DeBAKLe 2013 — 15 February 2014 — The Army Choice 3

OK, it is one week before I commence a journey to Kuala Lumpur for the increasingly misnamed DeBAKLe 2013 (yes guys, I am still planning on attending – working out travel logistics this weekend). As it is seven days to go, I thought it was about time I thought seriously about the army I plan to paint and take. I had looked at some possibilities and had narrowed the field down. Now with the pressure of a limited time period in play, it’s time to get serious!

The Khmer - undercoated and some painting started
The Khmer – undercoated and some painting started

The Khmer are based, undercoated and one element is already complete (the Maiden guard was my test base for colours etc). Whilst I like the idea of an Asian Army for DeBAKLe 2013 and whilst the Khmer will be very pretty when I finish them, I do have some repair work to do already. The umbrellas either need to come down or I need to add a brass wire umbrella pole (umbrella pole? Hmmm, and English is my first language).

This will probably also be the heaviest army to transport with the weight of the elephants.

Still, I can see this being a nice army – figures are from Irregular Miniatures.

Gladiator (now Black Hat) Nubians
Gladiator (now Black Hat) Nubians

A short-priced favourite to take, ancient Nubians. The army is from the old Gladiator Miniatures (now Black Hat Miniatures).

These have the advantage of not being powerful as an army and therefore perfect for a competition like DeBAKLe 2013 (or so the guys in Kuala Lumpur assure me) as well as being light to carry and likely quick to paint.

Finished, I think they will look very nice.

Gladiator (now Black Hat) Early Arabs
Gladiator (now Black Hat) Early Arabs

Option 3 is another Gladiator army – this time, Early Arabs. This is a mix of Auxilia and Psiloi with a Light Chariot General and some camels as its main strike force. Yeah, this is powerful … not!

It will look good however.

Still, if I can get unlucky with the dice and roll low for Attacker/Defender then place more sand than you can see in a KL building site, this army might do OK.

Who am I kidding!

I am Spartacus ... from Essex Minitures
I am Spartacus … from Essex Minitures

The Slave Revolt Army (Spartacus edition) from Essex Miniatures is a nice collection of Roman looking figures and wild(ish) Gauls. Actually, the Gauls look pretty sedate but it will end up being a good looking army when finished and should, with its mix of blades and warband, give any budding Crassus a difficult time.

This army has the most figures to paint of all the possibles.

Having said that, who can resist having the guys in KL walk past the table and each time they do, have them say, “I am Spartacus!”

Plan B - Koguryo Koreans are ready for a second competition outing
Plan B – Koguryo Koreans are ready for a second competition outing

And now I present … plan B!

If I can’t get one of the above decided and started tomorrow and then well underway paint wise by Monday night, ready for varnishing Thursday night, then it may well be time to take the Koguryo Koreans north. A mix of knights, spears, bows and light cavalry suggests that as an army they will perform well and at Cancon 2012 they placed firmly in the middle of the field so not that impressive as an army goes.

Having said that, the Alain Touller Miniatures are very nice and the army looks good in white.

Right then, that’s where we are down to in the selection process. Anyone, especially in KL, have any favourites that they want to see at DeBAKLe 2013?

David, I’ll contact you later when I work out the travel arrangement and whether the entourage has decided to come to KL that weekend as well).

What’s Under the House — 2

I have done some sorting and organising so a brief update:

Item Comment
Egyptian and Sea Peoples – 1/1200 Langton boats Sold to Seattle and currently winging their way across the Pacific … or at least on the way to the airport to start the journey
Philistines – 15mm Essex – DBMM sized army Traded with Doug for the start of my Thirty Years War project
Ptolemaic Successors – 15mm Museum – DBMM sized army Will put these up on eBay tomorrow – I just can’t and don’t like them any more
Minoan and Mycenaean Greeks – 15mm Chariot Miniatures – DBMM sized army These are truly lovely figures but with one exception (possibly) I want to concentrate my large army ancient wargaming in the Classical and Dark Age periods. I’ve found a home for these though
Seleucid Successors – 15mm Essex – DBMM sized army I like these and so am returning them to the lead pile
Bactrian Greeks – 15mm Essex – DBMM sized army Classical and I like them a lot as well – I’ll write them up later but in the meantime, they will be returned to the lead pile
WW1 Austrian Naval fleet – 1/3000 Navwar – the full fleet Returned to the lead pile – they are ships after all. Will write this up later too
WW2 Matapan – 1/3000 Navwar – both fleets The British and Italian fleets from the Battle of Matapan. Returned to the lead pile
WW2 British Pacific Fleet – 1/3000 Navwar – the whole kit and caboodle A fine collection of a lot of ships and the largest number of British carriers ever – returned to the lead pile
Warmaster Empire Fantasy – 10mm Games Workshop – very large collection Still deciding what to do with these but likely will start eBaying items from it … watch this space … or the space above
Kallistra/Pendraken Fantasy – 10mm Fantasy, a lot of figures The barbarians are now homed with Doug and hopefully he may find a home for the Ratmen

So, that’s where we are up to. Next post will be as I consider the army for increasingly misnamed DeBAKLe 2013, on in February 2014. After which, more of the lead pile and then, a summary of 2013 and a plan for 2014!

