26 Apr 2023

Totally Unarmed Slaves!

 OK, so you probably remember the Spartacus army that I finished earlier this year?

Well, actually it turns out that it wasn't entirely "finished" after all.

The L'Art de la Guerre Slave Revolt army list has an option for a couple of Mediocre Levy - totally unarmed, totally combat-ineffective bodies of peasants who just provide a smidgeon of moral support through their sheer mass. 

(And, at only 2 points each, they can help spend any left-over points up to the standard 200 point army limit in a list where everything else has a minimum cost of 4!).

So, having forgotten this when I based up the full army I ended up buying a couple of packs of Xyston Civilians from Donnington, and also some of Donningtons own new-casting Classical Civilians as well - and here they are:

OK - so I have 4 bases worth, not two. 

Well, I wanted some variety of figures, and it seemed a waste to only order 2 packs when there's minimum postage .. so, it sort of happened that I made up 4 bases worth. I guess that means they can look forward to being a hostage screen for the Timurids someday as well?

The Xyston and Donnington packs were surprisingly compatible - I'd been concerned they might be different in height or stature, but they actually integrate really well together with the Xyston folks having a lot of "women and children" and Donnington having some almost Senatorial Romans in togas.

As with the rest of the army these bases were a slap-chop + Contrast Paint project, in which the main challenge was to not go too crazy and upmarket on the colours of their clothing whilst still trying to make the figure's arms and faces stand out from what could easily be some very "beige" clothing options suitable for their low social status. 

All in all I'm very pleased with them - however if they ever end up featuring in a battle report you'll know something has gone badly wrong on the tabletop for the rest of the (fighting components of the) Spartacus army! 

20 Apr 2023

Roman Clibanarii

At Warfare last year I accidentally placed in the 15mm ADLG competition, for which part of the prize package was a blister of Forged in Battle 15mm Roman cavalry.

These chaps were Clibanarii on half armoured horses and armed with Kontos, bow & shield, from the Early Imperial era - a troop type I rather unusually didn't really own (unless you count my repeated and shameless morphing of Early Byzantine cavalry to fulfil that role when and if they were called upon to do so!).

So, I decided to paint these guys up, and to do so with ADLG specifically in mind, as in I painted all 4 bases in slightly different liveries so they could be used as units that would be easy to tell apart if they were in different commands. 

With the EIR and LIR armies only having a couple of these in each list the round dozen were also slightly overkill, so I managed to find some spare unarmoured horses to make one base up without horse armour to play the role of an Average unit, two as standard half-armoured Clibanari and one as a half-armoured unit with a commander figure for an embedded General.  

FiD do seem to throw in extra figures to each pack so I also have 2 spares left over, which are being baked into a separate Commander's base as we speak. 

They were done mostly in Contrast paints on a white base, using Snakebite Leather for the really visible shoulder and skirt leather armour, and (of course) drybrushed Gunmetal on a black base for the actual armour. I spent extra time with a magnifying glass doing some of the detail on their straps and uniforms (if you note the reins for example, they even have two layered colours of leather brown on them for extra depth), which I think has paid off pretty well given it's a level of committment I rarely approach with 15mm figures !

These also look a little more spiffy than usual in these photos as I took the pictures before matt varnishing them, so they still quite literally have a little more sparkle. 

I'm really pleased as to how they have come out, as these FiB figures really do take paint extremely well. The shields are the only "meh" bit, as I was lacking in inspiration and they are so small that it seemed like it would be both too hard to put any design on them. I also feared that any design I did conjure up might just look odd at that small a scale and size anyway.

The set is listed on the FiB site as a Random mix of 12 cavalry, including command. Figure code WE-RM09 Roman Clibanarii, 3rd century

14 Apr 2023

The Normandy Landings : Battle Reports and More from France

Yes, two sets of battle reports in a single week as the CLWC team take another international excursion, this time to storm the beaches of Normandy and visit Bayeux, Le Havre, several seaside gun positions, Pegasus Bridge, Rouen and Dieppe whilst also finding time to fit in a bit of Norman-themed ADLG competition action too!

We also manage to undertake numerous bouts of eating, drinking, discussing former Fulham players of the last decade, and indulge in many other regionally appropriate activities as well, all of which are recorded in loving gallic detail in these 5 battle and 2 tourism reports.

To top it all off there is even a rare in-the-field podcast episode in which a team of 3 (me, Dave from the Podcast and Mike) record our progress throughout the long weekend in glorious Normadie!

Sound quality is a little sketchy in some parts of the podcast, mainly on account of the fact a number of the individual segments were recorded on my phone in (or outside) various bars and restaurants in the Normandy heartland.

The battle reports and tourism photos from this trip can all be found on the Madaxeman website and there is also a YouTube video version of this podcast which also includes all of the photos too. 

5 Apr 2023

Assyrian Beachhead! 5 Video Battle Reports

Back at the start (or maybe even just before) of Lockdown I'd painted up a 28mm Assyrian army, and used it with some success at Roll Call as well - however for Beachhead 2023, in a Biblical & Early Classical period I had initially hoped to field a 15mm Hittite army rebuilt from some of the last knockings and scraps of Clive's Stash. 

Odd numbers in both 15mm and 25mm periods put paid to that idea, leaving the Hittites in the drawer and me floating across into 25mm to even up numbers using pretty much that same Assyrian army that had done quite well in 2022. 

The army list I used this time was however a little different to the one that I had used at Roll Call 2022, as I was expecting to have to deal with more shooting from my opponents as a consequence of the more biblical-orientated theme - but in essence it was still pretty much the same. 

I also wanted to use more of my Heavy Infantry units, or which only 2 of the 4 had made it onto the  table - these 25mm Newline Designs figures are great, but they are kinda wasted if they only ever get to go on parade in the Really Useful Box Barracks!

Asssrians on YouTube

To find out how this revised force actually did you now have 5 consecutive video battle reports to watch either on YouTube, or on the Madaxeman Website followed by a video showing all of the Assyrian figures in my collection.

2 Apr 2023

15mm Samurai Bowmen

ADLG v4 introduced some Light Infantry skirmishing archers to the Samurai lists, adding a much needed troop type to the Samurai roster - however the idea of adding in a few more figures to the only army I have ever had professionally painted was a bit of a challenge, as I'd need to paint them to sort of match the professional paint job on the rest of them!

Most of my Samurai army were also Old Glory figures which come in large bags, so even choosing a comptible range was a challenge - but eventually I settled on these really clean Ashigaru archers from Museum as being both the right height, and also simple enough to be easy to paint to a reasonably close standard to the rest of the army.

Being Ashigaru really reduced the level of detail needed

I also took an ADLG-specific approach to this set of 4 bases, choosing to paint them all in slightly different colours and uniforms to allow them to operate as single units of skirmishers in different commands. 

The pattern of 3 or 4 dots on their clohing fits in thematically with the rest of the army, and is a very simple way to generate a bit of a Japanese vibe (at a 3 foot range!) 

 I'll now have to look out for an event where they can be used!

And here's the army they will be playing as part of:

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