And, to make things even better, we’ve reduced the price of Surf’s Up to just £6. This PDF supplement contains sixteen ready to play scenarios, the conversion pack for gaming those with ANZAC forces and the Tour of Duty campaign system, so you can get playing straight away.
Having relied on Neil at Meeples & Miniatures for the past year or more to produce out adverts for us for his excellent podcast we thought it was really about time we got into the Lard Island Recording Studio to do something for ourselves. And what an experience! Wall to wall thespians and clapper boards, but we got two adverts “in the can”, one for Dux Britanniarum and one for I Ain’t Been Shot Mum. Never ones to hide our lights under bushels, we thought we’d unveil the first one here.
So, what feels like several thousands takes and three complete cuts later, it is: Dux Advert
Our thanks to EMC productions who did all the clever stuff. We just made the tea.
With 2013 being the year of the Lardies’ Four Capitals Tour we are very happy to announce the details of the third leg which is happening just outside Edinburgh in June. To be precise the luxurious surroundings of Musselburgh Rugby Club will be the setting for a day long feast of Lard on Saturday the 22nd of June. Starting at 10am and ending at 5pm we plan to run numerous games over a number of tables for our chums north of the border. Dux Britanniarum, Chain of Command, I Ain’t Been Shot Mum, Algernon Pulls it Off, Charlie Don’t Surf will all be on display and we are busy planning others, so do let us know what you fancy playing, or if you or your local club fancy running a game.
Both Richard Clarke and Nick Skinner will be running games as will a selection of local Lardies. Musselburgh Rugby club features a licensed bar and has a proud heritage in the official sport of Lard Island, Rugby Union. We hope there’ll be plenty of opportunity to talk all things Lard and have a few pints over an enjoyable day of gaming. After a fun filled day of games attendees will be invited to come along to Stagg’s Bar, winner of the Lothians’ Pub of the Year for 2012, and quite possibly on for a curry after that.
Cost should be about £5 a head, though this will be confirmed closer to the time – we’ll certainly try to keep this to a minimum. If you are interested in coming, or even better running a game on the day, you should contact our very own Entertainments Officer for Scotland, Derek Hodge, at firstname.lastname@example.org Numbers will be limited so you should get in touch as soon as possible.
Edinburgh will be our third capital in 2013, with Crusade in Penarth near Cardiff in January, Salute in London in April and we have big plans for Belfast in August. So, come along and join us for a great day of gaming in Scotland in June.
Remarkable celebhrations on Lard Island this week. If it wasn’t enough to win the prize for the best Historical Wargames Rules for 2011 in the TMP poll, we also picked up an unexpected victory when our 28mm Hugh Jarce figure won the best single Historical figure for that year. He’s a fine looking chap, but this was praise beyond our wildest dreams.
To celebrate our fourth annual award for Historical rules and our very first figure award, we thought we’d like to say thank you in a very tangible fashion. Firstly, the next 100 orders for hard copy products from our web site will get a free Hugh Jarce figure. Secondly, we are painting up a further six Hugh Jarce figures which everyone ordering between now and Febraury the 28th will have an opportunity to win. For every ten pounds you spend you’ll get a ticket to the Huge Hugh Jarge Draw. The six names that come out of the hat at the end of February will be sent their painted and based Hugh Jarce figures.
So, great news if you want hard copy or PDF products. A great opportunity to buy that set of Dux Britanniarum you’ve been wanting!
What better way to start the New Year then with an award! The merry voters of The Miniatures Page have once again kindly shown their appreciation for Lard by voting I Ain’t Been Shot Mum the best Historical Rule Set for 2011. This is a really fantastic tribute and we are really very grateful to all who voted in the various rounds of the poll. What makes this especially great for us is that in the four years the TMP Awards have been running we have now managed three first places in the historical rules section – Sharp Practice winning in 2008, Charlie Don’t Surf in 2010 and now IABSM for 2011. We just got pipped at the post in 2009 with Mud & Blood coming in a very close second to Black Powder (and who can complain about such competition!), so four podium finishes in four years.
Thanks fo everyone at TMP who voted, and to Bill for running the competition. We’ll be keeping our fingers crossed for Dux Britanniarum in the 2012 poll! To celebrate this great result we have swung into action and have a really great “Thank You” present lined up, so watch this space early next week.
