You can make up scenarios based on historical actions by fudging the scale of the ground to fit the table and calling the units brigades or divisions instead of battalions, and it can be great gaming scenario, but it's not a true simulation. Even so, this works pretty well for ancient & medieval battles, even for ECW. But in the 19th century when the armies were very much larger and the terrain was more critical and orders of battle more complex, such a simulation is less satisfactory and less instructive.
Hail Whoever provides for battles with 15mm figures with a ground scale of about 16" per km and with 6mm figures with a ground scale of about 10" per km. With 15mm figs our infantry units are about 1200 men and with 6mm figs they are about 2400 men. So with each step down in figure scale we are fighting larger and larger battles with more and more men, but with the same number of units on the table. While we think that 28mm makes for the best games we also like to explore historical simulations of the famous (and usually big) battles. We also fight campaign and like to be able to get a good one night's battle from a clash regardless of the size of the forces.
Tonight we set up and simultaneously fought the same small battle 3 times - with 28mm, 15mm & 6mm figs. Each battle had the same 1.8km square terrain and the same 4,800 infantry, 1200 cavalry & 8 guns a side Chris commanded the Austrians, Mike commanded the French.
The 28mm battle
The 15mm Battle:
The 6mm battle:
The 28mm battle lasted 17 double turns x 10 mins = 2 hrs 50 mins.
The 15mm battle lasted 7 turns x 20 mins = 2 hrs 20 mins.
The 6mm battle lasted 4 turns x 40 mins = 2 hours 40 mins.
This as good a correlation as one could get considering the vagaries of the dice & is a pretty convincing demonstration that we have our sums right with regard time & distance scales.
The course of the three battles varied considerably due to the vagaries of the Hail Caesar command dice providing the players with different challenges in each case. As games, the 28mm was obviously the most interesting, the best looking and the most fun. But the 15mm & 6mm battles were much smaller than we would ever use outside of an experiment. With more units they too become more interesting.
A 15mm battle with the same number of units as our 28mm would be of 12,000 men a side, a 6mm battle would be of 24,000 men a side. We know from experience that we can fight much bigger battles single battles in a night. The 15mm system works well for small Corps sized battles up to about 30,000 men where our 10'x6' table is 7km x 5km. Our 6mm variant simplifies combat to speed up play even more and allows us to fight even the big Napoleonic and ACW epics when our table might covers 15km x 9m. The simplifications remove some of the tactical niceties, but are not missed when there are so many units on the table and so much room to manoeuvre.