31 December, 2012
- Imitation legionaries
With a brief flurry of painting I go my Mithridatics ready for CANCON 2013. All my paints are in storage, so it took a bit of effort to get them out to do three 4Bd elements. I’d already prepped them, so they didn’t take long once I started. These elements allow me to field the late Ptolemaic and Seleucid armies. which have two and one element respectively. I’ll also use them to fill out my Mithridatic army.
The figures are Freikorp Thureophoroi and Thorakitai; I’ve given them pila from old-style Freikorp Romans. They may not have used them, but it helps make them clearly imitation legionaries.
The Mithridatic army has five elements of imitation legionaries. I’ve decided to use one element of Romans, as Mithridates had some Marian exiles fighting for him; then there are two elements of Marian figures mixed with Thorakitai, but with Marian shields. And finally two of the new legionaries. It is a nicely hodge-podge collection of legionaries, in keeping with the rest of the army.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’m attending CANCON next year. I’m looking forward to it. I didn’t play that much DBA last year, though I started to get a few games in November. I’ll be taking a few armies to Oz when I return; I reckon I can get all my Classical armies (though I’m leaving behind the Ancient British chariots, LH and extra Ps to make room. As it is, I’ll have a stack of armies for the period of around 300 BC to the start of the principate. One army that doesn’t fit is the Komnenan Byzantines, who I need for the second day of CANCON. I’ve used it before and like it, not that I’m terribly successful with it. My other armies from Books 3 and 4 are either not finished, needing to have their bases upgraded, and/or not very competitive. I was tempted to try the Pre-feudal Scots; they’re not terrible, but are a bit of a challenge. If I wanted to keep with a similar army for the first day, I could have gone with the Syracusans. However, I’m keen to use the SCh before it is emasculated, so Mithridatics it is; I can make a fairly spurious link with the Komnenans by pointing out they’re from the same region!
- Mithridatics completed
The Mithridatics are a somewhat cheesy army for competitions in Australasia, as down here you are generally allowed to choose what elements you’ll use before each battle. The option to substitute five 4Bd for a SCh and four 4Pk allows you to transform the army’s capabilities. Against most foot the blade are very powerful, but against armies with a lot of knights the combination of pikes and a scythed chariot should be pretty potent. That said, I’m unsure what to field against armies with pikes and knights, though I suspect the blades are a better bet.
The army has a strong selection of BGo troops; it’s able to vary the combination of Auxilia and Psiloi to give more rear support for the blade, or to create a block of three Auxilia with one Psiloi for support. The army also has a choice between a 3Kn, a 3Cv and a 2LH. The 3Kn is probably the most useful, but I really like the figures for the 3Cv and I don’t get to use them enough.
I’ve updated the Mithridatics army page too.
10 October, 2012
I’ve not had much time for gaming this year. For a while I was looking at getting into a bit of ancient naval wargaming, but moved to Adelaide before I could go further with that. I got a few games of DBA with Joel before I left and the Mithridatics had their first victory. Otherwise, I was going to try to play SBH: it’s more portable, and the community isn’t riven by disputes over rule changes, which has rather soured DBA for me. However, when I saw that Cancon would be using DBA 2.2, I thought it’d be fun to get along next year. I’m still deciding on armies; I’m tending towards Mithridatics (the last chance to use SCh while they’re fun possibly), but if I took Seleucids I could field 3Cm, who are also slated for emasculation. I have fewer options for a later army, but if I decide to take a different one from last time, it’d likely be the Pre-feudal Scots; they’re hardly dynamic, but they’re not pathetic. It’s a choice between them and the Komnenans, as I have nothing else ready.
In Adelaide I’ve played a few boardgames, particularly the new edition of A Game of Thrones, which is quite satisfying in its permutations. If I bring a few armies with me for Cancon, I may look to get in contact with DBA gamers there. I’m going to be there for another year.