Part of the fun of playtesting a set of rules is the opportunity to not just think about the rules, but also to play games and have fun with the characters involved. As anyone who has played Lardy rules will know, our emphasis is on the men who fought and their importance on the battlefield. Nowhere could the men be more to the fore than in an aerial game where the chance to “get to know” each and every pilot over a sequence of games is the best way to really immerse ones-self in the system. So, inspired by Joe Legan’s Squadron Forward, I decided to land our hero, The Right Honourable Algernon Carpet-Byrnes, with his brand new Squadron in May of 1916. I rolled a few dice and here are the chaps that our new Sprog is serving with.
247 Squadron is commanded by Major Sir James Seville DSO, MC, a cunning hedonist who transferred to the Corps before the war and who ranks as a lesserr Ace. Algy has been allocated to A Flight which, due to the Fokker Scourge, has been reduced to just seven pilots and six observers.
Captain Blackburn heads the Flight, a Veteran who is well-born, wealthy and yet lazy. He flies with Sergeant Edmonds as his Observer. Lieutenant Stewart is also a veteran who is a liberally minded chap who tranferred to the service from the infantry due to his consuming interest in all things mechanical. His observer is the Canadian Oberver Lieutenant “Nipper” Jensen.
Lieutenant Leigh-Travis is also new to the Squadron, being a sprog who seems highly pessimistic about his chances of survival, and also appears to be consumed with avarice. Possibly this could reflect his earthy background in the terraced streets of the north of England, although one would have hoped that Grammar school would have knocked those corners off him before now! Not a popular man, but he is lucky at cards, so who knows. He flies with the elderly Sergeant Wogan who is a renowned poor shot.
Lieutenant Hamilton is a cultured man whose sole care seems to be to return to his beloved family. He hounds his aircrew to get the best performance from his aircraft and his engine is tuned to perfecion, always useful when getting out of a scrape. US Volunteer Sergeant Roscoe is his observer. Roscoe has aspirations to greater things than simply an Observer’s half wings.
Sergeant Bates is another newcomer, a young sprog who joined the squadron last week. He is already carving out a reputation as a man who likes to have fun, clearly valuing golden hours of wine, women and song behind the lines. He also has managed to dispaly a certain derring do in his short time here. Will this be another star that burns brightly before suddenly extinguishing? Who cares, open another bottle, bring on more French fancies! Oh, his observer died two days ago, he currently is awaiting a replacement and “borrows” one of the chaps when he goes up.
Lieutenant Young is the old man of the Flight. He too is keen to return to huis familiy in Surrey and his job as a stock-broker. However, his dedication to his nation and King ensure that this man does his duty at all times. He is helped by Sergeant Raymond, his marksman Observer.
Into this mix has come Algy, the new Sprog. He is flying with Corporal Oiksworth, newly transferred from the Royal Engineers and ready for his first mission. Corporal Oiksworth has never flown before but has some experience of operating a Lewis gun.
Algy doesn’t yet know the chaps in B and C Flights, but he has heard that Captain Freeman who commands B Flight is a daring minor Ace who is driven by revenge. His brother who served in the same Squadron was killed several months ago. Freeman is an Australian and respected for his leadership qualities (unlike Capptain Blackburn of A Flight). There is some worry about his drinking. No matter what he drinks he only consumes it from pint glasses. Not halves.
Captain Peel commands C Flight. A Meek man, a veteran flyer, he recently applied from the job of Squadron commander but lost out to Sir James. Not a situation which makes for comfortable co-existence!
Captain Walker is the Squadron Recording Officer, a glum man whose mood only lifts when in his cups.
So there we have a snap-shot of 247 Squadron as Algy sees it. Algy has aspirations to fly Scouts, especially as he met Major Rogers of 321 Squadron on the boat to France who regaled him with such stories. However, Algy knows he will need to make a name for himself on “Fees” before he can dream of a transfer.
So, let us see what the future brings. ALgy’s first mission is scheduled for this very day!
I thought I’d better add a supplementary post to the last one with pictures of the Shapeways models. Bill very kindly popped the piece onto TMP but of course my comments from the TooFatLardies Yahoo Group could not be seen. So, I thought I’d reproduce them here. This is what I said about Shapeways:
Afternoon all. Well, I just finished painting my first six Shapeways aircraft,
four FE2b and two BE2c. I thought I’d go with the British first as the paint
scheme is much simpler than the Germans.
