Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Artillery support for the 20mm Russian force

The mainstay of Russian artillery battalions during the Great Patriotic War was the 76mm Zis 3 gun, and no Spearhead Russian force would be complete without them.

Normally most artillery in Spearhead games is off-table, so there is no need for the actual gun models. However the difficulties in gaining artillery support with Russian forces (perhaps more correctly the inflexibility of the artillery in tactical terms) means that I have fought games in which the guns rarely see action. I therefore tend to model the artillery battalions on-table. This way, careful deployment means that even if your observers find it difficult to acquire the support of their guns, the guns are present and able to fire direct in response to threat (albeit at a much reduced range). They often guard my flanks - a slightly precarious existence if you are an artillery battalion gunner or commander.

They are deployed in mixed battalions with two 76mm gun stands, and one 122mm gun stand in a battalion. Last week I acquired the models for the 76mm guns from Stan. These are the UM models, and were quite an eye opener for me. In my opinion these are 'modellers' kits. The detail is finely molded, the detail excellent. Many parts fitted so well there was no need for glue ... I don't recall ever buying a kit with such precision assembly. I've also never before bought a 1/72nd or 1/76th scale kit in which the wheels come with separate tyres.

They certainly are great kits, it's just that I'm in this as a 'gamer rather than a modeller.. I prefer those fast assembly kits. But if you are a modeller, or a 'gamer with a little more modelling patience than me, you'll love them

I also bought two UM Su76 self propelled guns... these look equally as precise (read 'fiddly' for my large fingers). These are next onto the painting table - this may take quite some patience!!.


  1. Ooo, very nice...very indeed! Facing them from across the table, well...at least they'll look great as they're tearing reams off my Germans!

  2. One of the nice things about Spearhead.. no super weapons.. one of the things I used to hate about previous rules sets.