EXCERPT FROM APPENDIX 1 from Don Featherstone's Battles With Model Soldiers
(The book that got me started.)

"Nothing in these pages is a dictate, no word says you must or you shall do it this way. On the contrary, the book sets out from the very beginning to stimulate the reader to think for himself, and to use what he has read merely as a foundation for efforts and ideas which reflect his own temperament and character. Only in this way will he obtain maximum satisfaction from the hobby of battling with model soldiers."

-Don Featherstone 1918 - 2013

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The set up

I'm probably breaking copywright but hopefully Don will forgive me.  The picture is from Don Featherstone's Battles With Model Soldiers and shows the introductory game that I am about to replay. The troops that I selected came from my 40mm fictional armies representing the forces of Oberhilse and Faraway. They are a mix of original figures and conversions of Scruby figures (from Historifigs) and Zinnbrigade homecast figures, and 1 Irregular guardsman.  Since Don doesn't seem to have gone in for the Imagi-Nation thing, I decided that these armies would stand in for 1839 British and American forces.
One of the problems I have had with this project over the decade that it has been simmering, is that I have had trouble deciding just what I want it to be and what sort of rules I want to use.  Should it be a small number of large units for semi skirmish games suitable to the Canadian rebellions with what if US involvment or a heated up Aroostock War or a larger number of small units to refight the Sikh and Mex-American War? Should I use Charge! and single figures or a set written for fixed stands or...etc.   So,  not surprisingly, organization is a bit at sea. Lately I have been leaning towards units of 24 infantry or 12 cavalry and batteries of 2 guns org 4 crew each.  For this game which originally used units of 20 infantry or 9 cavalry with 2 officers and single gun batteries with 4 crew, I went with Charge companies with 16 muskets plus officer, sergeant and drummer, but guns with 4 crew and 12 man squadrons of all ranks.  Nor sure why!
Set up was by the book but on the 1st move of the 1st game I noticed a discrepency. In the photo, the infantry is shown deep.  Having now read Wargames, I realized that only the front rank can fire and so this is a sort of reinforced line, so I deployed the companies 4 deep. When I started following the written orders in the book, I saw that it specifies that all units deployed 1 deep.  I quietly changed formations as the armies advanced and deployed in firing line in subsequent refights.
The 1st battle reports should be up by Friday.