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"Recommended Rules for New Napoleonic Player?" Topic


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badweasel11 Apr 2014 10:31 a.m. PST

I've recently become interested in Napoleonic miniatures and was wondering what a good intro set would be. I am okay with a high level of complexity with plenty of experience with board wargaming, but my only Napoleonic experience is Command & Colors or the very abstract Manoeuvre.

From perusing the message boards and blogs, it looks like I am looking for something where the smallest unit I would control is a battalion.

For miniatures, I am pretty set on going with 6mm figures either from Adler (most likely) or Baccus. I will pick up some sample first before deciding on which company. Assuming I go with one of these companies, I would probably start with a division or starter pack to get a start. For an Adler French division, this would be roughly 15 battalions plus support. Ideally, the ruleset I select would be able to play a conflict with forces of this size in around 4 hours.

In summary, I am looking for a ruleset that:

  • Is good for someone new to Napoleonic warfare
  • Has a battalion as the smallest unit size
  • Is playable I around 4 hours

    Any other advice or suggestions would be very helpful as well while I go about my initial fact finding.

  • Personal logo Mserafin Supporting Member of TMP11 Apr 2014 10:57 a.m. PST

    The usual recommendation is to find what others in your area are playing, and try that. They should be more than willing to teach you. Learning a complicated game from people who already know how to play is generally easier than working out a simple set by yourself.

    Otherwise I'd recommend Black Powder. Pretty straight-forward ruleset, more emphasis on having a gentlemanly game than trying to simulate Napoleonic warfare, pretty easy to learn. Has a few quirks, but so does every set of rules.

    Pictors Studio11 Apr 2014 11:01 a.m. PST

    From your list I'd also recommend Black Powder as a starting point. There are a couple of Napoleonic supplements for it. These are worthwhile if they cover the period/area you are playing.

    Mike Petro11 Apr 2014 11:16 a.m. PST

    Whatever people play in your area.

    Personal logo Saber6 Supporting Member of TMP Fezian11 Apr 2014 11:34 a.m. PST

    To the above I'd add: "how many figures do you have painted or are willing to paint?"

    A Twiningham11 Apr 2014 11:35 a.m. PST

    If you are thinking about Baccus anyway, you might give their Polemos set a look. It is actually two rules sets in one and in the lower-scale game each stand is one battalion.

    ThePeninsularWarin15mm11 Apr 2014 11:50 a.m. PST

    I think A Twiningham has a point that Polemos is popular for 6mm with what you're wanting to do. Black Powder in my opinion, should be avoided for multiple reasons. Shako II has scenarios in existence and do not require large units (I'm guessing you're going with 6mm because you don't want to do a lot of painting).

    badweasel11 Apr 2014 12:11 p.m. PST

    As far as I know, there really isn't any Napoleonic players in my area. It seems to be ancients, pike & shot, and then it skips up to WWII. I know there are people interested in the era, but no players so I would be building up two forces to start.

    I want to go with 6mm because I really like the look of 6mm armies, particularly of what I have seen of Napoleonic armies. I like the look of mass and the low cost is a bonus. The painting itself isn't much of an issue, but I know it would take me forever to do larger figures due to how long I spend painting a 28mm figure.

    Texas Jack11 Apr 2014 12:21 p.m. PST

    I cut my teeth on Lasalle and then after much searching moved on to Black Powder. Both games are a lot of fun, but I think Lasalle is a bit more user-friendly for first timers.

    No matter what you choose, best of luck on your new venture!

    Caesar11 Apr 2014 12:39 p.m. PST

    The cost of a 6mm force is actually comparable to 28mm if you are going to use dense figure basing.
    The appeal of 6mm – at least to me – is, as you wrote, the look of them.

    GROSSMAN Supporting Member of TMP11 Apr 2014 1:05 p.m. PST

    Look on ebay before you go and buy a ton of lead-let someone else do the work. I like 10mm for Napoleonics myself, and they paint up just as fast as 6mm -for me anyway.
    Good luck.

    Desert Fox Supporting Member of TMP11 Apr 2014 1:13 p.m. PST

    For first-timers I would recommend Shako.

    Shako is easy to read and understand. It is not complicated and the rules are simple and easy to remember. With Shako you can easily fight battles of any size. While I own and play many other Napoleonic rulesets, Shako remains my "go-to" Napoleonic rules. From Shako it is very easy to graduate yoomore complicated rulesets. It is a very good ruleset to cut your Napoleonic teeth on.

    GildasFacit Sponsoring Member of TMP11 Apr 2014 1:33 p.m. PST

    Doesn't Shako have Brigades or Divisions as units ?

