Ahoy there! My name is Conor and I am the latest member to join Warlord’s Customer Service Team here at Warlord HQ. Today I want to take the time to talk about my Kriegsmarine Fleet for Victory at Sea.
As you may have guessed we are all quite budding hobbyists in the Customer Service team (check out Max & Marcus streaming over on Twitch every Monday) and despite my long-term love for tabletop gaming I have only recently got into Warlord products and as such had to make sure my first project was something big. Between this and “new model syndrome” (of which many of us are afflicted – <ed>)I decided to embark on my craziest hobby challenge yet: to cover one country completely(ish) in History. Not wanting to clash, I looked into the other projects within the team and I quickly settled on Germany (and not because they were only founded in 1871! –
My aim is to cover the geographical area from Germanic tribes to Prussian Cavalry in the future). Now, as the Second World War is currently our most supported part of history (with four games), I decided on this being the perfect place to start!
The Initial Plan
Now due to the limitations of lockdown here in the UK I sadly could not approach this in my usual manner and get some games in to see how they play. So instead I decided on building four main battle groups to cover a variety of expected scenarios. With my main ships already covered and already having three destroyers from the starter set I also decided that I’ll probably need another trio of destroyers (for six in total) and then match this with the U-Boat release.
With the idea in place, I decided on the 4 main fleets to be a battlegroup, a commerce raiding fleet, a carrier fleet and finally a coastal defence fleet.
I was really lucky to be able to pick up a copy of the shiny new hardback rulebook slightly early which gave me a sneak peek into the wider fleet building possibilities, provoking changes to be made.
Firstly, I created a fifth fleet, made up of only six U-Boat submarines in order to have an attacking force for the Submarine special scenarios (Submarines cannot normally be taken in normal scenarios – although this is fine if both players agree) and secondly a change to the coastal defence fleet. With this information and the rest of the recent releases now sitting on my hobby table, I was finally able to look into building my lists properly.
Each of the battlegroups was to be led by each of the four main battleships currently available, (with the caveat that Tirpitz hasn’t yet been released – though you can pre-order here – but will be added to my collection as the lead ship for my home coastal defence fleet). With the main ships selected I then looked into splitting the rest of the ships between the fleets to make each battlegroup equal in points and, on paper at least, relatively balanced.
From the drydock to the Table
With the fleet lists and ships committed to battlegroups the next step was to get the fleet painted up. I started on giving the entire fleet a Uniform Grey undercoat (although in hindsight a blue undercoat would have saved a lot of time) and although there are different colour schemes, I wanted to make the fleet pretty uniform, as though it had all been constructed and commissioned in a short space of time. I, therefore, opted for a limited colour palette.
I decided on sorting the bases of the ships first and went for a base of Army Painter Deep Blue, followed by Quickshade Blue Tone and a drybrush of Vallejo Matt White to finish off. Next the ship hull with decking as a 50:50 mix of Panzer Aces New Wood and Vallejo Dark Sand, the metals Vallejo Oily Steel and the rest of the hull Vallejo Medium Sea Grey. Once all this was dry a wash of Army Painter Strong Tone and a drybrush of Matt White on the nameplate resulted in a relatively uniform colour scheme for the fleet in a short amount of time.
Now with the fleet designed, written up, built and painted all that is left to do is play some games. With this sadly being very limited due to the lockdown they are currently being held in the Kallax dry dock. I have already turned my head to what I can add to the fleet. With Tirpitz and the Kriegsmarine Aircraft expansions on pre-order (due for release in March), I am already plotting out battlegroup expansions. I have now resigned myself to studying the rulebook but I look forward to seeing some fellow Admirals to join me on the high seas soon!