I had a bit of an experiment with some card, MDF bases and part-painted British infantry. I tried various permutations of 15mm, 20mm and 30mm bases with the little Lobsterbacks arranged in different numbers. I'm not sure I'm much further forward to be honest, but maybe laying it out in a post would help me crystallise my thoughts.
|20mm bases with 2 figures. OK spacing wise but units of 8 companies (16 figures) would be a bit small for my liking.|
|20mm bases with 3 figures in a single line. This looks too much like close order. Suitable for Hessians and other 'mercenaries' ;-)|
|20mm bases with 2 ranks of 2.|
|As above. 8 line companies worth to give an idea of how a battalion would look.|
|15mm sq bases. Rear: 2 per base; looks OK but looks too small for a unit. Front: 3 per base; seems crowded.|
|As above but the bases with 2 figures doubled-up/a 15x30mm base. At 15 yards wide this is possibly a bit too narrow for a company.|
|30mm sq bases with 2 by 2 and 2 ranks of 3. 2 ranks of 3 looks nicely spaced. Maybe a bit wide at 30 yards.|
Can I draw any tentative conclusions? Well I need to if I'm to move this thing forward. I know some people might think, 'why the bloody hell is he overthinking this?', but it's just the way I am. Maybe I can't let go of that old charade of making it 'scientific and historically accurate' to prove it's not just playing with toy soldiers.
OK. Size-wise, bases 20mm wide (20 yards) seem the most appropriate. I can get 2 ranks of 2 on without them looking too crowded, but just a bit. That would give me battalions (with flank companies detached) of 32. I can also fit 2 ranks of 3 on them for the close order troops. It's only just occurred to me to try 25mm wide bases. That would also make them easier to pick up safely. Alternatively I could try 20mm wide by 30mm deep which would also help with horses. So maybe I have moved forward a bit.
One thing that is clear is that I need to lighten the colours on the little chaps.