15mm Ancients


Some day my Ninja will come...

June 2019 - The NEC, UK Games Expo and one of the bigger UK events I will manage to get to this year. So, why not take an almost legendarily unusable army into a theme where it is certain to meet opponents it struggles to deal with?Well, if that army is a Samurai force that hasn't seen light of day since it's almost-win in Burton last year, the answer is of course a resounding YES!!!The end result is five full match reports, packed to the sushi-tasting gills with pictures of Samurai figures far better painted than I could ever hope to manage myself, as well as all of the usual videos, jokes, witty banter (some of it from headless ex-warriors serving as markers), and half-baked tactical theories.In fact, there's even a herd of cows. What more could anyone want in the height of BBQ season eh?Read on to find out how the Samurai fared against the Song Chinese, Sicilians, French, Ottomans and a properly colourful Samurai Civil War as well (just one) in these 5 fully ninja-tastic reports.

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It's A Lightbox!

Having take thousands of photos for this site over the years against various very basic backdrops, usually with an angle poise lamp for lighting I finally bit the bullet recently and bought a mini lightbox (affiliate link) on eBay for just over a fiver - and frankly I'm already wondering why on earth I didn't do so ages ago!It is roughly a 10' cube with one open side, with the lighting powered by a usb cable from my PC (which drives a line of LED's at the top of the box facing back into it). The one I got comes with a couple of backdrops (white and black - but it will be easy to make more), and folds away quickly for flat-pack storage.If you want to have a look on your local eBay, this affiliate link will take you straight there (I get a teeny kickback from eBay if you buy one as well using this link).Here's a load of (un-retouched) photos taken with my usual cheap camera, firstly of some of the Khurasanians I'll be taking to The ADLG Worlds this coming weekend, and then some of the Samurai who were

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What's for Desert? The Egyptians @ Campaign 2019

The Campaign team event has become a bit of a regular feature on the ADLG circuit, and this year I ended up driving a newly-rebased and refurbished New Kingdom Egyptian army in a tightly themed competition against 6 other extremely similar armies.The Egyptians fought Bedouin Camels! They fought an artistically licensed army of Egyptian Undead ! And, most of all, they fought Egyptian Civil WarsThese 6 match reports chronicle the complete biblically epic weekend for the NKE, in a widescreen spectacular that only the presence of Charlton Heston could possibly improve! 

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A Load of Old Bulls - The Koreans invade Spain

Its Spain - and of course it's 6 battle reports which are as tasty as a Korean barbecue with added Chorizo and Manchego !The occasion is a competition in Pamplona, the home of the running of the bulls which was of course an ideal place to try out an army which may in itself be a load of old bull.But even more pertinently they are the Koryo Koreans and their War Wagon Wagon Train, a novelty item often overlooked in ADLG. Will the cunning Koreans make the wagons work in these six trucking good battle reports?The wheels are certainly rolling - will they come off, or will they ride to victory in Spain?

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I Sea People!

After being somewhat impressed with a Sea People army last year at a competition in Ireland I've added a few more of the excellent ex-Gladiator Black Hat figures now sold by Fighting 15's  to my New Kingdom Egyptian army such that I can now also field a full Sea People force.For the Medium Foot I've kept all of the similarly-hatted guys together to give some vague impression of different tribal sub-groupings fighting as pseudo "units"I didn't really buy enough figures though to make that work for the close formation units, especially as I added in a load of random spare Egyptians and other biblical and loincloth-clad waifs and strays from the parts box to make up the numbers, so the Heavy Foot are a bit more of a mysterious rabble.Having originally bought the first half of this lot many years ago I'm actually quite pleased that I still had the same flesh wash (GW) to make the new figures look consistent with the old ones as well.I even picked up some tribes that I didn't have any of first time aroun

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Galatians ! Faaarsands of 'em Sir!

With a shwoosh of clackers, and a dusting-ioff of the family jewels the Galatians take to the table in five separate match reports against the Romans, Germans, Seleukids (twice) and the (who the f--- are the?) Blemmye, in the post-tournament report from Bournemouth earlier this spring. There is of course the usual mix of captions, videos, both handy and unhelpful rules-related hints and poor quality humour throughout.This time however you also get a specially themed report of one of the battles which features extensive references to the 1970's Bay City Rollers knock-offs from Bradford, "Smokie" - not for the faint-hearted, so if you are easily offended please feel free to skip report number four!Go on - get your undercarriage out into the fresh air this lovely spring morning, lie back and enjoy these five fine reports !

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Oi! You! Peasants!

The last (for now) iteration of the Great Biblical Army Painting Frenzy is three units of levy.They fit naturally in the Assyrian army, where the high quality (and cost) of many of the line troops means that adding in some levy occasionally may well be a good idea, but there are other armies than can also use some. too.With that in mind I chose to use Museum's Minoan and Mycenean range as the basis for these units, making them up out of naked spearmen and bowmen, together with a couple of slinger figures - as how much more generic can you get if you haven't got a uniform at all?The paint job is kinda simple!I guess if I ever try and run more than he 9 proper Mycenean spear units I own I could even press-gang these to serve as extra (ill-equipped) spearmen!

