24 Dec 2020

Festive Persian Siege Towers...? OK, it's a stretch, but...

 OK, maybe not - but if you are prepared to stretch to a bit of Old Testament nonsense and have an Early Achaemenid Persian army you'll probably have wondered what to use for 15mm scale "Cyrus Mobile Towers" at some point in the past... and now, I may have found the answer!

Very recently Pendraken announced an MDF Siege Tower in 10mm scale, which a quick email to Leon revealed was less than 40mm wide, and so would fit on a standard DBx basing frontage - the key challenge for other towers I'd looked at in the past. 

At only a fiver a pop, I quickly ordered a couple and then set to with the wood glue to assemble the two of them. 

With Museum Miniatures releasing some new Persian Sparabara, my own Essex Persian infantry were already slated to be replaced in the new year anyway, but this project meant that some of them won a last-minute reprieve from eBay as I instead upcycled a few bases of mixed bow / pavise infantry for tower crew. 

I then added on some re-purposed Essex War Wagon horses to pull the towers (because I had them lying around with ADLG needing less wagons than previous rulesets), otherwise Museum's Draught Oxen might have been the ideal choice (although it looks like Essex "might" sell the wagon horses separately if you ask nicely too), and with the application of some printed-off "wallpaper" patterns (repeating the idea from my Assyrian Chariots of a few years ago) to give the towers a more detailed look than I could ever hope to paint and, well, Cyrus is your uncle! 


There's about a dozen crew inside each tower, and a couple on the base as well to keep the enemy away from the horses!


You can fit 2 standing Essex infantry on each of the three internal levels. I used the wallpaper on the pavises as well. 


This pattern is one of a number I've made available to download as a pdf from my site, but there are loads of images on Pinterest if you search for Persian or Assyrian Graphics.



The tower is painted in Citadel Magragge Blue - not sure if its still available but it is a nice strong dense dark blue. 


I glued the drop-down "bridge" in the open position to fit more crew in. I may add one of the Museum kneeling archers here too once I get round to buying them. 



Adding a different image on one of the front panels just about stops making the tower look like it's wearing pyjamas. I think.... 


The second tower I did in yellow, trying to blend in the yellow borders on this graphic from Pinterest. 


Here I used much more of a mix of graphics - not sure it's as effective though as the blue one. 


Part of the reason for using a mix of graphics was that the main one didn't scale down well to the smaller panels at the top of the tower.


Again, space on the drop-down bit for a kneeling archer.  


Even the 10mm ladders internally don't look too out of scale. 


This is a standard 40mm wide and 80mm deep DBx "war wagon" base.



Happy Christmas! 




  

14 Dec 2020

Here's those Arabs... for the last time (for a while)

 Yep, finally the mega-project is done and dusted. Or, matt varnished more accurately. 

That means an "all options" ADLG Generic Arab Dynasties army in 25/8mm plastic and metal is now ready to be used, whenever that may be. 

Here are the final set of full-army photos;




















There are plenty more photos of the individual figures on the following pages on Madaxeman.com:

 

7 Dec 2020

Come on Down, the Price is Right! Podcast goes viral..

As the festive vaccination season looms large in the minds of wargamers around the world, the Madaxeman podcast team are back with an honest to goodness actual discussion about a topic which seems to be on everyone's Christmas list, why are so many wargamers seemingly more obsessed with the price of a figure than the quality? 

The core premise of the discussion is that for the rules we all play, a typical 15mm army comes in at 120-odd figures. That means the price difference between buying an army of the most expensive figures on the market today (50p each = £60) vs the cheapest (31p each = £37.80) is just £22.80.

Given figures are at the heart of everything we do as gamers – playing, painting, collecting – and we all keep our collections for years (decades even), we spend loads on paint, terrain, gaming mats (heck, even box sets of naval games from Warlord Games that we've still not assembled and which we all know that we'll be lucky to play even once) – in what part of our collective psyche does it make sense to spend ages calculating how to ‘save' £22 on 120 figures we'll spend months painting and play with many times if that means we are compromising on "quality" by not just buying the figures we like the most ?

Why don't we instead spend the same time simply choosing the figures we like the best and then buying them, whether they are 31p, 40p or 50p a pop?

There is also all of the usual painting, gaming and Gallic techno-driven military themed obscure general knowledge to fill your early December weekends and evenings as well as a quick diversion into airbrushing, a cough-assessment section (no, not like that..), a fairly comprehensive listing of those world museums displaying collections of "stand alone" military legs, many admissions of accidental purchasing, and a lengthy almost-feature on how to make an old rusty skip look like an old rusty skip using hairspray and fake rubble. 

