Saturday 23 February 2013

Too much choice is a bad thing.

My eBay purchase of Napoleonics figures arrived last week and they're about what I expected. The painting is ok but nothing great. However there was a problem with the French army. Half of them were Confederation of the Rhine Infantry which I had not been expecting. I went back to the listing and it said Napoleon's army which I had read as French so my own fault really for not checking. But now I have a problem with how I going to base the figures as they're in units of 16 or 20 and I was planning on using units of 24 or 32. With half of them being CotR troops I can't merge the units into larger ones as I'd planned because of the uniform differences

But the basing issues don't end there. I had intended to use either the Lasalle or FoG:N rules as they both use a 40mm frontage for their bases and I could base up the figures so they could be used for both rules. But  the Lasalle army lists don't have much flexibility with regard to the units you can take and the required number of units for a valid force would mean I'd have to buy more figures.

Fog:N, on the other hand, has more flexibility in what you can take. However it is a corps level game with units representing demi-brigades/regiments as opposed to Lasalle's battalions. This has the benefit of needing fewer infantry figures as you can replace a base of infantry with a base of cavalry or artillery to represent an attachment to the unit. However having looked at some pictures I didn't like the look of the units and it didn't feel right to base units that way.

After much thought I decided to go with Lasalle as the rules seemed easier to pick up and learn and I would base in 24's and bite the bullet and buy some more figures. So I ordered a bunch of bases and got my pdf copy of the rules printed out. It was at this point that I encountered the 'Napoleon at War' rules.

I came across these on the TMP boards and did a bit of research on them. They seemed to be easier to learn than Lasalle and they were based on 24 man units, plus they had flexibility in the army lists to let me pick and choose to suit the figures I had bought. But the basing is really weird and not compatible with Lasalle or FoG:N. It would also mean buying yet another set of Napoleonic rules. So now I'm thinking about going with N@W but I've just laid out £20 for printing and bases for Lasalle. I briefly toyed with the idea of using the 40mm bases for N@W but decided against it  as I didn't want to have to fudge things to make it work.

After much wailing and gnashing of teeth I decided to go with N@W as they seem to fit best with what I want. Also I can still use them with Lasalle if need be as base sizes aren't critical as Lasalle uses base widths as the unit of measurement. So I've ordered a set of the N@W rules for £22 from Stafford Games as they were the cheapest place I found that sold them. I'm sure somewhere down the line I'll find a use for the 40mm bases I'd ordered. But I can't help feeling life would be easier (and cheaper) if there wasn't so many rulesets to choose from!


  1. Ferb, I couldn't agree more. The current huge choice of rule books for the Nap gamer is a curse as much as a blessing it seems!
    Looking forward to seeing the progress on your project.


    1. Thanks, I'll be posting a review of one of the N@W miniatures box sets on Monday and a 'first look' at the rules later in the week.

  2. I agree, too. But - if you aren't bothered with production values - there are lots of interesting rules to try out for free on various blogs and the freewargamesrules site.
    My advice - too late I know! - would always be to check out any QRS on the web; if you can't figure out how the game rules work from it, proceed no further.
    Check ebay for the number of s/h copies of rulesets on offer; if there are many copies of set x, but few of set y, this may suggest that many people have tried x and been disappointed with it. At least you may pick up a copy to try for a cheap price...

    1. Good advice, as I already had FoG:N and Lasalle I hadn't expected to buy another set or a load of bases etc. But as wargamers know things don't always go as we planned!


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