Saturday 27 August 2011

WW1 Interregnum

It has been a while since I've posted anything about my efforts to put together two WW1 forces so that I can play games set in late 1917 and finishing with the 100 day offensive of 1918. While I'm no where near finished painting anything of note, what I have done is finally finish basing all of the figures for both the Germans and British forces I am building.

Above shows the British company and I'm thinking about about adding another base of three Tommies to all the rifle squads because as they stand each platoon is only 33 men. This would strengthen the platoon to 39 men. As you can see I have six Vickers machine gun teams and a four mortar teams to support this lot when in defence. I'm also making up shock markers using casualties on stretchers, but again I haven't decided how many I will need? Or,  I could use one each with a die next to them to indicate shock points. Any advice would be welcome.

Alternatively, if Pendraken were to do some poses of Tommies firing either prone, kneeling and or standing, then I could add two scouts to each platoon, which would only strengthen them up to 35 men. I'm undecided about this.

The German company organisation is taken straight from the example in TooFat Lardies Through the Mud and the Blood book, and represents a late war company with Stosstrupen attached, which makes them quite formidable and what has caused me to re-evaluate the number of Tommies I have in my British company.

Above is the basic company consisting of three kampfzuge (platoons). Two of the  kampzuge are made up of eleven man einheits gruppe (squads); seven riflemen and one LMG four man team, plus NCO. The third kampzuge is half strength einheits gruppe consisting of of 32 men; two groups of eight riflemen, and two groups of with one LMG with eight men.

To strengthen the German company each kampfzuge will have a stoss gruppe (shock troops), or assault grenade squad attached to stiffen them when attacking. Finally, there are the erganzun zug consisting of sixteen men with four NCOs and the reserves made up of a recce squad and granaten werfer squad. In addition, I've added two flame thrower teams and one 37mm artillery piece that the stoss gruppe could have attached when in assault.

I also have tanks for the British; three MkIVs, three MkVs and three MkI supply tanks, plus eight Whippets for the break through group, and plan to add a cavalry troop/squadron to this as well, but no pictures of them yet as I haven't managed to assemble the models.

Besides WW1 actions I intend to use this force as the basis for a what if continuation war that rolls over in 1919 and beyond that is based on the Germans not counter attacking when the Americans arrived, but rather basing their strategy on defense in depth with mobile quick strike formations. This story could then develop into a breakdown of both sides ability to wage war when the inevitable discontent the lengthening of the war produces leads to uprising and civil war breaking out. This does preclude me going all out and adding H. G. Wells Martians for a War of the Worlds scenario. I have some tripod war machines that would serve quite nicely for this idea.


  1. Looking good Ashley, for a wee bit of encouragement take a look at my WW1 stuff at its for the other Lardy ruleset ITLSU. As yet unplayed sadly.

    I'd suggest only painting 2 or 3 platoons of Germans and finishing off the Brit company and a gun or 2, then let the Brits do an attack. Reason is I suppose they tended to do nothing unless they could attack with overwhelming numbers, that and the fact that your Brits look nearer finished.

    Dont know about the Tommy poses, all mine are a mix of advancing poses but a quick question to Leon on the Pendraken forum should provide an answer.

  2. Any chances of some close ups of the painted minis, they look nice but hard to see properly (with my old eyes!)

  3. looking good, like the basing style, yes close pics please.

  4. Impressive formations indeed. I cannot see the pics very clearly because I'm reading this in my phone. A warning, if you play M&B don't go crazy with the number of figures because it works better with no more than 10-12 big men per side... and you'll need trenches too!

  5. Close ups to come as and when I can get some decent pictures sorted out, but I'm really at the limit of my cameras ability.

    I realise that my formations are at the top end of the games rules framework, but the point is to be able to have a company attack and have a platoon in defence games, from either sides perspective, as I don't favour either faction.

    I'm just fascinated by the periods transitional aspects where modern machinery changed the shape of warfare i.e; truly the first step on the road to modern warfare we have today.

  6. Great work. It is always interesting to see WWI from ground level. I wish I had more time to do serious exploration of the topic. I seem to spend my time dealing with the aerial aspect of the conflict. I always look at the Armistice as a cessation of conflict on the Western Front. In the east it was the beginning of several wars which used the same technology and lots of behind the scenes dabbling by Britain to counter what they saw as the Communist threat.

  7. These look great. Look forward to seeing more of them.

  8. Thank you one and all for the comments. As I mentioned I intend to also play "what if..." campaigns, influenced by the Russian Civil War and later Spanish Civil War.

    My idea now is that the Ludendorff Offensive never occurred, and that the war dragged on until great flu pandemic (Spanish flu) brought an end to hostilities through disease and exhaustion.

    Why? Mk VIII Liberty tank, British Medium B & C tanks and the Char 2C. Say no more, I like tanks.