Saturday, January 14, 2017

Review - Airfix 1/48th Bedford MWD

I needed another truck for my Bolt Action British, so I picked up a 1/48th scale Bedford MWD from Airfix.

First a couple of words about the original:
The Bedford MWD was the ubiquitous 15cwt truck in British service - over 200.000 have been produced during the war and it served in every theater. Also only 4x2, it had a powerful 72 hp engine and reached a top speed of 95 km/h with a range of over 400 km. It could transport a 10-man squad or up to 800 kg of material.
The early version had only canvas doors and tiny screens for the driver and passenger, earning it the nickname "pneumonia wagon". In 1943, the design was updated to have half doors and a proper windscreen, together with some changes to the engine covers and instrument layout.
In the desert they were also used as 2pdr ATG portees.

The Airfix kit comes with 95 parts on 3 grey sprues plus one clear sprue for the windshield.

It allows to build both the early and late version and several canvas configurations, so you'll have a decent amount of pieces left after you finished:

You could even further reduce the number of used parts by omitting the engine parts and some of the interior that might not be visible in the version you want to build.

The kit comes together without any issues and I only encountered two small pitfalls:
First, the tires are flattened on one side so be careful when you assemble them to make them fit correctly.
Second, the instructions skip one step when it comes to the steering wheel, but it is quite obvious how it should work.

The final product is a fine little model:

I found several pictures of MWDs in North Africa, and it seems to have been quite common to remove the side covers of the engine, so I left them off my truck, too:

I also left the hood separate to allow easy access to paint the engine:

Size-wise, it fits quite well with 28mm miniatures, mostly because the MWD is such a small truck. A Company B driver doesn't look out of place at the wheel (apart from his missing legs...):

And next to some Perry Miniatures 8th Army soldiers it still looks good:

Even in direct comparison to a Warlord Games 3-ton Bedford the scale difference isn't outrageous:

Just to put the difference between 1/48th and 1/56th scale into some numbers:
This MWD is 1.3 cm too long, 0,6 cm too high and wide.

And with a coat of sand color it is almost ready to roll!

All in all, this was fun to put together and the kit makes a very nice looking model. The scale is acceptable in my mind, and I am looking forward to finish the paint job soon!

Monday, January 2, 2017

Bolt Action Pulp Partisan Cultists

Today I'd like to share an idea for a rather unusual Bolt Action army. 

Picture from Fenris Games

I am a huge fan of Weird War settings, but sadly, there is not much interest in that at my gaming club. Generally, they are quite conservative and like to stick to the rules as they are, while I like to be more... experimental.

Anyway, after realizing that there is almost no way to get away with a British '46 army based on a late war German list (basically an excuse to build some British assault engineers and use JTFM's Tortoise as a Jagdpanther), I thought up a new concept: Cultist Partisans!

Every proper Pulp setting has a sinister cult performing strange rituals to end the world/ wake up an ancient good / summon creatures from the other side / have NSFW social gatherings.
So why not make a fun Bolt Action army based on this concept?

This is the list I envisioned:
Kingsport Irregulars (Partisans)
Second Lieutenant with SMG
+ soldier with SMG

Partisan Squad 1
NCO with SMG
Soldier with Panzerfaust
16 soldiers with rifles

Partisan Squad 2
NCO with SMG
Soldier with Panzerfaust
16 soldiers with rifles

Partisan Squad 3
NCO with SMG
11 soldiers with SMGs
Anti-tank grenades

Guerrilla Squad
NCO with SMG
11 soldiers with SMGs
Anti-tank grenades

Anti-tank Team with Bazooka

General Purpose Truck
General Purpose Truck

= 1000 points
Pretty straight-forward: Two large squads as a solid base, and two assault squads in trucks to get right in your face. Plus a little extra in case of tanks. Anyway, not the best list ever, but okay to play.

Now the fun part - miniatures!
When one thinks of cultists, the excellent Frostgrave plastic box comes to mind immediately. Combined with an abundance of left-over firearms and Molotov cocktails from different Warlord Games boxes this should be a great foundation for this army.

Of course one could just use some army trucks as transports, but if I go wacky, I go wacky all the way:

Behold Sloppy Jalopy's 1910 Type B bus - the perfect way to ride into battle in style!
For the second one I would take the Ford AA panel van from the same manufacturer:

Or I get a Mack Bulldog Model AC from Shapeways:

Or, to fit with the tongue-in-cheek approach, this little vehicle from Great Escape Games:

This army also offers some interesting options for mission objectives and markers. Fenris Games has a whole range of Mythos-inspired pieces like these:

"Sir, we need to blow up the rune stone before those lunatics complete their ritual!"

And if you are looking for some further inspiration, have a look at Osprey Publishing's books about the military struggle against the Elder Ones:

On that note: Cthulhu fhtagn!