Tuesday 28 November 2023

My big fat Greek army - part 2

 Afternoon all

Over 12 months ago I put out a post that discussed my next army build - you can read it HERE

In this post I mentioned that my next focus was going to be on Greeks, Macedonian Successors and Persians. The project started and then stalled with the house move BUT I am delighted to report that this phoenix has now been resurrected and work continues apace. 

However the focus has changed a little bit. As opposed to two phases I have decided to break the project into three manageable pieces. The first will focus on the Greek State city wars also known as the Peloponesian wars. In essence these were the civil wars of ancient Greece where massed ranks of hoplites would bash and stab one another.

Phase two will focus on the Macedonian Successor wars where massed ranks of pike armed phalangites would stab at each other from a distance whilst fighting over Alexander's empire. The good news is I can press my aforementioned Hoplites into these battles as additional troops. Plus I get to field Elephants.

Finally phase three will focus on the development of a Persian Army not only to take on the chaps of phase 1 but also phase 2. In all three phases I am going to need Greek light cavalry and light skirmish troops.

Back in 2022 I had completed around 150 Hoplites and 300 Phalangites (pikes). My summer and autumn have not been idle as I can now field almost 1000 Hoplites in units of 32 men per unit. 

All the Hoplites are from the excellent value Warlord Games Greek and Spartan starter sets. Each box provides around 150 figures ad all of these have been sourced via ebay at discounted prices. My best guess is I have been paying around 25-30 pence per figure.

I did consider the Victrix sets but the cost was both prohibitive and for the volume I am looking for their assembly is much more complicated. I will however use Victrix for Skirmish and Cavalry units.

Each 32 man unit has been painted with a particular distinctive three colour scheme, typically bronze or lined white cuirass. a dark colour for tunic. and white/light colour for plumes/tunic. This colour combination has then been mixed up on the shields. It provides some unit uniformity but also creates variety that would be expected of the period. The exception all the majority of Spartan units that have been given their distictive red tunics and plumes. I also decided that any bronze cuirass would be a Spartan (There is one on each sprue).

If needs be units can be mixed up to provide less uniform looking troops - eg picture below

I have adopted a factory line approach to his vast number of figures - from assembly to priming and onto painting and varnishing. Typically working in blocks of 96 figures I have been cranking three units out every two weeks when time permits.

The excellent shield transfers are added once the figure has been painted with army dip (my go to process to both shade the figure and strengthen it) and only then is is given a coat of matt varnish.

The figures are mounted 4 to an mdf base which is 40mm x 40mm. The basing is yet to be done and I intend to do this en masse at the end.

With the Greek hoplites almost finished ( I think I have enough figures left to make two more units) attention will turn to the skirmish and light infantry units, cavalry and command stands. 


Drop by again soon

Par 3 of this series can now be found HERE