This is Jeff Hudelson’s question over in the neighboring Principality of Saxe-Bearstein right now. And one that I’ve tried to reply to there twice, but the new version of Blogger doesn’t seem to want to let me do that. Grrrrr. . . Kind of like the supercomputer “Hal” in 2001: A Space Odyssey ! So, I’ll respond to Jeff’s query here and offer my own thoughts and ideas in the process.
My philosophy is to keep an army painting project fairly simple and manageable. Since I’m amassing “BIG” battalions of between 30-64 figures each and want to get everything painted and on the table before decrepitude sets in, I suggest keeping armies fairly small: 4-6 units of infantry, 2-3 of cavalry, and a battery or two. These are forces the size and organization of those fielded by Brigadier Young and Colonel Lawford in Charge! If your units are smaller, than those described, then so much the better. You’ll get ‘em on the table even more rapidly.
Fine and dandy, but what if, as Jeff queries, you want a little variety in the size and composition of your miniature battles, so the same units don’t appear on the table time and again? Well, this is where my idea comes in. Paint a few extra, smaller mercenary/militia units that can change sides randomly and often, or that you can combine to form larger units.
My two main combatants are Stollen and Zichenau, but some of you might remember that these two territories are surrounded by smaller, even more peripheral entities. It’s my long-term plan to paint small forces for each of these principalities, using all of those extra, left over figures from the many boxes of Revell SYW Austrians and Prussians that I’ve hoarded during the last year. Here is a slightly more concrete version of what I’m talking about:
* Pillau-Zerbst – 1 large squadron of Jäger zu Pferd (13 figures). Mostly dragoons firing cavalry carbines from the saddle
* Pillau-Reuss – 1 battery of artillery (13 and two MiniFig guns).
* Tauroggen Fiebus – 2 companies of infantry (39)
* Werben-Steinau – 2 large companies of infantry (48)
* Zeller-Schwarzkatze – 2 large companies of infantry (48)
The infantry from the latter two states will wear similarly colored uniforms (dark green like the Russians of the SYW era) and could theoretically combine to forma single MASSIVE unit. It will at least allow me to use up all of those extra, much maligned Revell Prussian grenadiers in mitre caps. And I’m still left with enough extra figures to try some additional conversion work. Voila! Problem solved.