Wot, No Heer?

Genereal Axis discussion with SS, Heer and FJ sub-specialisations

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BedsnHerts
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Wot, No Heer?

Postby BedsnHerts » Sun Oct 17, 2010 7:29 am

With more people on the Allied side moving away from doing l33T units and concentrating on the far more representative leg infantry impressions, I'm curious as to why this hasn't happened so much with the Germans. First choice always seems to be Waffen SS, FJ as a sort of niche secondary impression and Heer very much an also ran.

Is feldgrau and plain steel really so boring? Even the ones that decide on regular army can't seem to resist tan & water smocks, splinter tunics and helmet covers, nets, wire cages, etc etc etc.

Now I know that most people do a heck of a lot of research into their impressions, so why are the thousands of photos showing bog-standard soldiers ignored in favour of the one where a guy is wearing something unusual?
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby Hänschen klein » Sun Oct 17, 2010 8:35 am

Personally a group of us (10) have started with either SS or Heer splinter smocks all down to price. Most of them on the first game went out and bought a smock and hat and along with some generic OG trousers and shirts looked the part. Going down the full on tunic trousers and helmet to start with looks the part but is pricey. I have the full set now so could convert to Heer but have spent quite a bit which others have spent on WW2 guns. From what I saw on our first game the `Hardcore` made up a contingent of Heer and the others SS FJ etc. The scenario accomodated for this so we were all happy :D
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby rammix » Sun Oct 17, 2010 8:53 am

:good:

It all comes down to cost, Ive been collecting bits and pieces for over 5 years now and playin airsoft for 2 years. Started out as Heer and now have an SS impression as well, still collecting bits!

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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby BedsnHerts » Sun Oct 17, 2010 9:11 am

In truth, a spearhead tunic is only about £9 more than a camo smock and it comes with litzen already sewn on. For some reason, people think you have to buy the whole Nic Morigi catalogue if you get a tunic.

Still doesn't explain why those who do decide to go down the full monty German route almost invariably want to be Waffen SS.

Edit:
I REALLY like these pics. I also have a close combat clasp but chose to remove it after I found out that it was an incredibly rare award.
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby rammix » Sun Oct 17, 2010 9:24 am

was suffering from a bit of blingitus there :rofl:
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby Chomley-Warner » Sun Oct 17, 2010 9:40 am

The reason why people choose the SS route is obvious - historically there was an active Hohenstaufen group, people like cool cammo, people like something perceived to be a bit more 'elite', SS is thought to be more interesting and so on.

The danger of criticising those who choose SS is that those who already have SS kit feel they have to justify themselves (see above) and demonisation isn't the way forward I'd suggest. In any case, there is plenty of Heer kit about - loads at Op Ariel for instance.

No, I'd suggest the way forward (if this is perceived to be a problem at all) is for game organisers to build events around a Heer story and for someone to make the effort an start a Heer based group that actually does something. Give people a reason to chose Heer over SS!

For what its worth I'd always advise anyone starting a German impression is just get a wool tunic/trousers with helmet and belt and then you are sorted. Forget the accessories, forget the badges, forget the camo. It isn't expensive (relative to Brit or US equivalent) and it is easy and universal and as Beds points out, representative.
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby BedsnHerts » Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:04 am

Woah! Hold on Hoss :wink:

I'm not criticising and I'm certainly not demonising. I'm just interested in people's reasoning.

Camo. Yes, I can see that. The typical WfSS guy looks cool - but so does the typical 101st guy and yet these days I can almost hear the sighs whenever a new forum member announces his desire to put together an Easy Company loadout.

Hohenstaufen is also long gone and even when it was active I recall Pete regularly weeding out so called members who never attended anything or contributed to the forum. Even the couch potatoes wanted to be associated with a Waffen SS unit
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby Chomley-Warner » Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:34 am

BedsnHerts wrote:... but so does the typical 101st guy and yet these days I can almost hear the sighs whenever a new forum member announces his desire to put together an Easy Company loadout

Exactly, sighs are so heavy there aren't enough US airborne to fill a side because of this.

This same question frequently pops up of traditional reenacting forums - plaintive cries about the predominance of the 'elite'. Frankly, it is how it is. People do WW2 airsoft for exactly the same multi-various reasons people sit behind ropes at WW2 shows. I'd wager many (of both groups) aren't that much interested in history (socio/political/economic/military) beyond war films. Others are manic kit collectors. Some have a personal reason for interest. Others get kit because their mates do. Others like dressing up in cool gear or matching gear to their guns. None of this is mentioned as a criticism - this is just how it is.

