Our friends at The Hobby Company, based in the UK, have once again supplied us with a number of kits that make the leap from static display to tabletop gaming. Available in a range of scales, we thought we’d cover them all in one post.
Note: The text below is the transcript of our unboxing video (for those who would rather read than listen).
In 1/72nd, we received three AFV kits, all based upon German World War Two vehicles. The first is the Sd. Kfz. 265 Panzer-befehlswagen, a Wehrmacht Panzer Division commander’s main ride.
Designed to keep up with the advancing troops, the chassis and hull of a Panzer I light tank had its turret removed and replaced with an armoured superstructure. The kit itself has a few small parts but seems simple to build, as you would expect from Italeri. The track assembly is rigid plastic with both rows and individual links, something I find difficult to complete to my satisfaction. The next kit is a 10.5cm StuH.42 Alsz Ausf. E/F from the Dragon ‘Pro Armor’ range. This looks like a kit that can be quickly assembled but has a wealth of detail. It also appears to be a fairly robust kit, so it has some tabletop ‘survivability’. An interesting feature is the track assembly, flexible plastic but with the rollers already attached, making that assembly stage a lot easier. The last kit is from Zvezda and represents a Jagdpanther tank destroyer. This is advertised as a ‘snap fit’ kit, so no glue required, but would benefit from some glue on smaller parts. Assembly would take longer than the previous two kits but that is largely due to the additional detail parts which are included. The track assembly is a mix of rows of wheel, individual wheels and flexible tracks, a test for old fingers.
Moving up to 1/48th scale and Tamiya, we also have a World War Two German vehicle, this time in the form of a German SS-100 Heavy Tractor. This is a vehicle used by the Luftwaffe to tow aircraft to and from hangars or similar. It does have some conversion possibilities to other genres of gaming but is primarily designed as a diorama piece.
However, the other offering in 1/48th is more useful for the Modern or Ultramodern wargamer, the M1A2 Abrams Main Battle Tank as used by U.S. forces since 2003. This is a fairly detailed kit, with a number of options which may be added to the turret in particular.
Although fairly robust, all this detail could be an issue for the wargames table, especially as adjusting the turret during gameplay would be a major aspect.
This is a solid kit, which comes with a bar of metal which may be added to the model to provide extra heft. Although probably designed for aiding static display, this adds a sense of weight for the wargamer.
Our last kit is more of an objective than a battlefield piece. Created by Zvezda, this is a 1/72nd scale version of the ‘Is-kander-M’ SS-26 ‘Stone’ Ballistic Missile System, as used by the Russian armed forces.
Intended to target key enemy installations, the missiles travel very rapidly, at a great height, and use stealth technology, making them very hard to counter. Both conventional and nuclear warheads may be fitted. To my mind, it would make a great objective for a special forces operators or similar, either to be captured or destroyed. The kit has a plethora of small parts and is a testament to the level of detail that it is possible to create in modern plastic kits.
So, there we have it, a number of plastic kits that can be used on the tabletop. The robustness of most modern models and the range of different kits makes them a good choice for the wargamer on a budget. They are also great for creating centerpieces for your tabletop.