Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Bolt-Shooting Torsion Catapults

Here are some bolt-shooting torsion catapults and crew that I've just finished painting. The three above all Vendel/Sgt Major figures and are early examples of oxybeles as illustrated in Duncan Head's WRG book Armies of the Macedonian and Punic Wars 359 BC to 146 BC (p.187). The one below is a later Hellenistic scorpion (p.188) with three crew and is by Relic Miniatures but doesn't seem to be on their website anymore, which is a pity. I will use all four for a Command and Colors Ancients (CCA) scenario of the Battle of Jaxartes River 329 BC, where Alexander used the catapults to provide covering fire for his troops, as they crossed the river and taught the Saka a lesson.

Monday, July 27, 2020

Scythians versus Neo-Assyrians Chariots Rampant Game

Table view from the Scythians' side

View from the Assyrians' side

Scythians advance

Assyrian cavalry mixed bow and spear

Sab Sharri mixed bow and spear

Chaldean slingers and Assyrian chariots

Sab Sharri mixed bow and spear

Assyrian cavalry mixed bow and spear

Scythian horse archers

Scythian noble cavalry

Scythian horse archers

Scythian horse archers

Last Sunday afternoon out in the shed I played a solo Chariots Rampant game with the Scythians taking on the Neo-Assyrians somewhere in the highlands of Uratu (Armenia). Chariots Rampant is a Bronze Age variant of Lion Rampant and can be found in Wargames, Soldiers and Strategy magazine Issue 82. The scenario was the standard Bloodbath encounter, the two sides were 32 points and, except for a single skirmisher unit of Chaldean slingers, every unit was bow armed. The Scythians suffered early casualties and a horse archer unit was forced to retreat battered in the face of some withering fire from the Assyrians. A unit of Scythian noble cavalry recklessly charged a Sab Sharri unit, and while they won the combat they were forced to retreat battered. Eventually sheer weight of numbers told and the Scythians' bow fire wore the Assyrians down and their left flank routed.

Scythian noble cavalry

Scythian horse archers

Scythian horse archers

Both sides advance

Scythian horse archers retreat battered in the centre

Scythian noble cavalry charge the Sab Sharri

They win the combat but retreat battered

Casualties from missile fire mount

Scythian horse archers make skirmish moves

Sab Sharri advance

Assyrian left flank routs

Assyrian chariots are the only unscathed unit

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Scythian Noble Cavalry 2

Here are some more Scythian noble cavalry and horse archers that I've just finished painting. The nobles are all Tin Soldier figures and the horse archers are a mix of Wargames Foundry and Old Glory. I have enough painted Scythians or Kimmerians for some games I have planned but still need to paint up some more figures for their opponents. I have enough figures for both sides to try a small Chariots Rampant game, so may do that for fun (I haven't played it for a while) and just to give them a run.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Sherden Warriors

Here's another post from the archives, two units of Sherden warriors. These are all Wargames Foundry figures in the unit above with a few Newline Design figures in the second unit below. This unit, with the officer and New Kingdom Egyptian standard, are supposed to be Ramses' II Sherden bodyguard.

To quote (p.42) from the Stillman and Tallis WRG book, Armies of the Ancient Near East 3000 BC to 539 BC:

The Sherden or Shardana are first recorded in the 14th century BC when they were known in Byblos. Early in the reign of Ramses II some were caught while raiding in the Delta and were placed in the Egyptian army. The characteristic helmet is of a type known in the Near East and Aegean. The long sword is possibly a type of levantine dagger rather than an Aegean type. One possible place of origin is the Syrian coast north of Ugarit. After their attack on Egypt some of them settled in Cyprus and eventually arrived in Sardinia, giving their name to the island.

An excellent book to get, if you're interested in the Sea Peoples, is N K Sandars' The Sea Peoples: Warriors of the Ancient Mediterranean, it is out of print but you can probably track down a copy through Abebooks. Andrea Salimbeti's excellent website The Greek Age of Bronze: Weapons and Warfare in the late Helladic time 1600-1100 BC also has a very useful section on the Sea Peoples:

Friday, July 17, 2020

Camillan Romans versus Samnites Mortem et Gloriam Game

View of the table from the Samnite side

View from the Roman side

Armies advance

Roman right flank with Italian allies

Samnite left flank and centre

Samnite right flank and centre

Apulian javelinmen and Samnite foot

Samnite javelinmen and foot

Roman cavalry on the right flank moves around the wood

The armies close

Cavalry manoeuvre near the wood

The Samnites hold, the Romans advance

Samnite infantry move into a marsh

Last Thursday afternoon out in the shed I played a solo Mortem et Gloriam (MeG) game, with the Camillan Romans taking on the Samnites in a Pacto (small) sized game of about 3,500 points a side. I thought the Romans would easily crush the Samnites but it proved to a very close game, level pegging through out much of it. In the end both armies were on the verge of breaking and the Samnites just managed to pip the Romans at the post with a 15-10 victory.

Roman cavalry declare a charge on the right flank

Roman cavalry declare a charge on the left

The Romans charge into combat with the Samnites on the Roman right

And on the left

Infantry combat in the centre

Roman cavalry break on the Roman right, Samnite cavalry break on the Roman left

Infantry slog it out

It's level pegging

Casualties mount

Both armies are on the verge of breaking

Samnite left flank hangs on, the centre is almost gone

Romans break first

Samnites just pip the Romans at the post with a 15-10 victory

Skirmish Before Stoke Field - Billhooks Deluxe Game

  Yorkists deployed on the northern edge of the table Royalists on the southern edge German skirmishers head for the woods German pike reinf...