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Friday, January 31, 2014

Review: Pink Team Assemble! The Cobra and Loach in Vietnam.

Let's do this!
By Throck "T-Rock" Morton

One of the biggest draws of the new-ish Vietnam briefing book, Tour of Duty, for Flames of War is the helicopters.

I mean, who doesn't want to field flying death machines in force? So, when our benevolent overlords at Battlefront sent along a Loach and two Cobra kits recently of course I wanted to paint them up.

Plus, I just got my first airbrush rig, so this gives me the perfect opportunity to whip it out and start brushing.

Armed forces regularly use "hunter killer" set ups in various different ways, where the "hunter" acts as a spotting team and the "killer" does... well he does the killing. From Bradly AFV's and Abrams tanks to snipers and spotters, the team works together to get rounds down range in the most effective way possible.

Due to the nature of the fighting in Vietnam, quick reaction close air support was a necessity. Thus was born the "Pink Team," consisting of one OH-6 Cayuse or "Loach" (from an observation or "White" team) acting as spotter while the venerable Hueycobra or a UH-1B Hog (from an attack or "Red" team) did the killing.
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Bolt Action - AAR: Hold Until Relieved, 1941

Cory, Andy, Colby, my Dad, and I, got together the other day for an epic battle.  I wanted to bust out some of the Early War vehicles I own that never see the light of day.  This ended up being a lot of fun.  The Germans had a StuG III D, an Sdkfz 233, and a Panzer II; while the Soviets had a BA-10 and a T-26.  Both sides also ended up tricked out with a healthy dose of soft skins to get them into the fight.

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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Steven's tournament report from Auckland NZ Pt I (Flamescon)

So far, since being in Auckland, I've had the pleasure of participating in 3 Flames of War tournaments.  Flamescon, Snapshot, and "Dancon".  Both Snapshot and Dancon were put on by the excellent fellows from T.C.O.W. (That Club Out West).  In this part, I'll only include Flamescon as it was 6 games, and the others were 3 each.

Flamescon is the yearly Battlefront-run event here in Auckland. This year Mike Haught did an amazing amount of work in preparation. The rest of the guys all pitched in to make the event great fun, and a smashing success! I was fortunate enough to play in the big late war tournament.

List: Being my first time in a tournament here, I figured I better go with what I know, so I settled on Armored Rifles.

My list was fairly standard: HQ + extra bazooka, 2 full platoons, 4 shermans (I think I upgraded them to M4A3s so I could get detroit's finest), M10s, cav recon, and armored mortars.

Surf and I playing round 1 on the right
Game 1: vs Mike Haycock's Ostruppen in Dust Up. This was a great game! Mike had a ridiculous amount of platoons- lots of trained grenadiers with a solid backbone from some Panzer Lehr, Pak 40s, and Pak 43s. His AT assets rolled really well and chewed up my Shermans early on. The fight in the middle swung back and forth, but his Panzer Lehr were just able to get the upper hand. My flank attack was stymied by mine fields, and in the end "Surf" broke my company. I think this one was a 2-5. I quite enjoy playing Mike, and this game really could've gone my way- closer than the score might have one believe!
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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

BatRep: EW Japanese vs Russian Heavy Tanks in Breakthrough

By Jeff "SonBae" Flint

My buddy Michael (Link2Edition on the WWPD Forums) and I have been dying to get in another game of Flames of War Early War….this time with my Japanese and his Russian Heavy Tankovy.  Both lists are from the Rising Sun book.

I went with a Fearless Veteran Hohei Chutai backed up by AT Guns and Artillery.  The Type 38 75mm Artillery piece is a great AT gun for this period as well.  AT 8 and Firepower 3+ range 24…YES, Please!

I swapped out 1 Rifle team in each Infantry squad for a Nikihaku team and combat attached 2 HMGs from the HMG platoon to each Infantry platoon.  I have to give these guys some firepower against that infantry blob I see coming my way.  I had to proxy Brit Para 17lbers for the Type 38 Artillery pieces…fair swap, one deadly gun for another.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Bolt Action - When Tank Tracks Give You Lemons...

