How Men of Quality Resolve Differences

How Men of Quality Resolve Differences
Poodle attacks - an ugly but inevitable part of any 17th C. British Civil War, "Oh! The Shame of it All!"

Monday, January 1, 2018

Basing: presenting history on the table for AWI

Previously, I got indecisive on what to do with these 25mm figures. I toyed around with 
selling them and getting smaller figures for a more One-Hour Wargames concept. I investigated 6mm, 10mm, and 15mm, [click] all of which have a better figure to table ratio than 25mm. However, I've found it hard to part with them - they are well painted [if I do say so myself!] and there's most of a balanced brigade almost ready for the table. In the end, I decided to go with getting French to oppose them, and they could be 7YW or Imagi-nation as well as AWI. So here they stay [unless I've another bout of indecision!].

Well, it is time to put these guys on bases. At the very least, they need to be lightly glued to something to prevent breakage / scratching while I experiment with developing AWI rules.

My immediate solution is to fit it into the general style that suits both the figure size and what's happening locally. In this case, a gaming pal has his 28mm AWI mounted 2x2 on a 1.5" square base. For my larger Hessian battalions that will come out to 3x2-3 on a 2x2" square base. I say 3 figs x 2-3 figs because I want to create the "feel" of that third rank the Hessians used through 1776-1777 [at least], and because I like differentiating units a bit, so the purpose for using Hessians in AWI is not just historical or because they look cool [they do!] but because they offer another set of characteristics by:

  • being large battalions that fight three ranks deep, and, 
  • marching and performing formation evolutions a bit slower than their British allies [post-Nova Scotia training]. 
So here is where I'm headed at this point: British according to 1764 regulations:

from "With Zeal and with Bayonets Only" by Spring, Matthew H. [click]
I love how this looks from the top - it shows a force that is ready to fight, and how they do it. 

And here is how Frederick the Great did it, which is a primary tactical influence on the Hessian army:

from "The Army of Frederick the Great" by Christopher Duffy [click]

I've included the caption so you can see who was doing what. It is clear that every platoon of about 40-60 men had about 5 sergeants behind and a sergeant and a lieutenant to each side to maintain order and keep them in the ranks! 

This diagram says something about the unit, the soldiers, the war, everything!

I'd like my units to look more like this. However, game mechanics will certainly play into it. For example, as I plan my Hessian Battalions, I also have to figure out how they will fight according to the game mechanics - which aren't decided yet! So as at least a temporary measure, I will need an "intermediate" basing scheme that allows me to try it out on table.

I think the 4 Division system of maneuver will play into my game, so it might look like this:

But it does push the color party to the left side a bit and splits the colonel off onto a different base. Not sure I like that. Also, the location of the color party and colonel would be nice to show during formation changes, so I am thinking they'll need a separate base to move around - which would also permit it to be centered. That might look like this:

The main game mechanic question is "will the color party base be a marker / indicator or an actual fighting base?" 

Also, with 5 bases, the formation risks looking a bit lopsided, unless I have the sixth stand of grenadiers marching around with them, and they were often removed and put together as a composite grenadier battalion according to the needs of the generals. So it would be nice to have the flexibility to declare that the color party bases are or are not actual fighting bases in which case it would be good for them to look the same [for those occasions when they do fight as just another base].

I think that's what I'm going to be running with at this point - as stated above, it is just an intermediate step, so I will lightly base each figure with some elmer's glue which is easy to snap a figure off from.

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