AK Interactive's WWI, The First Mechanized War Reviewed

WWI. The First Mechanized War

AK Interactive Books (AK 273)

Soft Cover, 9.5” by 9.0” format. 167 pages, 123 Black and white photographs (including 46 never before published), 110 full-color plates including: 14 aircraft, 66 tanks, 24 armored cars and prime movers, 5 motor cycles and 1 uniform.

In WWI, The First Mechanized War, the folks at AK have put together an invaluable reference book on WWI. This book is a one-stop shop reference, giving the modeler a great selection of archival photographs and full color plates on both the aircraft and the land-based weapons of WWI.

The 167 pages are broken down as follows: the first three chapters deal with each of the armor of the three major powers, Germany, France and Great Britain. Next comes a brief discussion how mechanization changed the way war was waged in terms of movement from horses to vehicles and pigeons to motorcycles.

Next comes the real meat of the book, the color plates. These are a mix of single view and 4-view plates, with excellent color and detail.  Plates provided include everything of interest to the modeler, the MK I, MK IV, Renault FT and variants, St. Chamond, Schneider and A7V.  These will be invaluable to anyone looking to paint whatever vehicle they may be working on with no shortage of color schemes or camouflage patterns to choose from.  The aircraft plates are all single view plates, depicting some unusual but still very useful and inspirational views for the modeler.  There is also a short section that includes paint color chips used by each of the major powers for their vehicles as well as a brief discussion on uniform colors.

The final 50 pages of the book are really special in that they represent a collection of newly discovered photographs including the notes of the photographer made to the original glass negatives. These are shown in large format, filling each page, and are incredibly sharp and clear depicting the daily life and horrors of the First World War.

If you need a WWI reference, make it this one.  You can order your copy directly thought AK Interactive’s webpage: http://ak-interactive.com/v2/product/wwi-the-first-mechanized-war/ or through several major hobby on-line retailers as well as Amazon.

By Tom Jett