Sunday, June 28, 2009
In Search of a Lost Chord
OK...For the fourth!? time in my life I'm (re)starting a colonial collection! It's a period that for me epitomizes the spirited fun of wargaming and by its nature seems "way Old School" to me. So my first collection was old Minifig zulu war figures, the second was a really nice Northwest Frontier collection done with Old Glory 25s, and the third was a rather large collection of Frontier 25mm Zulu war figures that I did not paint myself but aquired in exchange for painting stuff for another gamer. Each of the three collections had to be sold to either feed the "gaming dragon" or amazingly to keep the rent paid in rougher, younger days. But finally my life has stabilized to the point where I can reasonably expect to hang on to a collection if I choose (a great luxury!)
...so...I took the plunge into collecting figures for the Sudan using Old Glory 25s (I signed up for the "Old Glory Army" 40% discount from Merrimac Old Glory Shipyard) so I was able to mass a fairly large pile of metal for a reasonably low cost and not too much alarm from the wife...well, actually a fair amount of "alarm" but she got over it...god I love that woman! :) ...and the Old Glory figures are decent castings..not the absolute best but with a bit of care in painting, very good for my taste. So even with the arrival of a new baby and a busy time in life I've been able to get a nice little colonial force painted up destined for a game soon using my rules of choice the classic "The Sword and the Flame" by Larry Brom. Now I can revisit with renewed interest that wonderful gaming site "Major General Tremorden Rederring's Colonial Page"...a site that to my mind set the gold standard for gaming sites. It is now unfortunately long un-updated, but it's still a great place to go to for ideas and inspiration.
I've got three companies of British already done (I'm going with 10 figure and 2 officer "companies" instead of the 20 figure units called for in the original rules), and I just today finished an Egyptian force of 2 companies and a section of Krupp guns to start. I've also got 6 companies of Sikhs still in the bags to futher bolster the British column when they are done.
I have a tendency to tailor my units to the make of the figures I am using, so with Old Glory, that assumes a 30 figure bag plus a command bag to get three 12 figure companies (for 36.00 USD...a pretty good deal!). By the same token that is how my 18th century units were worked out based on 36 figure bags of RSM figures. It might seem lazy but it works out efficiently for my purposes.
I just placed an order for the Dervishes, so hopefully in a month or so I can get some natives on the table...in the meantime it's going to be Egyptian revolt in the Sudan! I've got plans for scratchbuilt gunboats and all sorts of cool stuff that comes with colonial gaming...but more anon.... (and of course Germans, Italians, French, for a hypothetical colonial "what if" in East Africa!)