Sunday 29 March 2015

Warlord Games German Ostfront Command

I was very honoured to be asked by my friends over at Warlord games to paint some of their recently released German Ostfront Command figures.

These are older models that have been released from the archive and are beautiful sculpts. My favourite is the vehicle crewman carrying his wounded friend. The figures are as usual very cleanly cast, and full of character.

The radio operator and the pointing officer are both wearing Waffen SS smocks, whilst the medic is wearing tunic and trousers from 1943 onwards.

 The tank crew can be either assault gun crew or in Panzer blacks. In readiness for Warlords upcoming StuG release though I painted mine in field grey assault gun wraps.

The colours used can be found in the painting German's guide I have on Warlords website here.

You can get your own set of the figures here

My work as ever can be seen at Volley Fire Painting

Beyond the Gates of Antares Concord Strike Force

For Warlords upcoming game Beyond the Gates of Antares I have chosen the Concord as my faction of choice (So far). I love the high tech feel and hard sci-fi look to their armour, especially as it reminds me a little of the Fallout series of computer games. More on that later...

My force is currently comprised of the contents of the Concord Strike team starter army, and I've played several games with them now which you can read about here

The models are possibly the best cast figures I've worked with. They require no cleaning up, and after a quick priming are ready to go. I painted mine with a mixture of airbrushing and inking, using a base of Vallejo 972 light green blue. I then shade the figures with layers and mixes of Army Painter Green and Blue inks. Colour inspiration came from the power armour worn by several factions in Fallout, and I was wanting to try out different levels of texture to mimic the game effects.


In game terms the Concord are very well armoured and have both accurate and powerful firepower. 

Balancing this their forces are seem smaller than the other armies in the game, and are quite fragile at close range. the phrase glass cannon could have been coined for them.

 I'm going to be expanding my force with some extra units as and when the become available, Warlord have already teased images of Concord on jet bikes and heavily armoured Drop Troops who look awesome. 

Antares is definitely a game to watch, and you can download the beta version of the rules for free from Warlords website

As ever more of my work can be seen here at Volley Fire

Warlord Games plastic T34/76 review

Another week another review!

This ones been out a little while now, but I've only just got around to painting it. Now, I had every intention of modelling the tank for my Russians, however whilst Googling around looking for photo's of T34's I came accross this picture of a Captured T34. Seeing as my mid war SS force is based around the 2nd SS Panzer Division Das Reich who operated a lot of T34's in 1943 I decided to give mine a change of ownership. 

The simple route to making a Beute Panzer (Booty Panzer!) is to paint the tank in it's natural colours, put some crosses on and Bob's your aunty Mavis. As you can see from the period photo that inspired the build though sometimes the Germans added or altered the vehicles. This ranged from everything from new Cupolas, Schurzen plates, guns, weapons, it's a pretty endless list. 

Warlords new T34/76 is a superb kit. the model is very, very simple to assemble. The kit has a nice little commander figure, and has optional hull flame thrower to make an OT/34 variant, plus a choice of 3 turrets, though sadly only 1 gun and turret ring.  Tracks and suspension are simple and well detailed. Excluding the extra modelling work I inflicted on myself I think the build took about 20 minutes. If you've build Warlords T34/85 you will know what to expect from this.

I added some spare Schurzen plates from a Warlord Panther, as well as some bits of stowage from my spares box. The commanders is from Warlords Panzer IV, and the grumpy looking bareheaded guy is from Warlords tank crew set.

The only area worth mentioning is the optional fuel tanks on the rear hull. The best way to fit these is by butting the edge of the fuel tank up against the exhaust, and the top edge of the fuel tank butted against the hinge of the air vents.

The track join on Warlords kits has the potential to be very prominent, however it is possible to reduce this almost completely. To do so make sure you are using a proper plastic glue, my preference is EMA plastic weld which is actually a solvent, although something like Revell or Liqued poly are ok too.

 I leave track and suspension units off the model until it is painted as this makes weathering and painting easier. Once I'm done attacking them with Crayola's I put hold the top run of tracks in place and apply glue to all the contact points between the wheels and tracks. Leave this about 15-20 seconds for the glue to eat into the plastic and then do the same thing with the bottom run of tracks. Using a glue like plastic weld allows you to use an old paint brush to paint the glue onto the model, and lets you run glue along the joins. Applying some pressure eliminates most of the join, with minimal clean up required.

 The tank was airbrushed using Vallejo Model Colour paint over a grey car primer. I tend not to use model air as I prefer to thin my own paints for spraying.

Vallejo Paint
Games Workshop colour
Dunkel Gelb (Sand)
882 Middlestone
Ushabti Bone

RotBraun (Brown)
846 Mahogany

Skrag Brown


Dunkel Grun (Green)
890 Reflective Green

Straken Green

Shading was added using Dayler Rowney artists oils, and mud was from Games Workshop Agrellan Earth special effect paint.

I've not included comparison shots this time with other T34's on the market as my conversion work has rendered it very hard to compare and do a fair view of Warlords kit, so I shall be building another as Uncle Joe intended and that shall be used in comparison photos.Size wise the model is identical with other kits on the market, and you can happily mix it into other existing 1/56 scale vehicle models.