    Polemos are quite feasible for a begiiner to the period but do be beware that they work quite differently to many other rule sets. This can be an attractive feature or not, depending on the players involved. Our group threw up their hands in horror and really didn't give them much of a trial but, personally, I think they work well if you are prepared to get into the mindset the author intended.

    Personal logo Gonsalvo Supporting Member of TMP11 Apr 2014 3:02 p.m. PST

    Shako has battalions as the basic units. I tink you are thinking of Valmy to Waterloo fror unist at the Brigade/Division size.

    Sparker11 Apr 2014 3:03 p.m. PST

    Another recommendation for Black Powder!

    Personal logo Mserafin Supporting Member of TMP11 Apr 2014 3:45 p.m. PST

    As far as I know, there really isn't any Napoleonic players in my area.

    What is your area? There may be Napoleonic gamers around you don't know about, and they may be lurking on these very boards.

    badweasel11 Apr 2014 4:03 p.m. PST

    What is your area? There may be Napoleonic gamers around you don't know about, and they may be lurking on these very boards.

    Montana, which seems to have very few active posters. Looking through those listed on TMP, I am several hours away from any Napoleonic players so I would probably be limited to conventions for meeting up.

    Timotheous11 Apr 2014 5:33 p.m. PST

    Take a look at Drums and Shakos Large Battles. Don't let the title put you off-the previous Song of Drums and Shakos is a skirmish game, so DSLB is aimed right at divisional command. Price-$8; plus, it's basing agnostic, so you can try out the rules on another set's basing convention.

    Lion in the Stars11 Apr 2014 6:01 p.m. PST

    I'd honestly say that LaSalle is GREAT for someone just getting into the period. You'd be roughly speaking a Divisional commander, with 6-12 battalions under you for most gaming situations.

    That's actually only a small part of most battles, by the way. What I've slowly been working on is forces for the Battle of Fuentes de Onoro (Iberian Peninsula), and the entire battle could almost be gamed on 6-7 separate tables. A single player's force would be one of the 8 divisions of the British/Portuguese army present at that battle. I've been considering the idea of running a big team game like that if I ever find time to run a participation game for a convention.

    I also have Black Powder, but BP assumes that you know where to start looking to see what units you will need, and any details that would set those units apart from others in the same army.

    LaSalle has generic army lists, broken down by theater/year, and I believe it's more "noob-friendly" in terms of reading and understanding the rules, too.

    Physically building the army is very simple in LaSalle, you have either a 4-base infantry unit or a 6-base unit (I forget what cavalry units are, numerically). That's it, though you also will need brigade and division commander 'stands' (that are there to show where the boss is, not to impede traffic!). You MAY add some "skirmisher" stands to help you remember your skirmishing score (having a better Skirmisher score/"more skirmishers" adds a bonus to the combat resolution). No casualty counting, the entire unit accumulates "hits" and breaks/routs or holds in its entirety. IIRC, you need 1 'hit' per stand to break a battalion, but it might be a flat 4 hits regardless. I'd suggest using casualty figures or small groups of soldiers running away for each 'hit' marker, but that's not required. I just find that having a marker next to each stand of troops to be a more intuitive thing than needing to read a 'dial'-type marker.

    The one really interesting thing that LaSalle does is invert the usual order of operations. It's not Move-Shoot-Assault, it's Shoot-Assault-Move (again, IIRC, been a while since I've played). You don't resolve the assault you moved your troops into during your turn. You move the troops into the assault at the very end of your turn, and then your opponent gets to shoot at them at the start of his turn! All of your actions happen during your turn, essentially, but that uncertainty about the success of your attack is unique in my experience.

    LaSalle was sufficiently pretty and simple enough in the explanation to get a long-time finger-pointer (as in, point and laugh at the 'absurdities' the Naps players get wrapped around the axle about) to Bleeped text and start playing the period. Black powder was NOT that game for me. As far as I know, LaSalle is available as a PDF only right now, unless you find someone who still has a hardcopy lurking around somewhere. No, you can't have my copy of LaSalle, though I'd be willing to sell you my copy of BP if you wanted a second copy for your opponent.

    Personal logo Saber6 Supporting Member of TMP Fezian11 Apr 2014 7:22 p.m. PST

    Well we need some specifics on your area. I'm in Northern Wyoming and I know of players in Helena and Missoula

    Bandit11 Apr 2014 7:31 p.m. PST

    GildasFacit,

    Doesn't Shako have Brigades or Divisions as units ?

    Nope, battalions.

    These threads always drive me a little nuts, not because the question is bad, the question is perfectly sensical, but because "we" i.e. the bulk of those who reply, largely just say "pick the rules I really like, cause they are the best-est!"

