01 February 2015

A matter of scale

As some gamers do, I am going through a bit of a crisis of what figures and periods I have in different scales and what the best way forward is.  Of course different scales provide different aspects and focuses for gaming- 28mm has lovely characterful figs for skirmishing, 6mm is great for big blocks of troops and big battles.   But sometimes you find yourself with the same genre in more than one scale...
Wonderfully illustrative pic from "PizzaGrenadier's blog" here
So for my own interest I felt compelled to see where I am at after a few decades of indecision, decision, reconsideration, consolidation, and dithering!

WW2 Bolt Action/Chain of Command: British Paras (Painted)
WWW2 - Germans, US (60% painted)
VSF: IHMN, Space 1889 (75% painted)
Pulp/Horror/Cthulhu -Various (mostly painted)
Dark Ages: SAGA Vikings, Anglo-Dane, Irish and Norman (All Painted)
Middle Ages: boxes of Fireforge Crusaders (unpainted)
Blood Bowl - lots of teams, 80% Painted
40K: Moderate size Salamanders Army- Actually its the Lad's (50% painted)

Ancients - DBA Briton and Imperial Roman Armies (unpainted), DBM Polybian Roman (painted) and Carthaginian (painted) Armies
Medieval - DBA HYW Feudal English and Scots (unpainted)
Colonial - Zulu Wars: British, Natal and Zulu armies (all painted)
VSF - bunch of stuff (all unpainted)
WW2 - Eastern Front (Kursk), Western Desert (mostly unpainted)
Vietnam -large collection of Free World Forces and jungle terrain (50% painted) and some NVA (50% painted)
SF - small collection of GZG stuff plus a few QRF goodies.  I so want some of Old Crow's Hammers Slammers though...

SF: OGRE (some painted), Epic (mostly painted), random SF (lots painted)
ECW: Royalist English and Scots to go against Alan's Roundheads (WIP)

VSF: Aeronef and Land Ironclads (some painted, lots not)

Misc - spaceships, WW1 and 2 aerial

Its the keeping of all the necessary terrain etc in different scales that seems needless and a bit daft at times.  Then again, my interests (and use of scales) seem very cyclic so I try to have a lot of scale generic scenery where possible.

For me there appears to be no "one true scale".  Then there is this mate of Comrade James and I who is tempting us into joining his near future Campaign in 1/600...

Anyone else have this continuing dilemma?  Or is it just me having such analysis paralysis?

Another topical pic, this time from Hots Matz


  1. Yeah mate, I hear ya, I started in 28mm, zombies and Vietnam, now I'm all 15mm ww2, dark ages, Wild West, Afghanistan, Vietnam, and I just started on 10mm AWI,

    1. Glad its not just me then!

      I have a bunch of 15mm Cowboys - Peter Pig I think, new in packets - and untouched in years. Yours if you want them.

  2. Good review of your collection and interests. As I'm more into painting than gaming - most of my stuff is 28mm; although I've gone down to 1/1200th for Ancient naval gaming.

    1. Your Galleys look fantastic, the messed effect for your Project Actium is spot-on!

      BTW If you haven't read John Stack's "Ship of Rome" series I highly recommend it

  3. The vast majority of my stuff is 28mm. I do Sci/Fi in 15mm, though I have a fair bit of 28mm Sci/Fi lurking about as well. I'm considering 1:2400 WWII naval. I love the escorts and both the Med and Pacific were destroyer wars, with the occasional bigger stuff.

    Honestly, the biggest thing holding me back from different scales is the terrain. When you are looking at natural features, woods, hills, rivers, it's all more or less scale agnostic, at least going 28mm to 15mm. It's the buildings, roads, walls and hedges that are harder. You need an awful lot of those things to fill a table and doubling or tripling that for multiple scales is just too much to contemplate.

    1. Exactly right, although not everything is period agnostic either. For example, your 28mm VSF buildings are of marginal value in any other period and Dark Ages stuff is not good for any other period. So it doesn't matter that your SF is in 15mm as the buildings didn't work for other period anyway. So its really just roads, rivers and trees and as you say some are a bit interchangeable. Overall, I think that gaming in 3 scales has probably doubled but not tripled my scenery requirements.

      I used to do a lot of naval gaming but gave it all up - too much like work!

  4. I think we all have these kind of problems, I think 15mm is king, and I swore never to have another 25mm period. I lied!

    1. We all lie to ourselves in such matters Ray...

  5. I have different projects in different scales thankfully none crossover apart from batman and all my modern stuff but they aren't (mostly) much bigger than my 28mm.

    1. Well you are a stringer man than me Simon!

  6. "Anyone else have this continuing dilemma?"

    Absolutely! I'm not sure I look at it as a dilemma though, except when I get to fourth or fifth force for a period. I have stuff in 6, 10, 15 and 25/28mm and also other scales for naval and space combat. Like you I often do the same period in multiple scales. My terrain collection is also designed to be as useful in multiple scales as possible.

    I'm rapidly moving away from army sized games in 28mm and my ECW stuff you saw the other day will likely be my last proper historical army at the scale, as much from a cost perspective as anything. Storage is also an issue obviously.

    I will say this. If you are considering a clean out, be VERY sure whatever you let go you'll never want again. I've made that mistake a couple of times and it invariably hurts the hip pocket to rectify.

    So when does your ECW project kick off? :-)

    1. Yes, 28mm is the optimum scale for Skirmish for space (table and storage) and cost, but all those lovely pastil 28s make it so much more complicated a decision!

      "So when does your ECW project kick off?" - standby for a post in a few days :-)

  7. Sticking to one scale is pretty much impossible in my opinion, even inside one subject era :) All of them have a lot to offer from different aspects.

    28mm is definately my favorite with wonderful miniatures with loads of detail to paint. Large armies unfortunately will take a lot of time to build up and take a lot of space both during a game and in storage. I have some large armies in the scale, but somehow nowadays I mainly just enjoy skirmish games of platoon scale or less in this scale.

    6mm is great for massive battles, but to be honest I find these horrible to paint. It's fast, but I don't really enjoy doing it. It's already getting close to the point that I'm wondering why even paint them and not just use cardboard markers. Storage wise it's lovely and having a few massive armies with terrain in your backpack isn't a problem at all.

    Flames of War originally got me started in 15mm and it is now forming up to be my new favorite scale in anything larger than platoon scale games. At least for me it's a good compromise between being nice to paint and being able to field large forces without too many problems. After I'm done with my 28mm Napoleonics project I highly doubt I'll ever do another large army in any other scale than 15mm. More Naps already on the way in 15mm so I've already gotten started on the transition :)

  8. You do indeed make me feel better Samuli - kiitos!

    Your 6mm ACW stuff looks fantastic so not bad for somebody who doesn't enjoy painting at that scale :-) If you think thats small, go check out Curt's recent pics of his 2mm Confederate Regiments in 1:1 figure ratio - madness!

    15mm is great for WW2 I think, especially now with the proliferation of plastic kits making it much more affordable - in fact a plastic tank now costs the same as only a few 28mm figures (non GW ones of course, you could buy a platoon of plastic tanks for the price of one GW character figure!) Good luck with the transition and I'll watch with great interest.

    1. Yeah Curt's entry was impressive! And extremely mad at the same time!