While on holiday in Melbourne I’ve had a couple of games of DBA with Steve. We played Imperial Germans against Communal Italians. The Germans won decisively, but I can’t really remember how. We then played Papal Italians against Communal Italians. This time it was a victory for the commune, as their Knight general managed to destroy a Horde and a Psiloi. The Carroccio stayed firm on one flank, despite heavy pressure from the opposing spear.
Last night we tried Libyan Egyptians against Neo-Assyrians. The Neo-Assyrians were hard pressed by the Libyan archers, who recoiled them a long way back before being caught by the Assyrian cavalry. After that it was only a matter of time. The highlight for me was the Assyrian general’s charge into the Meshwesh (4Wb), who were reputed to be invincible. They died, but the general forgot about his pursuit and on the next turn the other Meshwesh turned and recoiled the general into a 3Wb; their boast of invincibility was not so empty, though by then it was too late and the rest of the army was in flight.
9 December, 2011
I’m very pleased to get a Marian Roman army finished in under a week. It was one that I bought painted in the middle of this year. However, I had to rebase it and reorganize the foot, as there were too many command figures for my liking. I suspect it was the start of an army for a larger set of rules that didn’t get finished and was turned into a fairly rough and ready DBA army. I had to get some more figures for it and some standards. I decided to use some Gladiator Hellenistics for the auxiliary troops. When I first got these I was really unimpressed with the mounted figures, but on closer inspection and after painting them, I really like them, and I think they go with the Freikorp figures very well. In fact, I want to get some of their unshielded Hellenistic cavalry for my Early Successor armies.
To finish off the legionaries, I had to paint four more figures. Only one of these was a legionary, the others were a commander and two centurions. I was able to space out the excess command figures by using two musicians on the command element and then having a standard bearer on three of the other elements. There were also four centurions spread amongst the legions, so only one element didn’t have a command figure of some sort!
The legionaries have two shield patterns. I only had to paint two more to bring the army up to the right number.
The auxiliaries are all recruited from the same area. The foot are Hellenistic slingers, archers and thureophoroi. They seem appropriate for an army off to face Mithridates!
The mounted are Illyrians and Macedonians; the command element are more Roman looking; and I think that general is the personality figure Julius Caesar. I guess he can have a go at my Gauls some time!
I painted the shield designs by hand to match the rest of the army; they’re fairly rough, but look OK from a distance. I particularly like the Illyrian shields, as they are salvaged from other figures; one is an Essex hoplon, the other was a Gallic shield, I think, but I cut it down.
I used a variant on the wreath pattern of the legionary shields for the command element. I figured attempts to tidy them would only make them worse, so they were done fairly fast.
I’m quite pleased with colours for the cloaks, though I’m not sure how accurately the correction for contrast by Picasa renders them.
There is also an Army Page for this army now.
I almost forgot! I did a camp for this army! It’s a OG15 tent; once I hacksawed off the base it’s rather good.
The figures and equipment are OG15s, while the mule is Essex. This has got me started on doing a few more camps (leaving three elements of Imitation Legionaries and six of pike waiting longer!).
6 December, 2011
I’m putting together some spare figures for sale. These figures are mostly unpainted, but a few have been prepped and one element is even finished. They are enough for the Alexandrian Imperial (II/15) army, one with a lot of character. If you’re interested, email me on daviespm AT yahoo DOT com.
It consists of:
2x3Kn: Companion cavalrymen (Freikorp, 1=cmd)
1x2LH: Thracians or Skythians (Gladiator)
1xEl: Elephant (Freikorp)
1xArt: Bolt Shooter (Essex)
2x2Ps: Archers and slingers (Gladiator)
1x3Ax: Thracians (Gladiator)
6x4Pk: Phalangites (Gladiator)
For this I’m asking NZ$56.50 (I can supply MDF bases for an additional $3.50 and VVV transfers for the phalangites for an additional $1.50).