    Now, that said and knowing now that you're chilling in Montana and not sure that you'll be able to game with anyone… here is my advice for whatever it is worth:

    Don't pick a rule set. Sample a bunch

    Watch the aftermarket swap boards and such. Buy yourself a handful of different rules, old and new, I say the swap boards because they represent a nice cross-section and you won't have to pay the premium that brand new sets cost. It will give you a lot of flavor.

    I'm pretty sure my first Napoleonic game was Nappy's Battles. I liked it a lot. Then I delved into Bruce Quarrie's rules, then Corps d'armιe… read more and more about the period, decided Napoleon's Battles was not for me at all (well designed game, just not my preference), then tried Empire because all the cool kids were doing it… then Legacy of Glory, then some others and on and on.

    Lastly, I wouldn't get hung up on figure scale. If you like 6mm, awesome, go for it. A smart guy with an abacus can easily determine how to scale rules to whatever figure size he chooses to use – don't be shy about that and don't restrict yourself to "6mm rules" vs "15mm rules" etc.

    Good luck to you!

    Cheers,

    The Bandit

    Skeptic11 Apr 2014 7:44 p.m. PST

    I've tried both Lasalle and Black Powder, and each has its advantages and disadvantages. Regardless, another relative advantage of Lasalle for beginners is that the rules include an index, and are much less chatty, so tend to be easier to check when in doubt.

    wrgmr111 Apr 2014 7:55 p.m. PST

    Our group plays Shako 2 regularly. It's battalion/regiment/battery driven, with divisions being the command element.
    It's fun and gives you flavour or the Napoleonic period.

    Small battles are 2 to 3 hours medium 3 to 4 hours.
    We've played Wagram, Austerlitz, Borodino and Eylau in a day.

    Photos, here.
    Wagram 28mm
    link

    Wagram 15mm
    link

    Borodino 28mm
    link

    Borodino 15mm
    link

    Eylau 28mm
    link

    Eylau 15mm is coming up May 10th.

    bandrsntch11 Apr 2014 8:41 p.m. PST

    For 6mm, I would definitely look at General de Brigade(GdB) and LaSalle. I think GdB is the better set. Shako II would work also and is certainly easier to play.Basic units are battalions. You can decide how many figures to use per stand, but you need at least two stands so you can show line, column and square formations. Shako moves pretty fast and you can have some good sized games that get done in a reasonable amount of time with it.

    jnmpoppie11 Apr 2014 9:22 p.m. PST

    Shako uses the battalion as the basic unit. However, it does have some optional rules allowing for divisions as the basic unit.

    bakblast11 Apr 2014 10:21 p.m. PST

    Shako: lots of fun and able to finish a corps sized battle in 3 hours.

    Black Powder: open ended make the game what you want.

    Whatever you decide to go with, buy Black Powder! This is the most entertaining rules set just from a reading standpoint. Black Powder is the type of book, that your great aunt fannie might have sitting on the coffee table to entertain guests while waiting for her to discover where she left the teapot. It screams H.G. Wells, cork floors and mustachioed "men of the regiment".

    CATenWolde12 Apr 2014 3:12 a.m. PST

    Despite it's current popularity here (on boards populated by experienced wargamers), I really wouldn't recommend Black Powder to someone new to the period and learning to play in relative isolation. It's a quirky set of rules that is loosely written, covers a much broader period, assumes you know how to tweak the rules to achieve what you want for a specific sub-period like Napoleonics, and has a … unique command system that isn't really representative of any other play experience. I'm not saying it's a bad set of rules – just imho not a good fit in this situation.

    I would support the recommendations above for either Lasalle or Shako. They are both straightforward sets that are specific to the period and (particularly Lasalle) give you a very clear idea of what the rules are trying to achieve within the period. Both are pretty popular, and both give advice on what armies to collect (again, Lasalle comes out ahead here).

    If you think you want to play with bigger units and a bit more complexity (but not too much), General de Brigade is also a good choice. It doesn't have a section on collecting armies, but like Shako and Lasalle it is a popular set that is specific to the period and very straightforward in its writing and approach.

    Any of these three will give you a great introduction to the basics of Nepoleonic wargaming on the battalion level, with its mix of arms and formations, and all have a pretty workable set of command & control rules. When you do find a group, or go to a convention, you'll be able to easily adjust.

    Also, since you're collecting 6mm, don't be put off by the basing schemes in whatever rules you buy! Just figure out how many bases you need, and base however many figures you think looks good. For instance, Shako assumes three bases per battalion and Lasalle four, but the number of figures doesn't matter. General de Brigade is a nominal 1:20 figure ratio set (usually about 36 15mm or 28mm figures per average battalion), but it assumes 4 figures per base, so you can just model your own bases and track casualties as you wish.

