Saturday, December 20, 2008

I Hate Stokes! --

No, not really, Stokes of the "Grand Duchy of Stollen" is actually a very nice fellow (we've had some nice phone conversations).

So why do I say that?

He and Jonathan of the "Principality of Hesse-Engelburg" and the "Landgraviate of Ober-Schweinsberg" are playing out one of Charles Grant's "Table Top Teasers" as a 'play by email' game.

To make matters worse, they are using the venerable "Charge!" rules.

I mean that this is the essence of 'old school' 18th century table top gaming . . . and it is extremely appealing (click on photo to left for larger image).

Yes, I confess it. I want to play games like this on my table. I do. But I don't have the 'big battalions' that are needed.

And I want them.

Of course it takes time to paint them . . . lots of time. And I have lots of "honey do" items on my list . . . including finishing the library (currently full of hundreds of boxes of books and no shelving) before I can do any painting.

So it will be some time before I can play some Charge! games . . . therefor I'm spending my time re-reading "Charge!" and hating Stokes.


To watch the progress of the game Stokes and Jonathan are playing, go to the "Grand Duchy of Stollen" blog and use the archives to go back to November, 2008. Find the first move and then work your way forward.

-- Jeff


tradgardmastare said...

Go for it -you won't regret It....
best wishes

littlejohn said...

There's something truly appealing about that smooth olive colored table and abstract stepped hills/buildings that really speaks volumes about what got many of us into gaming in the first place.


Capt Bill said...

I do love the look of these games. It reminds me of my introduction to gaming so many years ago. Best ragards...Bill

Snickering Corpses said...


Have you thought about reviewing the forces you do have, and seeing how many units you could put together if you converged your existing battalions? If I recall rightly you and Murdock both use magnetic labeling to identify your figures on the day of battle, so it should be doable. You could probably pick a set of battalions, set aside all but one command stand, and form up a temporary "Big Battalion" that way.

You'll notice that Stokes and I are just using companies...16ish men a piece for the infantry, 12ish a piece for the cavalry. Combining units might give you a chance to play at least a small action sooner than you think.

Heinz-Ulrich von Boffke said...

Oh Jeff, meow!!!

Best Regards,


Fitz-Badger said...

I do agree Stoke's old school game looks great!
Now, I'm never going to do big battalions myself (I got bogged just down trying to do units of 20-24 or so for fantasy back before getting into the 18th centruy stuff). So these days I'm aiming for around 16 figures for infantry units and 6-12 for cavalry. I think I'm just about at the point where I can have a decent combined arms game, so my New Year's resolution is to do just that early in the new year.

Bluebear Jeff said...


The painted figures that I have are all mounted on multiple bases . . . and really don't have the "proper look" (to my eye) for "Charge!".

I do have a bunch of RSMs that were planned for my "Tricorne Wars" rules . . . I might have to see what would need to be added to them to get the right mix of figures for a 'big battalion' game.

-- Jeff

Conrad Kinch said...

See if you can't do something with smaller units, get some games in, that's the main thing.

As for hating Stokes, I wouldn't worry about it, it's essentially a victimless crime :)

DestoFante said...

Looking at that picture, oh!, really warmed up my heart... we paint miniatures, we read rules, we prepare scenery... but at the end, the joy is really in deployment the troops on the terrain, and enjoy a hell of a fun with the battle. If I keep up my efforts in painting my WSS project at the current pace, maybe some time by middle 2009 I might be there... for the time being, i can just join Jeff and drool over what Stokes has accomplished!
[And by the way, I just love the look of those multi-layered hills!]

MurdocK said...


I will gladly loan you the troops needed to post on the table from the collection I have built so far...combined with some of your units and we could very likely have enough to 'do' a big battalion game!

Perhaps something to look into for 2009?

My Tricornes will not see as much action (save for the white ones being used as Saxons at Aspern & Wagram).

A J said...

Stokes is leading the way in the play by email wargame. I like the concept. With our fellowship scattered all over the world, it gives us the chance to play games against each other.

Anonymous said...

We're all jealous of Stokes. I love his figures and enjoyed his game. Like you Jeff, I'd love to be able to have a set up like his.

old-tidders said...

You'll get there Jeff. Good luck with unpacking your libray.

I haven't the space for big battalions either (or the patience to paint such large units); but I use 'charge' sized units/companies for my skirmish games using 40mm figs.

Merry Xmas

- Allan