The Companion cavalry come with the Alexander personality figure. For the light horse you can choose either Thracians (HE06) or Skythians (HE41). I’ve just finished painting some of the Thracians and like the way they look.
The elephant is the Early Successor one that I painted a pair of last month. It’s a great model. I’ll throw in a spare archer to put on the base. The artillery is the same as I painted earlier this year, although it comes with only two crewmen. How the psiloi can look painted can be seen here. The Thracians are very nicely animated figures (one each of HE24, HE25 and HE26). I’ve not painted any yet myself, as I’ve not finished any early period armies.
The phalangites are all prepped; they have convex shields made from green stuff, are fitted with Xyston pikes and are undercoated. One element is painted; this element and enough for one more have pants, like some of the Seleucid phalangites. This makes them ideal for morphing, but also could be said to reflect some of the recruitment policies of Alexander in that period.
If you’re interested I could supply some of the figures to allow this to morph into the Alexandrian Macedonian army.
28 November, 2011
The Mithridatics are a bit closer now with the first of their imitation legionaries done. The blue shields are imitation legionaries, the red shields are Marians. These are Freikorp figures; For the imitation legionaries two on each element are Marians, one of an older vintage, and one each of the newer ones. The other two are Hellenistic thorakitai with scuta instead of thurioi and pila from the old vintage Marians. As mentioned in earlier posts, I’ve used VVV transfers, which I think look pretty effective.
The Marians have a centurion, two of the new vintage figures, and one of the old ones. I plan to have a centurion on each element, for colour, but also as they were so significant to the functioning of the legions. I’ll probably do pairs of shield designs for them, so that there will be some four ‘legions’ in the DBA army.
I think the figures look pretty neat, though I missed some major flash on some of the new figures; it’s very prominent on one of their faces!
Now I’ve got these figures done, I just need to do the three elements of Ptolemaic and Seleucid imitation legionaries, who have thurioi. Then I can field later versions of these armies, as well as the Mithridatic option of five 4Bd.
The Marians should be pretty quick to do now that I’ve established that these transfers work, though whether they’re next on the to do is another question.
After the Ptolemaic and Seleucid imitation legionaries, I could do some more pike; they’re all prepped; it’s just I’ve scuttled off onto other projects. And I could still be tempted to do Bruttians, again prepped, or Numidians instead of these pike. There are also some camps to be done when the mood takes me!
26 November, 2011
I decided to put shields on my Pontic light horse, as by this period most cavalry used them. Following the good advice of the Teenage Visigoth, ‘use what you’ve got, rather than dreaming about what you could have’, I gave them a pair of bucklers that were the best size for them I had. As I didn’t want to draw attention to the shields especially, I gave them fairly ordinary colours. These were also extra quick, as I didn’t clean or undercoat them. They got one colour and the boss was bare metal; then I gave them a wash and glued them.
I’ve also started painting the shields of the Pontic imitation legionaries and the Marian Romans. These are VVV Early Imperial Roman designs. Both the designs needed a little trimming to fit. Some of the shields are on older Freikorp figures and noticeably cruder in terms of their bosses, but this shouldn’t show up too much.
23 November, 2011
Mithridates is ready to free the Roman province of Asia from the avarice and corruption of the Romans. I’ve updated their Army Page too.
Mithridates has a good supply of light foot, which can be used by the Seleucids (and others).
His cavalry is fairly strong, compared to his Roman rivals. He has Pontic cavalry of a 3Cv command and a 2LH.
I’ll probably add small shields to the 2LH, as they were pretty standard by this period. Mithridates also has a choice of Sarmatians (3Kn), Skythians (2LH) or more Pontics (3Cv).
The Pontic horse have a lot of character and will see service as Seleucid Civic Militia or auxiliary cavalry for Marian Romans. The cup on their shields reflects their dishevelled appearance—an enthusiasm for foraging over fighting! I may get more for some 2LH!