Having read Adolfo's musings on basing ( Il Desto Fante at http://destofante.blogspot.com/) I've been thinking about basing for the Mendelstadt C18 armies. I want games that are quick to set up, play and take down, but I also want an OSW approach, with casualty removal. I don't like "casualty rings" - what's the point of all that time spent on beautifully painted minis just to obscure them with abstract counters?
I could use markers which are more scenic , e.g. bodies littering the table, but this seems a little macabre (I know: the whole idea of a game of war seems rather macabre, but that's no reason to make it look that way). In fact, in my 10mm Napoleonic games, where typically I have 10 figs to a base, I use cotton wool smoke markers to indicate casualty/morale/cohesion. (My rules here are as simple as I can get away with, in the interests of getting 1000 figs on the table yet completing a game in a few hours).
So I think the best approach is to mount figures individually and use magnetic basing for multiple stands: 4s or 8s. Current thinking will build 24 man battalions, in 28mm, with a battalion (or regiment, really) being three companies of 8 figs. Companies can then become independent tactical units (a la Grant and Lawford/Young) and I can use casualty removal, but this approach also means I can:
(a) use occasional figures for skirmishes. I plan to have some pirate games, naval boarding and perhaps skirmish-sieges, as well as full scale battles.
(b) I can combine two 24-man regiments on occasion to build 48 man "brigades" for true OSW big battles. Whilst this won't quite fit the rules of Charge! or The War Game, it'd be close enough to require only minimal tinkering.
(c) As I'll have two colours per regiment, I'll also be able to divide them into 12 man, single rank regiments, each with their own colour, for games where I want a lot of units (e.g. for reasonable simulation of a historical set-up)
(d) I don't plan to have grenadier companies, only grenadier battalions, but with single figure basing, I can always change my mind later, if I want.
However, it does mean quite a lot of work on making magnetic bases and movement trays (or "sabots" as I believe some know them).
Any advice, chaps?