At this point, I think we all realize that sometimes, the model you receive is not exactly what you thought it would be. What to do in these situations? Call the company and spend more time figuring out how it will all be sorted out? Or do you simply gut it because, man, you really want to get that tank on the table?

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Monday, January 27, 2014

Beyond the Foxholes Episode 8

WWPD presents Episode 8 of Beyond the Foxholes!

Welcome to Beyond The Foxholes Episode 8.
In Part I we join Ben, Winner Dave and Adam as they talk about what they have been up to over Christmas and the New Year, some blog news and a look back over 2013.

In Part II the guys look at 2014, a little Desperate Measures chat and about the new Snap Shot PDF Briefing.

In Part III the guys round out the cast with tournament news, a look at Adam's never ending problem of whether to use British, British or British and this episodes 10.1 is on deployment and placing objectives in Defensive missions.

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Review: Sails of Glory by Ares Games

by Rich - thanks to my brother Jason for the unboxing pics

Sails of Glory is a game of naval combat, set in the late 1700s-early 1800s. Wooden sailing ships of the Royal Navy go toe-to-toe with the mighty French fleet, against the imagined background of Napoleon Bonaparte's European campaigns.

In SoG, you can command agile frigates and second-rate ships of the line in epic sea battles. The ships are 1/1000 scale and come pre-painted. The whole game looks pretty, and the rules and scenarios are versatile and impressive. Your reviewer has never played Ares' "other" game - Wings of Glory - but his trusty podcasting partner and fellow crewmember Jared says that the comparisons are many between the two games. Let's have a look, shall we?

First things first: what do you need to play?  As one of the hundreds of kickstarters of this project way back in May 2013, my set came with everything that Ares released for the game, including the whole first wave of ships.  

A good place for everyone to start with is, well, the starter set. This box comes well stocked with a rulebook (which you can also read here), 4 ships, templates, counters, rulers, and everything else you need to play the game. A wind indicator, er, indicates the wind, an attitude indicator establishes where your ship sits in relation to the wind direction, and the combat rulers determine range for your cannon and muskets. Really all you'd want to add is maybe the ocean mat (although blue felt works just as well), and the terrain packs for some variety. To play an actual game, you'll need some ships and their "logs" (see below), a "mat" for each ship (ditto), a ruler, a wind attitude indicator, and the 5 sets of damage counters (see: Combat).

This is what you get in the starter set, minus the 4 ships
Ship packs

Inside the ship pack - note the folded-up ship "log" behind the model

In addition, you can purchase individual ships from the British and French fleets. A ship pack (which usually retails for $12-$15) comes with the model, a reversible reference card with statistics for two ships (so one model can play as either of two ships in a game), a deck of manuever cards for that ship, and a "ship log". The log is used in the game to display how much damage you've taken, and how much firepower and crew you have. You'll use this log in conjunction with a very important item that comes in the starter set, called a "ship mat."  The ship mat (weird name, I know) shows any actions you have taken or are going to take with your ship (reloading guns, choosing amount of sails, repairing damage, etc.).

The spread-out ship "log" of the French Two-Decker Aquilon, placed in the top of the ship "mat."  The Aquilon has taken damage to her hull and crew, and has both broadsides loaded with round shot. The "mat" acts as a sort of base for a ship's "log."
There are Basic, Standard, and Advanced Rules to use. The Standard rules seem to offer the sweet spot in terms of interesting gameplay, as your options for movement and combat are greater than Basic, but not as complicated as Advanced. I still haven't played the Advanced rules, but they seem to cater to the full simulation crowd with things like fires, sail- and rudder-damage, crew repairs, variable wind directions, and other battle situations.


