Shock and Horror! We staged a Napoleonics game using unpainted 20mm plastic figures. Before you choke on your single-malt whisky and let your fine Havana drop to the ground, let me assure you we have not lowered our standards. After all, the moto of our gaming society still is 'Visual Appeal is everything!'.
However, there are times where 'perfect is the enemy of good'. One of our illustrous gentlemen members is busy collecting and painting Napoleonic figures at an alarming rate. In the mean time, we already want to try out some battles - hence the stand-ins in the form of the old faithful 20mm plastics.
Now, I don't have a strong objection against using unpainted plastics. They provide a sort of childish pleasure, almost a throwback to times when wargaming was much simpler and cheaper. I still remember my first wargaming experiments, using plastic romans as substitutes for Orcs and Elves, and using chalk to draw the battlefield on top of my study table. Fun was had by all, and I still have loads of cheap plastic figures lying around. The visitors to my wargaming garage can testify this.
About our Napoleonic battle then. The rules we use are based on the divisional level wargame found in 'Napoleonic Wargaming for Fun' by the late Paddy Griffith. As is usual in our gaming group, we amend and iterate over any ruleset till we have found a workable set of rules that fancies all players in the group. Moreover, I actually did some decent research on this one, reading up on Napoleonic battle tactics and translating my findings into the rules proper. Although is some work, it has produced a very nice result.
The pictures show our game, played on a 8 by 6 feet gaming table. Such a large table definitely adds appeal to the game, and lets you move and manouvre your troops as you see fit.