Building Arial: The Professional Comes To Town | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Tuesday, 29 January 2008

For our 2008 anniversary, I set out to get The WebMistress something truly unique. To this end, I contracted with the very talented Aaron at Black Crab Sculpting to build a miniature of The WebMistress' RPG character Arial on her Unicorn mount.

After some back and forth, we came to an agreement, and Aaron went to work.

He is making us a green of the figure - LadyArial mounted on her Unicorn in 54mm - along with a master, mold, and two paintable castings. 

We have no desire to make this figure publicly available, but after Aaron and I came to an agreement, I asked if I could run a series of articles showing the work as it progressed and showing those of you wondering about the process what it takes to be the customer for the sculpting process.

I will continually update this article as the project progresses, giving you updates as I get them. The project is slated to be complete by April 15th.

Last Update: 15 APR 08 - added final pictures and wrapped up. 


Tiger On the Prowl: A 15mm WWII FireFight! | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Wednesday, 23 January 2008

More than sixty years after the Tiger first prowled the battlefield, we’re hearing more and more armchair generals question the validity of claims about German tank engineering. One need only go to the source to find that in the case of the Tiger, these claims are very valid. Certainly everyone that fought these big cats feared them, and that says a lot.


One of each tank in this review.

While the Tiger had some problems that were never quite worked out, these issues were no different from those encountered by other countries making heavy tanks in World War II: limited range and wear on the drive train from the massive weight, around 61 U.S. tons in the case of the Tiger, and being too heavy for many bridges. It was a fearsome beast though, with reports of its powerful 88mm shell penetrating clear through Sherman turrets and shooting through buildings to destroy Shermans. Both German and Russian accounts relate the Russian cry of “Tigri!” as being used to warn the front to retreat in the face of this tank, most notably Franz Kurowski in Panzer Aces II

Considering the Tiger’s popularity on gaming tables—where its shortcomings are often under-played—and the lasting notoriety of this tank, we decided to bring 15mm mid-production Tigers from every major vendor into our painting area and let you know the strengths and weaknesses of each.

Our thanks to Scott Washburn of PaperTerrain for reading this one for us.

Supersize It: A 15mm WWII Panther FireFight! | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Sunday, 13 January 2008
When the Allied Powers had their first run-ins with the Panther, they mistook it for a heavy tank. That’s no surprise—for its time, this cat was a monster, weighing in at an impressive 45 tons, as opposed to the Sherman’s 33 tons and the T-34’s 29 tons. It was big, mobile, packed a powerful 75mm weapon, and boasted some of the thickest sloped armor to be found on the battlefield.


This review’s vehicles advancing. 

The Germans, however, considered her a “medium” tank. The view of the German high command was that armor would continue to thicken, and gun sizes would increase proportionately. Thus, they called a tank that in some respects was larger than a Tiger a “medium” tank. The weakened state of German production and this designation meant that the Panther was soon the primary tank in its armored divisions.

We brought in all of the Panther D models we could get our hands on and painted them up to help you decide if you want to upgrade your tank divisions.


Baueda Miniatures CAMA Terrain Product Line Overview | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Sunday, 13 January 2008

Baueda has a large selection of terrain and basing products in the ancients space, so we weren’t surprised to hear that the company is moving into the World War II era. When the CAMA line of WWII bases and terrain first became available, we got our hands on six packs to give you an idea of the breadth of selection offered.


Because the CAMA Web site contains pictures of these (and many more) products done up with trees and static grass, we decided to paint ours up in mud and dirt without any obscuring decoration. Not that we don’t like the way the items on the Baueda site are decorated—we do. But we wanted to show you the amazing detail the company offers without covering any of it up. It’s likely that when we permanently place our late-war German platoon on these bases we’ll throw on some grass to add a bit of flare, but that’s not necessary, as you’ll see in the attached pictures.

Camelot 15mm Sdkfz 223 Command Radio Vehicle | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Tuesday, 01 January 2008
Command Radio Car

The Camelot Sdkfz 223 adds radio in the desert or the steppes. 

The Sdkfz 223 was a command adaptation of the German Sdkfz 222 that included a machine gun as the main gun and a bed-frame style antenna above the vehicle. Some claim that the bed-frame antenna was rapidly replaced by an aerial, but even if true, that wouldn't look nearly as cool on the table, now would it?

We got our hands on the Camelot Miniatures version of this vehicle and painted it up in a nice neutral color suitable for use in Africa or Russia. 

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