Without steam engines, you'll be dependent on the wind to get your ship from A to B. If the wind is at your back, you'll fly. If you're facing the wind, you are extremely limited in what you can do (read: a sitting duck).  The colors on your ship's base indicate your attitude to the wind, and you simply line up the attitude indicator with the main mast of your ship (pointing in the direction of the wind) to determine what maneuvers you can take. Once you've got a color, you pick a corresponding maneuver card from your deck, and slide the maneuver card under your ship. No rulers, no measurements, just line your boat up with the colored lines. Simple, if a bit awkward, because all players move their ships at the same time! 


Your wooden ship carries dozens of cannon and a complement of musket-wielding marines with which to punish your enemy (there's a boarding mechanism in the Optional Rules). The combat ruler shows if you're in range, and the firing arcs on your ship show how much firepower you can bring to bear. These firing arcs correspond to three numbers on your ship "log", the first is for your forward arc, the middle for the broadside, the last for the rear arc. You'll notice that the number is highest in the middle, and that's because here you can bring more guns to bear. If you're in range, you simply draw as many damage counters as you have numbers for the firing arc you're using. If you're at long range, draw from the "A" counter bag. Short range is the B counter, Musket range (the width of the ruler) is E, and the C and D counters are for chainshot and grapeshot special ammunition. Players conduct their shooting simultaneously, as with moving.

Color-coded damage counters. Different symbols on the bottom indicate types of damage in the Advanced Rules.
The counters you pull have numbers on them. Basically, your ship has a number limit (called it's "burden") to how much damage it can take. Once you've hit the limit - or lost enough crew members due to enemy fire - your ships strikes her colors.

So how does it play?  
"Much like Wings of Glory," says Jared. "Like a historical wargame," says Rich. As a 1v1, you have to like historical wargaming to like SoG. Combat is all kinds of fun; when ships are in lethal range you're really smashing each other, and sometimes you can sink a ship in two, or even one round of shooting.

Jared and Rich running through a demo game. That's Jared's "hurry up" stare.
It's the maneuvering that slows things down a bit. These old boats take time to turn, so after you make that initial pass and the first volley, you can spend a lot of time circling each other without even firing a shot. In these cases, it's the wind direction that usually gets the last laugh as one player finally flounders long enough to get pummeled. That being said, it's probably a very fun party game. We found that the more ships on the board, the better. Managing one ship takes a bit of micromanagement, and managing 2 seems to be the limit for one person. So you'd probably want more than one person on your team if you're going to have more than 2 ships, and as I mentioned, that's not a bad thing. The opportunities for a large group to have fun playing together - each player controlling one ship as part of a large fleet - are definitely there.

For our 2v2 game, it took about 1.5 hours, including setup, to play. That's with 2 ships per team: 1 ship of the line and 1 frigate.

What does the future hold?
Summer 2014 releases will bring the mightiest warships to the fray: first-rate ships of the line carrying 100 or more guns, individual famous units like the HMS Victory and USS Constitution. I for one will be purchasing a couple of those.

Overall Score:  3.5 out of 5 Pints of Grog

Ever since watching "Top Gun" as a 10 year-old, Rich (sylvansealy on the forums) has dreamt of flying the not-so-friendly skies. Poor eyesight may have kept him from being Maverick's wingman, but it did not keep him off the highway to the digital danger zone. Rich's fondest early video game memories revolve around the classic "X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter", flight sims, and real-time-strategy games. When he's not gaming or juggling his 4 kids, Rich can be found co-hosting the Outpost 309 podcast with Jared every few weeks.

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Sunday, January 26, 2014

Bolt Action - Bolt Action Radio Episode 20

Captain TO, CH, and Judson are joined by Shawn Morris - The Terrain Guy - in Episode 20 of Bolt Action Radio. If you've never heard of him, or his work, you owe it to yourself to tune in as he explains his amazing table and display board commission work. Later on, the BARbarians talk Italians, and upcoming events around the globe.

This episode refers often to Shawn's work. To see it while listening, go to:

One final correction: The tournament at Huzzah Hobbies is happened on January 25th, not in February.

