AWI Era Caribbean Concept


Caribbean AWI era gaming using “Sharp Practice”


Our game group has a collection of AWI British, Colonial Militia and French 25mm Troops that are collecting dust. We came across Richard Clarke’s “Sharp Practice” rules and wished to give these a try.


Problem: “How do we breath new life into our old AWI gaming interest w/ the “Sharp” rules and be able to field British, French and Militia AWI era figures that we already have painted up?”


Solution: Use a Caribbean / Gulf of Mexico (Deep South) setting just before, or shortly after the outbreak of the American Revolution.


The Rules: “Sharp Practice” has truly been a breath of fresh air. I have always enjoyed both Horse and Musket era and Pulp type gaming. The rules are a perfect way to marry both genres and add some adventure to the standard Horse & Musket era game.


Concept: Introduce the characters of Captain Talbot (British) and Capitan Reynard (French) and other Officers & NCO’s against this Caribbean backdrop. Have the British invade French held Martinique as a reprisal for their supplying arms to the colonists just before the outbreak of the AWI. This will provide a fanciful but semi-historic backdrop for some small unit actions in and around the Caribbean. This idea opens up an entire avenue of adventurous linked scenarios that could include a variety of troops: British, French, Spanish, Local European Militia, Black/Mulatto Militia, Provisional troops, Natives (albeit fanciful), etc..


Inspiration: I have been watching the Sharpe’s Rifle BBC series on DVD. I was particularly inspired when Sharpe comes across the descendants of an Ancient Aztec Cult guarding a large, ancient treasure horde. I thought, “Well if Sharpe could fight Aztecs in the Napoleonic Wars, surely there are some possibilities for adventure in the Caribbean using the painted AWI figs we already have….” 







British: By setting the scenarios against a 1774/1775 backdrop, it is somewhat plausible that the British can operate a fleet (pre French naval build up in the Caribbean) and land Captain Talbot and his troops wherever needed. They can invade French and/or Spanish holdings and provide the “Hero” for our linked scenarios. British forces include regulars, a Privateer landing party from the “Black Fin,” a German Duchess and Jager escort, etc..


French: Capitan Reynard provides the antagonist and he and his forces defend the Governor’s holdings and other key points on Martinique or other French and/or Spanish possessions. French forces can include Garrison (Line) troops, Militias (Black/Mulatto and/or White), Provisional Troops, etc.. If one gets a bit fanciful even trained Natives could be used.


Spanish: By adding some Spanish troops to the mix, the scope of the story line could be expanded to the Spanish holdings or even the deep South in America. Of particular interest is Governor/General Galvez’s AWI operations in Louisiana, Alabama and Florida using Spanish and Colonial troops against the British. Also of interest is the fact that the Spanish attempted to send their troops to combine with the French on Martinique, thereby lending some believability to combined/Allied operations against the British. Spanish forces can include Regular troops, Militias (Black/Mulatto and/or White), Provisional Troops, etc..


Black/Mulatto Militia: Given the setting and backdrop, many of the Caribbean Islands had Militia and Provisional troops. Of interest is General Galvez’s use of Mulatto Provisional Troops mixed with Spanish Regulars against the British in Florida during the AWI period.


Provisional Forces: Similar to above but more organized and better equipped with interesting uniforms.


Trained Natives: Admittedly Fanciful but offers and interesting addition to the troop types available.


Summary: By adding some Black AWI Old Glory Militia, Spanish London War Room Regulars and Copplestone Natives with Muskets, I hope to expand my current collection of British, French and Colonial Militia to enable some Caribbean adventure using the “SP” rules.



Pics below show European Settler Militia Units that I plan to use in some of the linked scenarios. Foundry figs.




4 Responses to “AWI Era Caribbean Concept”

  1. Noel Zaal Says:

    Really great idea to expand AWI gaming. Do you know of any sites covering India during AWI? Because that should also offer great expansion possibilities using the Sharp rules?

  2. basilhare Says:

    Hi Noel,

    Thanks for the comment. No, unfortunately I do not have anything on India…that would be interesting to examine any AWI potential for SP there as well…thanks for looking at my blog…take care…

  3. In 1781, the British actually invaded Dutch-owned St. Eustatius, although a friendly chat with the governor sufficed. But in Sharp Practice, who says your Big Man can charm/bribe/bully the governor enough to surrender? And if he succeeds, does your Big Man notice the French invading a few months later? Does he get all the money the islanders have hoarded over the years of trade with fledgling US of A?
    Love the scenario set up!

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