    Cheers,

    Christopher

    GildasFacit Sponsoring Member of TMP12 Apr 2014 3:14 a.m. PST

    When I played Shako many years ago bases were Bn and the command units were divisions – I always assumed that was the norm.

    Probably just a diffierence in the terminology.

    Whirlwind12 Apr 2014 3:29 a.m. PST

    If you are looking for something easy for someone to begin with, then Neil Thomas' rules are very good:

    link

    link

    The set of Napoleonic rules in the last couple issues of Miniature Wargames, although not quite as simple as the Neil Thomas, looks very playable. They are quite similar to the rules in Henry Hyde's Wargaming Compendium link ,which should work fine too.

    I play Polemos myself – they work fine too, although as noted above, some of the concepts are quite unusual.

    All of the above will give a game in well under four hours, all have the battalion as the basic unit.

    Regards

    nsolomon9912 Apr 2014 4:14 a.m. PST

    Valmy to Waterloo is not, as suggested above, a brigade or divisional based set of rules. It uses battalions, regiments and batteries. But its out-of-print and anyway I wouldn't suggest it as a beginners set.

    I'm with Christopher Tenwolde – having played Black Powder I would not recommend it as a set for a beginner. You need to already understand the period, the tactics, and the armies well to get value out of it.

    I think most of us start out with a set of rules that introduce us to the period and then as we learn more and our understanding grows so too do our interests change and we try other sets of rules. Some people settle on a favourite set fairly quickly and others explore continually. This is a hobby, there is no one true way to extract relaxation and enjoyment.

    I agree that La Salle and Shako would both make great introductory sets of battalion level rules. I no longer play either of them for different reasons but either would be a great place for a beginner to start. I would possibly add General de Brigade to that list of battalion level rules sets because its mechanics are simple, straightforward and transparent and it teaches you as you play.

    A great strength of Napoleonics is the wealth of options and choices of rules sets – I have more than 60 sets in my collection at last count. I feel that rightly reflects the colour and atmosphere and diversity of the period.

    Glenn Pearce12 Apr 2014 7:16 a.m. PST

    Hello badweasel!

    Congratulations on making what will turn out to be some of the best decisions you will ever make in wargaming.

    1) Napoleonic's
    2) 6mm
    3) Adler or Baccus
    4) Single base battalion units

    It took me over 20 years to put all of that together. I now have over 40 years of Napoleonic experience, 35 years of 6mm experience and almost 10 years of Baccus figures, rules and other accessories. I also managed a world wide web site strictly dedicated to Napoleonic 6mm gaming for about 15 years. I only mention all of this so you can evaluate the experience of my comments.

    I can't recommend you deal exclusively with Baccus strong enough. Their figures are world class, easy to buy, organize, fastest to paint and mount. You can buy flags, rules, bases, buildings and other terrain items all from one source. The uniformity of their figures makes their units pop just a little more when their finished, verses other manufactures. They also have fewer items prone to bending (swords, lances, etc.).

    Even if you don't buy their figures use their bases. The 60mm x 30mm base is the most popular base in the 6mm world and growing every year. Mount your figures on these bases and you will never have to remount your figures again. You can also use them for just about any other rule set. Some might require a simple rule amendment, which is a lot easier then having to rebase an entire collection. I know I've done that too many times before.

    Buy the Napoleonic Polemos rules. They were designed by 6mm players for 6mm figures. Most if not all of the rules mentioned by others are intended for other scales. Yes you can use 6mm for them, but they were never designed for them. The Polemos rules are fully supported with an online Yahoo Group, where the author and others will gladly help you with any questions. The real beauty though is they are two rules in one. The first one is for smaller battles which is exactly what you want. The second one is for the really big battles which you will probably aspire too, and you can use the same bases.

    Should you have any further questions just contact me at
    glennrpearce@hotmail.com

    Best regards,

    Glenn

    CATenWolde12 Apr 2014 8:18 a.m. PST

    I really appreciate Glenn's enthusiasm, but telling someone new to the hobby that using 60x30mm bases is somehow a standard, and that he'll never has to rebase … is a bit misleading to say the least. He won't be able to use those large bases with virtually any other rule set than your favorite Polemos, which is a decidedly minority set of rules.

    (and no, Glenn, please don't hijack this thread too)

    If I had to give a sort of universal advice (other than going with the basing in the rules), I would recommend 20x20mm squares, which you can then sabot to larger bases if desired, but which would work well themselves with virtually any other rule set.

