Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Questions Answered and other Rants

Well I put alot of thought into my gaming dilemmas and my huge task list from a project management perspective.  Once you organize your thoughts, the gaming situation doesnt seem so dire anymore.  I will delve into this later.  Suffice to say that this morning I had the best of intentions when spraying my 1:72 Caesar WWII GI's and German Panzer Grenadiers with Games Workshop's "purity seal" which turned out to have disastrous consequences as now they look like they just stepped out of a concrete plant.  The soldiers are covered in a chalky, white coating that resembles powder.  I suppose it adds to the dirty, combat tested look, but my drybrushed painting style for my wehrmacht troops isn't exactly the brightest painting style on the block.  So now instead of battle-hardened schutzen, my troops like like they work in a bakery...

truth be told, the rustoleum matte sealant works better.  I would rather have them looking a little wet than chalky or like they stepped out of the dunkin donuts' kitchen.


A good friend recently gave me some good advice.  Looking at the massive pile of miniatures, rules sets, terrain, and campaign lists I seem to have hit a brick wall in terms of organization.  so many rules, figures, and conflicts so what to do?  Well, my friend from down under suggests that you start with an overall approach to just what you want to do.

It was then that an incredible idea came over me.  This may sound incredibly obvious for most of you so bear with me - I had a moment.

The size of the miniatures are related to the scale of the game and level of war.  This really helps make a mountain into a mole-hill.  Allow me to explain:

Tactical:  The most basic level of conflict where the metal meets the meat.  The tactical level is made for larger scales of figures like my 20mm troops and 15mm troops.  (20mm is the biggest scale of troop I play with).  Why was I overly concerned with using 20mm troops in Spearhead games?  NOT PRACTICAL.  Imagine the implications for terrain and vehicles?  When you live in a shoebox, space is at a premium.  I dont HAVE to play skirmish games all the time, but I can play small unit actions with some of my favorite rules sets.
Same with AWI, Napoleonic, ACW and micro armour to a lesser extent.  For MicroArmour Tactical games, I can play Blitzkrieg commander or GHQ MicroArmour both of which are terrific tactical games but also can be played at the operational level.  For ACW, GHQ's MicroForce ACW is perfect for ACW tactical actions and very much replicates the role of a Brigade Commander.  I will base my 1:72 scale troops for GHQ MicroArmour, while I will KEEP my 15mm metal based for the ever popular Fire and Fury, one of my favorite all-time rules sets PERIOD.  (just ask Dave F sometime about the epic battle of the apple orchard that I inevitably lost).

Tactical Level of War = Bigger figures and tactical flavored rules sets.

Shako - 20mm Plastic Napoleonics
GHQ MicroForce ACW - 20mm Plastic ACW
Guns of Liberty - 20mm Plastic AWI Figures
BKC skirmish - 20mm Plastic WWII Figures

Operational: I am already used to gaming at the operational level of war.  Playing a Corps or Division commander is one of my favorite levels to play at, so it's no surprise that I have the most experience playing at this level.  I have BOATLOADS of 6mm figures and 10mm Napoleonics.  Not to mention 6mm MicroArmour (the Microarmour spans the tactical and the operational.  GHQ and BKC allow you play the operational level, but the games at that size would take a LONG time so there's always SPEARHEAD which I have not formally played  yet, but I will!  For the horse and musket period at the operational (brigade) maneuver there is the venerable Volley & Bayonet set that I will forever play my 6mm and 10mm troops with.  Given the small scale rule, all of my 6mm troops will feel right at home with hordes of their friends on the table top.

Napoleonics: 10mm AND 6mm.  This will be a hard choice but I have tons and tons of 10mm Napoleonics to paint and 6mm Napoleonics to base!!!  (still an unresolved issue)
ACW 6mm: My 6mm ACW armies are still intact and one of the few metal armies I brought down to Philadelphia with me.  I use (prefer) Volley & Bayonet for the large scale games.

1 comment:

  1. Figure scale, and game scale are very important to me as well. Flames of War seems so out of wack because the figures are too large and too dense as compared to the level of command it represents. That might be the reason why the most common complaint by observers is the parking lot look, or mass clustering of stands.

    Figure scale is not just important for for command level, but ground scale too. 28mm figures look grand on the table, but they always seem so big that ground scale inevitably suffers. I can think of a few ECW and WWII games I have played that fit into this category. Unless you have the luxury of an eight foot dimensioned table, I would rather play with 20mm and smaller minis. This may be nit-picky, but I hate seeing figures that have movement rates and weapons ranges that barely reach past twice their own height.