Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Wounded leaders for Chain of Command

I've been trying to think of a way to show wounded leaders without cluttering up the table with markers.  Up until now I have been doing just that, I have been using some acrylic, skull tokens from Litko. The problem is that the light wound that reduces a leader's command initiative by one level is a wound that could last the entire scenario (unless you have a medical orderly who can patch the leader up, of course), so I wanted a solution that reduced clutter, but was easy to notice on the table.

The 'old' method. Litko token skulls - white representing wound (stun) and red for a light wound.
The Plastic Soldier Company Late War German Infantry set comes with some spare heads and each sprue includes a bare head with a bandaged wound.  The PSC Late War British Infantry also includes one bare head.  It's unbandaged, but would work just as well as I plan to have all wounded figures without helmets.  These can be used for any nationality and so I've tried some simple head swap conversions with my Russian, German and British junior leaders.  The first batch of figures will be used to represent Junior Leaders who have been wounded and will operate at one less Command Initiative for the remainder for the scenario.

The PSC German bandage head in grey and the British bare head in brown plastic.

So after a few straightforward head conversions I've come up with this for lightly wounded junior leaders:

Before and after the head conversion

To help the wounded figures stand out I've added a medical bag  

The British wounded:

Figure on the right has the British bare head, with bandage just painted on

And a Russian Junior Leader with head wound:

Wounded leaders confer and exchange war stories.....

I'm trying to think of a way to show those leaders whose wound stuns them for the remainder of the current turn and I'm trialling something using a British casualty figure from the PSC set.  Two thoughts, one simply the leader lying prone on his base:

The other option is to go for something a little more scenic and add someone tending to him.  A bit confusing if I have a medical orderly as a support, but if they are all on the same base I will know what's supposed to be represented.  I'm leaning towards something along the lines of below.  These two are on my standard 25mm diameter base for Junior Leaders but it may work better on a 30mm base.  As this will look so different from any other figures I'm not concerned it will be confusing:

You can see how I made the figures pictured below for the wounded leaders who are stunned in this post Wounded Leaders Part 2.

I haven't thought about senior leaders yet, as they can progress through two levels of light wounds and I don't really want to create that many extra senior leaders (best solution of course is not to let my senior leaders get shot at.....).  I'm going to have to think about that one.

I did think of a Pythonesque solution, straight out of the Holy Grail film, which is to have them getting increasingly debilitating wounds.  Not quite chopped off limbs ("it's just a scratch"), but something along those lines.  A solution in severe danger of getting comical I suspect.


  1. For a leader who's knocked out for the turn we simply lie the miniature down.

    1. Simple and effective, that's for sure, but I can't help thinking it looks like someone's been clumsy and knocked a figure over. That's just me of course, too anally retentive, for sure!

  2. Great ideas that I think will be pinched by a lot of gamers, me included. Also the figures are superbly painted.

  3. Portraying the extra loss of Command Initiative on a Senior Leader is a bit of challenge. I use small blue beads with a -1 painted on the top and a metal stripe glued on the base. The JL and SL have tiny magnets bedded within the base of the figure,which I attach when a leader losses a Command Initiative. As Andy, I lie the Leader on his side to indicate, miss a turn. As an alternative method I also use small red cross boxed in a white square, which also are magnetic as indicators for loss of Initiatives. Having said that I really like what you have done, Quite innovative, and thinking outside the square, moving away from foreign plastic/wooden markers. (I may pinch your idea) thanks for sharing
    cheers John

  4. Great idea,and like the Monty Python reference--excellent job!

  5. Beautiful work, I have the same problem, but I game in 15mm. Not sure if the trick will work on those size figs.

  6. Tactical Painter how about a how to step by step to do the head conversion. For some this is easy but I end up butchering the figure. Are the PSC figures not to hard to cut into?