Thursday, June 18, 2015


So here it is.  To observe the 200th anniversary of the battle of Waterloo and the beginning of the end of the Napoleonic wars, I am officially taking up the hobby of Napoleonic wargaming.  It's on like d'Erlon.

 Here are my first two brigades.  4 minis/stand, 6 stands/infantry battalion.  Cavalry is 2 minis/stand, 10 stands/squadron.  Artillery is 1 gun/stand, 1 stand/battery.

So I chose to go with AB Napoleonics 18mm.  I'm a little concerned that they are too large, because I want to scale my games at the battalion level at a ratio of around 20:1, and 15mm or 6mm seem more practical for that scale.  That said, I think AB Napoleonics are excellent miniatures and also a good compromise for my inclination to go with Perry 25mm, which would be pretty unwieldily in battalion scale games.  Can you imagine how cool it would be to play Quatre Bras at the battalion level with perry miniatures though...?

Then there is the (unanswerable) question of rules.  I have played, read, and rejected Napoleon at War.  I have also played and rejected Shako.  I have read Black Powder and Napoleon's Battles, and have ordered Volley and Bayonet because I will be playing two games using those rules at Historicon.  Still, I'm no closer to knowing what to do for rules that will enable big battles at the battalion level.

The bottom line is that I have no idea what I'm doing, but I'm doing it.  What is the consensus out there?  If I'm building battalion sized units, what are the rule sets out there that will enable a large scale battle?

I'm stupidly excited about this.  It's been coming for years.


  1. The HH historicals guys all seem to be breathing _really_ heavy over Blucher, but as far as I can tell, that's in 6mm and kinda-sorta minis-optional?

  2. Thanks for the tip. I took a look at the Sam Mustafa website and I'll have to try to pick up a copy of Blucher and Lasalle at Historicon. Blucher sounds like it is scaled at the brigade level while Lasalle looks like it is scaled at the battalion level.

  3. The perry miniatures keep luring me in. Maybe we can do both scales.

  4. I dunno, John. That's a lot of 25-28mm minis to paint for a large battle (easily over 1000 minis per side for a Corps vs. Corps battle). It would be a long term project (years vice months). It would totally be worth it, but we'd have to go into it understanding that we were playing the long game. We'll see what you think about the AB 18mm once I get enough minis painted to play a tiny game (about 130-150 minis for a brigade vs. brigade fight). They are nice models.