|The Canadian and US forces meet in peace at the border to discuss cross border incidents.|
Having done my best to invent a believable setting and backstory, capable of being turned into a credible campaign, I am about to throw concern about believe-ability and continuity out the window and just use the setting as a background for a series of unrelated skirmishes as the mood takes me (which was the original idea). Think if it as a traditional TV series where the idea is just to cram as many episodes in as you can before being cancelled. This should mesh well with the 1950's toy soldier look and the artistic license taken with uniforms etc.
I have decided to condense all of the various parties into just 3 armies which can each fight each other. I am planning on 6 to 12 units per typical scenario.
1st. The Blackfoot. Having just recently put the boots to their traditional enemy the Cree and made peace with their chief Poundmaker of 1885 Northwest Rebellion fame, the Blackfoot Confederacy now controls the Cyprus Hills outside of the Whiskey forts. I don't know much about their tactics but they do not seem to have had access to as many horses or modern firearms as their friends the Sioux so they are pretty much restricted to ambushes and skirmishing on foot while moving by horse. I can't fix the horse issue quickly but I can give them better guns. It might also be possible to find them some Metis allies. I currently have 8 units on hand and pkan to add a couple of Metis mounted rifle units. In game terms they are fast and flexible but with low firepower and a tendancy to give ground rather than take casualties.
2nd. The Canadians. So far for cavalry I have the Princess Louise Hussars from New Brunswick but for nearly 20 years now I've had castings for a troop of the Governor General Bodyguard so their time is nigh at hand. There is one gun and crew now plus some horse gunners currently without a gun. There are also more grenadiers, highlanders and riflemen than I can shake a stick at. Some will stay on the shelf but I want to add some redcoats in slouch hats so I may just rebadge or rather, re-hat some grenadiers. There is also room for some local scouts and some NW Mounted Rifles. On hand I have 2 cavalry, 10 infantry, 1 gun and plan to add at least 1 cavalry and 2 mounted rifles.
3rd. The US. The core of this force will be US regulars on garrison duty in between Indian Wars. They will be supplemented (eventually) by volunteer expansionist Cyprus Hills buffalo hunters and whiskey traders and by Fenians intent on setting up an independent Irish and Metis plus American republic but acting as volunteers to back up the US regulars in this moment of crisis since they "just happened" to be in Bismarck when the outcry for a cross border punishment expedition against the Blackfoot "just happened" to erupt. On hand there are now 1 cavalry, 2 infantry, 1 gun plus 2 volunteer infantry. Planned additions include 4 more infantry, 2 more volunteers, 1 cavalry, 1 mounted rifles. Since the idea was to suggest units bought off tge shelf (without getting pedantic over details), most will be in ACW garb including volunteers in Confederate Butternut and grey.
The rules will be an adaptation of the Tin Army as used in the Oberhilse/Kapelle game last year. First game: ( hopefully on Thursday) US army vs Blackfoot somewhere ABOVE the 49th Parallel.