Saturday, November 20, 2010

Of men and hexes...

An as yet unnamed battalion of
Frenchmen, deployed on my Hotz mat.

I had some good news on Thursday, GMT games finally charged my credit card for Command & Colours: Napoleonics, which most likely means that I'll have the finished game before Christmas - which is immensely satisfying. It did of course, throw into high gear my thoughts on howI was going to play the game with figures.

Assault on Hoth kicks off

The Battle of Hoth.
This picture does no justice to the lavish scale of the game.

I was offered a bespoke hex mat recently by the wife of a very dear friend of mine. He had run a spectacular game set around the battle of Hoth from the Starwars films using 28mm figures. This was an opulent affair with three massive AT-AT walking tanks attacking rebel alliance entrenchments defended by Luke, Chewie and chums. The game ran using a version of the Memoir '44 game system and was played on a standard Memoir 44 mat (9 hexes by 13) with massive ten inch hexes. I had entertained hopes of commissioning such a mat, but it would mean that it could only be useful when laying on the floor and most of my pals are less enthusiastic about floor games than I am.

So I think I shall have to make do with my two Hotz mats and let pipedreams of gigantic wargames tables go the way of all fancy.

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A Charge! battalion of nameless frogs deployed in line,
representing in this instance three units for Command & Colours: Napoleonics.

My Napoleonic armies are based on card sabots three inches across with two sabots making up a unit. I had thought this was going to be a problem as it meant that the bases were an inch longer than the five inch hexes. This isn't really an issue for an isolated unit, but it makes deploying a Napoleonic line of any size problematical.

However, after removing the figures from the sabot and laying them out, they just - as you can see in the picture above - fit the five inches allowed. This has settled it - I may ask my friend to run me up a mat for the mediterranean, but I think it will have to use the smaller and more practical five inch hexes.

Which brings me next to the thorny issue of tables...


  1. I love C&C and I'm very much looking forward to Napoleon. The hex system is so elegant and simple.


  2. Delighted to hear it. I've greatly enjoyed your blog. I'm assembling some Mahratta chaps in hope of adapting the system to the sub continent.