A discursive look at Napoleonic & ECW wargaming, plus a load of old Hooptedoodle on this & that

Friday, 10 September 2010


I have to say right at the start that I'm talking about the original 20mm Garrison figures, not the later larger ones, and not the recent re-issues, which I never really fully understood, despite patient efforts on the part of the new proprietor to explain them to me.

I liked, and still like, these little figures. My local model shop stocked them, so you could go in and pick what you wanted. The range was not extensive (the big sellers at the time were their Ancients), and the infantry had a semi-flat profile which was not to everyone's taste, but I liked them. I particularly liked the cavalry, which are simple and vigorous and really very pleasing; again, the snag was the small range - if you wanted officers or trumpeters you had to convert them yourself (which is what I did, of course). Their galloping Napoleonic cavalry horse (with the various saddlery options) is one of the classic 20mm wargames horses, and certainly makes the Higgins/PMD horses look a bit sad.

Something of a rarity is the very distinctive skirmisher pose, firing with the "wrong" foot forward. Not recommended as a stance for firing a flintlock with a kick like a mule. The rifleman in the foreground is the Garrison man, with Higgins colleagues in the background. This, by the way, shows one of my 80mm wide skirmisher bases.

The Chasseurs a Cheval unit shown here has a NapoleoN officer, in case you can't make him out - an appropriate mix - apart from the peerless Art Miniaturen, the Garrison and NapoleoN horses are probably my favourites in 20mm. The hussars were aggressive little chaps, but the mould problems with the original series meant that you are very unlikely to find one with a complete sabretache.

1 comment:

  1. As the 'new proprietor' in question, don't worry, never fully understood the 20mm Napoleonic ranges myself - they seemed to evolve more than anything. A range would appear in one catalogue, with spaces. Next catalogue, spaces filled but original figures no longer appeared..... some figures would be 'upgraded' and appeared in both the earlier 20mm ranges and also later in the 25mm range - the faces had just been slightly remodelled.. plus other figures I found that were never released...

    I think I finally identified at least 5 separate ..well, issues rather than ranges.

    But they were difficult to cast, very fragmented as to what survived, and didn't sell.