The material these are printed in is quite odd to use. I washed them in soapy
water, I sealed them in neat floor polish, I gave them two coats of spray on
gloss varnish and I undercoated them in grey car undercoat. Despite all of this
one is left with a somewhat grainy surface which sucks up moisture, and
therefore paint, like a sponge. Is that bad? Well, it does take a bit of
getting used to. In the end I found that watering down my acrylic paints with
water was not ideal, far better to use the Vallejo thinner you can buy as this
is less prone to being sucked right off your brush when you paint.
Detail is certainly less pronounced on these than on the WoW/WoG models and as a
result I found myself painting on stuff like weathering which a dry-brush would
have sorted out on normal plastic models. A dry brush would just not work on
these due to the grainy surface, so you create depth with thin inks and build up
light areas such as on the ribbed wings with a couple of layers of painted on
highlighs. Having said that, the weathering is the part of a paint job I enjoy
(unlike painting struts which is truly tedious) and an extra hour at the paint
table, ten minutes per plane, really payed dividends. From a distance the
models looks as pretty as the WoW/WoG, and I am talking about normal gaming
As yet I haven’t got my decals, I only ordered them last night, so I am not
taking snaps yet, but a bit of additional weathering one they are on will, I
reckon, have them looking really nice.
In summary I would suggest that you need to have a pragmatic approach to these
models. The material is simply odd and you have to find solutions to that by
painting in a way you wouldn’t with plastic or resin, but it is worth it in the
Conclusion. I’d like to paint some pretty Huns before I come to my final
conclusion, but I would certainly buy these again and reccomend them to others.
Just keep an open mind when you open the box.
To try to illustrate the points above I have just taken a few quick snaps and blown them up to give some detail. Part of me wants to apologise as this is slightly unfair to Shapeways in that it makes the issues look worse than they are, but I hope my comments generally will be seen as whole-heartedly positive about these aircraft.
Here’s the first snap which shows an undercoated German plane. I washed the original white model in soapy water – washing up liquid and war water – and then sealed them with a five minute soak on floor wax prior to undercoating the dry model in car undercoat spray. These car sprays seem a bit denser than modelling sprays and I hoped that would get the models a bit smoother.
I must point out that the crew in all of my Shapeways models are the superb Peter Pig 144th scale WWI pilots and crew. These glue in very easily, although they do have to be trimmed to suit each individual aircraft. This image should show the still somewhat grainy surface. A better shot still is this next one which is the same aircraft side on.
You can clearly see the grainy nature of the “strong white flexible” material. Again this is really unfair as this is showing the model at four or five times its size, but it serves to show what I am talking about. What I will say is that when these planes arrived they were indeed white and flexible. To a degree I would question the use of the term Strong, but the strength is a product of the flexibility of the material. They bounce when you drop them! That in itself makes them more robust than normal plactic kits and MUCH stronger then resin.
Now let’s look at the painting detail so you can see what I talk about. First is a shot of the underside of the FE2B wing. As you can see this really is just a flat surface. As it is on the underside I haven’t bothered to do anything other then slap on a coat of light tan (Vallejo Stone Grey to be precise), I am not going to lie on the floor and admire the underside of these, so that is quite sufficient a paint job for me!.
On the top wing it is a very different kettle of fish. I am going to be looking at this and I want it to look nice. Again the top surface has very little detauil other than the faintest outline shape of the ailerons. None of the “ribbing” which one finds in most of their planes was present so one couldn’t simply dry brush over the wing to pick out the detail.
Here I created the highlights by just painting them on using what we could call the Foundry three-stage process. I took my base colour (Vallejo Bronze Green) added a bit of white and then painted on (very roughly) the ribbing. I then added some more white and highlighted up from there. In a few places I then used some VERY watered down black ink to create a bit of shadow. Dom’s Decals provide the perfect national markings with ever speedy service.
I am no painter, so please don’t see this as a guide to painting planes. These snaps are merely used to illustrate how different painting 3D printed planes made in “Strong, White & Flexible” is. I am actually very pleased indeed with these. Biggles began his career on the “Fee” with 169 squadron and my campaign using Joe Legan’s Squadron Forward will see Algy begin on the same kite. Just a bit more detail to go when I decide on the markings for the (equally) fictitious 247 Squadron RFC.