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The Tercio- “too old and too useless!?”

A wargames army where even the commanding officer has his doubts? An impulsive purchase relights an old love!

” The junior officers, n.c.o.’s and enlisted men were not so suitable. The n.c.o.’s and enlisted men were taken from static batteries on the coast and on the Atlantic Islands. They were too old and useless for an Armoured command.” 

Generalmajor Feuchtinger, 21. Panzerdivision, Normandie 1944.

The central committee of the Cardiff Wargames Tercio had decided. We knew exactly what we were collecting next year. It was to be Napoleonics and there the problems started. Eddie had expressed a preference for 15mm British, Steve opted for three different scales in the Penninsular, John turned a strange pale hue at the thought of painting and I committed to finishing my Bonaparte in Italie collection. We were playing Blucher, Sam Mustafa’s innovative system but Bataille Empire, by the gentleman who created L’art de la Guerre, is the hot topic at the moment. So we were definately doing Napoleonics, but in three scales with two rules sets! And then my eyes fell on Battlefront’s recent add-on to their Late War in Normandy series.

The plastic card was duly handed over and World War Two was back on the agenda, not just 28mm but 15s. This was my favourite competition army from over ten years ago. Paul Cummins had lovingly painted most of it and I had smuggled it into the hobby room in monthly packages of three vehicles. I had even taken it to European Team Championships in Poland. What an army, all the glamour of the desert war veterans with the ingenuity of transplanting German guns onto a French chassis.

In the latest incarnation of Flames of War the Division gets HEAT rounds that do not suffer over range and, the “salvo” rule which gives batteries a ten inch bombardment. The Hotchkiss (7.5cm) packs the army standard anti-tank weapon. It may not withstand return fire but as a mobile defensive weapon , it is awesome.

I also collected six of the 10.5 cm variant, with its awesome range, the Allies will pay dearly. To add to their discomfort I have two Reihenwerfer. I should really change the base to match the others but maybe after Christmas.

The infantry is not forgotten either. Each platoon can have seven U304(f) to mounted attack in a swarm. 

When four aren’t cutting it, try seven!

I go for a full battery of Lorraine Schleppers.These can usually proxy for either the 10.5 or the awesome 150 cm vehicle gun. These complete an impressive amount of firepower although the “armour” is indeed brittle. Basically if the kit is hit, it burns!

Just to annoy by-standers I have added air recognition flags to all leaders. At the time I was big into the computer game Blitzkrieg and those flags caught my imagination. Not realistic but hey……….As to the politics, just as bad as the Hammer and sickle!

The new codex has Sd Kfz 10s but my AAA has the U307 which I prefer. 

So we were decided, Napoleonics. I went home to reorganise my Flames of War collection. Then, I went on Fleabay and bought a new AAA halftrack for my 28mm Bolt Action Americans, and then a dancing bear to lead my Medieval Swiss! You think I’m joking, you know me better than that!

Have a wonderful Christmas!



  1. Very nice collection there and I think the most 1944 21st Panzer Division models I have ever seen in one go! Now you’ve made me think I should be trying out some of them in 20mm scale! As an aside, my mate has gamed Napoleonics for decades, always tweaking rules to suit until he bought the Blucher set a couple of years ago – I’ve played a few games against him now and the rules give a fast game that seems to give realistic results!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi John,
      Believe me, there are more! One of the reasons I’m back to Flames is the number of models I have in boxes! I think if I had my time again I would collect those ready painted diecasts – 10 pounds for a complete well painted model is a bargain.
      Blucher is an amazing system- Sam Mustafa is a genius. Have you come across the Oldmeldrumwargamesgroup – a site full of orbits and card downloads ( ACW too)
      Merry Christmas!

      Liked by 2 people

      • I might have an upcoming post on pre-painted diecasts, since that is an option for me in 20mm/1:72! And my mate has found plenty of orbats and cards for Blucher, but I’ll pass on the link – I just to turn up so that he can beat me hands down! Hope you have a good Christmas too! 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      • Always amazed by the variety and low cost of diecasts. Could never understand how some entrepreneur did not switch to 15s and cash in on Flames of War craze ten years ago.
        Blucher is a definate favourite- did you ever try Lassale – same author but battalion level?
        Looking forward to your article!

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I sometimes opt for diecasts because the price is favourable compared to kits etc. And I’m lucky in that I don’t need to collect Napoleonics ’cause my mate’s already done all the hard work and has more than enough figures to game with – his preference is for corps level games, so Blucher no doubt suits him more than Lassale might.!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Nice Lorraine Schlepper conversions. I love FoW models (Have not tried playing them in FoW yet but am reticent as a lot of the games I’ve seen look like Warhammer 40K for WWII – ie crowded). Maybe someday, but love the paint jobs on these here. Pretty damn cool.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Glad you like them Mark. I must stress I only painted a few! I chicken out of airbrush work so all my late German armour was painted for me!
      I totally agree with you as to Flames- it does suffer from track to track deployments and this is part of the reason I base them. I posted them on Facebook and created a bit of a stir on whether to base. Realistic terrain makes a big difference too- even the Warpact had to re-write their tank manuals to accommodate small folds in the ground in the 80s!
      Merry Christmas!

      Liked by 2 people

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