Bolt Action!

Bolt Action!

Well, if I didn’t get enough gaming in with all the Warmachine and Hordes and Board Games, I got lured into painting and playing some Bolt Action, the WW2 skirmish miniatures game.

Being a glutton for punishment, I decided to start with some Italians. I love the desert war uniforms, and the idea of playing an off-beat force. So Italians seemed perfect to start with.


My initial 500 points was really, really thin. Had to add a forward observer (Guiseppe) to hit the mark. I love the notion of the Bersaglieri veterans, so I started with them as the core of my force. I’ll be expanding with some Blackshirts and colonial infantry eventually, and maybe a unit of Paratroopers for some Tobruk games. 


Closer view of the rank and file, and the medium machine gun team. I love the feather on the sun helmet, as well as the little red and white badge on it. It really makes the models pop on the table. 


This may be the best photo of a mini I’ve ever taken, and a mini I’m really proud of. A year ago, I couldn’t paint skin tone to save my life. After personal teaching from a good friend and amazing painter, Enrico Nardini, I really think I’ve upped my game–and this guy is good evidence of it. I love the character of him, and as he’s my Lieutenant/Captain for the force, I get to field him prominently in battles. 


My Italians’ first battle against the British, alongside some German allies. I may have taken fire, but we held for longer than I expected in the crop fields. Eventually the losses of my small units added up, and that left our side in the hole because of progressive loss differential–and the Italian special rules that makes things get worse when things start to go bad. 


My second game was another team-up: again Germans and my Italians (this time with more men in squads) against the British. While we ended up losing the scenario, the highlight was my Elefantino gun being on Ambush and scoring a killing blow shot onto the Sherman tank when it arrived from reserve. Well, that and the heroics of the German squads trying to chip away from the British corner defense in wave and counter-wave of close shooting from reserve.

I played a third game that was a demo with a friend who is also starting–this time my Italians versus his U.S. Marines. We pretended my Italians were French and it was one of the few African landings where Marines took place. A good game, but sadly I forgot to take photos! It’s all for the best, as I’m also working on some Japanese forces to be able to play games set in the Pacific. Here’s a sneak preview of my Japanese uniform scheme–I’m doing a late war, Island defense color scheme with them: aimed at Iwo Jima and Okinawa particularly:


And while I like the Italians, I absolutely love the plastic of the Japanese kit. 

Overall, I’m really enjoying the game. The order dice mechanism makes things enjoyable, and the fact that battles are varied is really good. I’ve grown in my tactical and strategic skill after just three games, and already itching for more. I’ve got some Italian fascist militia (Blackshirts) and an Italian tank on my painting table along with the remaining start-up stuff to get fielding my Japanese.

Battles (Bolt Action):

Overall Totals 2017: 3 (Win/Loss: 1/2/0)

Italians: 1 Win / 2 Losses





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