Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Back from our hol's and some data

We have just returned from our holiday which explains the gap between this and the previous post.

Thanks to all those who viewed the story of our refight especially those who left comments, this post will hopefully answer some of the questions raised.

The figures are organised into companies, squadrons and batteries as follows:

Infantry - A company comprises an officer, NCO, musician and 20 men. A regiment (I have one French Line) has 6 companies, a colour party and two mounted officers.
Cavalry - 16 men, an officer and a musician make up a squadron. A regiment (I have one each of French Dragoons and Hussars) has two squadrons, a standard bearer and escort, and a mounted colonel with trumpeter.
Artillery - A battery is three guns with a total of 12 gunners and an officer.

All the figures are painted in good old, actually some of them are not so good anymore, Humbrol enamels. There's no real trick to the way I paint, I usually go from dark to light, so a face would be painted brown first, then a flesh tone, leaving some brown around the nose, mouth and eye sockets with a final highlight in the nose, chin and cheeks. Practically everything has this three colour treatment. And yes black horses are highlighted in blue!

Given the number of figures involved (around 1300) I wanted something simple and easy to operate. Given my usual consummate planning skills I finally "wrote" the rules the night before the battle.
All distances, movement, weapon ranges etc. were in "feet" that is our feet heel to toe, large boots might lead to an advantage or two?
For each unit I devised a rating score based on ten factors:
1. Elite - Guards, Rifles etc.
2. Status - Veteran etc.
3. Morale level
4. Resilience
5.Competence - Drill, weapons handling etc.
6. Physical condition
7. Specialist weapons - Lance, rifles etc.
8. Specialist equipment - Cuirass for example.
9. Level of training.
10. Reputation

So we then scored each factor out of 10, giving a possible maximum of 100. Through out the day each unit had its' factor rating adjusted depending on what was occurring, so heavy casualties for example would reduce the overall score. Once a unit reached half its' starting total it had to withdraw two whole moves.
Firing was decided by simple dice throws, so we threw lots of dice.....

Lessons learned.
We needed two players a side to help with moving the troops, despite the large number of figures on each base, time started to run away from us. Any volunteers out there????
I need to devise another way of sticking figures to card bases. we used PVA and it really stuck, it really stuck.

We had a lot of fun and laughed at some of the strange events, what next? well perhaps a bigger version in 2019?

Thanks, hope this helped.



  1. Hi Eric,

    Hope you enjoyed your holiday!
    Thank you for the insight in the garden game (table top is not so much applicable for this matter haha) and other practical explanations. Impressive to read the numbers of units you used. We normally use the ''About Bonaparte'' game rules in which an infantry unit is between 8-10 figures and cavalry is only four!

    Regarding you figures that stuck to there bases...I use woodglue (Collall but there are many brands out there) that does the trick really well! Just a small drup and you can easily remove the figures from cardboard, hardboard or wood! If you do a very big drup, you might need some extra power though.

    Best regards,


  2. Stan,

    Many thanks I shall certainly try wood glue next time.


  3. How much space is needed to deploy an infantry battalion is in line?

  4. Eric. I trust you are well. Any further developments to the game or are you having a break?

  5. Mark, I am working on a mid-19th Century skirmish game, I'll post pictures soon

  6. Ok, I will await with interest.

  7. Hi Marc
    Looks fantastic. If you are sticking the bottom of plastic figures directly onto large cardboard bases I would recommend sticky white tack. This doesn't work well for other things but with soft plastic and art board fixes very firmly and is still temporary. I'm using this method for other periods and rules but be careful removing the figures later. They need to be gently worked loose. You don't want to ruin your great paint work.