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Thursday, 22 August 2013

Libyan Archers

Here are a few photos of a small unit of Libyan archers. The figures are by Foundry, beautiful sculpts by the Perrys. These archers are supposed to be from the Tjemehu tribe who were light-skinned and fair-haired unlike Berber tribes like the Meshwesh and Libu. I have a Libyan warband on the painting table at the moment and these count as light infantry in Hail Caesar against the medium infantry of the Egyptians, so they will probably need all the support they can get in terms of skirmishers!

Cutting Edge Miniatures are releasing packs of Libyans, Nubians, Middle Kingdom Egyptians and Sea People chariots in September this year, photos of some of these can be seen here:
Cutting Edge Miniatures Facebook page

A really great reference book for painting if you are interested in the armies of the New Kingdom Egyptian period is Monuments of Egypt and Nubia by Ippolito Rosellini a friend and associate of Jean-Francois Champollion (translator of the Rosetta Stone). I have two slightly different abridged versions of it and both feature gorgeous full colour plates by the artists Giuseppe Angelelli, Salvatore Cherubini, Nestor L'Hote and Gaetano Rosellini.

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Libyan Chariot

Here are a few photos of a Libyan Chariot I've just painted. Chariot, crew and horses are all by Essex Miniatures. Libyan tribes were nomadic herdsmen and included the Tejehenu, Tjemehu, Kehek, Meshwesh, Seped, Mahasun and Libu (from Libya). I have an army of these to fight my New Kingdom Egyptians with really nice figures by Foundry, Old Glory and Newline Designs. By the later New Kingdom period the Libyan tribes had a small number of chariots which were probably used by chiefs, captured from, or traded for, with the Egyptians.

The infantry used throw sticks, javelins and bow and later acquired large numbers of copper long swords of the Sea People type. Several tribes formed coalitions and during the reign of Merenptah, Libyans under Meryey were joined by a contingent of the Sea People who were all defeated at the battle of Per-Yer c.1231 BC. There is a scenario for this battle in Wargames, Soldiers and Strategy Issue 66 pp.18-19. Background information on the Libyans from the biblical gamers bible - Armies of the Ancient Near East, 3,000 BC to 539 BC by Nigel Stillman and Nigel Tallis.

Friday, 16 August 2013

Tarentine Cavalry

Here are photos of a small unit of Tarentine Cavalry which I've just finished. The figures are by Aventine Miniatures and the detail on both riders and horses is superb and they are a real joy to paint. Tarentine Cavalry were originally from the Greek colony of Taras (Tarentum, modern Taranto) in Magna Graecia and were unarmoured and renowned for their skirmishing tactics. Over time it came to mean a collective term for lightly armed skirmishing cavalry in Hellenistic armies. There is an Osprey book by Nic Fields in the Warrior series that is well worth checking out - Tarentine Horseman of Magna Graecia.

Monday, 12 August 2013

Seleucids versus Republican Romans

View of the table

Opposite end

Getting down to business

Seleucid left flank

Seleucid right flank

Advancing elephants make the Romans nervous on the left

Roman, Tarentine and Seleucid cavalry meet on the right

As mentioned in my last post here are photos of our game on the weekend at the Vikings club. There were two other games played at the monthly meeting of the Capital Region Wargames Club, photos of which are further down in the post. Our Hail Caesar game was Seleucids versus Republican Romans with three divisions aside 530 points with Craig and Bern commanding the Seleucids and Gary and I nervously in charge of the Romans on their first outing.

A Seleucid elephant hits a Roman unit in the flank - nasty!

Another one takes out some Numidian cavalry

The Seleucid elephants caused some initial carnage on the Roman left flank but at the same time on the right the Roman and Tarentine cavalry performed well beyond expectations in breaking the opposing Seleucid cavalry. Within a few turns due to some appalling dice rolls from the Seleucids and lucky rolls from the Romans the entire Seleucid left flank collapsed and the division was broken. 

View from the Seleucid right flank

In the centre the two lines converge

After lunch at the club upstairs we resumed the game but the Seleucids luck did not improve. In the centre the main pike versus pila clash unfolded with the small Roman units and their numerous supports  proving more than a match for the Seleucid phalanxes. The Seleucid central division was driven back and then broken while on the Roman left flank, this division was broken, after a prolonged struggle, by the Seleucid Argyraspides (Silver Shields).

It was a fairly decisive Roman victory and in the post game discussion Craig and Bern both thought the Roman small units with their stats (clash and sustained of 5) and supports overpowered. Two small units of Hastati or Principes were fighting throughout the game, a standard Seleucid phalanx unit so they had a combined clash or sustained value of 10 and stamina of 8 compared to the phalanx unit's clash or sustained vale of 7 and stamina of 6. The situation only got worse with supports as the Roman small units were really able to maximise these.

Pike versus pila

Seleucid phalanxes are driven back and then broken

Seleucid Argyraspides (Silver Shields) break the Romans 

John, Roger, Greg and Ian played a nice looking 15mm Napoleonic game, using a Napoleonic version of the ACW rules On to Richmond.

Peter, Leigh and Ric played an attractive naval game set in South America with all scatch built ships and terrain.

Friday, 9 August 2013

Republican Roman Principes and the Triplex Acies

Above are photos of another unit of Principes for my Republican Roman army. We have got a game on tomorrow fighting Seleucids so in the photos below I've tried to show how the maniples of the Republican Roman army deployed before battle. First there is a screen of Velites and then the Triplex Acies (triple battle order) of Hastati, Principes and Triarii formed a checkered formation called a quincunx. 

Once the Velites had thrown their javelins and retreated through the gaps a solid line was formed to engage the enemy. I've drafted in some Marian maniples to make up numbers for the game so most of the legionaries in divison two are from this later period. Gary has another division and a few spare painted units of Hastati and Triarii so it should look pretty good overall. I'll post a report and photos after the game.

Two divisions deployed in a qincunx

Division One 

Divison Two

Consul and Equites on the flank

Maniples of Hastati, Principes and Triarii