Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Welcome!

The first post on this new adventure, the Korean War!  I will be posting blog entries on an occasional basis that will deal with gaming the war in miniature, along with other tidbits I find interesting.  On the miniatures side, the land war will be in 15mm, small unit level, while the air war will be gamed in 1/285th (1/300th) scale.  As this is a brand new gaming project, there are a lot of decisions to be made about miniatures and rules, but I do have some ideas in hand.

My Korean War knowledge is slim so I grabbed a few titles from my local Half Price Books and am working my way through them.  My father missed Korea, having served in the U.S. Army in the mid-1950s where he was stationed in Germany as part of an armored cavalry regiment.  So I do not have any direct connection or reason to have a strong interest in the war, other than it isn't gamed often, the air war saw the first widespread use of jets, and of those jets I really am a fan of the F-80 Shooting Star and F-86 Sabre.  I also think that the M26 Pershing is one sweet looking tank.  Are those valid or enough reasons for gaming the Korean War?  Damn right they are!

For the land war, there are various companies making Korean War figures, and of course many World War Two ranges can be used.  I would almost go with 10mm for this project, but to my knowledge there is only one company (Pithead Miniatures) making 10mm Chinese and none making North Koreans or Allied forces in winter gear, while there are some ranges existing in 15mm.  The larger scale of these battles (compared to some of my more modern projects) would lend itself more readily to 10mm, and there are rumors that Pendraken will be making a Korean War range, and that Pithead will be expanding their range, but until those figures are forthcoming 15mm will be the direction I most likely will head.  As I am going to work on the air portion of the war first, I do have some time to wait to see if these additional rumored 10mm miniatures are indeed placed into production.

In 15mm there are enough existing figures to put together small unit actions.  Quality Castings (part of Old Glory 15s) make Chinese in winter gear, North Koreans in summer uniform, and other forces can be put together from their World War Two range.  I have always had a soft spot for the Quality Castings figures as they were some of their first World War Two 15mm figures I ever painted.  While some of the poses and details might be a tad dated compared to more recent lines, they still hold up fairly well.  I do have an order placed with Eureka (the USA shop) for the North Koreans to see how they look, and will probably order some of the other ranges to see if they blend well together.

For the air war, I am purchasing some 1/285th MiG-15s and F-86 Sabres from a local gamer, along with four air war books and some Dom's Decals.  I am not sure who the manufacturer of the planes might be, but I did order some of the Raiden Miniatures via I-94 Enterprises today so I hope I will be able to compare them and determine what manufacturer the local gamer's planes are.

Rules - For the land war these are yet to be determined, but I do have a copy of the Korean War Data Book coming from Olde Dominion GameWorks (ODGW) for their Mein Panzer rules.  For air combat some of my gaming friends use Check Your 6! rules from SkirmishCampaigns so I ordered the Korean War supplement today as well.  I have only gamed CY6! one time before, years ago, and did not come away with fond memories, but am willing to give it another go before making a final decision on rules.

There will be more to come over the next several days (pictures of minis, etc.) so be certain to check out the blog regularly and leave comments from time to time!

5 comments:

  1. If you haven't grabbed them yet, Donald Knox did a couple book on Korea that I thought were quite good. At least they made the time go by faster on a hilltop over there.. Check out The Korean War: Uncertain Victory and The Korean War: Pusan to Chosin.

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  2. Very interesting to see someone opening up a dedicated Korean War blog. Hope you come up with all kind of good forgotten history and interesting stuff as you dig deeper into the matter!

    For rules, I think Check Your Six Jet Age works fine if you have other players as sparring partners. It´s not exactly suited for Solo gaming, but great once you have adapted to the rules. The important part to remember is (I always tell that to people before starting a demo game) that you should not focus too much on the current position of the airplans on the board but on the next step ahead, where could my opponent be next turn? If you got that right, the game works flawlesly even with new players (especially if there are no missiles that complicate things)

    The choice for ground rules depends a lot on what you want to play. I can only make recommendations on the platoon level scale and tactics-oriented gameplay here, which is what I usually play. For Platoon plus support sized games, use either Chain of Command (WW2 rules, most of the TOE should be usable with minor modifications for Korea though). Big plus for excellent tactical gameplay and tough choices for the players, rewards historical tactics and is not even complicated to learn. Downside is that it´s not quite flexible enough to handle smaller games (squad level or half-platoons).
    Second recommendation is using Force on Force if you are looking to play both small scale (squad plus support to half-platoon) and platoon plus support sized games. Unfortunately the game has some weaknesses, but I´m playing it with a set of houserules that fix most of the issues and encourage more realistic tactics and outcomes while preserving the flexibility of the system which I´m missing with Chain of Command - if you´re interested in the houserules, just ask me, I can provide the beta version to you for playtesting ;-)

    Hope you have lots of fun with your project!

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    1. I am a huge Force on Force fan, and if I want to keep things at a very small level, those would work great (raids on trenches, farms, small villages). And yes, I would enjoy seeing your beta rules!

      As for CY6, I am gaming this weekend with them with the guys, and they are all fairly veteran players of CY6 so I will either learn or be schooled.

      Thanks for the info!

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  3. Good, I´m sure you´ll pick the rules up rather quickly - just make sure you´re always one step ahead when thinking about which turn code to choose, the rest should be easy ;)

    For the FoF-Houserules, send me a mail to info [ at ] enfilade-figures.com and I shall provide you with the current version and all future updates on those. Hope you can give me some feedback after the first reading or the first games!

    (edited to avoid spam risk on my mail adress -.- )

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