    Cheers,

    Christopher

    Bandit12 Apr 2014 9:57 a.m. PST

    Glenn – I know ya love the 6mm, the Baccus and the Polemos and there are a fair number of wargaming concepts that you and I agree about, so please don't think I'm trying to be unkind when I say, reading your post made me think I was watching a commercial.

    badweasel – I'll jump in and agree with Christopher (CATenWolde) and nsolomon99 that Black Powder may be great, it may not be great, but it presumes you know a lot of stuff. If you are looking for rules that will provide some guidance on the period, they ain't them.

    I'd also say, don't ignore "out-of-print" because something is out-of-print. I emphatically encourage the "sampling" model of pickup several used rule books and give em each a read.

    When it does come to basing, my advice is that you should either be willing to rebase as you change your mind in a couple years or you should work on using something that is likely to be easily sabot'd as Christopher notes. If you're unfamiliar, a sabot or "movement tray / base" is a larger base onto which you place or attach smaller bases so that (presuming they fit) you can base for rules with smaller bases and still play rules that use larger bases without rebasing.

    Cheers,

    The Bandit

    flipper12 Apr 2014 10:30 a.m. PST

    Hi

    I would consider 2 of the recommendations already made:

    Get a copy of the Neil Thomas book
    Look into a 'deal' from Baccus for some figures/rules/bases

    You can then try both sets of rules – the Neil Thomas set work on 4 bases to a unit (call it a battalion if you will)

    A 'base' takes 4 hits and is then destroyed.

    Adler are lovely figure, I so like them … But they are nimble and prone to bent/broken bayonets/flag staffs and what not (if only they used a rigid metal).

    Good luck.

    Clays Russians12 Apr 2014 1:13 p.m. PST

    Recommend shako first edition, second edition I suppose is just fine, but I was satisfied with the first. Not sure why Arty was compelled to fix something that clearly was not broke.

    Glenn Pearce12 Apr 2014 4:54 p.m. PST

    Hello Christopher!

    "I really appreciate Glenn's enthusiasm,"

    Certainly doesn't seem so by your following comments.

    "but telling someone new to the hobby that using 60x30mm bases is somehow a standard, and that he'll never has to rebase … is a bit misleading to say the least. He won't be able to use those large bases with virtually any other rule set than your favorite Polemos,"

    Are you confusing this with the 60mm x 60mm base? Your list of "virtually any other rule set" has to be extensive. Can you at least name 25?

    "which is a decidedly minority set of rules."

    Decided by whom? A simple vote here in this little thread has it as number one or tied depending on how you want to add up the versions of Shako. There are basically seven sets of rules mentioned. Polemos is no where near the bottom. It is however the only one specifically designed for 6mm. So it's clearly number one.

    "(and no, Glenn, please don't hijack this thread too)"

    Certainly does not sound very positive to me. Am I missing something? If you have some sort of axe to grind please explain it. Clearly a contradiction to your opening sentence.

    "If I had to give a sort of universal advice (other than going with the basing in the rules), I would recommend 20x20mm squares, which you can then sabot to larger bases if desired, but which would work well themselves with virtually any other rule set."

    So my basing advice is "misleading" and can't be used with any other rule set, but yours can be? How is that possible? Have you actually studied the basing requirements of all the Napoleonic rules? I'm really anxious to see this list and the complications that make the use of my recommended base impossible to use. I'm not aware of any Napoleonic rule set that can't be used with some simple amendments. Certainly a lot easier then building different sabots for every possible rule set. How ugly is that?

    Are you really suggesting that a large scale Napoleonic battle should be composed of a few thousand little 20x20 squares all painstakingly sorted out into their respective sabots?

    Best regards,

    Glenn

    Whirlwind12 Apr 2014 10:50 p.m. PST

    Recommend shako first edition, second edition I suppose is just fine, but I was satisfied with the first. Not sure why Arty was compelled to fix something that clearly was not broke.

    Was there an exploit with the unstoppable massed columns in Shako? I could be wrong, just a very vague memory.

    Regards

    Sparta13 Apr 2014 8:57 a.m. PST

    Some rules that appear unbroken and working smoothly to some, may appear broken beyond repair to others :-)
    I have seen players play with rules for years without the glaring deficiencies (that they never saw how to use/play/exploit – depending on your preference) ever dawning upon them. Is it not wonderfull that we humans have different abilities and taste!

    Sparker13 Apr 2014 7:43 p.m. PST

    I really wouldn't recommend Black Powder to someone new to the period and learning to play in relative isolation. It's a quirky set of rules that is loosely written, covers a much broader period, assumes you know how to tweak the rules to achieve what you want for a specific sub-period like Napoleonics, and has a … unique command system that isn't really representative of any other play experience. I'm not saying it's a bad set of rules – just imho not a good fit in this situation.

