Welcome to Peter’s Paperboys!
With a dozen or so titles in the Helion & Co Paper soldiers range, it’s time to break out online with new ranges of the little chaps designed to extend the use of the armies in those books, and to cover new ground in a more expansive way than is allowed by the rigid space limits of a 48 page book. I will be adding regularly to the range of sheets available. You can follow my progress day to day, comment and make suggestions on the Paperboys page on Facebook.
What are Paperboys?
Paperboys, a name coined in the earliest days by Andy Callan, are 2-dimensional full-colour 28mm scale figures arranged in stands to be used in wargames. All arms are represented for each period, with all the types you will need to make complete historical armies. They will fit in with most modern sets of rules , also simple rules for the various periods designed for these figures are in the Helion books, or will be offered online for new subjects.
Once downloaded, the sheets can be printed as often as you like, which means you can build up large armies very cheaply. You will need scissors, a craft knife, glue, appropriate paper and some stiffer card for bases, all of which are described in the how-to section.
The figures are laid out on A4 format, which will print onto US legal sized paper, or will fit US letter size printed at 93%. You can, of course, print the figures in any scale you choose, making them uniquely flexible in this respect.
What’s on a sheet?
If you are new to Paperboys, the crowded sheets might look a bit confusing, but you’ll soon come to recognise the elements. Besides the three stands of three-rank infantry or four stands of two-rank infantry or cavalry ( horsemen are always in two ranks ) you will find command figures, like flag-bearers or drummers. Sometimes they are in a complete four-man rank, which you just place on the locator strip instead of a front rank of normal troops. Sometimes they are in pairs of figures which you use to replace the central figures in a front rank. Suitable front rank strips for this are often marked with an asterisk. There is normally an officer type figure or choice of figures, with a 5mm strip of attached ground. He is to be glued to the extra bit of base on the front of your chosen command stand. See the how-to page for more info on that.
Where you are offered alternative front ranks, like the Caesarian infantry, for example, you will have some spare figures. There is a sheet of extra bases in the terrain section, which you can use to mount them up into stands if you wish. My friend Steve Page has a ‘No Paperboys left behind ‘ policy, which makes economical sense .
There are also casualty markers. These might be riderless horses for cavalry or depressed- looking infantrymen using muskets as a crutches. They have 1cm attached bases and those bases should just be glued to card , then trimmed into a nice shape to make a base. Not all rules need casualty figures, so you may not need them.