Category Archives: Chinese

Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall

Back in 2015 I made an unplanned trip to Taipei, during which I managed to squeeze in the briefest of visits to the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall. As luck would have it, my presence coincided with the hosting of a modest exhibition commemorating the 70th anniversary of Japan’s defeat in WWII.

On display were paintings of the sort favoured by Asian military museums (which is to say their inattention to historical accuracy and general shoddiness would in all likelihood preclude their inclusion in Osprey books) highlighting some of the Sino-Japanese War’s greatest hits:

Of greater interest to wargamers such as us were the smattering of 1/35 afv kits the organisers had very kindly commissioned:

My favourite, though, were the even smaller batch of action figures on show:

And to end it all, a bloody big diorama of the China theatre of operations. Funnily enough I didn’t feel all that bothered about capturing the thing in its entirety.

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Winter Chinese

When Stonewall first brought out their Chinese I thought “I have to get these!” even if it meant buying them sight unseen. Sadly the figures turned out to be quite horrible, with some looking like overfed hunchbacks armed with oversized chunks of wood. That they were done by a first-time sculpter speaks volumes about their quality.

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kmt_003The helmeted nco is actually a figure from Lancashire games.

kmt_004

kmt_002

The officer figure is wearing a kepi which, according to Jowett, was mainly seen worn by troops involved in the Jehol campaign of 1933. It appears to have been completely phased out by the mid-1930s.

For the uniforms I used the Foundry British Blue Grey triad, which turned out more blue than grey. Although the Chinese were notorious for their lack of quality control, and uniform colours varied immensely, I don’t think they came any where close to being this blue. So I guess I won’t be using the paints any time soon. Talk about sunk costs…

The figures are based on a plate from the Osprey Men-at-Arms title on Chinese Civil War armies, and I must admit that the sculptor’s attention to detail should be praised – even the spare shoes can be seen strapped to the riflemen’s backpacks.

kmtsoldiers

I’ve always wanted to wargame the armour battle at the Kunlun Pass, as well as the Stalingrad-esque street fighting in places such as Shanghai, Nanjing, Changsha, and Taierchuang. But until a decent 20mm range comes along, it must sadly remainĀ  a dream.