As I said before one thing thats makes Sharp Practice stand out as a game I want to play is that you more or less need all the "extras" miniature-wise. The use of Deployment Points (DPs) is an example of this. You COULD just put down a blingy dice to mark them. But you could also make a nice little diorama (or four) themed to your army and it will look really great!
Here is how I did my DPs.
This is Perry's Russian casulaties pack used straight away. The positioning took some time and I added some extra debris and blood to the scene to finish it. Two Jägers are carrying their wounded/shell-shocked/drunk/depressed officer away from the battle, other wounded are reaching out for help.
I tend to use this one as my main DP as it seems to be near the thick of the action.
Cossack Scouting Party
This DP depicts two Cossack scouts asking local kids of the enemies activites. The Cossacks are from Front Rank, slightly converted to look casual and talking. I don´t know the manufacturer of the kids, I bought them at Salute more than 15 years ago. Finally they were put to use!
Actually, the scene holds another story as well. The boy holds a lost horseshoe and is inspecting if maybe one of the Cossack's horse lost it! At the time his friend is talking to the scouts. The bit with the lost horseshoe is extra fun for me as I have a background as a professional farrier. But I bought the model before I went into that trade myself, probably as a gift for my father - also an farrier. He never got it, because he has no great need for 28mm kids holding horseshoes... but I figured I might one day, and that day showed up!
Cossack Horse Handler
This DP is made from Eureka miniatures from their Cossack range. It can also do double duty as a horse holder if I need that. I don´t see many people use this Cossack range but it´s really good! It has a lot of Cossack extras and dismounted Cossacks that I have put to good use! A tip for you Russian Sharp Practice players out there!
I tend to use this one as a movable DP.
From the same Eureka range - Cossack plunderers! I really like the one with the duck, so fun! There is certainly something going on while the rest of the force is busy fighting it out with the invaders!
This one would be a good "Dummy DP" (but don´t tell Jonas).
All my DPs on show. I don't think I ever used all of them in a single game. But they were fun to make, I've got use for some miniatures I'd never paint otherwise and they look great at the tabletop!
If I made one more it would be an artillery one, with a wrecked gun/cassion on. That iconic broken gun style, maybe with a broken banner and abandoned drums well.
Another idea is one with a couple of dead horses (it sure died many horses in Russia), and a crying or stranded cavalryman if I could find one.
During my Napoleonic/Sharp Practice period I have accumulated a couple of officers and other folks I will show of here. A great thing about Sharp Practice is that you have many good reasons for buying all the nice officers and other miniatures you want - you can actually field them at the actual tabletop. Even civilians, though we don´t use them in our games - not yet anyway. Good game design!
The whole gang from left to right: Orthodox priest, mounted carabinieri field officer, line officer, combat medic, mounted line officer and another line officer!
I did some small conversion on this Perry mounted field officer. First I put a plastic head on it, screaming as you should do on a raised horse. Then I changed the sword to a nicer one (the original is not that hot). The head and sword are much better in their plastic variants, both from the plastic Perry Russian infantry set.
I am very pleased with the painting on this particular one. I put extra effort on the horse (the lighter parts around the belly and... bow?) and, yes everything, the silver on the uniform/shabraque and trousers are also to my liking.
I re-used the head from the other mounted officer on this one. I wanted my carabinieri officer to look like he's keeping up a higher pace to match my carabinieris, which are perry's metal ones and have some speed to their poses. I also fixed some damage to the miniature and the tassels with green stuff.
This is the classic officer from the Perry plastic infantry. I cut off the scalp, carved some place for a bicorne (Perry's French plastic box bicorne I think) and greenstuffed hair and plume. The plume is maybe the only combination of white/black/orange that was not really used... I was also unsure about the Jäger variant of the officer "frock coat". Maybe this is close or at least close enough!
This doctor, or more like "medical officer", actually seems to expect more action with his sword than the bag of medical supplies! He started out as a Prussian medical officer from Black Hussar miniatures. The uniform is close to the Russian one. I greenstuffed the epaulettes. For the buttons on the cuffs I had to cut off the original ones with a knife and replace them with plastic ones from the perry infantry set. I carved them off with a VERY SHARP THIN hobby knife and then glued them in place.
I drilled a hole in the arm and stuck in a pistol. It´s a Victrix plastic British one - very good for conversions! The head is also swapped. It´s a Perry metal head from their "marching casually infantry command 1809 kiwers" set.
The priest! Actually the photo does not really do it justice. It´s a Foundry model and it was a pleasure to paint.
Since I started Napoleonics I knew I wanted hussars. They have the most elaborate uniforms (at least in the Russian army) and have a cool air around them as death-seeking party people.
When all regiments have very distinct colours you have many good options. From the beginning I fell for the Akthyrka hussars with brown, yellow and blue in their uniforms. Brown uniforms!? Yes, I don´t know what hit me but I like the combination. They also started using lances in 1812 (not all hussar regiments did) and are said to have used them with skill at Borodino - so you can use them as lancers in Sharp Practice without twitching your eyes.
To avoid too much brown I opted for black horses with many white markings on them. "Then they'll be the first squadron of the regiment" I thought... but then it came up that the Russians just blended horses without even trying to sort them by colour. My bad. But the combination of brown in the uniforms the and black horses looked good! When I painted up some additional hussars later on, to beef up the unit, I gave them two dark brown horses and it looked good as well.
The miniatures are Perry, and I like them a lot. They could have had more defined detail (whch would have made them easier to paint) but I still think they are the best ones out there. Painting these brings a good looking unit with speed in it to my army. They are quite a headache to paint with all yellow/blue and fur details in the uniforms, but it's well worth it when you are finally done!
I had them with pelisses even though armed with lances because it looks so badass. It was a quite hard decision, but I don't regret it - the pelisse is half the hussar! I also made them with the campaign trousers on - that´s because I´m a sucker for the hearts on their knees. A military uniform with hearts on it? You just have to do that! The full dress without pelisse would have been the most realistic/historical choice. But I regret nothing!
I made one conversion and that´s the flanker with a carbine. You can see him at one of the flanks of the unit!
The "Command group" - NCO, musician and officer. The officer has a more exclusive, (self-purchased) uniform that is redder and makes him stand out. I re-painted the musician's horse when I added the lance-armed hussars. I usually don´t re-paint miniatures but here I made an exception.
A close up of the NCO, with a good view of the sabertache-cipher. I hand-painted this on all hussars. Take one line at a time and it´s not THAT hard.
I used wire lances instead of the pewter ones that I got with the miniatures as I think wire looks much better, mostly because they are thinner. I also got plastic pennants from a club mate who had left overs from Warlord's plastic French lancers. I trimmed them and bent them a bit so they didn't look all the same or too big for the wire lances.
The sabre-armed second rankers. I think the models really has a good panache to them!
The Akthyrka hussars arrayed for battle. A most pleasant sight to behold and something of a mile-stone accomplishment for me as a Napoleonic player!
Hurrah, hurrah, hussars!!!
"Glory is fleeting,