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I like simple troop types and game mechanics, so you can put on big battles and concentrate on grand tactics without getting caught up in troop specifics. Too often in wargames the peripheral issues (such as skirmishing or gun calibre) absorb an inordinate effort of rules management, that generals would never have been overly concerned about, complicating and slowing the game down in a way that would never have been the focus of a real battle.
The beginning of the century is my favourite, defined by the rationalisation of infantry formations through the socket bayonet, along with the flavour of medieval nuances, such as heavily armoured cuirassiers. The uniforms are easy to paint, yet colourful enough. There are no shortage of great battles and inspiring leaders from Marlborough to Peter the Great.