Wednesday, August 1, 2018

3mm at 1:1 - Part 3: Game Time!

It’s been a little while but it’s time to get back to some 3mm discussion!

Lately I have been re-basing some of my 3mm miniatures to play lower level games. Recently I’ve been playing a lot of 6mm Team Yankee and it struck me that it could be good to play in 3mm as well.

For those who may have been living under a rock for the past couple of years, Team Yankee is a set of rules, based on Battlefront’s Flames of War WWII system, for games set in Cold War 1985. Depending on points values chosen for your game, the forces are between several platoons (for low-point games, or armies with expensive kit), up to about Battalion-sized (high-point games, or armies with cheaper troops - eg. East Germans).

I figured I could individually base some vehicles and infantry squads to play Team Yankee or similar level games (eg. Sabre Squadron, or the upcoming Battlegroup: NORTHAG). So that’s what I did.

As discussed in an earlier post, the bases are Gamecraft Miniatures “half-size” Flames of War acrylic bases. Both the length and width of the regular 15mm gaming FOW bases are halved, so the bases are actually a quarter of the area of the larger bases (do the maths!). My concept is to use these smaller bases with 3mm miniatures and substitute centimeters for the inch measurements from the 15mm game. Compared to the 15mm game, 3mm minis are1/5 of the size and the measurements scaled down to 1/2.5. This gives a better miniatures to ground scale ratio than the original in my opinion.

Some photos are below from my first game with the newly based miniatures, with my mate Chris (a few months ago now). As described above I embarked on this little project (pun intended!) primarily to play Team Yankee. So it was perhaps amusing that we ended up playing something else in the form of my favorite Fistful of TOWs (at 1:1 ratio with single vehicle/squad-to-a-base, instead of platoon-to-a-base). The game would, however, look very similar with the Team Yankee rules.

The game itself was a 1985 US company sized combat team defending against a Soviet Motor Rifle Battalion hasty attack.

Opponent Chris gives the traditional US commanders’
rock ‘n roll salute prior to going into battle...

The table; 3mm allows you to play on a smaller tabletop. 
This 4'x3' surface (120x90cm), when using centimetres in lieu of inches for TY, 
is the equivalent of a 10'x7.5' surface. Lots of room to manouever!

US M-901 ITOWs lurk in the forest does the US Mech Infantry

More ITOWs on the wooded ridgeline.

Infantry occupying a hill

A Soviet MR company advances quickly along the road, led by tanks.
Unfortunately the US artillery ranges in and pins the head of the column.

Another MR Company column, with a Recon platoon screening its flank.

MR and Tanks in column head for the gap in the forests.
Miniatures are Oddzial Osmy 3mm from PicoArmor. Amazingly detailed little miniatures - I love 'em!

Another view, with the MRB's third company advancing on the left flank.

Overview of the advance

The artillery continues to pound the central column. Casualties this time...

Soviet company columns converge on the US positions.

US M1 tank platoon re-deploys from the US left flank into the centre.

Soviets continue their rapid advance, the central tanks and MR company 
hooking left to join the left flank MR company in a heavy attack on the left flank.

Speed is of the essence! The Double Time marker represents a "Strategic Move" 
in Fistful of TOWs, or a 'March' or 'Dash' move in other rules.

US artillery falls on the lead company, but all of them continue to advance.

Soviet Mi-24 Hinds add their weight to the attack.

But then some US A-10s turn up as well.

The Soviets lay smoke to screen the advance

… and try infiltration through the woods for cover form US artillery and air.

The Mi-24s stalk the US M1s...

The right flank MR Company moves into some light woods...

… but still gets massacred by the flight of A-10s.

US Thermal Imagers allow the US defenders to target the Soviets through the smoke screen (degraded shooting though).

Some of the M1s arrive to reinforce the central positions.

… but the Soviets still launch their assault. The Soviet tanks and Mi-24s take care of some of the M1s.

The US air continues to hammer the advancing Soviets.

… and another shot of the carnage they are inflicting...

Soviet assaults put the US defenders under serious pressure, capturing the objective at heavy loss.

…. but not before the A-10s do even more damage.
The game was great fun, and 3mm single based miniatures were a triumph in my opinion. In the months since this game, I’ve been single basing lots more miniatures, so I expect that there’ll be many more battle reports to come...


  1. The look of the game is great - looking forward to more reports!

  2. It strikes me that TY might actually look better in 3mm than in 15mm.

    I'm not one of the types bothered by tank models being next to each other, but I do think the table can look a bit too busy in the medium scales.

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