DeBAKLe 2013 — 15 February 2014 — The Army Choice 2

So, one batch of possible armies sorted and I am holding the Nubians and the B edouin Arabs as possible armies for DeBAKLe 2013. I found another box of DBA Armies – yes, I have a few laying around in the lead pile 🙂

This lot are from DBA army lists book 2 and 3. There are other armies here as well but they were all prepared for DBA v 1.1 (see how old some of my lead pile is?).

So, the next four contenders are:

Slave Revolt (Sparticus) 74-71 BCE II/45c
Slave Revolt (Spartacus) 74-71 BCE II/45c

Slave Revolt (Spartacus) (74-71 BCE)These figures are from Essex Miniatures and are list II/45c. This represents the slave army following Spartacus after he had walloped a few Roman Armies and had therefore acquired some Roman equipment and, along with the addition of some deserters, had trained some troops up in the Roman manner.

It is not a powerful army although it rates 242 on the rating scale. It could be 5 blade elements, 5 warband elements and two psiloi or one cavalry, 4 blade elements, 5 warband elements and two psiloi.

The warband can be effective and at the same time fragile. Running this with a cavalry general is an option. swapping the cavalry general for a blade general when facing non-horse armies is an option as well.

I like the idea of this one. The only thing missing is the Parthian!

Sui 581-623 CE III/20a
Sui 581-623 CE III/20a

Sui (581-623 CE)

These are really nice Essex figures and have a strike force of cataphract knights. They are backed up with some very ordinary foot troops however.

Their rating is 208 so not a powerful force by any means. Having said that, there will be a lot of figures on the table as this army can have 2 x 8Bw (16 bowmen on two bases) and must have 4 x 7Hd (4 bases of 7 infantry each). They are list II/20a.

These are tempting because of badness but will mean a butt-load of painting for DBA. Doug’s AAR from using the DBMM version of the Sui makes for interesting reading and whilst DBA is not DBMM, I think the problems with these two armies are the same.

Tang 618-755 CE III/20b
Tang 618-755 CE III/20b

T’ang (618-755 CE)

List II/20b are the T’ang. These were both contemporary to the Sui and the successors of the Sui. These are Essex Miniatures as well and also a lovely collection of figures. They rate higher, 250-274, than the Sui so are not so much rubbish. Like the Sui there is a lot of painting in this army.

It also is possible to field the T’ang as an all mounted army (the barbarians to the north were getting restless at this time) as well as a mix of cavalry and infantry.

Qura-Khitan 1124-1211 CE IV/15
Qara-Khitan 1124-1211 CE IV/15

Qara-Khitan (1124-1211 CE)

A book four army, IV/15 and an interesting one at that. These are also Essex Miniatures and like the T’ang, the army can be entirely mounted at 3 Knight elements, 3 Cavalry elements and 6 Light Horse elements. This rates at 294 and is quite powerful for a competition army unless facing elephants. Two of the Light Horse elements can be replaced but only with a Horde and a Psiloi reducing their rating to 273.

So, here are another four possibles for the DeBAKLe 2013 army. From this lot, I would be leaning towards Slave Revolt (who can resist “I am Spartacus!”) and the Sui (really crappy army but pretty, although a lot of painting).

Considerations continue! Hunting for more figures in the lead pile under Mama’s house.

DeBAKLe 2013 — 15 February 2014 — The Army Choice

As I am unable to attend Cancon 2014 I thought instead that I would hit the international circuit. The Broken Bayonets wargames club in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, host an annual De Bellis Antiquitatis (DBA) competition called DeBAKLe (get it? DBA KL). It seems that one of the important things about DeBAKLe is that is should not be held in the same year that it is planned. So, for example, DeBAKLe 2013 is being held on 15 February 2014 1.

Kuala Lumpur is just a short bus trip up the Peninsula from Singapore 2. and the cost of the return trip is about SG $70 (more if a really luxury coach with meal service is required, less, about MYR 68, if travel is to and from Johor Bahru). This compares to a cheap flight on JetStar or AirAsia with a cost of around SG $128-165 3. I think I have decided to take the bus and enjoy the scenery … before the sun goes down.

I asked some of the guys from the Broken Bayonets what sort of armies were prevalent in the competition as I thought I would try and match with something contemporary. I was told that the armies were from all over and that they tended to be none of the world beaters but rather, there was a certain honour in competing with crappy armies. I have quite a few of those in the lead pile. Now I am trying to decide which army to paint and take. I have Burmese and Khmer back in Singapore ready for paint and they are an option. I also went into the lead pile and started to look at what I had down there that could be painted, would look quite good but which would earn points for being crappy. The first cut through revealed the following.

