Saturday, 22 August 2015

Miniature Wargames with Battlegames Issue 389

The September issue of MINIATURE WARGAMES WITH BATTLEGAMES magazine arrived by post on Friday morning, and I spent a large part of the afternoon reading – and thoroughly enjoying – it.

The articles included in this issue are:
  • Briefing (i.e. the editorial) by Henry Hyde
  • World Wide Wargaming by Henry Hyde
  • Forward observer by Neil Shuck
  • Fencing mistress: The continuing tales of a wargames widow by Diane Sutherland
  • Fantasy Facts by John Treadaway
  • 6mm and the bigger picture: Small scale figures for grand tactical games by Jim Webster
  • Board with World War I?: Get enthused again with Will Townshend by Brad Harmer
  • Waterloo refought: The Church Fenton alternative by Brian Fish and John Smith
  • A multi-period campaign: Giving your club games a purpose by Chris Jarvis
  • Negative freedom: A philosophical appraisal of wargamers by Rob Wyness
  • Points system in the dock: A send three and fourpence special by Conrad Kinch
  • Terrain for tiny chaps: Miniature landscapes for you 6mm armies: 2 by Mick Satce
  • Hex encounter by Brad Harmer
  • Recce
  • The Battlegames Combat Stress Appeal report by Henry Hyde
I particularly enjoyed:
  • Brad Harmer's Board with World War I? because I have enjoyed all of Richard Borg's other wargame designs, and have come very close to buying this game several times;
  • Conrad Kinch's Points system in the dock because he puts that case for and against points systems extremely well. (I am not a great lover of points systems per se but I think that they can be helpful if properly designed. That said, I did included Army Lists – with points – in my rules WHEN EMPIRES CLASH!)


  1. Bob,
    Personally, my favourie article was Jim Webster's; although I have hardly ever played Ancients - apart from my own Gladiator Game - his articles always contain practical ideas that can, with a little effort, be adapted for other periods. His current campaign system, could I think, be tweaked for the English Civil Wars...

    Conrad Kinch's discussion of points systems was, I felt, a bit too long and 'padded out' by the illustrations, but made some valid points. The costings for raising the British foces at Waterloo, however, were irrelevant, as Wellington was not given a budget and then asked to raise an army within it; rather, he had to make do with the 'infamous army and a very inexperienced staff' that British government gave him.
    In many military historical situations, the army commander does not have the freedom to select the forces he will command; and if he does decide the composition of a force to be detached for a particular mission, the commander of that force will have to complete his task with the troops he has been assigned, not make the choice himself.

    I much prefer a system which generates a force around a core that relects the typical historical composition, by adding some additional units - or even, in the Peter Pig ECW rules, for example, removing units that have been detached to garrison local strongholds, straggled on the march or been decimated by plague!


  2. Arthur1815 (Arthur),

    Jim Webster's article probably didn't appeal that much because I have never had much time for 6mm-scale figures. You are right - however - that he does have some great ideas that are adaptable to other historical periods,

    Conrad Kinch is currently doing a law degree, and I suspect that this may have influenced the way he wrote this article. I actually found the costings for Wellington's army quite interesting, although I take your point that this is not how Wellington would have seen his army ... although some at Horse Guards might have done.

    I generally prefer to wargame with reasonably historically correct armies ... even when using imagi-national ones. I agree that the sort of army you suggest - one with a core of units with additional optional/randomly-generated units - is better than one generated by a purely points-based system.

    All the best,



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