A smorgasbord of useful WW2 15mm kit courtesy of that all round good fellow, the legend that is Archduke Piccolo!
I have said it before and will say it again - wargamers can be the most generous of folks! That wargaming doyen, Bon vivant, wit and raconteur from the ‘Land of the Long White Cloud’ - Archduke Piccolo - was having a little bit of a tidy up when he happened to mention that he had some bits and pieces that were surplus to requirements from the old Axis and Allies Miniatures Game including not only a selection of 15mm vehicles but also the rules, game cards and the maps. To cut a long story short and following an exchange of emails the bits and bobs were duly packed up and sent on their several thousand mile journey to little old me - and they arrived safely this morning.
All I can say is Wow! There are sufficient vehicles (scaled at 15mm) for a couple of forces - primarily late war German and Western allied but with a couple of other bits from Russia, France, Japan, Poland and Italy.
The German force is the largest and as befits 1944 is a real grab bag of kit ranging from a Panther to a Goliath via some Pzr 4s and assorted other vehicles with a few infantry figures for good measure. The US have a selection of tanks and infantry whilst the British have anti tank guns (6 and 17 pdr), some infantry and a couple of recce vehicles. The others comprise a French tank (which could readily be repainted for the Germans in 1944), a Russian armoured car and a truck mounted Katyusha rocket battery (possibly repainted for the allies - did the US use truck amounted rocket artillery?) , a brace of Italian mortars, some Japanese anti tank guns and the ubiquitous ‘knee’ mortar and a sole Polish infantryman. Oh, and I forgot to mention the rather handy Me 262 jet fighter!
I have a modest selection of other Axis and Allies bits and pieces that I will add these to and so will have a reasonable selection of vehicles at the very least.
What I was really taken with though, and this was the unexpected part, was the four map sheets. These are a lot smaller than the versions I have and appear to have been made on rather more durable paper. Running out at 6 hexes by 8 (the hexes are 2” across the flat sides with a sheet being 10 1/2” x 16”) the map sheets are double sided so there are an impressive variety of terrain types to configure in a number of ways. I shall be getting these laminated in due course (like as soon as possible!) but what a superbly useful selection of playing areas in a handy size - ideal for Portable Wargame style actions or small scale and more detailed affairs. They look something this:
The maps and with apologies for the large creases - I suspect these have been lurking in a folded condition for quite some time - but these will be flattened out when laminated.
I am thinking that these maps will suit any number of periods and are ideal for a quick or small game when used individually. They can of course be combined in a huge number of combinations.
I can readily see me using these for 18th and 19th century games (imagi-nations perhaps?) as well as for WW1 and WW2. As for scale, well 15mm would be the go to but I am thinking that smaller may be a good option - even as far down at 3mm. For now though, and using the Axis and Allies stuff, I shall be sticking to WW2 - all I need to do is to get the rules organised and yes, I have a few ideas to play around with!
Once again many thanks to the good Archduke Piccolo - this may well be the catalyst for a whole raft of ideas!