Reducing the Moving Parts

The header illustration is of a mechanical music machine by Gaspar Schott, a 17th century physicist and mathematician, which I found in this post at Acousmata.

At one point in my wargaming endeavors I had no less than four flags for each regiment of foot, one each on a small command stand for the two musketeer sleeves and two with the command stand for the pike block. This gave me maximum flexibility in using them with any foot regiment and, if I wanted a new regiment for a specific battle, I only had to make a few simple command stands (or in some cases where the flags were detachable, simply replace them).

While I liked having the multitude of flags it added several additional moving parts in unit assembly and made the storage a bit more fiddly. The older I get the more I value simplicity. Sometime ago I eliminated the musketeer flags but the pike command remained as a separate stand. This meant that the flags were placed behind the pike block and this has never really looked quite right to me.

As I wrote in the previous post I have decided to do some minor rebasing to accommodate using each piece individually at the skirmish level. As I have just acquired some second-hand Scots I will now expand and round out the various factions fighting in Scotland. All of this now gives me the opportunity to move the last set of flags from their individual pieces to the central pike piece of each unit.


The Irish Confederation foot is undergoing its rebasing to reduce the number of bases to five with each unit (Regiment) having identical figure arrangements. The flags have also been made integral to the central pike piece

My current command pieces also suffer from a needless complexity. There is a separate piece that carries a faction flag and a 5mm dice frame to track the command value of the field officer piece with which it moves. These pieces can be easily consolidated and a larger dice frame added (5mm is hard to pick up and manipulate with my fingers). I also realized that if each command (the commander and each unit in the command) gets its own die color I can dispense with tracking that information in the Orders of Battle that I produce for each historic replay. So, a few more reductions in moving parts.

A collection of most of the field officer command pieces are in the process of getting 7mm dice frames and generally getting new and somewhat bigger bases.

Continuing the theme of simplification I have taken down all the pages that I had on the blog concerning my initial attempts at rules mechanics and the dozen or so that described my wargame armies. Both sets were vastly out of date and were in need a total rework. Likely I did not find all the links to them from various posts but eventually I’ll have them back up once I have the new basing complete.

2 thoughts on “Reducing the Moving Parts

  1. I agree with you that simplicity is valued more as we get older. Thanks for a smile when I read that you’d acquired some “second-hand Scots.” I pictured these bedraggled men trudging into your sunroom.


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