The wargames table can be a chaotic place, with all sorts of villains and wreckers smashing things up. Thank goodness then for the thin blue line. Acting as a third force of neutrals or reinforcements for one side, these police should spice up games of Black Ops.

SWAT team

I got these guys from The Assault Groups ultra-modern range. There’s a 4-man team armed with MP5s, shotgun and pistol, and wearing gas masks for that extra intimidation factor.

Backing up these door-knocking gentlemen are a medic and should I need one an EOD operator, who has a nifty little robot.

In Black Ops police like these can be pretty nasty hombres. Good shooting and close combat skills, backed up with the ability to hurl CS grenades into a room and then storm in unaffected due to their gas masks makes these guys urban combat specialists.

I went with the classic SWAT-team Darth Vader look, but tried a slightly different painting style this time. Compared to the ninjas I painted a little while ago I went for two layers of highlights this time in a slightly blueish first then grey to finish. Not sure it looks any better than the ninjas, but I think the ninja miniatures are easier to make look good in black. I find highlighting folds in clothing always comes out better than all the square-edged gear these SWAT guys are wearing. Maybe I should just learn to paint properly! 

Their ride is a SWAT van from Urban Construct. It’s not listed on their website but drop them a line and I’m sure they’ll sort you out. I think I paid around £8 for it.

Patrol officers

I’ve got two flavours here. First up are some pretty standard police types (slightly US-style) from Foundry’s excellent “Street Violence” range. I love the fat bloke with the coffee and what has to be a bag of donuts. Foundry have given him the name “Coronary Bob” and I think that will stick.

The slightly more kinetic option for banana republics are these other guys were officially billed as “republican guard” from Militia Miniatures, but with a lick of blue paint they strike me as looking a lot like the police officers you see in the less flash parts of the world. I’ve always thought that you can tell the nice parts of the world from the rough ones by checking whether the police are packing AKs.

The guns on these guys are quite realistically proportioned, so much so they they were all bent completely like bananas on arrival. Hopefully they just had a hard life in transit and won’t get too bent during use.

I need to get these beat cops some wheels, I quite like the look of this one from Antenociti’s.