Back to the Russian Civil War again this LPL round with some Copplestone 28mm Bolsheviks. I really like the whole Copplestone Back of Beyond range, even the “rank and file” infantry have loads of character and lots of really nice details.
The tan background and khaki on the Bolshies gives this photo quite a nice sepia tone overall; that wasn’t really planned but looks good!
Doing final organization for my Trumpeter Salute Russian Civil War game this evening, I did something I’ve never actually done in the two years of this project — laid out every single painted, game-ready RCW figure and model I have together. The lighting in my dining room is awful, so this is a terrible photo, but it’s fun to see everything laid out for review!
On the left, the White Russians. Officers and machine gun in front, two dozen Cossack riflemen, then a couple more officers, then 32 rifles from a regular rifle regiment. All of my White Russian figures are from Brigade Games.
In the centre, the 77mm field gun (nominally Red), sixteen cavalry, one armoured car, and one protected railcar. These figures are (so far, at least) all deliberately painted without much in the way of identifying insignia, so they can and have appeared for both sides in our games.
On the right, the Bolsheviks. Officers, machine gun and banners in front, and the long column is forty ordinary Red riflemen. Far right is twenty Red Sailors and their leaders, and behind them is the Red militia of 15 rifles. The Bolsheviks all happen to be from Copplestone.
This gives me a total of 56 White rifles, 75 Bolshevik rifles, and a grand total figure count (including gun crews) of exactly 190 figures, apparently. I’ll tick over 200 fairly soon, as there’s another round of White rifles to paint up. That’ll pretty much finish off the regular infantry, although I do want another section or two of Red sailors. After that it’s off to more of the toys and quirky bits, tchankas, armoured cars and such!
I’ve long been a fan of putting figures on the smallest bases they’ll fit on and that’ll keep them upright, when you’re doing individual bases for skirmish gaming.
Almost all of my 28mm pulp and historical figures are based on Canadian pennies, which are about 18mm across. You can’t beat the cost, they’re big enough for nearly any human-sized figure provided you don’t mind the occasional toe or heel sticking over the edge a few millimetres, and the small size makes it far, far easier to get your figures into scenery, especially buildings and larger vehicles like ships.
But what of guns, and larger-than-human figures?
Pennies and Milliput epoxy putty again there too. Why change what works? I’ve used that method before for monsters (werewolves and Yeti, just for two examples) and decided to stick with it when basing up the Bolshevik Maxim HMG from Copplestone. With the gunner prone behind the weapon, the whole thing would have required a base of about 60mm diameter to get him to fit — see above about wanting minimal footprint bases!
Pictures being worth a thousand words and such, see below for the Bolshevik and White Russian Maxim guns.
The Copplestone Bolshie Maxim (on the left) has the gunner and gun on three pennies in line; the prone loader takes up two and is arranged on one edge of his base so he can reach the gun. On the right, the Brigade Games White Russian Maxim with seated gunner only needs two pennies; the kneeling loader is on one, again arranged to one side so he can reach his gun. Having the loaders and other crew on separate bases also makes casualty marking dead simple, as a bonus.
Incidentally, Copplestone and Brigade Games RCW figures work perfectly together, no size mismatch at all. I have a longer post comparing the two lines in the works — stay tuned.
There’s 43 Bolsheviks off my painting table and ready for action, finally! One Maxim MG crew, some officers and NCOs and a whole lot of ragged, barely uniformed riflemen. Almost entirely Copplestone figures, and I mixed freely from the regular rifles, greatcoated rifles and the partisan packs to get a suitable ragged look. I had just started painting (and thinking about organization) when this marvelous Lead Adventure thread opened, with all sorts of great contemporary photographs of both Red and White uniforms.
24 more Bolshies to finish basing and then paint, at which point it’s on to the 60-some White Russians that are in the mail to me as I write this. All that painting will give me the core of two good-sized RCW infantry forces, nominally configured as platoon-sized forces for Through the Mud and the Blood but obviously configurable for other games as needed.
The Russian Civil War has well and truly taken over my painting schedule, and starting in November I should even be able to get some games in again, as a screwy work schedule settles somewhat and once again frees up my Sundays for gaming, which is of course the best possible use of that day. I’ll probably try to push hard to get enough Whites finished for a first Mud & Blood RCW outing by the last Sunday in November… we shall see!
(More photos of the Reds in the next few days, as daylight and weather allows…)
I generally do figure prep (taking off moldlines and flash) and basic basing in fairly large batches, prime the whole batch, then tuck most of them away and bring them back out 5-10 at a time for painting.
It’s a good system for me; it gets the gruntwork of cleaning and prepping done efficiently, but avoids the “Primered Legions” paralysis I get from having hordes of unpainted figures staring at me from the corners of my painting bench. Instead they’re out of sight in in a spare figure case, to be brought out in small enough batches to actually paint.
These guys started out as a Lead Painters League entry, but didn’t get finished in time, and besides, I’d already run too many groups of riflemen in khaki to want to run another in LPL5!
They’re a mix of Brigade and Copplestone Red Russians and Red Partisans; I’m not actually sure which figure is from which company as I bought them in a mixed batch from a fellow Lead Adventure Forum member who lives over in Vancouver. There’s a standard bearer and another dozen riflemen still to be painted, making these the nucleus of a decent little Red Russian skirmish unit.
In website news, you might have noticed the black menu bar along the top here changing a bit. Always a challenge trying to fit everything in, make it findable and sensible without being too complex!