Download the BAR here! 

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Friday, January 24, 2014

Review: Battlefront M113 (AJOBX01)

By Eric Lauterbach

When I was told I got to review the Jordanian M113 box AJOBX01 I said YEAH!!!  I had purchased two of the US Vietnam era boxes (VUSBX07) already and had not put them together so this was my chance to dig into M113.  First let me say wow, the sprues as they come out of the box are overwhelming. It's target overload.  Since the Jordanian box is the same box as the US M113 with all the variants you get a ton of extra pieces if you are only doing the plain Jordanian version.

So my first step, and I highly recommend you do the same, is to go find the battlefront assembly guide and study the pieces you need.  I did and I still messed up some hatches. This was my first all plastic Battlefront tank model and I was impressed with the quality, but I did add extra crew that you do not get in the box set.  Hey, these are for my personal army and I want them to be cool. 

In both the US and Arab boxes the two sprues pictured above allow you to build one vehicle.

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Bolt Action - AAR: Battle of Attu, Chevesy Pass

For the last year I have been yapping my mouth (nonstop - Judson) about playing Bolt Action games based on the US Attu Campaign, in the Aleutian Islands.  Finally, I got some friends together for the first, in what I hope is a series, of Attu themes scenarios.    Attu was one of the first major amphibious operations in the Pacific, but often overlooked by most gamers. Unlike the warm, tropical conditions that defined the Pacific campaign, Attu was a barren, wind swept island, covered in wet, marshy low lands and rocky, snowy mountains.  Fog and bad weather were a nightmare for troops fighting in the battle as well.  

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Desperate Measures Tournament List

by Dirty Jon

Once again, I am putting together a list for the upcoming Williamsburg Muster.  This is a 1750 point, East Front only tournament.  Since I have no Soviets and I want good Germans,  I will be building my lists out of the new Desperate Pleasures book -- because I like it.

My vision for this list is one that can take on all types of enemies I expect to see:  Heavy Russian Tanks and Assault Guns, T-34 Horde and Infantry.  Because of this, I want my Combat Platoons to be able to handle two of the above lists' main units.  I think that this will give me a fairly balanced list that has a shot at winning.  I am working with the Panzer Kampfgruppe on page 68.  Confident Trained.   Let's build!

Since the HQ has to be the same as one of the Combat Platoons, let's pick those first.

3 Jagdpanthers 545 points, 1205 remaining.  1 Platoon

I love my Panzer IV/70 (V)s and my Jagdpanthers.  Both are good choices for facing medium and heavy Russian armor.  I think that the Jagdpanthers are a better choice here because of their AT 16, being able to penetrate anything they see, even at range.  While FA 10 vs. 9 might not seem to mean much, I really think that the high AT gun and the increased side armor make the upgrade worth it.  Plus, they look cool, so yeah.

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Bolt Action - IJA Bamboo Spear Tutorial

(Next time you're batch painting a bunch of IJA, you owe it to yourself to try Nemesis A's approach to painting. Here's a guide to the bamboo spear method he mentioned in Speakeasy episode 19. He's a talented painter and modeler, and this is one of those tips you just can't afford to miss. - Judson)
When I decided to build an IJA force to take to the Bolt Action tournament at Cold Wars this spring I new one thing – my list was going to include at least one Inexperienced Bamboo Spear Squad.  There is just something about a squad of soldiers making a desperate last ditch Banzai charge armed only with a sharpened bamboo stick that appealed to me.  The fact that the unit is also a fairly good buy for the points didn’t hurt either.  But ask any one that plays IJA and they will tell you that the problem with this unit is that finding models armed with a bamboo spear is difficult at best.  I think I was only able to find a single model from all of the different manufacturer’s ranges that I searched through.  I am not a fan of unit that looks like it is made up of clones so a single model just wasn’t gonna cut it.  Especially since the unit I was envisioning would be 15 bodies strong.  Well if you can’t find them – build them.

