The usual suspect.

Or the Big 5. This is the major combatants of the second world war. Germany, Russia, America, UK and Commonwealth/Empire and the Japanese empire. All are well covered in plastic. Well with the exception of the Japanese anyway.

Support weapons are often lacking, and must be got in lead or scratch built (if you are feeling really clever or brave). Anti tank rifle, light mortars and most nations anti-tank guns are usually not available in plastic.

Germany is tremendously well supported. of the common equipment only some of the early Panzer 3s, 50mm anti tank gun and 75mm infantry gun are unavailable in plastic. Also common to other armies the light mortar and anti-tank rifle of the early war must be got in lead. Every other weird and wonderful (well almost every other) piece of kit is available in plastic somewhere, by someone! One thing to remember is that the bulk of the German army was NOT motorised. At its peak the German army was only 25% motorised. Until 1942 the most common tank was the Panzer 2.

Hot Tip: Revell do a pack of the German 105mm field gun (Standard weapon of the war) One with its horse tow + crew in transit, and one gun set up to fire. They also bundle it with a Panzer 2. If your game is going for table top artillery, this is a must get.

Russia is possible the No2 best supported. Revell have been focusing on the late war and eastern front with their figure set releases so always have a look at their range. In there are Cossacks (on horse) and 2 sets of figures on top of the Escii and Airfix figures. all the main armour from mid 1942 onwards, though the staple BT7 and T26 of 1941 are not easy to come by unless you go for resin or lead. Guns are sketchy in availability. Of note, all American tanks, British Matildas and Valentines were used and well liked by the Russians in significant numbers ( though the M3 light tank was known as a metal coffin for 5 heroes of the people).

Hot Tip: Feel free to use American trucks. The Gaz AA is the Ford model A, The Gaz AAA is the Ford model A with an extra axel.

America. Very well supported. They may have arrived late by 3 or 5 years depending who you ask) but when they arrives, they well and truly got stuck in with full force. You can use British 8th army for the early Philippines, other wise generally marines are pacific theatre, others would be Europe/North Africa. Field guns again a bit slack in availability. Armour and trucks though are well supported. Pay very close attention to the trucks. They were the grease of all the allied armies of the late war, Especially the Russian army.

UK, Commonwealth and Empire. Relatively well supported, especially from 1941 onwards, however 1940 is poorly supported with 2pdrs and pre-crusader cruisers missing in plastic (so your hunting for resin/lead for those). Valentines, Matildas, Vickers MK6s, Crusaders all available for North Africa/Burma etc. Churchills and finally Cromwell's for 1944 onwards (thanks to Revell). The 2 main field gun (25 pdr, 5.5 inch, both airfix, also 18pdr from Emhar WW1 range for early war 18/25pdrs), 2 main Anti-aircraft guns (Bofors 20mm, and 3.7 inch) and mid-late war Anti-tank guns (6pdr and 17pdr) all available.

Japanese. Figure sets commonly available, but that's about it. Chi-ha tank by Airfix and maybe the Ho-Ri Self propelled gun, plenty of planes though. There was a kit of the 70mm battalion gun. The Emhar German 77mm gun is very similar to the Japanese Menji 38 field gun un-improved (which was a Krupp 75mm from around 1905) but still needs a gun shield change, Other than that your looking at lead.


Rules and scale.

The usual suspects for WW2.

Not 'the usual suspects' WW2

Painting plastic.


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