Friday, March 1, 2013

Soviet Airborne Troops VDV ( Воздушно-десантные войска, ВДВ)

Here is a topic that has been done, re-done, and then done again many times in the blog-o-sphere but here it is yet again - my Soviet Airborne Troops, or VDV as they are commonly known.

Going along with my World War III hobbying and gaming of late, these troops will take part in the battle for the Weser River Bridge at Hameln, Germany.  Ralph Peters' excellent book "Red Army" has the Soviets sending an Airborne Battalion to capture the 2 bridges over the Weser purely as a deception operation to draw British and German armor away from the battlefield, and falsely signalling to NATO that the crossing is vital to their operational plan.

NATO buys off and sends significant reinforcements to capture Hameln, virtually destroying the ancient part of the town and, (SPOILER ALERT) eventually wiping out the Soviet Airborne Battalion.  It's great reading however and makes for some really, really good wargaming.

Figures are ESCI and Orion.
Battalion command team - Staff Officer and Commander

A section or part of a squad.  Each squad is heavily armed with an RPK, RPG  22, and AK74s.  The remaining force is approximately 2 full strength squads with a host of support teams

another section.

remaining sections - note some of the more colorful camoflauge hails from my "Modern Warfare 2 Russians" in which I will game an invasion of the US like in the video game

The remaining scratch force...

Anti Tank Team.  Even though it's an RPG model, it's really an AT-3  team.  Useful for those pesky NATO tanks and APCs

Sniper.  Note the green and black "warpaint" 

2 leftover dudes that don't conveniently fit.  Thinking I'll make an AGS-17 AGL team with them.  Note the AKSU Carbines.  You get points downgrades in SOCW&D's rules for fielding them.

No-Bullshit Soviet Section Chief.  His fists are his weapons...

Another shot of the squad.  Prior to the air assault operation, morale was running high

These forces are platoon in strength and represent an ad-hoc grouping of the Battalion staff, and the last surviving remnants of furious West German Territorial Army and British Regular attacks.  Their job is to hold the Thiewall Bridge over the Weser until Soviet Armor reaches them.

You and I both know that the columns will never arrive - but the troops don't know that.

I will game this scenario using the excellent "Disposable Heroes [rather appropriate name given the scenario] Seek Out, Close With, and Destroy" skirmish rules.  I will cover the scenario, the British and West German Forces, and the terrain over the upcoming days.

Surprise!  My first "go" at British DPM Camo.  Not too bad.  He is part of the counter attack force at Hameln. 


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Nick! Just wait until you see my Brits and Germans - going to be fun

  2. good work! the soviets look cool. its been a while since I painted my Spetnaz models from ESCI

    1. Thank you, Gowan. I needed a break from Napoleonics and WWII! Plus it's been kind of like "World War III" season on the internet lately and I thought it would be fun to game some battles against Ivan.


  3. Really nice job on these bad boys Steven, the DPM painting looks top notch mate.

    1. Thanks, Paul. It was a huge pain and took a really long time but I think it looks ok. I got the know-how from here:

      Who has a tutorial easy enough for a yank to understand. I am painting up a whole platoon of those guys. I'll have them posted hopefully soon.