Sunday, September 4, 2016

Wargames with Airfix and Peter Laing

    With little time for the hobby right now, I use the time painting and trying to get games in; the blog is now secondary to my gaming.
     My wife had to work late one night, and went to a cookout with coworkers, which she kindly let me out of going to. So each night I played a game. For some reason this week I was thinking of my old Airfix Afrika Korps and 8th Army figures (the 1st edition).  I got them out and used Bob Cordery's "Memoir of Modern Battle" rules. In this game I do not use the grenade symbol as a hit on any unit. Instead, both sides got two grenadier figures. If the grenadier figure got to an adjacent hex next to the enemy, then the grenade symbol counted, to simulate a grenade attack.

    Once again, I wasn't going to report on either of these games, but found them rather enjoyable, even without terrain features.

Among the 8th Army were the last 3 surviving members of one of the first Airfix sets I bought back in the 70's.

The British machine gun draws first blood.

The Germans are causing heavy causalities to the British..

The British left flank is pushed back, while on the right a unit is overrun.

Closeup of the right flank; the old veterans are overrun.

Closeup of the left flank; the German grenadier took out the machine gun; two British units are routed.

The British on the left flank counterattack. On the left flank the British pull back to consolidate the line.

The Germans move forward one machine gun for support.

The British counter attack.

On the left of the picture the British grenadier has eliminated a German unit.

Close up of the grenade attack. I think using the grenadiers make for a more enjoyable game. As a kid one of my least favorite poses (next to prone figures) was grenadiers. Using the grenadiers this way I now have a new appreciation of the figure.

For this game I used slightly modified Battlelore rules. For picking the armies in this game I used 18 Army Points.  When I make random Battlelore armies, the system I use is: light infantry counts as 1 AP; medium infantry and light cavalry counts as 2 AP; heavy infantry and medium cavalry counts as 3 AP; heavy cavalry counts as 4 AP. This game it was an army of peasants vs the Persian Army. I started taking pictures about half way through the game.

In all games using the Persians I always make sure to include the Blue Persians.  This unit has consistently  stood out in games. The Blue Persians are the figures to the left with red trimmed tunics.

The Blue Persians are hit from three sides, but still hold. 

Two peasant units close on the Persian General; they fail to kill him.

At this point in the game the Persians have lost half their units and the battle. On the left of the picture  can be seen the retreat of the Blue Persians. They were surrounded. The peasant slingers and archers concentrated their fire on the Blues; however only "retreat" dice came up, which allowed the Blue Persians to escape annihilation. The yellow arrows show the missile attacks on the Blues.

Closeup of the attack.

The Blue Persians survive to fight another day.


  1. Those 1st edition figures are just great, even the prone ones! The first Airfix figures I ever had were 1st edition WW2 Germans given to me in a plastic mug with pictures of cowboys and Indians on it. Bloody hell that was a long time ago. The standing smartly to attention with an enormous acorn stuck on a stick ????? The A/T gun ? machine gun??? thing. All good stuff. Good to see that your decision re the blog is being vindicated and that you are enjoying your games so much.

    1. My introduction to Airfix is when my brother showed me a figure he had found at school. It was the Afrika Korps figure with the pick. He asked if I wanted the figure; I said yes. He promptly threw it across the lawn and told me I could have it if I could find it. I never did, but a week later found Airfix figures at a local hobby store. My first set was the Combat Team.

  2. After I was gifted a handful of Airfix Japanese, those 8th Army & AK 1st edition sets were the first I ever found in a hobby shop (central Ohio circa 1967). I still have most of them around here somewhere, unpainted.
    Wow what a blast.

  3. I almost threw my Airfix figures away when I "grew up". My mother suggested that I hold on to them for my own kids. My step children never had an interest in them, but I am happy that I held onto them. Might I suggest you look up Bob Condery's "Memoir of Modern Battle" rules, find those veterans, and have a war-game with them.

  4. I have a whole swodge of Airfix Desert War figures, 1st and 2nd generation. I reckon the 1st generation Vickers could be used to make Russian MMGs. I'm thinking of making some cart mounted MMGs. The prone bren gunner is not much of a bren gunner, but makes a very fine anti-tank rifleman, with suitable work on the weapon.

  5. Your idea on converting figures sounds "old school" to me. It seems to me the lack of detail on the 1st generation Airfix might make conversions easier than the more detailed figures. I believe I'm in the minority that likes the early figures the best; maybe it's just the nostalgia of childhood.