For more captured tank research check out this website Beute Panzer

I can't recommend snm stuff enough for modelling supplies, here's a link to some plastic weld. Get some, it's brilliant for plastic work.I'm not even being sponsored by them, it's just such a useful tool Go here, buy this

Warlords website is here 

Lastly, my work can be seen here Volley Fire Painting Services

Tuesday 17 March 2015

To Warlord, and Beyond! (the Gates of Antares)

Last week I had the prevelage of visiting Warlord Games to have a few games of Beyond the Gates of Antares using the recently released Concord Strike Force, against Jez Allum and Sam Phillips whom both used Algoryn armies. My force consisted of the contents of Warlords new Concord Starter army.

 After a quick tour of the Studio and seeing some amazing stuff that is due to be released over the next few months Jez and I set to having our first game.

 This was the first time I've played Beyond the Gates of Antares, and we were guided by Richard Dando, although having played Bolt Action the rules were simple and quick to pick up, despite still being the beta version.

Antares allows you far more reaction choices, and has more detail to the game than Bolt Action, however it doesn't get bogged down in details and is very intuitive. The Algoryn forces appear to be very flexible and are good at both range and melee/close quarters, whereas the Concord played best at keeping their enemies at arms length due to their superior firearms and body armour.

Jez managed to beat me in the first game however the second saw me wrestle a hard fought win against Sam.

I'm a fan of Bolt Action, but I really enjoyed the flow of Antares, it felt even more nail biting as the firing was more likely to result in kills, and pins are easy to shake, making games feel quicker. I found myself using the rally order more in those two games than I have in all the Bolt Action I've played!

Also worthy of note is that the game makes far use of statistics than BA for it's units, as I discovered when one of my squads horrendously failed an agility test to climb a small wall, fell over, then got shot to pieces. The dance Jez performed in his moment of triumph more than made up for this however.

I really urge anyone interested in sci-fi gaming to check out Beyond the Gates of Antares here. Currently the beta version of the rules are available to download from Warlords website.

More of my painting can be found at Volley Fire Painting Services

I'd like to extend my thanks to everyone at Warlord Games for a fantastic day, and to Richard Dando Rick Priestly and Andy Hobday in particular. Can't wait for the rematches!

Winter White Wash guide

Following on from my Warlord Games new plastic Tiger tank review, I have produced a step by step guide to doing simple yet effective winter paint schemes on your models.

You can read the guide on Warlords webpage by following the link here How to apply winter white wash

As ever, you can see more of my work and contact me through Facebook here at the Volley Fire Painting Services page

Sunday 1 March 2015

Warlord Games Plastic Tiger Review

The rush of new 1/56 scale plastic vehicles continues at a cracking pace, with another of kit of the Tiger. Being easily one of mine (And many other peoples) Favourite tanks I was eager to get my grubby mitts on this.

The kit I was working with was a pre-release review sample, and as such came without instructions or decals, so it is a testament to how simple the model is that I was able to knock it together in less than one episode of Arrow! 

Warlords model represents a late production vehicle of the steel wheeled type produced from February 1944. (closer examination and consulting with my trusty New Vanguard book on the Tiger shows its a vehicle produced in June 1944 anal retentive fact fans!).

The kit comes on 2 sprues, and stand out features for me are the crispness of the detail on the tools, and the sheer fit of parts.  The zimmerit is also nicely handled. Worth of note too is the 88mm gun's barrel is pre-drilled at the end, I suspect through the use of fancy slide molds. Very little flash is present and the kit also has a nice commander figure, though I've not used him here as I'll eventually convert one up wearing winter clothing. 

I decided to model my vehicle as belonging to schwere panzer abteilung 505 in the winter of 1944. 
The 505th used an unusual numbering system and had a fantastic charging knight symbol on their turrets, with the knight having a yellow tabard denoting the 3rd company. ( different companies used different colours on the tabard, White was first, second company red and Green was staff). I'm not sure where I got the transfer for the knight from, it came out of my decal cage, but the numbers on the hull came from Warlords SDKFZ 251 kit. I won't dwell too much on the painting techniques as I'm in the process of doing a detailed write up with a step by step guide. 

In terms of size Warlords Tigerfits well with those of Die Waffenkammer (with the flag) and with Rubicons (The one that isn't Die Waffenkammer's or Warlords...). The screaming question though is which is better, Warlords or Rubicons? and my answer is both. I'm tempted to leave it there but I suppose I should elaborate. Rubicons kit provides more options and version straight from the box, however if your going to do mid or late production vehicles you will need to sculpt Zimmerit on. A fairly simple task but one that's daunting and time consuming.


Warlords Kit has the better detailed tracks, especially for a late vehicle, however Rubicons are simpler to assemble.Both models are fantastically detailed and fit very well, and are generally pretty accurate. I should also point out that the Rubicon tank shown in the pictures had Zimmerit added by myself. 

In Summary, Warlords Tiger is a fantastic model. If you like Tiger tanks buy one. If you really like Tiger tanks buy the discounted platoon bundle box that I'm sure will be along soon. Warlord have announced some more exciting armour as well...

As always you can see more of my work here at Volley Fire Painting Services

Warlords Tiger can be purchased here Tiger 4 U!