Beneath the Lily Banners in 15mm

Ray Rousell - Back in 2010 my pal Richard suggested a joint painting project, he quite fancied the Nine Years War. Now here’s where I have to admit to knowing absolutely nothing about this great period sandwiched between the more well-known English Civil Wars and the Wars of the Spanish Succession. So a quick look online and in my pal Posties book “From Pike to Shot” and I was hooked. Richard fancied painting up the French, so my obvious choice was the English and Allies.

The problem now was what figures? What scale? and what rules?

We did consider using 6mm and 25mm but decided against both, (Of course if Warfare minis where out at the time we would have used them!!! ) So it fell back to my favourite scale, 15mm. There were several ranges out at the time including Donnington, Hallmark and Essex. We chose Essex in the end mainly for the price, which has crept up quite considerably recently. Today you can buy 2, 18 figure infantry units with pikes for just under £20, with a few spare figures left over.

One of my favourite units. Leslie’s Foot, still using William Clifton’s old flags! These are all from Essex Miniatures

So there is an alternative if either you can’t afford 25mm figures, can’t or don’t like to paint 25’s or like many gamers haven’t got the space for a decent sized tabletop to use 25’s on. As for the rules we chose BLB first edition but soon switched to the 2nd when they were released soon after we bought our figures.

We weren’t too sure how to scale down the movement charts for 15mm, you can just change the inches to cm as suggested, but after a few tests we thought the rules work perfectly as they are, using the 25mm scales for movement and ranges. It didn’t seem to notice at all that you were using the 25mm ranges for 15mm.

Essex Dutch Horse

Once again we toyed with ideas for scaling down the base sizes and in the end settled for 35mm x 30 for infantry, 40x40 for Horse and Dragoons and 30x 40 for all artillery, using 2 actual figures on the base for Battalion guns, 3 for heavies and 4 for Positional guns. All the figures were stuck to the 30x40 bases for ease.

I don’t see why you couldn’t do the same thing for 10mm or even 6mm. There are some great looking figures for these two scales as well nowadays, Pendraken and Baucus to name two make some great looking figures.

10mm models for the League of Augsburg period from Pendraken

Another great reason to go for the smaller scale figure is that if like me you’re a bit of a leadhead you can have bigger battles!! Much bigger battles!!! I’ve already got far too many units but will I ever stop? Probably not!

Editor - We would like to welcome Ray Rousell as one of our guest authors. Ray is the proprietor of a hugely successful blog called Don't throw a 1 and a partner in Battleaxe Painting Service. He has a huge collection of 15mm units for the League of Augsburg period and his blog is a great resource if you are looking for flags or uniform information, especially for the Battle of the Boyne for which he has amassed all of the units that fought around Oldbridge!