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Yet more Assyrians...

Finalising (I hope...) the Assyrian project, and having actually looked at what might be a viable list before buying the figures this time I've added some Heavy Swordsmen and Javelinmen to my Assyrian army.All of these figures are still from Museum Miniatures - it does mean I only have round shields rather than a mix of tower shields and round ones, but hey, I still like them !For ADLG I'm basing Javelinmen in 5's to a base. These are listed as "Aramaean Infantry Auxiliary spear" on the Museum site, and have an actual Assyrian soldier in the middle of the base as getting two sets of 5 figures out of a single pack of 8 Arameans was sadly beyond me!These guys count as Swordsmen in the rules, so I've tried to keep the number of upright-held-spear spearmen down somewhat and use a lot of swordsmen in the front rank.The guy in the second rank with a crested helmet is an Urartian Infantryman according to Museum, but his shield is the same size as the Assyrian figures so he can sneak in as a second ranker pretty

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Mahoosive Camels!

Whats that coming over the hill? Is it a Monster ?Or is it a Museum Miniatures Midianite Bedouin Camel?Having bought a dozen of the aforementioned creatures recently to flesh out an allied contingent for my Assyrians my plan was to use some old Essex bow-armed camel riders I had kicking about as the Light Camels and use the double-crewed Midianite ones as the Medium Camelry with bows in the core Early Bedouin ally.Museum figures are made of a really strong but pliable metal compound, so tweaking one of the bowmen's arms and cutting off his bow to turn him into a flag holder to create a Commander/General figure was fairly easy to do;But just have a look how these beasts compare size-wise to the Essex camels !They are great figures, even allowing for the single pose - but boy are they huge!

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15mm Xyston Paphlagonians & Takabara

There's plenty of early classical era armies which have a handful of "Persian Takabara", "Paphlagonian", "Arachosian" or other "Generic Eastern-ish Minor Nation" Medium Infantry, armed either with javelins or spears.  These guys are never vital, but often "nice to have" - especially as Javelinmen in L'Art de la Guerre to give an army a nice little anti-elephant force.In the same Attack! purchase from Damian at Donnington as the recently-finished Egyptian Marines now come some Xyston Takabara and Paphlagonian infantry to fill that particular gap.These figures have Thracian-style shields which need to be glued onto the figures (using my standard 2-part epoxy liquid metal).The shields were close enough in shape that I was able to dig out some unused LBMS Thracian transfers - sadly I only had 4 left, meaning I had to actually paint the other ones myself (nightmare!)The uniforms are done almost entirely in inks - not even washes, proper Windsor and Newton ink (amazon affilate link) on a white base coat.T

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Museum Miniatures Assyrian Army

Having been rather light on Biblical armies, ADLG and its easy-to-collect army size has allowed me to turbocharge this previously neglected part of my collection.First up were the Myceneans, and then the NKE ended up being rebased as well. But now, finally, and after 30 years of collecting and gaming I now have an Assyrian army as well!As with the Myceneans, my choice was to go with Museum figures. They are a little static in their poses and stylized, but for Biblical era I feel that this style works really well.The Assyrians are a ruthlessly efficient army and so the regular poses of most of the men also feels right. Many of the colour choices were inspired by (but sadly not particularly closely copied from) the fantastic 28mm Foundry range, which have provided three Generals elements for this army as well.The highlight is of course the Chariotry - which I've tarted up using a common or garden cheap printer and some Google-fu to search for "Assyrian Patterns", downloading and printing out some images to past

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Xyston "Egyptian Spearmen"

Along with the Assyrians the festive Madaxeman workbench has been a home for quite some time for 2 packs of Xyston Egyptian Spearmen, bought from Damian at Donnington at Attack! in Devizes earlier this year.They fall into the category of "I'm not quite sure what to do with them but they are great figures so I bought them anyway". If only there was an army list for this I'd be able to field all sorts of stuff from my collection much more often!There are probably a couple of armies that they can appear in - some of the "non NKE" Egyptian ones in the ADLG lists, and given the shields I could maybe sneak them into an Assyrian or Babylonian lineup as well I guess. I did the clever painter-y thing on their kilts of doing darker stripes of blue, and then adding a lighter, thinner stripe inside them to give an impression of some texture.White undercoats for the men, black for the shields. The shields are stuck on with my go-to solution for shields, 2-part "liquid metal" epoxy from Araldite (affiliate link).

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WiP 15mm Assyrians

A Museum Miniatures January sale order finally makes it onto the painting table... after the somewhat disappointing outings so far for the Mycenaeans, these are the first bases of Assyrians to be fully finished as I test out colour schemes for this army.The uniform scheme I’m going with is rather dour, with dark blues and reds. This seems to suit the ruthless efficiency of the Assyrian war machine. No doubt the final army will also end up having the old classic wargamers trope of different coloured shields for the Elite and Regular quality troops! I an still undecided about patterned horse blankets. Could easily look too gaudy. My original army list to use the figures I bought doesn’t bear much resemblance to any of the Assyrian lists I’ve been beaten by this year, so an extra order may be required. Luckily there should be another sale along soon! 

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