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"Getting started in 6mm" Topic

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jeeves11 Feb 2017 7:38 a.m. PST

Seriously considering buying a 6mm horse and musket army. But I'm at a loss to which period it should come from. The SYW is really exciting to me, but Napoleonics seems far more popular and thus easier to find opponents. I really like the Thirty Years war as well but there isn't much evidence online that it is a popular period in 6mm. The American War of Independence is also possible but again, doesn't seem popular in 6mm and seems a bit limited. My question is, how did you pick your period and what things should I be considering when picking mine?

keithbarker11 Feb 2017 7:43 a.m. PST

You should pick with two things…

** your heart
** what your opponents play

If I was you I would have a look at the baccus6mm site and their forum. You will find lots of inspiration there and maybe even a gamer near you.

AussieAndy11 Feb 2017 9:23 a.m. PST

Good advice from Keith. I would add that 6mm is ideally suited to big battles. Wagram or Leipzig in 6mm is something to behold. Of course, however, if you have limited space, 6mm is great for something like AWI.

KTravlos11 Feb 2017 9:42 a.m. PST

Also if it is feasible, buy two matched armies. In that way you can always find an opponent.

Allen5711 Feb 2017 10:33 a.m. PST

Unfortunately I don't see Thirty Years War as particularly popular with any scale figures. I love the period. IMHO nothing beats the sight of pike and shot on the table and I find many of the battles interesting.

AS above, go with your heart and build two armies.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP11 Feb 2017 11:00 a.m. PST

Keith and KTravlos are both quite right--follow your heart, pay attention to opponents at hand rather than theoretical ones, and always build two armies.
I'm a Napoleonics player at heart, but I will say that SYW tends to be more scalable than either it or TYW. You can count on a battalion to wear the same uniform, and not to be partly pike and shot. The regiment in today's game might be the company next week, which is a serious advantage when you're still building the armies and exploring the possibilities.

Mollinary11 Feb 2017 11:08 a.m. PST

The TYW may not be a popular period in 6mm at present, but wait for Peter Berry's new range being released later this year. The figures are going to be special, and the range extensive. I think it could become the growth area for 6mm.


foxweasel11 Feb 2017 12:37 p.m. PST

I learned a long time ago in wargaming (not that I'm suggesting your new) if you can afford it, always buy both sides. The amount of promises to buy such and such an army to go against mine that never came off. If you get both sides people will always want to play, no matter the period.

Glenn Pearce11 Feb 2017 1:03 p.m. PST

Hello jeeves!

All great advice, but it seems that you don't have an opponent regardless of which army you choose. This is critical unless you don't mind playing solo. So I would strongly recommend that you not put the horse before the cart. Reach out for opponents/clubs/groups/players in your area. Once you have that you can then discover their interests and see if any of them match yours. From there you can start to build both armies. You might even find players who will build an army or better still a group that already has armies and you can simply build what you want to add to theirs.

The second option is to simply build what tugs at your heart strings and hope you find opponents before your finished. Whatever period really speaks to you is what you should build as even if you never find an opponent you will still obtain a level of satisfaction in building them.

When I started my heart called out ancients but there were no ancient figures in my hobby store only Napoleonics. I've now been doing Napoleonics for 40 years. Still no ancients.

Hope this helps you in some way.

Best regards,


jeeves11 Feb 2017 3:42 p.m. PST

Seriously considering SYW Russians now. Anybody have any warnings or encouragement regarding them?

Sobieski12 Feb 2017 7:17 a.m. PST

Yes – apparently they usually left the green coats that everyone expects in camp while fighting. In action, it was red jackets!

Jozis Tin Man12 Feb 2017 10:06 a.m. PST

I suggest SYW for your first horse and musket period. The available arms are pretty straightforward. Horse, Various grades of line infantry, guns, and some lights / jaegers.

Plus you can play all of Charles Grant's tabletop teasers straight out of the box!

I also recommend Christopher Duffy's "Military Experience in the Age of Reason." I am about halfway through and it has really enhanced my understanding of the period.

Plugging my own project, here is my AWI 6mm project, I have deviated from the "Standard" of 60mm frontage per unit, you may want to play with finding your own basing scheme that you find most attractive and fits your playing space.

Frostie12 Feb 2017 12:11 p.m. PST

Mulberian Wars is a good period for 6mm and Bacchus figures are great.

An alternative would be 10mm, I do 9 Years War and 7 Years War in 10mm with Pendraken minis….very nice!

jeeves15 Feb 2017 8:53 a.m. PST

Good show guys. So much useful information. Damn my ADD though, I keep looking at WWI now…but I'm thinking it isn't a great period for 6mm. or is it?

Ramming20 Feb 2017 11:31 a.m. PST

SYW, Heroics and Ros.

John Secker12 Apr 2017 12:32 p.m. PST

Jeeves, WW2 is a fantastic period for WW2, indeed with the greater range and speed of tactical units you might well say it's essential. And you have some great manufacturers – GHQ and Baccus for top quality, also Adler, CinC, Heroics & Ross, Scotia, Irregular. There are rulesets specifically aimed at 6mm, but a common wheeze is to play a set designed for 15mm, using 6mm models, which generally looks far better. In my view 6mm is the best scale for any battle, other than genuine 1:1 skirmishes, and a big Napoleonic or ACW battle in 6mm looks fantastic. You don't have to swallow the idea that a battalion is four men. But don't go away with the idea that it doesn't work for WW2.

John Secker12 Apr 2017 12:34 p.m. PST

Sorry, I misread Jeeves post, thought it said WWII. Certainly WW1 isn't so well supported in terms of number of manufacturers, but Baccus do a full range, and that should be enough. And again, to show mass battles with modern weapon ranges, 6mm works well.

cae5ar07 Jun 2017 7:28 p.m. PST

Have you considered somewhere between the Thirty Years War and Seven Years War, such as the War of Spanish Succession (Marlburian)? WSS is generally well supported by figures manufacturers and reference books, or the Great Northern War (less well supported, equally fascinating, and figures are often cross compatible). It's the very front end of the Horse & Musket period, with the occasional fully armoured cavalry regiment or pike block in some armies. The battles can also be huge, the largest to pre-date the Napoleonic Wars.

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