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Friday, 29 January 2016

A Slight Deviation - Command and Colors

For Christmas I received a big box containing the board game Command and Colors, Napoleonic warfare.  It is a nicely put together game and the gaming mechanism is great fun and works well, especially if you spend much time playing solo games. One of the down sides is the labourious task of sticking paper labels onto wooden blocks. Looking on line I see this game has been adapted in many ways, either for the normal wargame table, or on the board that comes in the box, but using model figures.

Straight away, having stuck on about 50% of the labels, I decided to try it out with 20mm figures and dug out boxes of Airfix and other makes of soldiers, but soon got bored, as being unpainted they looked no better than the wooden blocks.  Then I remembered the heap of Del Prado Relive Waterloo figures stored in a box upstairs and on inspection I had enough to set up the first scenario - the Battle of Rolica, although I had to substitute Dutch troops for the Portuguese. It looked quite effective:

I started playing, but to me it was a bit like a game of chess and the units, just four figures did not seem right. So, I went into another box and dug out the 6mm Napoleonics, which have not seen the light of day for many years. Instead of having a set number of figures I used small dice to denote strengths as casualties are accrued:

I think these figures work better - but then I began to dislike the terrain pieces. So, my conclusion is that this game is a lot of fun. I really like the rules, but I am not so keen on the playing board. I will more than likely adapt the rules for use on a normal wargame table. I will try this on my next Crimean war battle, which will be Inkerman.


  1. I quite like the 'big figure version. Maybe some form of 3D terrain pieces might be made that will make the field more 'in keeping' with the figures, yet still accommodate the figures. One idea that springs to mind is hexagonal pieces with building facades, or 2D trees glued round the edges. Figures could still be placed inside. Hills might be made with a smaller hexagonal or other shaped second contour placed on top with enough margin to suggest slopes, whilst still allowing room for troops to stand without falling over.

    Just a thought...

  2. I've been wrestling CCN Inkerman for a while now, it's a tricky one as the situation requires the British to fight a holding action with very small forces. It's quite hard to balance that in a scenario.

    Very interested to see how you get on with this.

  3. Thanks for your comments on CCN. My thoughts on Inkerman are that Russian speed will be relatively slow. There are no cavalry to worry about. I have looked at the terrain using maps and photographs and it is very difficult for the Russians due to massive gradients and the scrub. It works against the British too once contact is made. Second, British firepower gives great range and hitting/penetration ability. This is reflected in accounts of the battle where small groups of British infantry hold off huge numbers of Russians in tightly packed columns. Finally, and this is where CCN comes in, is the fog of war and foggy weather. Will see how it goes. Right now I am designing the ground, which is not easy.