Behind the Scenes & Starting a New Project

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February 29, 2020 by Lee

Now that 2020 is in full swing and the 2019 Christmas game is in the distant past, I thought I would share with you all a video we recently put out on our YouTube channel. In the video I talk about starting a new project and, after a question we were recently asked, we also show our games room.

What is the project? Well, I’ve been very keen over the years in getting back into Napoleonic wargaming. I have dipped my toe into this period several times over the course of my time in the hobby and I’ve always met a brick wall with it. Painting armies for this period as you may know is very time consuming, but can be very rewarding once they are done and on the table. If you have been following our blog, then you will probably have guessed by now that I haven’t painted miniatures for quite some time and Mel has taken up the mantle, (you can see her latest work here).

So after some time pondering on where to start, I put together my initial thoughts, concerns and general considerations in the video and am hoping for you (the community) to inspire with your usual words of wisdom. Take a look at the video and then let’s have a chat…….

We hope you have enjoyed the video. As you can see, I need your help and thoughts on what to do. Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below or on the YouTube video so I can hopefully get it all straight in my own head.

Please feel free to follow our blog and YouTube channel, also like, share and comment about the post.

Until next time, happy gaming.

4 thoughts on “Behind the Scenes & Starting a New Project

  1. Hi Lee, I have wargamed in Napoleonics, man and boy, and have considered, probably like most others who have got into the period, similar questions that you ask.

    I came to different conclusions, settling for 18mm (AB, Xan, Fantassin) figures and terrain because I wanted to wargame my Napoleonics in the Grand Manner with divisions and corps but with 24 figure battalions and 6-8 model-gun batteries at the typical 1” to 37 yards, 4 foot equating to about 1 mile of battlefield.

    If you want to see what I mean you can see what we did a few years ago culminating in several refights of the Battle of Talavera at 1:30 figure scale and with about 2,400 figures on the table.

    http://jjwargames.blogspot.com/search/label/Talavera

    The project took about four years to put together and was great fun to do. You will see that I use two rule sets, Carnage & Glory II Computer moderated rules which are excellent, but for those who want to roll bones, Over the Hills, which I wrote a Peninsular War scenario book for.

    I can see the attraction with 28mm but frankly you need an aircraft hangar and matching table to be able to do justice to Napoleonics at anything over a brigade aside clash, IMHO, and so the 18mm really do come into their own for doing proper battles but with figures full of character.

    You can see what I mean here on my YouTube

    In answer to some of your questions, I think trying to model battalions around the company structure, together with the varied strengths of units is a pathway to madness and so I settled on standard size units of 24 figure battalions in two ranks, 12 figure cavalry regiments, with four bases of three figures representing squadrons and gun batteries organised in 6 to 8 gun units.

    If you allow for a standard battalion to number 600 men, you then have a basic stat line which can be modified up or down for weaker units, 3-400 men and strong units 800 – 1000 men. Frankly weaker battalions would stretch their lines to compensate for their smaller footprint which is not worth worrying about. It is depth of units that is the big compromise in Napoleonic wargaming, with columns occupying far greater space in depth than what they represent on the table.

    The British under Wellington had a standing order for Light companies in a brigade of three to four battalions to always group together when offering battle under a nominated officer from one of the parent battalions, thus forming a brigade light battalion of about 200 – 400 men. The parent battalions themselves could in addition always deploy their grenadier companies to skirmish should they, in the unlikely event, find themselves unprotected by the brigade light battalion. There is some evidence to suggest the French operated a similar system with regimental groupings of voltigeurs.

    If you want to pick my brains, further I will be playing your LOTR game at the Devon Wargames Group and will be happy to help

    Best of luck with your new project, Napoleonics is and remains my first love and I would encourage anyone who fancies getting into it to go for it.

    JJ

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lee says:

      Hi JJ

      In the past year or so I’ve been reading your blog and watching your YouTube videos. I have really enjoyed your posts on painting / basing and your approach to standardising units makes a lot of sense.

      I can remember my very early introduction to wargaming, when I was invited as a young teenager to play Waterloo with Peter Gilder as some of his close friends. Seeing and playing in that game has always inspired me in this period and a memory that I will never forget.

      Like I said in the video, I think AB figures are the best at that scale and your collection with the others you mentioned stands testament to that. We are lucky in that we can play on a 12 x 6 or variations on that size at the same time as leaving the game setup. The main issue we have is time, time when my shift work doesn’t get in the way πŸ˜‚.

      My initial thoughts is to play BP and General d’ Armee using 28mm, but I know that in time and if my eyes can see them, I will no doubt get some AB figures πŸ˜‚. You mentioned Carnage and Glory, we played an excellent ECW Edgehill game with Nigel Marsh at Historicon back in 2016, I recall Jamie killing the king after he was attached to an infantry unit. We enjoyed the system, but have not played it since.

      Yes, we are really looking forward to bringing the Lord of the Rings game down for you guys to play and I will probably pick your brains during the game πŸ˜πŸ‘

      Cheers
      Lee

      Like

  2. Hi Lee,

    Napoleonics are my first love in Wargaming and like you have returned to it several times over the years, I have built up a Spanish Guerilla force with 95th and 60th rifles for Sharpe Practice, but for bigger battle games I have been starting playing Quatre Bras /Waterloo General de Armee recently and have set up my forces based on regiments/Battalions based on the following, all on 40×40 bases for infantry 4 figures for infantry, 3/4 for lights depending on figures etc, cavalry on 40×60 bases 2 figures on a base. tiny units 2 bases small units 4 bases standard 6 bases large units 8 bases, this looks and feels great, even on a 6×4 table, there’s not much room for manoeuvre but means that you have support lines and the game is pretty bloody, and when units and Brigades start falling apart you are glad of the support lines and brigades…
    I will try and set up a GdA at the club one Saturday…
    Or if you and Mel fancy a trip to Torquay feel welcome to come down for a weekend, I’m sure Jason and I can let you have a taste of musket, its a bit tighter in my games room than your place but we can fit four into the room comfortably?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lee says:

      Hi Nathan

      Thanks for your thoughts mate, it certainly does put add food for thought. I’ve been looking at GdA to play alongside Black Powder as it will allow greater variation to gaming the period. I also like the idea of using the figures to play Sharp Practice as this will also add to that depth to gaming the period.

      I was thinking of basing the infantry 4 figures on 40 x 40mm bases and the cavalry 2 figures on 50 x 50mm bases, so not to far away from what you had suggested. Regarding size of units, infantry would be 24, cavalry 12s. This would be if playing BP or GdA standard unit size and as you say I could either take out or add to others say 2 bases and that would make them either small or large units for those rules.

      We are looking forward to coming down to the club on the 14th and seeing you all again and no doubt we will certainly try and arrange something πŸ˜πŸ‘

      Cheers
      Lee

      Like

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