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"Getting the most out of my figures..." Topic

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Mike Moss07 Oct 2018 2:39 a.m. PST

So I've been bitten by the 18th century bug again and I've been binge buying figures to build a WAS/SYW French army, with 300 or so figs on the painting line. My idea is to build a force of single-based figures, mainly to play Maurice but which I could also combine into big battalions to play old school games like BAR or Charge!

My idea is to make 16-man battalions with a single colour (colonel for the 1st battalion, regimental for the 2nd) and with compatible facings so I could combine them into 32-man battalions with 2 colours for bigger games. Here's the list I've come up with so far, any comments are welcome!

Line infantry:

Grenadiers de France (I think I could use them as Gardes-Françaises grenadier companies in pre-1749 scenarios)
Gardes-françaises I
Gardes-françaises II
Royal-Ecossais (could be used as Gardes-Françaises in a pinch or vice-versa)
Du Roi I
Du Roi II
Normandie I
Normandie II
Dauphin I
Dauphin II

Irregular infantry:

Arquebusiers de Grassin (on skirmish trays)

Line cavalry:

Gardes du Corps (2 squadrons)
Royal-Cravattes (2 squadrons)
Du Roy Dragons (1 mounted and 1 dismounted)

Irregular cavalry:

Berchény-Houzards (2 squadrons)

5 or so guns with crew

Regimental officers, command bases, casualty markers, etc.

I think this would give me a very respectable force to play Maurice with whilst also allowing for "older-school" games. The only thing I'm hesitant about is that perhaps there are too many "blue" infantry units what with the Grenadiers, Guards and Scots and not enough "white" infantry? I also haven't included any Irish or Swiss which is a pity but the red uniforms might be hard to combine!

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2018 8:10 a.m. PST

Sounds like a great plan overall. If the blue/white ratio bothers you, perhaps Picardy or Navarre could take the place of either the Guards or the Scots?

Hmm. One hedge. Might want to think through your old school rules and consider scenarios. You may find yourself a little short on light forces for classic Grant, for instance.

(If anyone missed it, four line units, two skirmish units, two cavalry units and two artillery units plays anything on "One Hour Wargames." Eight line, two light, two heavy horse, two light horse and two units of two guns each plays 3/4 or more of all Grant horse and musket scenarios. Depending on sub-period, I've been known to add two medium cavalry and two horse guns--and I always make sure two of my line infantry can be used as elites in scenarios calling for such. But when you start building an army, it is well to know when you will be done.)

Mike Moss07 Oct 2018 9:05 a.m. PST

Great idea, Robert! I like the all-white uniforms and being Vieux Corps they could stand for elites as needed.

I've got some shooting and reloading poses which tend to look a bit silly in march column so I could repurpose them as light infantry.

Choices, choices!

FusilierDan Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2018 11:28 a.m. PST

Robert that's a great way to look at building an army and certainly keeps things under control. I've been doing that when I'm more interested in the figures than the period. For AWI and ACW I like more historical Orbats. Of course that's why I'm still not finished with them.

Mike I think you have a solid plan there but you know you'll need to paint at least one Irish regiment 😉

Mike Moss07 Oct 2018 12:00 p.m. PST

I know, just thinking of a not-Fontenoy scenario without Irishmen makes my OCD flare up! D:

Personal logo Herkybird Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2018 2:42 p.m. PST

If you can ignore the cut of the uniforms and turnbacks on the coats, why not, go for it!





robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2018 2:55 p.m. PST

Thank you, FusilierDan. You're right about historical scenarios. I have to bend a little for things like AWI militia, for instance. But I find it a good way to rein in a project which otherwise has no obvious end point.

Mike Moss07 Oct 2018 3:10 p.m. PST

The look I'm going for is 1740s-ish so I'm mostly using figures without turnbacks and lapels, except for some with turnbacks (no lapels) I'll be using for the Gardes-Françaises and perhaps some foreign regiments. Oh, and GdF with bearskins, of course! (they probably wore tricornes until 1757 but I just happen to like the figs)

Frederick Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2018 7:12 p.m. PST

Nice list

Over time you might want to build up the cavalry

As the "blue" versus "white" – my French infantry has Grenadiers de France, Auvergne, Languedoc, La Sarre, Royal Lorraine, Tournaisis, Berry, Royal Rousslion and for foreign regiments Royal Suedois, St. Germaine, Royal Pologne, Berwick, Rooth, Clare and Bulkely as well as two battalions de la Marine; I have Dillon as well, half-done in the paint queue; so I guess I don't worry too much about the white-blue-red balance

Costanzo108 Oct 2018 3:34 a.m. PST

I'm focusing on your marvelous idea of big battalions. I think you are right, every SYW player should do the same. The great beauty of the historical period is exalted by big battalions.

Musketier09 Oct 2018 1:01 p.m. PST

For more variety among the cavalry, you could combine two historic regiments in one game unit, since most of them only fielded two squadrons?

Mike Moss10 Oct 2018 2:41 a.m. PST

Thank you for making me feel better about the colour balance, Frederick! After all if I'm not happy once I'm done I'm afraid the proper thing to do would be… to paint more regiments!

Musketier, I like your idea. Maybe for dragoons I could do Colonel-General instead of Du Roi since they seem to have worn tricornes instead of bonnets? (According to Funcken it looks like Royal also wore tricornes). Anything but Schombergs, which I particularly dislike (and the post-1762 uniforms in general!)

AICUSV31 Mar 2019 11:48 a.m. PST

What ever French regiments you pick, make sure the pockets on the casting is correct for that unit. :) My French are organized exactly the same way as you are doing. Two 16 figure battalions per Regiment.

Mike Moss18 Jun 2019 7:31 a.m. PST

Just a quick update – I've based six regiments and I'm chomping at the bit to do some summer painting. Will I go to hell if I mix metals and plastics in the same unit? I'm also torn between giving the two battalions in a regiment the same pose or different poses as they look fine when separate but it might look silly when I mass them into a big battalion. Choices, choices!

von Schwartz18 Jun 2019 5:39 p.m. PST

Will I go to hell if I mix metals and plastics in the same unit?


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