Why I Decided To Wargame The Great Northern War

I’ve always had a thing for obscure historical periods. It’s been in the back of my mind to do GNW ever since I did some games with a few guys I used to game with when Black Powder (by Warlord Games) was first released.

We used 28mm figures, and I loved the slightly aysmmertical feel to the armies, with the nuttiness and relentlessness of the Swedes against the sometimes static Russian masses.

After the first game I read the classic book on the battle of Poltava by Peter Englund, and I was hooked.

Then life took over, I moved on from those gamers and I forgot about it.

15 years on and I spotted a gap in my collection.  No horse and musket period.

So I looked around and found there are now some amazing ranges (I think it was the Foundry range I had used years before).  But what scale?

28mm is the obvious one. But I want BIG battles.  My home table is 8′ x 4′ and a dozen units a side in 28mm fills it edge to edge.

So although companies like Ebob are bringing out amazing GNW ranges, 28mm was out.  It was also out because it’s BLOODY EXPENSIVE.

In 15/18mm, I looked at the old Dixon range.  But that’s CRAZY expensive for the scale.  I also looked at Blue Moon, but I found the poses too static.  Essex, nah, just too many gaps in the ranges and odd poses.

6mm….Baccus.  Tempting, but I didn’t want to squint and just felt there wouldn’t be enough character to draw in gamers from my club to play with interest.

Then I looked at Pendrakens 10mm range.  I was dissappointed it was so limited.  But I then realised with some fudging from their Malburian range (and even the Seven Years War range) I could do it.  At that scale there would be decent sized figures and units with character.

But it would also be affordable.

I also decided I wanted to get most of the figures pro-painted.  I have never done that before, but I saw Fernando Enterprises, a Sri Lankan painting service, and their prices are very cheap.  More on that in another post though.

So that was the decision making process for doing GNW, and my reasons for using 10mm Pendraken figures.

In my next post I’m going to talk about the Pendraken figures and how I worked out how I could fudge all the different types I needed.

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