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"Most Popular WWII Scale 15mm or 28mm?" Topic

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World War Two on the Land

3,490 hits since 30 Aug 2018
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Lee49430 Aug 2018 4:45 p.m. PST

What's the most popular WWII gaming scale right now 15mm or 28mm? What do more people play? Not looking for rules suggestions just trying to see what scale most gamers prefer to game in! Thanks!

Winston Smith30 Aug 2018 4:50 p.m. PST

Don't forget 20mm, 1/72 or 1/300.
I'm sure others will add more.

I do 15mm.

Vintage Wargaming30 Aug 2018 5:06 p.m. PST

The One True Scale. What that is will depend on who you are.

Silurian30 Aug 2018 5:14 p.m. PST

I'll be one of those annoying people who don't answer the exact question :)

20mm (1/72)

wrgmr130 Aug 2018 6:28 p.m. PST

+1 Silurian
Had 15 and .28mm, sold them.

Winston Smith30 Aug 2018 6:36 p.m. PST

The OP is begging the question that there are only 2 scales in which to game WW2.
Obviously that is incorrect.

saltflats192930 Aug 2018 6:41 p.m. PST

Probably 20mm, although I have none and both of the other 2.

Personal logo Zeelow Supporting Member of TMP30 Aug 2018 6:48 p.m. PST


BrockLanders30 Aug 2018 6:51 p.m. PST

We do 28mm for skirmish games and 10mm for large battles. Why compromise?

Stryderg30 Aug 2018 6:54 p.m. PST


BW195930 Aug 2018 6:54 p.m. PST

To answer the OP 15mm. But that may be different for different areas. With Plastic Soldier and the new plastic Battle Front stuff 15mm never looked better and was never as cheap.

28mm Fanatik30 Aug 2018 7:00 p.m. PST

I've heard on multiple occasions that 20mm (1/72) is the "one true scale" and commands more adherents than 15mm and 28mm COMBINED, but whether that claim is in reality true or not has never been verified and could well be nothing more than a myth.

So I would say 15's hands-down because of Flames of War, with 28's a distant second thanks to Bolt Action.

Neal Smith30 Aug 2018 7:22 p.m. PST

I have both 15mm and 28mm. I wish I had just started with 20mm… :D

Lee49430 Aug 2018 7:32 p.m. PST

To elaborate. Yes there are other scales and I also have quite large collections of 20mm (HO/Rocco etc) and 6mm Micro Armor. All of which collect dust because at least where I game nobody plays in those scales. So I limited the question to 15 and 28. I played 20's for years but got dragged into playing FoW with 15's. Got tired of FoW so wrote my own rules. Then I discovered 28's which were great because I could actually SEE what I was playing with. But I hated Bolt Action and so wrote another set of rules. So now I'm trying to decide whether to keep growing my 15s or 28s. Dont have the time, money or energy to keep buying everything in every scale. So I appreciate your input in helping me make up my mind lol.

BTW I've given most of my 6mm to friends. But have the worlds supply of 20mm plastics if anyone is interested. Cheers!

TMPWargamerabbit30 Aug 2018 10:13 p.m. PST

I see it as when you joined and started WWII gaming. 15mm and 28mm are generally recent scales for WWII gaming since 2000. But 20mm or 1/72 or 1/76 scale gaming dates much farther back into the 1970's. If you remember the gaming magazine War Digest, which featured a lot of WWII 20mm gaming (Gene McCoy?) articles you date yourself. As mentioned…. you can see the 20mm over the 15mm or smaller scales across the tabletop. 28mm for my vote is all skirmish level gaming… great fun with Bolt Action or other similar rules.

I play FOW using the WWII 20mm collection…… At last inventory over 1400+ scale vehicles, A/T. and artillery and more thousands more of the infantry based as FOW teams… using larger bases. Generally have one or two games every month…. and I play with the local Ver3.0 MRB FOW 15mm group too.

Wargamer Blue30 Aug 2018 10:34 p.m. PST


Martin Rapier30 Aug 2018 11:02 p.m. PST

I have many box files of 15mm stuff, slightly fewer of 20mm, and slightly fewer of 6mm (albeit with for more stuff in as they are double shelved), plus some small boxes of 54mm.

What is this 28mm of which you speak?

At the club we mainly use 15mm and 6mm for WW2, a few people play 10/12mm, and an even smaller number do 28mm Skirmish (well, specifically, one guy, who brings his 28s along). The bigger regular gaming groups do 15mm and 6m though.

