Its a good thing I played that little game last week. There was a lot right, or going in what I thought was the right direction, and yet, there was also something wrong. The obvious course of action was to rush ahead, change everything and see how that felt but I put the brakes on.
I had been so sure that I was on the right course last year that the matter needed thought. So, I fiddled for a few days with minor rules bits and how they affected the feel of the game and of the armies, and I looked at the miniatures and pondered their stories, both real and fictional. After playing with rules for a bit I realized that I had come back to a place where to get the battle to feel right I needed to start grouping stands into temporary multi-unit formations which in turn meant more miniatures per army. I was also seeing that I needed more troop definitions and group morale rules and ....well, from there it was all off course. (Heading sort of DBM vs original HOTT if you will)
This is the third time this decade I have started out to do a campaign involving a number very small medieval/ancient/fantasy armies and twice, almost thrice, have ended up working towards two largish armies designed for pitched battles and then wandered off to do something different.
Having a bunch of small forces for small games is not a new idea but despite various forays, for me it is an as yet unrealized goal and largely an unknown country that I have been slowly exploring. It is also something that seems to grow in appeal with each toe dipped.
All of which is a long winded way of saying I'm back on track, 5 "kingdoms", small armies of no more than 24 stands/elements with rules designed for quick games averaging 12-18 units and several characters whose roles in the game will grow as I find my feet. Should I feel the need for bigger battles taking up more time and space then I can always field alliances.
Since part of the fun will be discovering the backstory, part of the plan for this blog is to add a page for each kingdom looking at its background as well as its army. So a bit of painting, a bit of writing and at least 12 games over the year.
It also means another couple of hundred surplus painted 25's who don't fit into the desired setting to my satisfaction will be discharged and hopefully sold even as I paint new units.