Paint or Sell — Seleucid Successors

Hmm, these are Essex Miniatures and I am quite attracted to these. I’m leaning towards the paint side of paint or sell, although I expect that they will remain in the lead pile for quite some time. The Successors are at least in that Classical Period I like and are at least not Roman (although I will get to the Romans later).

The army is also about 400AP in DBMM terms and consists of:

Essex Miniatures
No Code Description Infantry Cavalry Elephants
3 MPA1 Macedonian, Greek Command 9
1 MPA3 Thracian Peltast rhomphaia 8
1 MPA4 Thrancian Peltast Javelin 8
2 MPA21 Cretan Archers 16
6 MPA83 Seleucid Phalangites 48
4 MPA84 Seleucid Agyraspids 32
1 MPA86 Companion Cavalry 4
1 MPA86A Companion Extra Heavy Cavalry 4
1 MEPA90 Elephant mahout pike archer javelin howdah 1
1 MEPA91 Elephant mahout 3 archers howdah 1
3 MPA92 Arab Archers 24
1 MPA94 Arab camel archers 4
2 MPA95 Thorakitai 16
3 MPA97 Heavy cavalry lance 12
3 MPA97A Extra heavy cavalry lance 12
2 MPA98 Tarantine cavalry 8
Total 152 53 2
Essex Miniatures Seleucid Successors 15mm from Essex
Essex Miniatures Seleucid Successors 15mm from Essex

Paint or Sell — 15mm Philistines

Sorting through the lead pile1 I came across some unpainted ancients. Actually, I came across a lot of unpainted lead but more of that later.

So now I am trying to decide – paint ’em or sell ’em.

Essex Miniatures
No Code Description Infantry Chariots
3 BS29 Command Chariot 3
16 BS31 Chariots 16
8 BS37 Kharu archers 8
6 BS33 Canaanite S/Less Javelins 48
5 BS??? Some sort of s/less Spearmen 40
4 BS112? Sea Peoples Infantry 32
4 BS32 Canaanite shield spear and armour 32
5 BS52? Shield tunic spear (Minoan types) 40
Totals     200 19

These are all Essex Miniatures and look good. I’m not sure of the exact composition of some of the packets but I recall when I built the stock for this I did make sure I covered everything that was needed to build about 400 AP of Philistines.

So … paint ’em or sell ’em?

Unpainted Philistines
Unpainted Philistines


1. Actually, I am looking for the British and German fleets from Jutland which I can’t find.

ACW Countback

Sunday I finished putting the last of the American Civil War figures on wooden bases ready for decoration and later varnishing. I also had to do a quick paint job on five flags (which I am totally unhappy with and will get around to changing later … really). When all that was completed and the varnish was dry on my observation tower (see yesterday’s post here) I thought “exactly how many figures do I have”.

I laid them all out.

The Union ACW figures laid out including markers. A mix of Minifigs, Essex, Lancashire and Old Glory 15s.
The Union ACW figures laid out including markers. A mix of Minifigs, Essex, Lancashire and Old Glory 15s.

It looks a lot.I guess it is. A count of the figures tells me that I have:

  • 188 stands of infantry
  • 28 stands of cavalry
  • 23 dismounted cavalry
  • 7 stands of horse-holders
  • 14 artillery pieces
  • 10 limbers
  • 14 general and aide stands
  • 2 ammunition wagons
  • 1 ambulance
  • 4 advancing colonels (one mounted)
  • 8 low on ammunition markers
  • 16 disordered markers
  • and one signal tower

Now all I have to do is decorate the bases for all these (and attach some flags to the standard bearers.

First of the ACW Finished

My test piece, a signal tower, for the Union 15mm ACW army I’m putting together is finished. I tested the basing on it today. The bases were covered in sand and some small rocks. Then just using ordinary acrylics from Art Friend here in Singapore the bases were covered in a sloppy mix of dark brown, then dry brushed with a red brown, then a yellow brown and finally an off-white (each dry brush layer was applied a little more lightly.

Glade green and yellow grass was then applied with the lot finished off by the addition of some meadow flowers. Done!

The sandy bases with the first brown wash applied to half the base
The sandy bases with the first brown wash applied to half the base
A red brown dry brush is applied across the base
A red brown dry brush is applied across the base
A yellow brown dry brush is then applied a little more lightly
A yellow brown dry brush is then applied a little more lightly
and lastly an off-white dry-brush is very lightly applied across the top of the base texture.
and lastly an off-white dry-brush is very lightly applied across the top of the base texture.
Yellow grass and a green static grass are now applied in clumps. Lastly some meadow flowers (from the Army Builder range) are added. These give a great touch but only a clump or two should be used here and there. Too much and it looks like a hippie festival battle.
Yellow grass and a green static grass are now applied in clumps. Lastly some meadow flowers (from the Army Builder range) are added. These give a great touch but only a clump or two should be used here and there. Too much and it looks like a hippie festival battle.
Further around the base
Further around the base

2013-02-23 16.16.25

2013-02-23 16.16.36

Painting the Rajputs

I thought I would do a quick write-up of painting the Rajputs for Cancon 2011. Realistically, it should not be that difficult to paint up a DBA sized army. Painting one element a night and over two weeks a DBA army would be completed.