Podcast Link to Podbean , or search for "Madaxeman Podcast" using any of your usual podcast providers.

(The "price vs quality" chat starts around 43:30 if you want to skip the rest)

The topic has already stirred up some discussion on TWS - here's the thread  and on Twitter 



3 Dec 2020

Arab Infantry... the Spearmen Arrive

 That project that's "nearly" done... we all have one, and mine is the interminable Arab 28mm army which continued to threaten to last into next year. 

The latest non-self-inflicted delay is an inability to get outside to do some matt varnishing, so I've just taken some photos anyway of the infantry who are waiting on a bit of Testors and thrown them online with pics of all the other infantry I've done so far. 


Artizan Designs commanders with mandatory LBMS flag




Mostly Perry Spearmen


More eclectic spearmen (GB, Footsore, Perry, possibly even BTD ?)


Serious contrast paint action !


Mostly Perry

There is a more complete set of photos - and some video - of these and the other infantry already finished online on the website.


2 Dec 2020

ADLG Army List Podcasts

The Madaxeman.com Podcast has covered the vexed topic of list design for quite a number of L'Art de la Guerre army lists in it's time, and, after a suggestion from a listener I've now pulled a set of links to all of these list-specific discussions together onto one page.

This listing includes both "dedicated" list-specific podcasts, and also the "Lockdown" series of podcasts where individual lists were compared and evaluated by the team.

The "Lockdown" Podcasts sometimes stretched to over 2 hours, and covered a lot more than just ADLG army lists, so for those just interested in the lists I've included approximate timings for when in each podcast the list-related discussions start, so you can skip straight to the list chat if you so wish.

Lists covered include: Late Imperial Roman, Uratu, Ugaritic, Later Byzantine, French Ordonnance, Achaemenid Persian, Later Assyrian & Sargonid, Ottoman Empire, Medieval Scandinavian, Late Imperial Roman, Fatimid Egyptian, Nikephorian Byzantine, Jurchen Ch'in, Later Carthaginian, New Kingdom Egyptian, Lydian, T'ang Chinese, Yuan Chinese, Venetian Condotta, Ghaznavid and Sassanid Persian.




27 Nov 2020

Basing Instinct - Podcast #52

With the UK gripped in a weird interim world of pseudo-lockdown the entire team reconvene again for the Madaxeman Podcast this week to chat through the usual mix of painting and gaming, before running riot with a freewheeling exploration of the different basing techniques they all deploy to try and make their figures look better than they really are from "wargaming distances".*

As well as enticing talk of flocking and slathering on gritty emulsions there is a potentially dangerous liason with the entire concept of Assyrian Relief, a rare and unusual mention for Nigella Lawson, further consideration as to whether size actually isn't everything when it comes to tiny toy tanks, a diverting foray into YMCA with the Imperial Roman Artillery Corps before ending with a bit of "oh la lah" to the Sound of Music in Andy's Quiz.

This weeks episode also comes with a teaser mni-video, which can be accessed on the Madaxeman Video Channel.

You can access the podcast in a variety of ways: 

22 Nov 2020

Some more stuff from the painting queue

With the Arab Infantry currently proving to be too much of a task to get started on finishing right now I've been diverted by some small-scale painting tasks that had been hanging around for a while waiting to force their way intro the queue. 

I also bought a small turntable from eBay (affiliate link to eBay here), which shipped from China incredibly quickly and (after getting 3 rechargeable batteries) seems to be working fine and gives a different option for showing off figures when I'm taking photos with my lightbox. 

The end result is this eclectic collection of models and videos :


1/300th T55's from Butlers Printed Models


Dr Andrei Sokolov - a Special Edition Malifaux figure


"New" Victrix 1/144th scale Sherman 



15mm Essex Sparabara, rebased and refurbished a little. 



I've got too many bases of these for what I need to field the army in ADLG, so I decided to rebase in an effort to pack the rear ranks with a lot more archers than the usual 3 or 4 in a "second rank" to give a more "biblical horde" effect.



You may also remember these Perry plastic Afghan warriors being made up a while ago - well, they are now painted and make absolutely fantastic Arabs !




The shield design at the front is a waterslide transfer made from a downloaded image of a real Indian shield in a museum somewhere!


These are the Kings of Kitbash - Fireforge Mongols, Perry Afghans and Wargames Atlantic Persians with some Fireforge Russian heads and a few Gripping Beast Arab bits as well.



I've ended up using the large pavise-like shields to give me a few bases of mixed spear/bow Arab troops for the handful of armies that have these formations. 






A very colourful bunch in their contrast paints!




And, to wrap up, a few more videos of the 28mm Arabs, including the second elephant from Gripping Beast in all it's glory








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