Tuesday, February 24, 2015

A Guilty Conscience...

A good conversation with the illustrious Comrade Davidov the other evening and lots of talk about Napoleonic troop basing.  David is like my gaming psychiatrist and helps me get to the root cause of my painting woes, scale complaints and project mayhem.

We were talking about my recent Black Powder ACW game and it brought up basing standards and aesthetics.  Eventually the subject of Napoleonic and SYW basing came up and I lamented the fact that my battalions are probably better off with 6 to a stand.

At the time of our conversation, I firmly rejected this nomenclature, having put enough work into basing and rebasing these blasted 15mm guys.  Until this morning...  Suffering from a guilty conscience, I set to work with yet another Horse & Musket rebasing project.

 I started ripping old troopers off their 4 man bases and making new 6 troop bases.  You can see the finished product.  I do like the look of 5 or 6 stand units however, and will most likely paint up an additional stand to go with each of these battalions.  That will give me battalions of 30 figures, and they look much more densely packed, which is what Napoleonics ought to look like...

Foreign Battalion waits to be based.
 Working on the coffee table as it's too cold in the basement.  Need to build a fire I think.

Southern Living gets a makeover...I hope the Mrs wasn't too keen on reading this one.  Jennifer Garner has a glue and flock problem now...

A comparison.  Some French Army units in Bicornes on the left.  On the right - the new battalions of the Grande Armee.

So what do you think?  A welcome and necessary change?  Yes, and more work for me!  Truth be told, 6 more troops per unit won't hurt anyone.  David was right (as usual).  I just don't have enough figures actually painted to do what I want.  Time to get cracking!


  1. 6 v 4 per base - call me a miser put that's 50% more painting and minis. Four per base is plenty.

    1. Ski,
      You're right - I think I have been plagued by this since I started basing Napoleonics and SYW. Also - many of my rules call for 4 stand units (Neil Thomas' rules and Warfare in the Age of Reason/Napoleon).

      That said, if I'm playing Volley & Bayonet, 4 of these plopped down on a big 3" sabot just have a more massed look to them.

  2. Whatever you are happiest with is what you should go for!
    It may be that you do different basing for different units even - the Brits often had understrength units so maybe their 4 man units will make alf r a hie thin red line va the tightly packed French columns!

    Dave sounds like a great resource. Everyone needs a Dave. Does he do outsourcing too? What does he charge per hour of therapy ? :-)

    1. Paul,
      Agreed. For some reason, it had just been nagging on me to put 6 guys on a stand. The battalions of 24 were more convenient for my laziness. Battalions of 30 or 36 will look very nice.
      While it's more work and certainly more $$$ (an Old Glory bag of 48 troops netted me 2 Battalions while now it will only be roughly 1 and a half) I think the result will be worth and maybe motivate me to paint more.
      You're absolutely right about different basing for different armies. I haven't rebased my Brits yet. Thinking they'd look better more sparse :)

      I've gotten some great advice from Mr Dave over the years I can say that much both gaming and otherwise - although the advice comes at a high price - think of Lucy and Charlie Brown in the popular comic "Peanuts" (see link below):