    I'm going to be careful what I say here, as I know some of the contributors to this thread don't like it when I have the temerity to defend Black Powder, but with that caveat here goes:

    It's a quirky set of rules that is loosely written, covers a much broader period

    All very true, but as observed above, whilst its scatter gun approach can be frustrating when trying to clarify a particular rule, its period, chatty approach has a charm all of its own!

    assumes you know how to tweak the rules to achieve what you want for a specific sub-period like Napoleonics

    having played Black Powder I would not recommend it as a set for a beginner. You need to already understand the period, the tactics, and the armies well to get value out of it.

    but it presumes you know a lot of stuff.

    Not so sure any of these statements are correct – the book comes with a good overview both of the Napoleonic era and its tactics, and with further explanantion of advanced and special rules and how you can apply them to give period flavour, and includes sample generic stat lines for all Napoleonic troop types. Certainly as much if not more that other rulesets listed…

    has a … unique command system that isn't really representative of any other play experience

    Again I'd like to politely and respectfully demur if I may –
    The notion of applying a command value to commanders and having you throw 2 d6 to get under that value to carry out the order, and perhaps 1 or 2 further moves, is very straightforward, and rather similar to the Blitzkreig/Future/Cold War Commander family of rules.

    And of course much more chrome, history and Napoleonic scenarios can be found in the 2 published Supplements.

    I might further add that doing it alone will be hard. My group has very successfully introduced dozens of newbies to Napoleonics with Black Powder, perhaps because of its origins in Warhammer rules, which has led to it being castigated as a 'Beer and Pretzels' set of rules because of its apparent simplicity. (Interestingly, those same critics are now implying its not a good introductory set! Wargamers Eh!)

    But we all needed a little assistance getting into Napoleonics. The interplay of all arms, and an understanding of the formations and types of unit involved is fairly complex so the overriding factor is getting support – but there is an active forum on the Warlord Games website, and of course as you know you can always get help on here…

    link

    Glenn Pearce14 Apr 2014 7:29 a.m. PST

    Hello My Good Friend Bandit!

    "so please don't think I'm trying to be unkind when I say, reading your post made me think I was watching a commercial"

    I do not, as I think you are by nature a kind person. However, it seems that I have not properly explained myself to you before. I sincerely apologize for that.

    I presently run the "Napoleonic Miniatures Wargame Society of Toronto" and the "Miniature Brigade". The NMWST is presently 49 years old which is probably one of the oldest Napoleonic clubs in the world. It is just not a group of guys that get together to play games (although now it pretty much is). For many years the group strived to find out as much as it could about Napoleonic Warfare and how could those facts translate to our games. We also studied various rules. How do they play, how long do they take, how do they actually function in relation to real tactics.

    It was in pursuit of this quest that we discovered 6mm figures around 1980. Since then we have also kept our eyes wide open in the 6mm world. What figures work best, basing, rules etc. It has been our goal to basically keep on top of everything Napoleonic and 6mm in our hobby.

    I am in contact with Napoleonic scholars, writers, societies, etc. and major figures (people) in the 6mm business. I monitor as many web sites and forums as I can. All in the pursuit of being at the fore front of Napoleonic 6mm gaming.

    When our web site was up we were receiving a 1,000 hits a month. To some who frequent the 6mm world our club/site is fondly referred to as the "Mecca" of Napoleonic 6mm gaming. The "Miniature Brigade" is attempting to do the same thing, but for other periods, F&IW, AWI, War of 1812 and ACW.

    So I have been passing on what I can for a number years and most are very thankful. Since this is an open forum here, I'm just another opinion. However, I can't ignore my experience and knowledge. So if my posting reads like a commercial it's because I've been saying it for a very, very long time.

    Best regards,

    Glenn

    MichaelCollinsHimself14 Apr 2014 7:52 a.m. PST

    Glenn,
    The NMWST… that`s a great site btw and recommended if you`ve not come across it before ;-)
    I must pop along and see what`s new there!
    Can you post a link please, I`m unable to locate it right now.
    Best Regards,
    Mike.

    Glenn Pearce14 Apr 2014 7:59 a.m. PST

    Hello Mike!

    Thanks, sadly the NMWST site is presently down as we are making some major changes. At this time were contemplating changing it to the "Miniature Brigade", however, that might be a mistake as the NMWST has made such a big impact. Also our site master has been hard pressed for time. So were not yet sure when it will be back up and running, but as soon as it is I will advise the forum.

