It’s not always about the hardened warriors, sometimes your wargames need some hapless civilians to generally get in the way and make things fun by spoiling your plans.

Hostages and VIPs

Like a fair bit of my Black Ops stuff, all except the last one of these come from The Assault Group’s Western Civilian & Corporate range.

The VIPs include a couple of obvious politician types (male and female), a gent in a suit with an ominous briefcase, and a rotund Arab sheik. All are nice characterful miniatures, and my mind instantly starts thinking of scenarios when I see them. This lot tend to be targets that have to be protected or assassinated. Sometimes it gets a little confused about which is which. The last time I had the sheik on the table one of his close protection squad accidentally shot and killed him (whoops!).

The hostages come in a pack with three main poses: prone, sitting and kneeling. I’ve just used the prone ones right now, and based them all together to make a sort of objective marker or mini diorama.

The last figure (female with SMG chatting on the phone) was a freebie miniature from the Irregular Miniatures Kickstarter I backed a while back. She could be anything from an FSociety hacker to an undercover agent, or some idealistic revolutionary.


Black Ops scenarios sometimes call for scattering civvies around the table, and it’s something I’ve never really been able to do so far. Normally civilian figures are just a bit of scenery, but in tactical espionage games you can set things up so that they’re an important part of the game, especially since some factions can in fact disguise themselves as civvies. The rules in Black Ops also allow you to talk to them and try to find out useful info about the enemy, such as revealing their blinds. Of course, get it wrong and they might just alert the enemy!


These are from Foundry’s Street Violence range, which is full of fun stuff. You may be thinking they’re suspiciously well painted and you”d be right: I didn’t paint them, I had them done by Shaun at Little Ninja Painting a while back. He does a lot of modern stuff and did some of my other Black Ops troops. He looks like he’s had a lot of fun with these, and there are some great sculpts in there.