COE Roman Armies

For the regulars, who stopped by the warren blog this December, may noticed the lack of recent December posts. Even gaming was curtailed for bad weather one weekend here in So. California, and except for two Flames of War games, the month’s time was totally absorbed by the Project. The Project (Roman) was continuance of the Clash of Empires (COE) rules miniature basing and organization effort, started back in 2nd quarter 2018 with the WR’s Chariot era 25/28mm collections, Evenings of planning, organization of miniature units to the Clash of Empires system, glued fingers, worn brushes, trips to the local stiff wire hardware store, and shipping orders arriving on the doorstep, adding to the patio pile of tabletop confusion mentioned in my prior COE miniatures project post. Streamlined now, the quick process results pictured below show the effort involved for six COE Ancient Roman era armies. For background details on the basing, organization, and inventory bookkeeping process, see WR’s previous post:  COE Chariot era armies

The six Ancient Roman Clash of Empires (COE) army collections completed during the Project: Early Rome (Kingdom) & Italian City States, Republican Rome, Late Republican Rome including Caesarian period, Early Imperial Rome, then Middle (2nd / 3rd Century) and Late Imperial Rome armies.

First up is the Early Rome and Italian City State Clash of Empires (COE) collection. These units will fill out the ranks for Rome’s armies or be opponents against the growth of Rome. Still weak in cavalry (or chariots), small tabletop actions like “border” disputes or cattle raids are planned.

Wargamerabbit’s Clash of Empires 25/28mm Early Rome – Italian City States era ancient army collection formed for review as of Dec 2018.

Side view of the Early Rome – Italian City State collection. Italian Greeks at top, Samnites and Romans lower half.

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Ancient & Medieval Siege equipment

Between hours of work on a remodelling and construction project, several Flames of War Eastern Front (Stalingrad 1942) tabletop scenarios, and occasional miniature modelling, WR slowly collected the bits and completed models of his 25/28mm ancient war machines, all scattered about in several ancient and medieval apple box miniature collections. From the unbuilt kits storage shed, additional models were added to the war machine collection, while some old models required repairs and partial fabrication of parts, no doubt from years of use in WR’s youth. Quick paint work and applied thin black wash effect left the only task to base the various war machines and apply the local scenic bushes in typical WR fashion. The current war machine collection pictured below pending the painted 25mm / 28mm crew miniatures…. as soon as WR can locate them:

The entire 25mm / 28mm larger war machine ancients collection displayed and looking for a castle or city wall. Small field army (battlefield) machines like Roman scorpion ballista or stone throwers not shown and retained in their army collection storage boxes..

[l to r] Siege mantlets in front cover the second line of stone throwers and ballista. Next in foreground are battering rams, then above them the large trebuchet. Rear line has a crow, small tower, and boiling oil pitchers. Group of siege ladders in right corner.

Reverse view with the trebuchet and large onager or ballista machines in foreground.

Rear view from the crew’s viewpoint. Siege commander miniature has his own personal mobile tower to direct operations.

As for all WR’s collections, the cut down standardized size apple box with compartmentation are used. Note the second box has an “attic” shelf to store the smaller mantlets and other small equipment and a common feature for some collections.

Warmachine apple storage box A with the larger machines.

Warmachine apple storage box B with the smaller machines. Note the “attic” storage shelf insert and a feature of several of WR’s storage tricks.

The lower level of warmachine box B after removing the “attic” storage shelf insert.

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COE Chariot era Armies

For the regulars who stop by the warren blog, some have noticed the lack of recent posts since March. Even gaming was curtailed for pending miniature projects. Well, the WR has simply been overwhelmed project wise, some of which have caused many evenings of planning, organization of units, glued fingers, worn brushes, trips to the local hardware store, and shipping orders arriving on the doorstep, eagerly adding to the patio pile of tabletop confusion (photos below). Slowly the process became streamlined, the process showed progress, and completion showed the effort involved. What is all this chatter about?… is the dreaded basing, re-basing, organizing and formation structure of WR’s ancient Chariot era armies plus some other smaller projects. Five chariot era ancient armies finally had their day under the patio roof…. on hot days, on cold evenings, and the occasion of rain twice.

