Review by Terry Ashley

Enygma Graphics latest CD releases features US Tank Destroyers of WWII, but with a few surprises.

The CD contains over 850 photographs, the majority in colour with some contemporary WWII shots in Black and White.

Only five vehicles are covered on the CD, the M10 GMC and M10 17Pdr, M18 GMC and the M36 and M36B1 Tank Destroyers. As you can imagine with 850 pics devoted to five subjects there are a lot of shots of each vehicle. The least covered is the M10 17Pdr with only 14 photos, commonly referred to as the Achilles there is no evidence this name was used by the British in WWII. The name seems to have gained widespread use in the intervening years, but that bit of trivia aside onto the CD.

The M10 has a series of excellent photos of a vehicle under restoration and has shots of the turret removed from the hull and the gun out of the turret, this gives some interesting views of areas not usually seem. There are also shots of the engine out of the vehicle again allowing great views. You get to see areas of the chassis not usually on view in the photos of the vehicle in bits. Finally there are shots of the completed restoration and some excellent detail shots of a museum M10 and B&W WWII shots (most I have seen elsewhere). Great stuff.

The sections on the M18, M36 and M36B1 have extensive photo coverage of over 50 vehicles used in the conflicts in Bosnia in 1997/98. The fact that these vehicles were still in fighting condition with only minor modifications all those years after WWII is testament to there design. Thankfully these vehicles have been rescued from Bosnia and many have now been restored or are in the process.

The photos of the vehicles in service give excellent views of modifications made to keep them running and to survive on a modern battlefield. Some of the M36s have added armour made from such items as industrial conveyor belts, the modelling possibilities are endless. One shot showing an M18 with the drive sprocket and track from an M24 Chaffee is most interesting.

The photos feature many showing the recovery process of the M18s and M36s, some of which are in quite a dilapidated state when retrieved along with many close-up and detail photos of all parts of the vehicles. These shots include interior and exterior shots and provide much useful information. The photos of the turret interiors of both are particularly detailed as well as the engine and driver's compartments.

There is also many good photos of preserved M18s and M36s on show at Beltring in 1999, again there are some nice interior shots. Another thing of interest is the current owners of these vehicles are wearing authentic tankers uniforms from WWII and serve as an added bonus with great uniform detail.

In all this is quite a sensational collection of photographs that would be a welcome addition to the reference library. If you are like me and have a special interest in these open topped Tank Destroyers then this CD will not disappoint. Highly recommended.

Click on the Thumbnails to view a few samples of the photos included on the CD. Please note these samples are half the size to those on the CD, this is reduce download time as the originals are quite large. Samples by permission of Enygma Graphics.

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Technical Stuff:
The CD comes with a small slide show utility for viewing the pictures. This will only run on PC's with Windows95/98 or later operating systems, although the picture files can be accessed manually on other systems. It also needs DirectX and ActiveMovie to run, these utilities are included on the CD if your PC doesn't have them. The CD will check your system and prompt you to install them if not found.
Utilizing the Autorun feature of Win95/98 the CD starts up automatically when you insert the CD. This leads you to the main menu where you select the section you wish to view. The slide show can run automatically or you can control it yourself using left mouse clicks to advance or right mouse clicks to back-up the pictures. Each picture is captioned so you know what you are looking at.

The CD is available direct from the Enygma Graphics Website. This has a secure ordering feature to process on-line orders.
The website also has details of other CD's on offer as well as prices and other details.
Snail Mail Address:
44 Broadmanor
North Duffield
North Yorkshire
United Kingdom

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