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

After Hours 70 and Bonus Road Talk

After Hours 70

The guys are back in 2014 with another After Hours!  First, we have a little behind the scenes on Episode 70.  Next, we talk about World War I, more about Desperate Measures lists and talk more about the AAR for our DM team game.  After that, there is some movie talk about The Hobbit and other movies.

Bonus Road Talk

We have been a little shy on the Premium Content recently, so we recorded this for our Premium Subscribers.  Enjoy!
The Dudes talk about their tournament experience on the way home from Scott Simoneau's historical tournament at Huzzah Hobbies. 

Want access to this premium content?  Just click here.

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Dust Warfare/Tactics - Heavy Recon Grenadiers and Heavy Kommandotrupp

For those of us who grew up playing 40K and are also lovers of history, there is nothing cooler than Germans in heavy body armor.  The Dust Tactics/Warfare Heavy Recon Grenadiers and Kommandotrupp are the perfect mix of history and scifi awesome.   Armed with dual machineguns and a Fliegerfaust these guys will form the body and/or center piece to any army.

The Heavy Kommandotrupp provider leadership to both your Dust Tactics and Warfare army.  It comes with a mechanic with a Fliegerfaust (which were actually used during World War Two), an officer, and a medic.

The mechanic/fliegerfaust trooper is wearing what appears to be a pilots cap and looks to be ready to fly.  He is also rocking a pretty heavy duty monkey wrench.  I love the look of the fliegerfaust, a multi tube 20mm rocket cannon.

This is the medic figure.  He really isn't that different from the regular recon grenadiers.  The unpainted model has a red cross decal on his shoulder.  One thing that is nice is he is a different pose than the other heavy recon grenadiers.

By far my favorite model out of both packs is the officer.  Instead of rocking a helmet, he has an officer cap and is puffing on a cigar.  I don't know if you can tell by the model, but I also gave him a eye patch.

These are Heavy Recon Grenadiers.  The unit comes with three troopers, one of which is suppose to be the leader.  These are all decked out in armor and armed with the dual machine guns.

The heavy recon grenadiers come in three distinct poses.  This one is my favorite of the three.  He is just a regular dude, not the leader.

This is the leader.  There is nothing that really distinguishes him from other troopers, other than it looks like he is barking orders.

This is the third and final grenadier.  He is also my least favorite.  Can you guess why?

Yes he looks like he is bull rushing the enemy or falling down a flight of stairs .  I get that he is the most dynamic of all the pose, but he is bent way too far over.  I wish they had a trooper pointing his daul machinegun shield at the enemy instead.

For more information on how these guys perform in Dust Tactics check out the review from Jeremiah Terry, from Front Toward Enemy.

Despite that one meh trooper, I love both of these sets.  Like all the other Dust models they come pre-primed with some decals.  As cool as they are they still suffer from lack of variety if you want to field multiple units, they are all going look the same.  However you don't need a lot of figures to play Dust, so its not that big of a deal and they still look so cool.

If you dig the Heavy Recon Grenadier lets chat about it on the forum.

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Monday, January 20, 2014

AAR: Ghurkas Vs Panzer Grenadiers Dust Up

By Charles Baxter

Recently a new player to Flames of War contacted me about wanting to learn how to play the game. Our group had him over for our annual Tanksgiving game so he could dip his toes into the FoWater. We followed that game up with a game using the forces from Open Fire, which is a great way to introduce new players. After catching a taste of the FoW bug I worked with him on building his first army, Mid War German Panzer Grenadiers. I wanted to give him the opportunity to play using more troops, so we met up for a 1500 point mid war game.