    Best regards,

    Glenn

    Personal logo War Artisan Sponsoring Member of TMP14 Apr 2014 11:13 a.m. PST

    badweasel,

    There are some good bits of advice in this thread. I would just add that the odds of picking a set of Napoleonic rules on the first try that you will use for the rest of your gaming life are virtually nil. I do not know of a single Napoleonic wargamer who still exclusively plays the first set of rules he learned. Don't get too bound up in picking the "right" set of rules with which to start . . . eventually you're going to outgrow them anyway. Your tastes in games will change with time, and as you learn more about the period you will discover aspects of it that are more interesting to you than others, and you will naturally gravitate to rules that emphasize those aspects. In the meantime just grab something that seems appealing and get started.

    You may even find, eventually, that you enjoy a few very different sets of Napoleonic rules for very different reasons. And that's OK; after all, you don't eat the same thing for dinner every day.

    ======================================================

    As an aside, I could wish that "rules recommendation" threads stayed a little less acrimonious. When someone is seeking advice on entering a new period, or a new hobby, the last thing that they need to see is a bunch of cranky old farts getting huffy over perceived slights to their favorite rules/scale/figures. I have observed (here, and in other threads of this type) that posters who respond will frequently drag things off into unhelpful side discussions.

    In spite of my confidence that those who would most benefit will ignore these, I offer a few suggestions to those who respond to this type of thread:

    If you want a detailed debate about the relative merits of particular rules or scales, start another thread. Convincing the OP to adopt your favorite set of rules does not constitute a "win". If someone appears to want to start a debate, ignoring them does not mean you "lose".

    A little less "do it my way" attitude, and a little more "you could do this . . . and here's why" would be more helpful. Just lay the information out there in as positive a light as possible, and let the OP make his decision.

    This forum is loaded with gaming grognards that have many decades of experience. Claiming to have found the "one true way" because of long experience rings hollow in this company, since others have invested as much or more time and come up with different answers.

    Claiming that a scale, base size, or ruleset is "the best", "number one", "fastest growing" or "dominant" smacks of arrogance and mimics sleazy advertising jargon. It also may imply to readers that the claimant lives in an isolated cultural pocket and is unaware of the larger world around him.

    The idea that a set of rules is "for" a certain scale is outmoded and archaic, not to mention slightly ridiculous in a hobby where virtually everything is scalable.

    Acquaintance with authorities on a subject does not lend your opinions more credibility. Instead of calling upon an association with celebrities in a certain field to lend credence to your position, simply present your ideas as well as you can and let them stand or fall on their own merit.

    Challenging those who disagree with an opinion (as opposed to disagreeing with a statement of fact) to provide support of their position comes across the net as belligerence, not as willingness to participate in a dialog, and will go a long way towards convincing others to disregard your position.

    By being more helpful, we all benefit in the long run.

    Good gaming,

    Jeff

    Glenn Pearce14 Apr 2014 1:28 p.m. PST

    Hello Jeff!

    That was certainly a very confusing post. It started off with some excellent advice and then went right down hill.

    You clearly state "As an aside" followed by "posters who respond will frequently drag things off into unhelpful side discussions." What are you doing?

    I could say a lot about what you said, but it's clearly off topic and "smacks of arrogance".

    If you really want to push your points, follow your own advice and "start another thread".

    Regards,

    Glenn

    nsolomon9914 Apr 2014 2:33 p.m. PST

    Hey Jeff,

    AMEN brother, well said, agree 100%, you speak for most of us.

    Nick

    Bandit14 Apr 2014 2:44 p.m. PST

    Jeff,

    +1

    Cheers,

    The Bandit

    Sparker14 Apr 2014 3:07 p.m. PST

    As an aside, I could wish that "rules recommendation" threads stayed a little less acrimonious….the last thing that they need to see is a bunch of cranky old farts getting huffy…

    Good job you weren't being 'acrimonious' there then! Speaking as as a 'cranky old fart' meself!

    If you want a detailed debate about the relative merits of particular rules or scales, start another thread.

    I for one will post my opinions where I think they are relevant, which in this case, correcting misstatements about Black Powder, is in the same thread that the misstatements were made…And I encourage Glenn to continue doing the same, particularly as he is far more courteous and humble on this thread than some…I have tried and failed with 6mm myself, but I encourage anyone to get enthusiastic and excited about their way of wargaming – Gee! You never know – someone might learn something or get inspired – Where's the harm?

    Since this is an open forum here, I'm just another opinion.

    Glenn,

    +1

    Hey Jeff,

    AMEN brother, well said, agree 100%, you speak for most of us.

    Nick

    Well Nick, I'm not sure you do actually. You certainly don't speak for me!

    Glenn Pearce15 Apr 2014 11:45 a.m. PST

    Hello Jeff!

