Thursday 22 May 2014

Brief return to Stalingrad

Some readers will recall that I resumed my affair with World War Two wargaming last Summer by starting a collection of 12mm, 1:144 scale models, and ruins, with the aim of refighting some of the struggles in or near Stalingrad in 1942. If you'd like a reminder here are the links  first-pics-of-new-project. and making-start-on-stalingrad-ruins

This got hi-jacked by my foolhardy involvement in our Waterloo project at 1:3 scale but I've promised my group I'd put on a Stalingrad game in November, and with Mark Freeman coming into my life interested in WW2  it was a good opportunity to resume. I've spent the last couple of months building up the collection, mostly by my own efforts but also with some judicious purchases off Ebay. I'm absolutely loving this scale as the vehicles still have good detail and the little men are just about big enough to distinguish weapons, officers, observers, radio ops etc. but are quick to paint.
Two photos of my understrength, motorised German Pioneer battalion

I'm using "Rapid Fire!" rules but I needed to test my theory that in this scale they would work with the ground scale halved. So as a rule of thumb any horizontal distance was halved, for example small arms fire now a maximum of 12" and direct anti-tank or HE fire 24". But I kept movement in time the same - so for example basic infantry move 6" and fast tanks 15" across country. The big advantage is that on a standard 6ft x 4ft table  you can still have a game with quick movment but lots more out of range manoeuvring space. Also if representing a historic battle area you get far more of it on your tabletop.  The figure: man scale of 1:15 and vehicles/guns of 1:5 is still the same, so again, you can get more on a smaller table.

I press-ganged Mark into being a willing guinea pig for a test game. As the "wargames-room-with-a-view" is still at least 3-4 months from completion and habitation I had to wait till the Duchess was away for a long day on grandson care duty so I could commandeer the living room and set up my game.  I had to cobble together the battlefield from the old terrain squares used for my 18th century games, topped with the Stalingrad ruins, therefore this is not much like the custom built urban boards I intend for this project. So I chose an early Stalingrad scenario fought outside the main city on the NW suburbs. I emphasise this is not a proper refight, merely a test game inspired by real events and a real location.....but please don't compare it with historical maps as my terrain squares have a will of their own!

It was Mark's first ever wargame so part of the test was to ensure I gave him an interesting force that got him into playing very quickly. You can see  a PDF explaining the situation with some pre-game photos here or look in the CG's WW2 Folder in my Downloads sidebar for Razgulaevka Station Briefings.

I'll show an arial view of the battle area for now and then follow up with detail in the next post.

1 comment:

  1. Great looking units and a fantastic battlefield!