Lee brings us some intel from this year’s Salute show.
Sadly I couldn’t make it to London’s Salute show this year, but the Brighton contingent turned out in numbers as ever and so I asked them to get me some photos of any new models that may be on show. Nathan and Simon, my usual Team Yankee opponents, both delivered!
Battlefront had a glass cabinet with new models on display, not only where the new Churchill tank plastics on show, but also the Free Nation plastics, plus a…friend.
Firstly, the new Gazelle plastic kit was on show. Whilst both players spoke favourably of it, neither actually succeeded in getting a clear photo of it! Thankfully BF have at least showed the box art off for the French box-set so which does show it, so we’ll have to content our selves with that.
Right, lets take a look at the actual models. I would say that, given the grey look, these are the resin prototypes rather than actual sprues, though apparently at least one of the new kits was there in sprue form. From left to right we have:
- AMX AuF1 155mm SP Howitzer
- Leopard 1A1
The recent preview article on the Team Yankee page has stated that the new AMX kit builds both the AMX-30 and AMX AuF1. This makes sense as the AuF1 just mounted the GIAT 155 autoloader turret on the AMX-30 chassis so its a consolidation of variants onto one sprue.
The Leopard 1 being shown as 1A1 version was an interesting move. We know it builds the welded turret version from the box art shown, but the cast turret is a good differentiation against the existing Plastic Soldier Company which only builds the former. Those who saw the book stated that the Dutch cast turret examples had the applique armour shown suggesting that these are separate parts that can be added to the base turret. This all alludes to a very versatile kit though presumably BF were no more able to squeeze a Gepard in than PSC were!
Finally, you’ll note there was a fourth grey shape – a T-62! The Team Yankee site had a preview of the Fate of a Nation book’s content page which mentioned a T-62 battalion for both the Egyptians and Syrians. Presumably BF don’t want a repeat of the T-55/Leopard and are coming out fighting versus the competition with a plastic kit straight off. Given a T-62 is just (horrendous simplification coming up!) a stretched T-55 with a 115mm gun, it will presumably be fielded in mass like its older brother so a plastic kit is a boon for the Arab players. It may yet come into play in Team Yankee with Soviet third line troops and the Bulgarians and there’s always scope for BF to expand Fate of a Nation/Team Yankee to look at Iran-Iraq or the Gulf War where the tank was prominent.
Lets close out the article with a close up shot from Simon of the AMX AuF1. Straight away we can see that the current great run of BF plastic kits continues with the kit capturing a lot of detail.
Finally, Breakthrough Assault will be commencing Free Nation coverage on April 25th, starting with an overview of the book and then some detailed analysis of each of the nations contained. Stay tuned!