Saturday, May 22, 2010

Condition Zebra countdown

We're starting to get previews of the next expansion set for the Axis & Allies Naval Miniatures game, Condition Zebra, although there's less suspense this time than there has been in the past, because we already have a set checklist, courtsey of the new starter set.

Together with the 8 ships included in the starter, we have a total of 212 models in the complete set, although it's not that many different scuplts because there are some reprints and sister ships.

Series designer Rich Baker has made some interesting choices so far, providing an eclectic mix of the famous and the obscure, the powerful and the puny and the useful and the useless amid the constraints of historical plausibility. There's been a numerical bias towards the Allies, of course, who outnumbered the Axis substantially, but at this point in the evolution of the line it has grown to the point where it compares favorably to the offereings of long-established ship modelers such as Superior or GHQ. For example, Superior's 1:2400 scale line of pewter ships is 61 models, while GHQ's 1:2400 scale offering for World War II is 251 models. With at least two more expansions planned, there's a liklihood War at Sea will even surpass GHQs extensive offerings.

One interesting thing about the War at Sea line compared to the traditional companies is how many different nations are represented. Greece and Finland are not represented at all by those companies, who concentrate on the big fleets.

So far the War at Sea lineup is comprised of the following navies:


Australia has a heavy cruiser, a light cruiser and two destroyers.
Canada has a light cruiser, a destroyer and a corvette.
France has four battleships, a carrier, a heavy cruiser, two light cruisers, two destroyers, a sub and two aircraft.
Greece has an old cruiser, a destroyer and a sub.
Netherlands has a cruiser, two destroyers and a sub.
New Zealand has a light cruiser.
United Kingdom has seven battleships/battlecruisers, four aircraft carriers, two heavy cruisers, three light cruisers, three destroyers, a sub and seven aircraft.
United States has 10 battleships/battlecruisers, seven aircraft carriers, four heavy cruisers, six light cruisers, nine destroyers/escorts, three subs, 1 PT boat, two auxiliary and 11 aircraft!
Soviet Union has two battleships, a cruiser and a destroyer.


Finland has a coast defense ship
Germany has four battleships, one carrier, one old battleship, two pocket battleships, two heavy cruisers, three light cruisers, four destroyers, three subs, an auxiliary, a patrol craft and five aircraft.
Italy has four battleships, an aircraft carrier, four heavy cruisers, three light cruisers, four destroyers, two subs, a motor torpedo boat and five aircraft.
Japan has seven battleships, six aircraft carriers, seven heavy cruisers, four light cruisers, seven destroyers, three subs, a sub chaser, two auxiliary and 11 aircraft.

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