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28mm British Early WWII

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This topic contains 18 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  yarkshiregamer 8 months ago.

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    Looking to start some WWII games, either Chain of Command or Bolt Action. I’m looking at Warlord Blitzkrieg German Infantry and Fallschirmjaer. Struggling to find Early British. Had a look at the Warlord British however they’re late war and I was wondering if they can be used just getting some other figures for the weapons teams. Although they have a later rifle (not sure how different they look).

    Have looked at some other suppliers just not sold on them, Crusader and Empress. Looking for advice on what others have used. Be useful if they could be used in late war although will probably be going US Airborne.



    Cult of Games Member

    Warlord do early war Brits. I’d love a crack at the early war and would be tempted by Empress, though you said you’re not keen. Here’s a link to Warlord’s early war infantry section; they have MMGs, mortars, anti-tank rifles, etc. as well.

    BEF Infantry Section


    Cheers, will have a look. Having another look at Empress. Think I have to get out of the habit of looking for plastic ranges. Also have to scroll through the full page to the late stuff at the bottom of their page, oops.


    Cult of Games Member

    Empress for the WW1 British (trying to remember the name of the original owner), they are all in field caps that were popular in the first couple of years (rather than the tin helmet). But you won’t find better sculpted figures for this period (pity the sculptor never got around to doing the Germans).





    Cult of Games Member

    Have a look at Artizan Designs as well


    Cheers, will do.


    Cult of Games Member

    For what it’s worth, if messers Preistley, Sawyer or Stallard are reading I would be all over a plastic BEF box. The Jerries have some early plastics.

    Ah g’wan


    Was surprised there wasn’t one as I’d imagine there is a lot of interest in the period.


    Cult of Games Member

    Agreed. Gerry made the point a week or two ago that early war is a good deal more interesting (basically without the German big cats). If I were getting into Bold Action now I’d go for that end of the conflict.


    Does seem to be better supported in the other scales however fancied some 28mm skirmish games. Will give the ones that have been suggested a look and see how they go.

    Although I did get an evening looking up some of the background so not that bad. Looks as though the British kit changed after Dunkirk so can’t use later stuff.

    Back to the books to read up on Lee-Enfield rifles and Puttees. Ah the rock and roll lifestyle.



    The Empress figures are sensational but they are more suited to the interwar period wearing puttees.  The BEF were wearing anklets which replaced the puttees in 1937.

    There is a real glut of 28mm BEF figures.  The only two manufacturers I know of are Warlord Games and Gorgan Studios.

    World War II: British

    • This reply was modified 8 months, 2 weeks ago by  beccas.

    Was thinking of going to 20mm scale. Don’t seem to have as wide a range of vehicles as the 28mm although I’m really looking for an infantry focus. Thanks for the link hadn’t seen them.


    Cult of Games Member

    Yup, same is true for both WW1 and WW2. In WW2 you haven’t got the big cats dominating the game, instead you’ve got loads of “tanks” and “tankettes” that weren’t really fit for purpose for pretty much all armies at this point. In WW1 everything hadn’t yet ended up in the stalemate of trench warfare and there was quite a bit of manoeuvring going on (which opens up the gameplay).



    Cult of Games Member

    Early War British have two different uniforms and two different sets of webbing. Basically you have the Service Dress (SBs) uniform, the one with longer jacket, walking trousers and leggings. The uniform is the same as was worn at the end of the Great War and actually you could use Late Great War figures with no problem.

    The other uniform is Battledress (BD) with the short gaiters, the uniform that like what we think of as British soldiers wearing in the Second World war.

    The issue comes with the webbing as you will find troops wearing SDs with pattern 08 webbing, just like in the Great War but also some will be pattern 37 webbing too. At least you wont have mixed webbing. Empress Miniatures have the British in SDs and pattern 37 webbing and are actually what most of the BEF worn in France 39/40.

    You also found, rarer though, BDs, with pattern 08 webbing, I not see any manufacturers do these, though 1st Corp do a Home Front range and Foundry and the Home Guard are wearing something similar to it. Then there is BDs in pattern 37 webbing which Warlord do, BEF platoon, and they are the best Early War Brits.

    The thing also to watch out for is the SMLE rifle as at the beginning of the war the British used the MKIII with the 18″ bayonet, the same rifle as used in the Great War and the late war used a MKVI and a pig sticker bayonet. There is a marked difference between the weapons especially the muzzle furniture, the MKVI has the barrel sticking out.

    The other differences between Early and Late War British is the position of the Gas mask, Early War is was carried on the chest, Late War it was on the left hip and the Helmets, Early War was the Battlefield Bowler and Late War was the Tortoise Shell

    Hope that helps.

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