The Poltava Demonstration game project
by Ian and Keith of the Humberside Wargames Society.
The prime mover here was Keith Gendle. He wanted badly to do things on a large scale in 6mm and threatened Ian with incriminating photographs to join. Ian had started painting in 15mm for the Great Northern War but was dissatisfied with the look and feel of the rules then being used. We had admired – usually from afar- the Baccus ranges and the “unit look”. More by chance than design both took the plunge and started with Russian (Ian Cluskey) and Swedish (Keith of course).
We then looked at what battle we should demo. The obvious one was Poltava as it is the one most people know anything about for this conflict. (It also meant Ian had to paint up to 4 times more figures than Keith).
The back board came about by a simple statement that most photos Keith had seen in mags etc were often spoilt by seeing the players crotches as a backdrop. Ian understandably was troubled by this lasting image and insight into Keith’s psyche and commissioned his daughter Jenni with some superb artwork (2 sets of backboards based closely on the Narva battlescape). This is used in our regular games at the club.
Problems to overcome for the demo were
Keith has produced some capital “chance” cards to deal specifically with these aspects of the scenario to factor in an element of “what if?”. These are being tested now.
The pair of us have put Poltava onto 2m x 2m MDF on 3 boards and dremmeled key features.
This has been painted to give a “time commander” meets 18th century artwork or Kriegspiel look to the playing area. Not a bit of flock anywhere.
Liberties have been taken with the fort – but we wanted to be able to use the terrain for other scenarios afterwards. Woodland is being prepared to frame the game and villages will be based independently.