Friday, 24 March 2017
Action Force - Z Force
Z Force launched the main assault on Ascendancy Island, taking advantage of SAS Force's diversionary attack to secure a beachhead and advance inland. Once the bomb was located and dealt with, it appeared that the threat from Baron Ironblood was over.
It took a while to decide on which figures to use for my Z Force infantry. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I've tried to go with the spirit of the figures rather than slavishly copying every detail. The original Z Force infantryman figure came with an MP5 SMG, but those shown in the comics usually seem to have the FN FAL/L1A1 SLR. An assault rifle is more practical for general combat troops than an SMG and Peter Pig professionals were one possibility - lots of great details with webbing and backpacks to match the action figure plus an SLR as the main weapon to match the comics. The only problem here was the head, the bush hat doesn't match any of the action figures.
Rather than try to hand-sculpt the heads for 40+ 15mm figures, I went for the easier option of using Peter Pig modern US troops instead. Heads and weapons aren't exactly right but they'll do for now! Helmets aren't unprecedented anyway, Z force minesweeper "Scout" and medic "Doc" both had helmets, as did tank commander "Steeler". A few head swaps will create a more varied force, red berets and black commando stocking hats being present on some of the action figures. Many of the infantry pictured in the comics wore the commando style stocking hats too, especially on Vanyo's excellently illustrated strips "Desert Strike" and "Jungle Terror". I will buy some more Peter Pig professionals and swap their heads for the spare US helmet heads and some more of the stocking cap heads to give me SLR-armed Z Force troops. For now, the modern US have a great range of dynamic poses.
Base colour is Vallejo medium olive green with matt black webbing and tiger-stripe camouflage. A 50/50 Pledge/sepia wash provides subtle shading, though my second batch seems to have come out rather darker thean the first ones. Helmets don't have the camo striping, the hooded infantryman and minesweeper action figures just had plain headgear. Red googles are something I particularly remeber from the action figure so that was a big reason for going for these specific figures. Webbing, weapons, boots and gloves are black with a dark grey drybrush. The final touch is a very carefully painted military stencil type red "Z" on the shoulder. Trying to paint this 4 times on each figure (first in white on each shoulder, then overpainting both in red) was a real pain!