The Nubians (3000-1480 BCE)
The Nubians (3000-1480 BCE)

Nubian (3000-1480 BCE)

The figures are the old Gladiator range, now owned by Black Hat Miniatures. I always liked the old Gladiator Miniatures and these are quite nice figures. I figure that as I have been offloading my DBMM Biblical armies, I could hang on to a few DBA ones. As this army is a mix of Bow General (never used one of them before), Warband, Psiloi and Bow, this army would rate for the “not a powerful army” award!

The Hyksos Force (1590-1537 BCE)
The Hyksos Force (1590-1537 BCE)

Hyksos (1590-1537 BCE)

These are really nice figures and have a strike force of four chariots (one of which is the general). They are backed up with some useful foot troops.

The biggest issue with these though is really the chariots. Whilst they are very attractive they look like a beast to actually put together. I’m thinking of ruling them out because of that.

The Early Egyptians (1639-1543 BCE)
The Early Egyptians (1639-1543 BCE)

Early Egyptian (1639-1453 BCE)

The Early Egyptians are also a really nice set of figures (all the Black Hat Miniatures are to be honest). There is a Light Chariot General with the main strike force coming from a combination of Bow and Blades.

As with the Hyksos, biggest issue with these though is really the chariot. It is a good looking chariot but squeezing Pharaoh and the driver in is gojng to have me without finger prints again for a week as the super glue slowly peels off. I’m thinking of ruling them out because of that.

The Early Bedouin Force (1499-1000 BCE)
The Early Bedouin Force (1499-1000 BCE)

Early Bedouin (1499-1000 BCE)

The Early Bedouin are sweet figures and the army itself cannot be described as anything other than challenging. The general can be either in a chariot (and this one seems a little better to work with than the ones mentioned above) or a Camel general or Auxilia.

The rest of the army is a mix of Psiloi and Auxilia.

I am leaning towards this army as, for a competition army, it is truly awful.

It’s rating would be around 185, assuming and Auxilia General to 208/209 (chariot or camel general). This is quite low.

The Tullian Romans (578-400 BCE)
The Tullian Romans (578-400 BCE)

Tullian Roman (578-400 BCE)

I don’t like these.figures very much so I think I can rule this army straight out, although as far as armies go it is not all powerful but could be a useful force in a competition environment.

Two cavalry elements, seven spear elements, two psiloi and one auxilia means that the army rates at 248, a lot more than the Bedouin.

The variable size Museum 15mm ranging from small to huge - truly David to Goliath - but Roman!
The variable size Museum 15mm ranging from small to huge – truly David to Goliath – but Roman!

One of the problems with the Tullians however is the variable sizes of the Museum figures – regardless of whether you like the style of the figures or not there are huge size differences in these figures.

To be fair, I think in part it is because these figures are old and perhaps I purchased them in the time between starting a re-sculpt of a range and finishing that re-sculpt although the hoplite and the slinger really are a David and Goliath!

So, there are a couple of possibles from this lot for the DeBAKLe 2013 army.

Any advice?

The planning continues!


1. Although to be fair the February date was chosen in part to accommodate my possible attendance
2. By short, one means 6 hours between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, 4.5 hours between Johor Bahru and Kuala Lumpur with about 45 to 60 minutes spent dicking around with Immigration and Customs
3. And a time period of 3.5 to 4 hours – the flight time is just under an hour baring congestion but there is the time taken getting to and from the airports – plus an additional cost in Malaysia in particular because KLIA is so far from the city centre

Malaysia High Commission London – Services

mal_hc It seems that the Malaysian High Commission in London has been moonlighting. Entering “malaysia high comm london” results in the map to the left with additional information being displayed.

You should be able to see the “extra” service.

Seems it is a visa with a happy ending.

Thanks Scott for pointing that one out.

Airport Oxymorons

Whilst waiting for a flight at the KLIA LCCT I did hear one of the great airport oxymorons:

This is a final call for passengers on flight XY123 to Bangkok, please go to gate 3 now.

This was then followed 10 minutes later by:

Again, this is a final call for passengers on flight XY123 to Bangkok, please go to gate 3 now.

Yep – and you guessed it, 5 minutes later we hear:

Once again, this is a final call for passengers on flight XY123 to Bangkok, please go to gate 3 now.

This “final call” happened a total of 6 times – only one of them was really final 😆

Travel Terms

I travelled through Malaysia quickly recently on Air Asia – a low-cost airline. I learned a new term. It was LCCT. The LCCT is attached to KLIA (Kuala Lumpur International Airport) and means Low Cost Carriers Terminal. So, what does LCCT really mean? It means a big tin shed with rudimentary air-conditioning and the impossibility of hearing any announcements clearly due to echo.

LCCT, a new term for travellers.