Sunday, 27 May 2012

DBM Armies and Their Uses

One of my long term projects (what am I saying?  All of my wargame projects are 'long term') has been my 15mm, 500 point Lydian DBM army (I/50), developed and finally all painted over the embarrassingly long period from 1995-2010.  The thing about choosing and developing a DBM army, at least for someone thrifty like me, is the opportunity to ensure that there was enough variety to generate an interesting selection of (much smaller) DBA armies without having to acquire additional figures.

As Classical armies go the Lydian army is quite useful because not only does it have mounted 'hoplites' - 'knights' Kn(F) (unusual for that period) but it also has light chariots (LCh), (foot) hoplites (Sp) and lots of auxiliaries (Ax), not to mention Psiloi (Ps) and, my personal favourite, wardogs (they count as Warband).
Not the most war-like of dogs really - they were actually some animals I got in the railway model shop Harburn Hobbies (top end of Leith Walk) so they're really just collies (and a labrador).  Still, with a little training..... The dog walker is an Essex ballista crew member or similar.  And yes I know, the basing is a bit, well, basic, but they were done a long time ago and if I redo these then I'll have to do them all, which is 500pts worth of rebasing....

Anyway, this varied collection of troop types lends itself to a variety of DBA armies.  For the sake of argument here are four of them, which also happen to be historical opponents (according to the DBA 2.0 army lists anyway):
  • I/41 Phrygian (800BC-676BC)
  • I/48 Thracian (700BC-46AD)
  • I/50 Lydian (687BC-546BC)
  • I/52(g) Early Hoplite Greek (Asiatic Greek) (668BC-450BC)
And here are (from front to back) the Lydians, Thracians and Phrygians.  All figures are/were 15mm Chariot (now Magister Militum).  I couldn't be bothered setting out the Asiatic Greek Hoplites, although the figures I have are very good (check out HOG002 and HOG003 on the Hoplites page).

And the reason for all this?  Well, a good few years ago we did a very successful DBA campaign where Geoff and I both fielded 4 armies that blundered round a rather complicated hex map fighting each other (not using the DBA campaign rules, as such).

It was one of those campaigns using a massive matchbox chest of drawers in true Donald Featherstone style.  I've still got most of the matchboxes somewhere, but my inclination now is to use the Berthier Campaign Manager (currently on v7.6.4), now that I'm thinking about another DBA campaign, which is ultimately the whole point of this rather rambling post.  Yet another opportunity to 'watch this space'.

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