Saka Light Cavalry

Saka Light Cavalry

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Persian Chariots

I have done very little painting since the challenge finished and what I have done is not fully finished. You can blame a couple of new computer games and the kids being off school for the most part. Burnout from the challenge is far less a factor. As I am working the whole of the bank holiday don't expect things to improve by much.

I still have a couple of posts worth of challenge entries to write up so lets start with Darius King of Kings. Actually he will be used as other Persian commanders as Darius was brown bread by the time the Persians took on Alexander.

The model and the casualty are all from Baccus and comes as a three piece kit for the chariot as does the scythed chariots that follow. All were a bit of a pain to glue together.

Being the army C-in-C he gets a larger round base. This is normally done to show it is the overall commander but in this case it should be obvious. I have more Persian command on the table at the moment, just one of the bits started before the challenge finished.

Bought for my Persians these scythed chariots will also see game time with my Seleucids in the display game we will be doing next year. I have copied the crashing chariot I did in 15mm so very long ago.

These gave me the opportunity to use bright colours so I jumped at the chance. Not that my Persians are exactly dull.

I could not resist smashing one of them up. If the figure was removable I would have done something different with him.

My original plan was to have three chariots as a single unit but the width of the chariots made it impossible. I then swung over to each model is a unit but I am rethinking it to two models equal a unit. If I settle on this I will need a further three models. I doubt I will make a final decision until we have playtested a few games. The final choice will probably be down to how they play out and look in those games.

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

The Battle of Magnesia 190BC

As I have mentioned before, Lee and myself are planning on putting an Ancients battle at Joy of Six 2018 and we have finally selected the Battle of Magnesia between the Seleucid and Roman armies. I have used a OOB from the internet . This is a truly massive force so I have cut it down to a third of the size as offered there. This still gives Lee 50 units and 77 units!

Whilst Lee has just about all his units to paint I at least have just 31 Four of these will be phalanx units (yes I know I said 20, turns out I need 22). These are a mix of cavalry, mostly cataphract and light infantry so will not be an issue painting them in time.

Lee's Romans are obviously mostly infantry and the units will be a lot less figure heavy than mine, this is the spectacle I was looking for in a game. My massed phalanx eight deep with 96 figures a base fronting up to about 36 figures a base. With the phalanx making up just over 25% of my force they will be a focal point but not the whole battle.

I have also worked out what figures I still need to buy and it's just under £120 worth of castings. Lee I am assuming will have still more to buy so Baccus will be getting a visit at some point. Most of what I am buying can be used in other armies so will not be one shot wonders though just how much use they will get post game is uncertain.

As for Lee's well I guess it depends on how fast the game will play. If fast enough to get a large game played then they should all get out in future games, that is if we can paint up enough opposition outside the Seleucid armies.

Rather than make up a set of new boards we are thinking about battle mats, the battle took place at the turning of the year (could have been 189BC) so we are looking at semi arid. That will come later as we still need to work out the actual size of the table we will need. It should be smaller than the Waterloo game which ran to 16x6 feet. The only two natural features is the Hermos River that the Romans fixed their flank to and a hill behind the Seleucid positions that was fortified but could be left off the table if desired.

So not a massive amount of work for me to do with plenty of time to get it all done. Lee on the other hand has lots of painting to get done, ideally we will get the figures bought before Salute as that is when Baccus put up their prices. I will await Lee's reckoning before making a move.

We will have to start playtesting the battle at some point as we have to balance the larger Seleucid army against the fact that the Romans actually won the battle. The trick I think will be a few special scenario rules that will have to be used to make this more even. Firstly bow troops will be less effective than usual as the day started with poor visibility and was misty and damp that would have effected the effectiveness of the bows at least until the weather improved later in the day. Reducing the bows effectiveness will harm the Seleucids more than the Romans . Most of the other SSR's will probably be worked in to give the Romans advantages rather than take things from the Seleucids.