Richard Baber30 Aug 2018 11:21 p.m. PST

I`ve only ever played with 20mm since my first box of Airfix figures in the 1960s :)

I don`t see a space saved between 15 & 20mm – so see no point in changing. 28mm (and larger) are really good for skirmish games, but not for company sized actions (which we prefer).If I was going to try something new it would be 6 or 10mm and play really big battles – but my eyesight prohibits painting in those scales :(

so the only option is 20mm :)

uglyfatbloke31 Aug 2018 1:14 a.m. PST

Locally it's 28mm. I don't think any of our group has 15mm or 20mm for WW2, though we all used to have the latter. At home we play quite a lot with 54mm, but it's just too bothersome to take to club nights.

Texas Jack31 Aug 2018 1:22 a.m. PST

Another 1/72 player.

Shedman31 Aug 2018 1:44 a.m. PST

In sunny Stroud it is 6mm, 10mm & 20mm

advocate31 Aug 2018 2:06 a.m. PST

Personally, 15mm, though I'm also playing in 1/300 (Rommel) at the moment.
I really don't like scales larger than 20mm for WW2 – personal opinion I know, and people in the club do 28mm Bolt Action.

Personal logo Frank Wang Sponsoring Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 2:23 a.m. PST

1/72 has plenty of cheap plastic soldiers and tanks. the best choice is 1/72.
15mm is also good.
28mm, i don't like them. They are too big for tanks.

Vigilant31 Aug 2018 3:05 a.m. PST

I mostly play 28mm, but also have 10mm and 6mm. From what I've seen around shows here in the UK 10mm seems to be more popular than 15mm. That may be due to most UK purchases being on-line or at shows rather than in brick and mortar stores as is the case in much of the USA. Battlefront are more visible in stores and have less competition from other scales.

martin goddard Sponsoring Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 4:51 a.m. PST

Seems like the overall answer is "there is no statistical evidence, but here is some anecdotal comment". I would suggest you play what the other locals do and ignore any pontification of the "surely only I have made the correct decision on figure size".

YogiBearMinis Supporting Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 5:06 a.m. PST

It would be interesting to go to all the various conventions, get their lists of events, and see if you could cobble an estimate based on that. I know conventions aren't necessarily representative of the hobby as a whole, but it would shed some light. You would need to do far more than survey the major HMGS cons, though.

Mister Tibbles31 Aug 2018 5:37 a.m. PST

Down side of 28mm is that buildings are huge, taking up so much storage space, which I no longer have.

My 15mm Normandy towns fit in a small storage drawer set from Target. :)

BTW an easy way to tell what weapons are on a 15mm figure is to place a small visual reminder on the figure's stand, like a twig on fig's base for BARs.

BTW sounds like the OP prefers 28mm.

Marc33594 Supporting Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 6:08 a.m. PST

Anecdotally, for our two conventions (HMGS-South's RECON and HURRICON) 15mm is the most popular. We are still getting games in for HURRICON 2018 and won't close the PEL for a bit but right now we are running, for WW II ground games, 5 15mm, 2 micro armor games and one 12mm (1/144th). No 20 or 28 mm which is VERY unusual for us. For example we usually have a few Bolt Action games, or mini tournaments, and run in the larger scale. I suspect our WW II ground games should about double before all is said and done.

nickinsomerset31 Aug 2018 6:50 a.m. PST

6mm and 20mm,

Tally Ho!

Rich Bliss31 Aug 2018 7:00 a.m. PST

20mm here too. Way to late to change now.

VCarter Supporting Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 7:10 a.m. PST

Another 20mm here.

deephorse31 Aug 2018 7:21 a.m. PST

None of the above. 20mm for me.

YogiBearMinis Supporting Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 7:34 a.m. PST

Is 20mm the preserve of gamers who started collecting prior to 2000? I came in to the miniatures wing of the hobby in about 2000 and everyone seemed to have 20mm, with some 6mm and a fewer number of 10mm. I never saw much 15mm until FoW came out, and 28mm seemed equally rare.

For those entering the hobby today, I can't see starting 20mm over 28mm and the Bolt Action empire or 15mm and the FoW craze.

