Saturday, 23 April 2011

Off The Bookshelf

With the Old Breed by Eugene Sledge - I must admit I read this off the back of watching the HBO series The Pacific'. It's an excellent read. Sledge doesn't pull any punches in his description of the fighting on Peleliu and Okinawa, or more importantly the descriptions of the conditions the Marines lived in.

Like the Band of Brothers TV series, the series does take certain liberties altering or merging certain events. For example, the scene of Peleliu when Snafu is throwing small stones into the open brain cavity of a dead Japanese soldier. Sledge does not  name the individual who actually did that, so unless the series writers or producers were privy to information I am not aware of, it could or could not been Snafu. When on Okinawa and Sledge is digging a foxhole only to find a corpse at the bottom, the event described in the book is far more graphic and horrific.

For myself I certainly felt that despite the fact that Sledge alludes to the waste of war, in terms of human misery and suffering, on both sides. He certainly does not demonstrate remorse over the killing of Japanese soldiers, during the conflict. His approach is similar to many accounts of veterans of WW2 in that 'they' were the enemy, and 'they' would kill you unless you got in first. Also a sense of pride comes through in having served in the US Marine Corp. Though he is critical of individuals on occasion ie certain officers, Sledge does not enter into the realm of criticising strategy, it literally is just an account of how he saw things, his war. 

If you're interested in the Pacific conflict then I fully recommend this book. A great read, and from a wargaming point of view certainly got me thinking about starting a Pacific project. But not yet!     

Friday, 22 April 2011


So here's a little clue how I have spent the last week, when not enjoying the glorious weather of course!

That's right basing trees. These are for 28mm games, and I've decided to base them all individually, on 60mm hex bases from....Warbases. In all there are currently twenty three of them (odd number, not sure why 23?). These trees are about twenty years old give or take a year or two, and had been sitting up in the loft for a while. I used to put the trees on to a piece irregularly cut green felt to represent the border of the wood. I had planned on making some area bases out of 3mm MDF painting and flocking it and basing the trees on to a small suitable base (a 2p coin for example) and then placing them onto the larger area base.

But I decided to use the hex bases instead. Not my original idea, but I like the effect it gives, may not be to everyone's taste with the straight base edges. This way an area of a wood can still be represented, or they can be used as individual trees. Also means less to carry around and store.

The same paints and flocks have been used as on the hedges I made. I have some 15mm sized trees to base which I will see if two or three can go on a single base. They should work with the larger trees, to give variation in height for a wood in 28mm games.  May also make some 'empty' bases, so the wood area can be defined when figures are placed into the wood itself, and trees removed for ease of play.     

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Making Hedgerows. Part 3

Another week of terrain making as passed by. Here's what I have to show for the hard work over the past few nights.

These are corner and T-junction pieces. Made in the same way as the straights, but smaller. I had considered, using the longer straight lengths and placing the corner/T-junction on each. But this would potentially have meant making more corner pieces, since a left corner, for example, could not be reversed to be used as a right corner.

So I used 40x40mm MDF bases instead, once again from Warbases. The corner pieces are now multi-functional. I've only made four corners and two T-junctions at the moment, but they work okay. Here's an example...
I've also made a further seven straight sections.

These are exactly the same size as the other bases. Not really clear in the picture but on these seven the foliage is slightly higher, to make it more hedge like. The foliage on the first set of bases does look a little low in places.

I  figure that I will need to make at least double the amount of straights to what I currently have to be able to cover a good sized area. A few more corners and a couple of 'crossroad' type bases for good measure.