    Well I waited to see a new thread started by you and failed to find one. So congratulations on starting a "side discussion", and failing to follow my advice. Hey you even failed to follow your own. Seems odd for someone who is so willing to give advice.

    Anyway as I said I'm really confused about exactly what your trying to say. So perhaps you could help me out

    "As an aside"

    Sorry, but I have to stop you right here. Why would you start a side discussion when you seem bent on stopping them? Would it not have been better to simply follow that with, please see my new thread about such and such?

    "less acrimonious"

    Again sorry to have to bring this up again, but I do think that Sparker made an excellent comment on that phrase.

    "bunch of cranky old farts getting huffy"

    Are you talking about yourself?

    "In spite of my confidence that those who would most benefit will ignore these, I offer a few suggestions to those who respond to this type of thread"

    I think I follow you here, but don't you think that sounds pretty condescending? Your never going to get anyone to respect your opinions if you talk down to them.

    "If you want a debate about the relative merits of particular rules or scales, start another thread."

    See there's that start another thread thing. Why didn't you start another thread?

    "Convincing the OP to adopt your favorite set of rules does not constitute a "win"."

    Now I'm been looking all over for the person who declared a "win" and can't seem to find him. Can you point the post out to me?

    "If someone appears to want to start a debate, ignoring them does not mean you "lose"."

    Okay, I think I understand this one as well. I just don't know if your talking about your post or someone else.

    "A little less "do it my way" attitude"

    Hey I agree with that, as that's a very strong negative statement. It's just another phrase that I can't seem to find in this thread. Can you please identify the post for me?

    "Claiming to have found the "one true way" because of long experience rings hollow in this company, since others have invested as much or more time and come up with different answers."

    This is certainly confusing. I can't find any post that contains that phrase. Again, please point it out to me. Anyway somebody with experience does believe he has in fact found the "one true way", but he's not suppose to say anything because somebody else might have another "one true way"? Wouldn't that be marvelous? They could then compare notes and maybe even agree that one was wrong and the other is right. I don't see any point in hiding discoveries, do you?

    "Claiming that a scale, base size, or ruleset is "the best", "number one", "fastest growing" or "dominant" smacks of arrogance and mimics sleazy advertising jargon."

    Okay, that's your opinion, but to me it seems silly and sounds very harsh. I don't think too many people are going to even consider your suggestions when you tell them, their not the best, their not number one, their not dominant and nobody buys them. Besides when someone is actually asking for a "good" set are they not looking for "the best"?

    "It also may imply to readers that the claimant lives in an isolated cultural pocket and is unaware of the larger world around him."

    Sounds like you got that backwards.

    "The idea that a set of rules is "for" a certain scale is outmoded and archaic, not to mention slightly ridiculous in a hobby where virtually everything is scalable."

    Okay, bonus for Glenn, I actually found the word "for" used by me! However, I never used it in that context.

    "Acquaintance with authorities on a subject does not lend your opinions more credibility."

    I'm going to go out on limb here and suggest your talking about me. I never said they did, in fact Sparker clearly pointed out that I actually said the opposite. Were you referring to someone else, if so please again, point out the post.

    "simply present your ideas as well as you can and let them stand or fall on their own merit."

    Great, I think I did that!

    "Challenging those who disagree with an opinion (as opposed to disagreeing with a statement of fact) to provide support of their position comes across the net as belligerence, not as willingness to participate in a dialog, and will go a long way towards convincing others to disregard your position."

    I stated an opinion and was challenged. I asked for some support from the challenger and the challenger disappeared. So if I understand your comments correctly it's the challenger who's the belligerent?

    "By being more helpful, we all benefit in the long run."

    Although I certainly agree with that. I didn't find your post helpful at all. In fact I can see that some people could find it insulting. If so, how could it ever be helpful?

    Regards,

    Glenn

    Glenn Pearce15 Apr 2014 12:03 p.m. PST

    Hello Sparker!

    Thanks for your kind words of encouragement, the +1 and standing up for me, yourself and others. You sir are a true gentlemen, a brilliant mind and a voice of experience that rings with truth. I always look forward to reading your posts.

    Best regards,

    Glenn

    Sparker15 Apr 2014 3:11 p.m. PST

    My pleasure mate!

    There is a tiny coterie on this board who seem to me to be increasing their bullying towards those who dare to express a contrary opinion, to the extent of making an entire thread unworkable..

    At first I felt that just ignoring these 'Keyboard Heroes' was the way, rather respond to the points they were making, if indeed they made any coherent points. But that just does their work for them, and they are slowly getting more rude and aggressive and now banding together. So I now think its best to support each other, and any one else they are attempting to shut down or ridicule, and tackle them head on…

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