All Quar on the Croftyan Front

All Quar on the Croftyan Front

Podwyn opened his ration bag and peered inside. He sighed with the deep resignation that all common soldiers everywhere had carried in their packs since war began. 

„Grubs. Again.“

Derfel lifted his snout out of his own sack. „Aye. Bit bland. Here mate, sprinkle a few o‘ these on top.“ Derfel handed him a screw top tin kept carefully in a side pouch of his pack.

The tin was one thirds full of dead, red crickets. Legs and bits of carapace had come loose. Podwyn carefully sprinkled some over the top of his grubs. The added spice and crunch would be a welcome pleasure. He carefully screwed the lid back on and handed it back.

Derfel waved it away. „Ach. Yin keepin‘ it. Me Pa an‘ Ma jus‘ sent same agin,‘ wif new socks!“

Podwyn was humbled by the gesture. „Thank ‚ee brother.“

„Nae botha. Us poor milwers need to help each other out, ya ken?“

Podwyn ate some grubs and sighed with contentment this time. „That’s champion!“

„Just like yon Nan’s, eh?“

„My Nan would put red crickets on fried earth worms. Bliss!“

Podwyn was the new quar in the crew of the war tractor and was assigned as Second Machine Gunner. He and Derfel manned the machine guns protecting the flank of the tractor in an attack, keeping enemy bombers away and shooting down into their trenches as they rumbled over top.

A pykpyk sat on a nearby log, observing them cautiously. He plucked an unseasoned grub from his bag and tossed it. With an excited chitter, the small animal leapt after the morsel, and after stuffing it into it’s cheek pouch, scurried up a tree to enjoy it in safety. 

„Aye. Got ta look after each other.“

Maethwyn, the mechanic, shouted from the side hatch, where he had been minding the tractor’s water boiling vessel. „Ayup you lot! Tea’s up!“

Derfel got up and retrieved his mug from his pack. „Well, there’s tea. So it’s nae so bad and all.“

I have been spending a lot of mental energy this past week thinking about Quar, looking up late First World War infantry platoon organizations, pouring over the Zombiesmith’s webstore, playing with troop building in Xenos Rampant, thinking about Quar some more, planning trench modules, thinking about Quar, and figuring out how I want to approach the project. 

In a fit of wanting to do something, I set about an old VSF steam tank that I had made to fight Pete’s VSF Russians along the Northwest Frontier about 15 years ago. I had built a card body to fit over the bottom of a 1/35th scale Panzer II. The design owed a lot of inspiration to the A7V and the St. Chamond. I painted it white (to reflect the Afghan heat), with black smoke stack and ventilation grilles, sort of like Royal Navy ships of the era. The main gun was made from a tubular, brown plastic coffee stirrer and a piece of sprue.

Panzer II chassis

With smokestack

Time for a change. First I painted it in French style dazzle camouflage. Then I decided that the smoke stack was too VSF and replaced it with an exhaust grille and added another ventilation grille on the blank side.

The original design had always meant to have ball mounted MGs on the sides. But over thinking how to make the balls induced anxiety and procrastination, which meant they weren’t added.

Finally, after going around a couple of solutions several times,  I just said „F*k it. Finished and not perfect is better than not finished but perfect in my imagination.“ I cut a plastic craft bead in half with my Dremel and applied liberal amounts of superglue. 

The Vickers gun barrels are from EBob via a friend of a friend, made specifically for scratch building AFVs.

After that, it was just an hour or so of touching up the paint.

28mm figure for size

Now I just need to compose my soul in patience until Wargames Atlantic puts the set up for order. Jason at Zombiesmith says late summer is the anticipated time. Until then, it’s back to Napoleonics and Middle Earth on the painting queue.

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Autor: James / Rabbits In My Basement

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