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"Help with 6mm armour and infantry labelling " Topic

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rulesquestor23 May 2017 9:02 a.m. PST


I'm venturing into a new scale of 6mm or 1/300 for my WW2 wargaming. Im using FOBWW2 rules to refight division and battalion size games. Bases for all are 30mm by 30mm.

I want to leave a small strip on the back of each base for labelling but am really unsure what needs to go on there. I don't see myself labelling for specific units and formations, so something more generic might be better.

Can anyone give me a few pointers on what works?


RittervonBek23 May 2017 9:07 a.m. PST

A system of coloured dots on the rear vertical edge might work. It's unobtrusive and if your kit is organised on a triangular basis it could fit numerous levels of games.

Col Durnford Supporting Member of TMP23 May 2017 11:33 a.m. PST

At a different scale, for my Vietnam NLF company, I use three digits.

1st platoon.
2nd squad.
3rd trooper.

So figure 325 would be in the 3rd platoon, 2nd squad, 5th trooper.

The same could be done with three colored dots.

Allen5723 May 2017 12:58 p.m. PST

I don't care for colored dots or numbers/alphabet on my figure bases. Have been experimenting with a system that uses bits of gravel and or lichen/grass tufts on the bases to identify the figures. Admittedly this can be confusing but I am still experimenting.

Kropotkin30323 May 2017 1:21 p.m. PST

I write what they represent on the underside of the base. Using 60mm bases of various depth a la DBA/Hott. Works for me.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP23 May 2017 6:10 p.m. PST

What have I tried?

--Specific units written underneath the command stand base.
--Simple numeric--or alphabetic--designations--which can be used with an OOB saying that 1st, 2nd and 3rd infantry and 1st tanks report to Headquarters A
--especially in 2mm, but also in 5mm, putting NATO standard weapon symbols on the base, so I can tell the AT gun, the HMG and the mortar apart.
--Unit designation on the back edge of bases, but only if the base is 3mm or 1/8" thick.

Personally, I find the little tags with unit designation, subordination and (frequently) break points a little too annoying in a miniatures game. But obviously many wargamers disagree.

Dynaman878924 May 2017 10:47 a.m. PST

I've gone with black dots or lines. A different pattern for each type of weapon. (Hard to tell weapons apart on 6mm figures at table distance sometimes).

On the back I label the nationality (hard to tell apart sometimes…) along with unit type again, Assault Rifle, Sniper, Flamethrower. For most things it is not needed but when it is needed it is really needed. Plus it makes it new player friendlier.

Mako1124 May 2017 12:49 p.m. PST

With such a small scale, there should be no need to keep track of individual troopers, at least in most cases, I suspect.

Squad, Platoon, and/or Company numbers should be it.

If you really "must" keep track of the trooper number, just count from the left of the figure base, as the troops are facing away from you, and toward the enemy.

For skirmish level games, I CAN see the need to keep track of individuals, though in that case, I'd number each soldier in a platoon, instead.

Mark 128 May 2017 6:40 p.m. PST

Things I have tried:

- Label each squad, on the top of the base, down to the company, platoon, and squad. (ie: B company, 2nd Platoon, 1st squad, but abbreviated for space to B2-1).

I found this to be too inflexible for my gaming needs. It was all fine and good for quickly putting my B company on the table. But it did not give me the flexibility to use the figures from 3 full strength rifle platoons to create 5 understrength rifle platoons, if that's what my game called for.

I also found that some gamers (some, but you have all met some of these some) would read the labels and come to understand who they should shoot at first, and my command stands would be cleared off the board before any of my non-command stands were even targeted. And while I'm not 100% sure that's not a legitimate tactic (it is, after all, a deliberate tactic in actual warfare), I AM 100% sure that I didn't like giving my opponent all the info he needed to execute that tactic.

- Label each stand, on the bottom, for what it is. Rifle squad with a light machine gun (again abbreviated for space, such as R + LMG), Engineers, MMG, whatever.

This works OK, but in fact I find it more than I need. It was more important when I was gaming at stand=fire-team level, but at stand=squad level it I just don't need that much info.

What I do now:

- Use "standard" sets of figures to represent some of the info I need.

4 figures on a stand = a squad. If it's a squad with an LMG, I put an LMG on the stand. If it's all rifles, I put all riflemen on the stand. 4 of 'em = a squad.

3 figures on a stand = special purpose squad. Engineers, weapons crews, whatever. Usually the models are good enough for me to judge if it is an AT gun crew or an engineering assault squad.

2 figures on a stand = half-squad sized unit. Could be a commo team, a medical team, a vehicle crew, a command stand, or a small weapons crew (like for an MG or light mortar).

To give me enough information to keep my formations straight, I label the command stands. But I only label them with their level of command, not which unit they command. And the indications of level of command are simple and low-visibility (although obvious enough to me).

So I put small stripes (or dots, if you like) on the back edge of the stands of my command units. I do it in a color that does not stand-out from the base colors. A base that is mainly green foliage on brown dirt might get dark green stripes, or maybe dark brown stripes. 3 stripes = platoon command, 2 stripes = company command, 1 stripe = battalion command.

Here is an image of how it all works. This is a portion of my Italian infantry (in continental uniforms).

You can see rifle squads, LMG teams (Italian infantry did not integrate their LMGs into the rifle squads -- each platoon had 4 LMGs in 2 sections of 2 LMGs each). You can see two platoon squads in this picture which have platoon commanders (the platoon COs did not have any support team, so tended to move and fight with one of the squads), and a company command squad with a medical team traveling with them.

Works for me. Your mileage may vary.

(aka: Mk 1)

rulesquestor03 Jun 2017 1:33 a.m. PST

Thanks everyone for your input. Starting to get my head around it. I'm going to experiment with a small area on the rear of the base that will allow a note to be placed with a non permanent marker. Hoping this won't be too obtrusive but if it is my fall back is the marking of the edge of the base.

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