Again, I go back to giving people a reason to choose Heer over SS and as far as WW2 airsoft is concerned there can be no more incentive than games built around Heer scenarios or proactive Heer interest groups. I wouldn't hold my breath though - people do what the hell they like anyway. :lol:
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby BedsnHerts » Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:20 am

Chomley-Warner wrote:there can be no more incentive than games built around Heer scenarios


like a Stalingrad game maybe....
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby Steiner » Sun Oct 17, 2010 12:33 pm

Lots of interesting points put forward already, but I would not like to see the situation where people feel they have to choose Heer over WfSS, or vice-versa. The fact that in the first place, the German WWII airsofter already has three distinct impressions to choose from, means that choices must initially be made, and as Gordon said, for a WWII airsoft newcomer, buying a ski cap and a camo smock allows someone to dip their toe in the water, without a massive initial outlay. How is the newcomer to know in advance whether he'll like the WWII experience ? They might all be a bunch of anally-retentive knobs! :wink:

I was airsofting for a couple of years before the Clash of Eagles event, but I knew quite a lot about WWII at that stage already. However, what I knew nothing about was the kit. I was fortunate in that I did have the resources to buy a complete loadout, and also fortunate in that I took Guy's advice and bought a set of Feldgrau first. (The fact that I wasted a whole load of money on superfluous camo items and bling which cost as much again as the unform, is neither here nor there! :whistle: ) So often, the initial kit decisions stay with you a lifetime - yes, if you get WfSS kit and some of your friends do too, then what reason do you have to get Heer or FJ kit also, especially if you can't really afford it? Over the years, I've tried to maintain kit for all three branches, but I finally decided recently to sell off my WfSS bits and do only Heer and FJ (and Brit occasionally).

As many of you know, I tried to get a Heer group together, but that German three way split between the branches meant that there simply weren't enough people to make it viable. In addition, there are obviously many Heer impressions also, which further reduces the amount of people who would want to join. i.e. if I said "let's form a Heer Infanterie group", then that immediately alienates anyone who does Gerbirgsjäger, Jäger, Panzergrenadier, Pionier, etc, etc.

Anyway, Heer is very much my favoured branch, and I like the classic Feldgrau look. Get about a dozen people dressed like that, and you have what I consider a very cool looking unit! 8)
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby marsha » Sun Oct 17, 2010 3:21 pm

well i started out as Heer and will stay as Heer as i like the infantry look
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby BedsnHerts » Sun Oct 17, 2010 6:20 pm

marsha wrote:well i started out as Heer and will stay as Heer as i like the infantry look


:good:

Plus you have the option of switching to 100% authentic Waffen SS simply by swapping out two collar tabs, an eagle and a pair of slipon shoulderboards.

See - camo shmamo :giggle:
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby richardschulze1944 » Mon Oct 18, 2010 9:17 pm

Finishing an impression? What does that feel like, then? Maybe it's just me, but I don't think I've got a completely finished impression yet, WW2 or modern - I keep finding things to buy :happydance:

Anyway. Why do SS, as opposed to Heer? Hmmm. As Dave implies, nay more suggests, the reasons individuals have are many and varied. For me, the SS tick a number of boxes: they wore camo, their uniforms are just generally smart and aesthetically pleasing, the variety of kit you can throw together and be historically accurate is huge, they were an elite, their officers were innovative, their rank and file brave, courageous and determined, they were trained [thanks in no small measure to Felix Steiner] to think of themselves as superior fighting men and this almost invariably translated into noteworthy achievements in battle, often against apparently insurmountable odds.....but wait a minute.....

.....you can have almost all of the same ingredients with a Heer impression, if you go GD :happyclap: Camo, smart uniforms, an elite - who fought alongside the SS! Every reason, then, to do both Heer and SS. I have a GD recon. loadout as well my SS ones, and with a swift change of differently piped shoulder board I can quickly transform into a regular infantryman. Huzzah. :mexican:
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby Ghost MacRoth » Mon Oct 18, 2010 9:37 pm

Well, my first German impression was much the same as any other I've done. Basic troop. Bog standard Heer, no rank, no bling (other than the iron cross 2nd class as it adds a nice flash of colour and they where apparently quite common anyhoo) and no camo. However, I later decided to do an SS load, simple for their camo, to assist in playing airsoft. After all, even an early and perhaps (in some's opinion) ineffective camo is better than none! I reckon on the airsoft side of things, that would account for the predomenance of SS units, as they had more camo choice, and most airsofters believe they must utilise any advantage available.

Personally I don't really care about unit's and stuff, as long as we (at POW) get folk into WW2 gear, and have good balanced game days. Perhaps that opinion will change once I finally get to a CIA game! :wink:
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Re: Wot, No Heer?

Postby JD7 » Mon Oct 18, 2010 9:44 pm

I have a heer schutze loadout, SS and FJ.
I quite happily wear whats required for the CiA event.
Each of them i have an interest in.

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