The Artizan LW Germans will form the nucleus of an armoured panzer grenadier squad- hence their fancy LW uniforms. One of the things mentioned in almost all accounts of fighting in the Middle East and Italy is the number of machine guns in German squads and the firepower that they can put out, the infamous MG34 and MG 42 (sometimes called the Spandau or Hitler's Buzzsaw) so want to have MG34s/42s at the heart of the force.LMGs get a bad rap in some sectors of the "BA community" as being overcosted at 20pts but I for one never leave home without them. I find the extra range invaluable and the reality is they provided the core of firepower in sections/squads so IMO should be there, min maxing bean counters be damn! The Bolt Action.net 5 pt versions make them even more attractive and maybe we will finally start to see Germans using LMG to provide the core of squads firepower rather than the ubiquitous assault rifle, which seems to be the weapon of choice for most German bolt action forces but which you will soon note are not included in my force- I may add some at some point but want to avoid assault rifles if I can.
My general theme is to have the force represent a platoon from one of the many panzer grenadier regiments defending Italy from late 43 onwards so with that in mind this is how I envision the core of the force being constructed (note, based on last nights games the force has been upgraded to veterans):
- 2x Veteran Squads (8-9 men including NCO with SMG and 2 LMG each)- the defensive firepower but with 9 men also capable of some go forward (mainly standard heer uniforms but intend a smattering of other kit as well- a typical hodge podge of uniforms representing vets who have survived various campaigns)
- 1x Assault pioneer squad (8-9 strong with options for a LMG or flamethrower)- I like the look of the Crusader pioneers for variety with this lot.
- 1x Veteran (armoured) PG squad (9-10 men including LMG and 2-3 SMGs). These guys will travel in style in the 251/1 hanomag and are a mobile firebrigade/assault force (mainly the Artizan LW Germans but a smattering of other manufacturers as well (some Crusader, a Perry and Warlord games plastic to get them to 3 SMGs)
I also tried a new basing palette for them, trying to get dusty "Italy" look and am happy with how it turned out.
Below is a few shots of the first two squads, painted up, based and ready for action.
With so any LMGs going to be included (at least 5 and potentially 6!) I've decided to revert back to putting them on rectangular bases to identify them easier.