Pan Marek Supporting Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 8:08 a.m. PST


martin goddard Sponsoring Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 8:23 a.m. PST

Got rid of all my 20mm. My original collection of 20mm included stuff from Eric Clarke, Altmark and Raretanks! I have gamed since 1970 and did start with 20mm, followed by 5mm. 15mm gave me the desired visuals and table/figure saturation. Did try some 10mm (Mercator etc) and was unhappy with the figures on bases being taller than tanks.

No one locally that i know uses 20mm. See what i mean about anecdotes? The point being, that each gamer's needs and wants are different, thus their solutions are different.

donlowry31 Aug 2018 8:45 a.m. PST

20mm and 6mm.

MiniPatton31 Aug 2018 9:42 a.m. PST

I liked 28mm for skirmish level gaming, but the majority of my gaming is in 10mm because it looks good on the board.

crazycaptain31 Aug 2018 11:25 a.m. PST

15mm only for me these days. 6mm does make an appearance on my table.

Lee49431 Aug 2018 11:25 a.m. PST

Wow so many play 20mm. I may have to dust them off lol. How do you base your 20mm? Singles for skirmish games or groups of figures representing sections or fire teams? I know I based mine singly. Often using pennies as the base. Cheap! lol

steamingdave4731 Aug 2018 1:40 p.m. PST

Play some 20mm ( Rapid Fire, Battlegroup) and 10mm ( Blitzkrieg Commander). Only ever played one 28mm WW2 game ( Bolt Action – does that count?)

Jacques31 Aug 2018 1:43 p.m. PST

1/72 and 1/300, 28mm too big for my liking.

Personal logo Herkybird Supporting Member of TMP31 Aug 2018 3:29 p.m. PST

28mm, and 1/76 for What a Tanker

TMPWargamerabbit31 Aug 2018 3:37 p.m. PST


Look at my basing for the FOW 20mm gamings I run. Same FOW rules, distances etc.. just I base the vehicles to protect the finer plastic details on the models. For the infantry, being larger I use larger team bases…… the large is 2.5" wide and 1.75" deep, the small base is 1.75" wide and 1.5" deep. Mostly to fit the 20mm scale miniatures so if a FOW base team book platoon image had four miniatures per team I based four miniatures (4-5 on large team base). If 3 or less images then used the small size, including all HMG under .50cal in size.

A recent game for Remagen Bridge 1945

Lee49431 Aug 2018 4:28 p.m. PST

Great stuff Wargamerabbit! Beautiful table and scenics. Love the basing. There may be life after death for my 20mm minis. Thanks!

PiersBrand31 Aug 2018 5:10 p.m. PST

Only 20mm in my group… Never understood how anyone would want anything else. :)


28mm Fanatik31 Aug 2018 10:08 p.m. PST

Never understood how anyone would want anything else. :)

Oh, I dunno. I couldn't possibly imagine. :)







PiersBrand01 Sep 2018 1:43 a.m. PST

Yep… still not as nice as AB.

But full marks for trying.


repaint01 Sep 2018 2:23 a.m. PST

20mm has a dynamic and talented community.

However, in so many years, I have never actually met a 20mm player or had a game with one.

Mostly 15mm or 28mm players, and lately, as everyone has dropped flames of war, Bolt Action, so almost exclusively 28mm

So from my perspective, I'd say 28mm is the widely popular scale.

TacticalPainter0101 Sep 2018 2:26 a.m. PST

28mm minis look great, but I find a 4x6 table starts to look very crowded. 15mm minis look too small to see the detail, but a 4x6 table has a much better sense of space. For me 20mm sits nicely in between the two, the Goldilocks scale.

FlyXwire01 Sep 2018 5:45 a.m. PST

For skirmish gaming, 20s or 28s both work great. As mentioned above, 28mm scale terrain tends to crowd the game board a bit. Also, the profusion of good, and often cheap die-cast vehicles makes 1/72nd-1/76th scale super attractive for collecting.

Though I have both the above scale figs for small units actions, I think 20s are my favorite for gaming with (but 28s for picture-taking visuals). The industry mags are full of 28s today (again, for "diorama-style" picture taking, and read sales promotion).

For WW2 battle-level gaming, I'd go with 10-12mm, but then the OP question was about the "most popular" WW2 scale, and I think this decision involves the unit level of your wargaming (although Piers can do lots just with 20mm although many others want to cheapen their vehicle collecting costs when going for larger unit actions, and have gone smaller scale sizing 15mm, 10s, Micro, even 3mm).

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