I selected the Rajputs from an Essex Miniatures DBA Army pack that I had. Below are the steps I undertook to painting the army up.

Click the link below to read more and see the pictures of the painting process:

Continue reading

Thomo’s Armies 2 – Ostrogoths

image The first of my collection of hairy barbarians. The Ostrogoths were one of the two Gothic tribes or branches. The others were the Visigoths – we’ll get to them in the near future. The Ostrogoths big claim to fame was the establishment of the Kingdom of Italy when they took over the Western Roman Empire.

Theodoric the Great was the Ostrogothic ruler at the zenith of Ostrogothic power. The Ostrogothic kingdom was conquered later by Justinian’s army in the Gothic War of 535 to 554 C.E.

The army I have here is the Early Ostrogoths (although I can probably morph ((morphing is the making of other armies from available figures not specifically designed for that army)) the Later Ostrogoths from available figures).

The main strike power of the Ostrogoths comes from their mounted forces. There is no clear description of these mounted soldiers in the ancient sources and there are, as a result, a couple of interpretations of their armament and fighting styles. One description has the Ostrogoths using a long spear or kontos two-handed with no shield. Perhaps the more accepted interpretation however has them armed with a heavy spear and/or javelins as well as a shield. They were likely supported by foot archers.

The figures for this army are from Essex Miniatures and the army was originally made for the DBM Rules. Under the newer DBMM Rules, the army list for what I have looks something like:

Quantity Description Cost Total
1 C-in-C – Irr Kn(F) 19 19
2 Sub-general – Irr Kn(F) 19 38
32 Cavalry – Irr Kn(F) 9 288
18 Archers – Irr Ps(O) 2 36
12 Archers – Irr Bw(I) 3 36
6 Camp – flocks and herds – Irr Bg(I) 1 6
Total 423

“Ostrogothi” means “Goths of (or glorified by) the rising sun”. This has been interpreted as “gleaming Goths” or “east Goths”.

Thomo’s Armies 1 – Late Roman


This is the first of a series of posts to the Hole covering Thomo’s Armies (OK, for some of my readers, Thomo’s Toys!).

The Late Romans I have are in 15mm and made up of Essex Miniatures. They are shown to the right laid out. The single figure to the rear is the Commander in Chief of the army. I originally built this force for use with the DBM rules from the Wargames Research Group but have never got around to using them.

I can’t claim the credit for painting these either. They were painted by Emily Barr (I think it was Emily) – one of Tony Barr of East Riding Miniatures’ children. His son also painted some of my armies.


Here the legion is deployed with light infantry archers in support behind the legionaries awaiting the arrival of some nefarious enemy or other.

I should get around to reorganising this army for DBMM. I’ve looked through the other mainstream ancient wargames rules, Field of Glory (FoG) but haven’t got around to playing with them. I suspect that the figures I have for here will work just as well in a FoG army if I even get around to playing that. The good thing is that the figures can also be used for DBA.

The last image here is another view of the main battle line with support.

imageHere most of the cavalry can be seen as well as a good percentage of the infantry.

The surface these troops are deployed on is the Games Workshop games mat – a really good surface for wargaming on.

Next Thomo’s Armies will be some hairy barbarian types, followed after that by the Sumerians – the first full 15mm DBM army I painted and the only army I have that I have never won a game with … ever!  😦

New Toys – 15mm DBA Armies

Essex in the UK had a sale recently. They were offering three 15mm DBA Armies for the price of two. Given the Aussie dollar’s stellar performance against the pound sterling it was too good an opportunity to pass up. I purchased.

I was looking for something fairly late and recognisable. I ended up settling on army IV/66 Later Polish (1335-1510 CE). This seemed like an interesting mix of elements and troop types – knights, war wagons foot and such. It also reminded me of my trips to Warsaw, Lodz and other places when I worked in Europe – loved the Poles.

The second army that arrived was army IV/22 Serbian Empire (1180-1459 CE). At this stage the Serbs were an ally of the Poles and so would make a nice addition to the collection when the chance for a big battle DBA rolled up. They were a similar but distinct mix of troops that would sit well with the Poles.

The third army was IV/43c Later Hungarian (1397-1526 CE). The Later Hungarians were near enough to the Poles and the Serbs to both be complementary whilst looking different as well as being a nice army in their own right.

After all the painting I have been doing recently on 6mm, 2mm, 1/1200, 1/2400 and 1/3000th scale figures and vessels, I am quite looking forward to painting these guys up. I’ll put up more information about these as I get it together.