Most wargamers of a certain age grew up on a diet of 20mm Airfix figures and kits but for the most part moved away from the same as more 'sophisticated' scales became available - 25/28mm, 5mm and of course, 15mm. We all did it - I know I did - but some of us managed to maintain a connection with 20mm especially for WW2 although I know of gamers that regularly use 20mm ACW, Napoleonics, 18th century and even the English Civil War so the scale is most emphatically alive and well.
I have been pondering over the last week/month/year (delete as applicable) about whether or not I should embrace 15mm or 20mm for my planned Fezian/Rusland adventures and I suppose that I probably no nearer making a decision than previously. However, stepping away from a problem and looking at it again with some fresh eyes certainly makes a difference.
I started by looking at exactly how I am going to be fighting my games at home. This will be using Hexon terrain and for the most part on a 13 x 9 hex battlefield. A Hexon tile is 4" across the flat sides and so essentially what I am looking at is having figures/models that will look right within a single hex whilst preserving the illusion of relative weapon ranges etc.
With this in mind I have come to the conclusion that 15mm is probably too small as one would need to use more models within a given area in order to look 'right'. For WW2 games then, 20mm will the way for me to go as a single hex will fit most vehicles or deployed guns and crews and as far as infantry are concerned, a fire team of 4 figures, individually based, would look well when suitably spread out around the hex.
Earlier periods in 20mm would look better with more figures but given the overall size of the armies I am looking at this should not be too onerous especially if I opted to use even larger figures - say 28mm.
In the meantime then, I have decided that for my 20th century games involving Fezia and Rusland I will be using 20mm as my preferred scale. I am really keen to tackle some kits again and working with the current crop of 'fast assembly' models from manufacturers such as Plastic Soldier Company, Armourfast, Pegasus Hobbies and others; coupled with the plethora of readily available plastic figures means that I can realise armies that I only used to dream about back in the early 1970s.