This article is one of the articles that appeared on the old MiniatureZone website during the first six years
MiniatureZone Gallery Archives (2000 - 2006) - Wargames for Dummies (or Dummies for Wargames)
Brightly coloured chips are fine, even dog-eared bits of cardboard could do, but for those more aesthetically minded this will not do at all.
Hidden figures or squads can be represented by numbered counters, so if we simply take this idea a step further, why not stick a figure onto the counter ? Number the "dummy" and then you can record it on a piece of paper.
The figures used are 1:72 and 1:76 scale Germans from various sets, all based on 2 and 5 (euro) cent coins, painted a neutral green and heavily drybrushed with sand to bring out the details. It gives them a "ghostly" washed-out effect without spoiling the table.
You can use the figures you most like, or dislike, from sets of cheap plastic soldiers. If you find a set of figures has a disproportionate number of figures in a certain pose, use those figures.
In this colour they blend in well with the surroundings and are fine for the European theatre. You can use a similar procedure for desert and jungle warfare, just varying the base colour of the figures accordingly.
The numbers were printed out on a colour laser printer and stuck onto the base at the time of flocking.