Bolt Action - Imperial Japanese Army

Right.. so.. um.. where to start on this post.

Recently while moving to the UK ( seems a lot of us 5th-d's are moving these days! ) I wanted to get back into the gaming scene. As UK is very big on its gaming scene, I figured this might be a good stepping stone into the community a bit also.

So the local club, Sad Muppets, in my town/village area started up an escalation league for Bolt Action. Starting at 600 pts and working up to 1200 or so.. Perfect opportunity to paint up some WWII forces, and more importantly.. the mighty Banzai shouting Japanese that I have always had my eye on!

With this in mind, and with the starter box picked up from a previous convention, I slapped some paint on the models to get an idea of where this could go.

The top 5 guys were painted up to give me an idea of how the army might look. Though I have to say that soon after painting them.. I realized that to do an army of them this would take forever... considering that it was almost 3 hrs per model above.. and when looking at what I have in the wings to paint up.. I am not looking forward to that!

My 800 pts force for next week's game. And some extras on the side. 

Rest of the infantry forces yet to be based, but at least are assembled!
Yeah.. the change of mindset is in order here. I don't want/care to have a super high end painted showcase army to play with.. but I wouldn't mind having this force done within a reasonable amount of time.

So I took a "few" steps back and changed up my painting style here a bit. Reduced the steps in the process, reduced the smoothness of the paint, and went back to a pure: Basecoat/Wash/Highlight mentality for the forces. First to get the treatment is the Second Lieutenant and his guard.

Very simple work here.. less than 45 minutes combined between the 2, and I think I can cut a few more corners to make them even faster! Maybe after cutting a few more corners, I can come back for a bit of pin highlighting on some points to make them pop while on the table. But for now.. this is decently fine for the tabletop!

More so when put alongside my first piece of armor that I have painted in a very very long time now!

Expect many more WIP shots (hopefully some with my camera instead of cell phone!) of these forces throughout the next weeks as I get more and more of it painted up for the escalation campaign forthcoming. And hopefully by the end of the whole ordeal I will have a semi-nicely painted up IJA force to play with on a more regular basis!

Any comments on how to play them.. please put them in the comments! And if you like the scheme then also post below! Cheers


  1. Nice work. It's hard to rein in the painterly side when doing table top stuff. I have some scouts for the NOVA Open Charitable Foundation and I have to keep telling myself: Deadline, move on! You can do more at the end if there's time :)

    1. Thanks Zab, and indeed it is hard to rein it in at times. Though I think I might have come up with a quick way to do a decent coverage with minimal time. Will see as I do a few more units for testing! Cheers

  2. May be simple but actually some of the most effective paint job I have ever seen for Japanese. Would you mind sharing the colors you used for their uniforms and helmets?