I built two armies using troops I owned, Ghurkas and Panzer Grenadiers.  I ran the Ghurkas while the new guy ran the Germans.  We built our lists using

2 Infantry Platoons with PIATs and light mortars.
2 Platoons of 3 Shermans
Heavy Mortar Platoon
2 Patrols of Indian Pattern Carriers

Panzer Grenadiers 
HQ w/ Panzer Knackers
2 Platoons of Grenadiers w/ light mortars
Heavy Platoon
3 StuGs
2 Pak 40s

I wanted to introduce him to reserves to we played Dust Up. I held my tanks, a platoon of infantry, and a recon patrol in reserve, while my opponent attached out half the heavy platoon, held the other held in reserve with the StuGs and another platoon of infantry.

German troops line up on their objective

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Bolt Action - After FTX Review: Tank Riders and Fanatics

Friday night, Nemesis A and I took a trip down to Technoir to demonstrate some Bolt Action and kick up some interest in that neck of the woods.

The half a dozen new guys involved had a good time, but selfishly, I'm more interested in talking about the way the forces played that we were running - Soviets and Japanese. (They're going to start an escalation league for Bolt Action and everyone's excited, more on that at a later date.)

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Friday, January 17, 2014

Tieu Doan Dia Phuong Quan (Local Forces) Battalion Army List Review
By Jeff "SonBae" Flint

Alright you lot...listen up! There is a new force you might be facing in the jungle...this block of instruction will give you just that little bit of an edge you will need to come out victorious.

Until now, you have only seen 2 Local Force Companies at most in a PAVN list.  Well, these black pajamas boys...and gals...have started taking to the field in full battalions.  This creates a whole new set of issues that you need to be ready to face.

Yesyesyesyesyesyes and YES!!!!! I have been waiting for this PDF since I first opened Battlefront's Tour of Duty force list for Flames of War. In Tour of Duty, you could take a Tieu Doan Bo Binh Infantry Battalion with up to two Local Force Companies as Support Platoon options. I know, as of the writing of this article the list is still “Under Review,” regardless, I just couldn't contain my glee and had to share my thoughts and wanted to see if I see what y’all see.

OK, why does the Dia Phuong Quan (Local Force) Company in Tour of Duty sing to me? It’s the sneaky feel they have…from the black pajamas…to the Resistance Teams…to the Booby Traps…to the special rules.  Everything just screams “NAM!!!!!” to me, more so than the Bo Binh Infantry list.

This goodness gets ramped up in the Battalion list. So let’s look at the differences between the Bo Binh PAVN List and the Local Forces list. Comparing the Ironclad Battalion list is just too different and is a topic for later discussion.

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Bolt Action - Bolt Action Errata Update!

Sorry for the delay, BARbarians, but word on the street had it that there would be an errata update today from Warlord Games and we simply had to let everyone know about it when it released.

"See? I told you Kaukopartio squads would be addressed!"

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Volksgrenadiers vs Romanian Rifles

by Steven MacLauchlan

Andrew and I played a game over the Holiday break, and wanted to something a bit silly.  My goal was simply to run 2 Jagdtigers.  Originally, I was gonna run a company of em, and will have to try that soon!  We rolled for the mission: Pincer.  We rolled for attacker/defender, and I was put on defense.  Andrew had a tough fight on his hands to be sure.

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Bolt Action - AAR: Soviet vs Germans: Learners' Game

A few buddies and I got together to play some Bolt Action.  Two of them had never played before, and the other had only played once.  I put together some simple introduction forces so they could learn the basics.  The forces mirrored each other for the most part, and we played to kill.  All forces were Regulars. 
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Monday, January 13, 2014

Outpost 309 - Episode 5

The distracted gamers return from a long Christmas break hiatus with a full head of steam!  The "back to basics" segment is a brief shout-out to co-operative boardgames, a growing phenomenon.  The boys introduce a family game segment to the podcast, with a look a lovely little game called Timeline (  After a fun soapbox on Jared's love of infantry in wargames, and Rich's love for tanks, the guys review the brand-new Sails of Glory ( historical naval game.  As always, the boys finish with videogame banter, including a farewell to War Thunder (R.I.P.) (, and subsequent selling-out by Jared into the world of Battlefield 4

Download Here!

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