Clash of Empires (COE) Egyptian, the Assyrians, the Indians, the Chinese, and the Steppe-Nomad armies are the Chariot era armies for this project. After these armies are completely inventoried, the Classical era Greeks, Republican Rome, Imperial Rome, Persians, Macedonian, Successor period, various minor eastern states (like Palmyra), Barbarian regional huge hordes (various), Carthaginian, Picts will follow with their own projects. Then as time permits the Dark age nations (various), early and late medieval, War of the Roses, and medieval Scots will see work next year…. if WR is still alive.

For many years these stored armies have seen limited service on the tabletop. WR hopes the army collection organization, identify what miniatures are painted and based, form units to standard Clash of Empires (COE) organizational unit size, and inventory the unpainted lead (some plastic) miniatures with spreadsheets (.xls) covering all the collections, will lead to more ancient games with the local ancients gamer group. That is the hope and target future goal for this effort. Plus identity what needs to be painted!

The process of organization and inventory. Pictured is the Chinese army undergoing the multi-step ten stage process outlined below in the article.

A side view of the Chinese army undergoing the review and organizational process with work table upper right. Stacks of apple boxes (storage) form the backdrop.

So the Clash of Empires army organization basing and inventory project process had a multi-step (1 to 10 stage) format done for each Chariot era army:

(1) Lay out the miniatures and form Clash of Empires (COE) ancient army units based from the rules and list parameters. Typically infantry are 20-30 miniatures for three rank massed formations, cavalry 8-12 miniatures for single rank formation, and skirmisher units 8-14 miniatures formed as loose formations.

(2) Base or glue the loose individual miniatures on their 20mm x 20mm bases (infantry), 25mm x 50mm (cavalry), or larger sizes for special units like elephants, field artillery, or chariots. Most of the basing is standard for the common rules sets in print, including WAB, Hail Caesar, and other non element rules. The individual miniatures are maneuvered on the tabletop using textured sabot trays sized for the formation footprint. Basing included gluing the miniature to the base, then apply putty to build up the base and hide the miniature base footprint. Note that complete miniature units stored in pre-determined sealed OEM bags or boxes are not opened and based pending their actual scheduled painting. Just the loose unpainted miniatures are based for this stage.

(3) Paint… really stain the putted base to a common brown background look.

(4) Dip or brush on a brown or black wash to give some depth and contrast to the miniatures. Only the painted miniatures has this treatment then allowed to quickly dry (except on the rainy days).

(5) Glue a light dusting of fine Woodlands Scenics green or earth blend flocking material with additional fine stones or other color textures to each painted miniature base. The unpainted miniature omitted this step pending their paintwork.

(6) Apply a texture clump of flocking material to decorate the basing. Glue a small piece of Woodland Scenics clump material to roughly half the painted infantry bases or all the painted cavalry and artillery bases. WR did only half the infantry unit bases to avoid a look of massed “bushes” in the unit miniature formation.

(7) Create an excel spreadsheet (.xls) for each army (example spreadsheet below). The spreadsheet has unit numbering slots 1 to 100 with pre-grouped numbers for each type of general unit. The numbering somewhat organizes the unit numbering across all armies. the numbers are assigned out in groups: 1-10 Leadership or Icon units or single miniatures, 11-30 close order cavalry units, 31-40 open order or skirmisher cavalry units, 41-50 chariots, elephants or unique cavalry / infantry units, 50-80 close order infantry units, 81-90 skirmisher infantry units, and 91-00 artillery etc.. The actual unit identity number in reality doesn’t matter in theory as the number is truly a unique number for each unit.

(8) Write down each unit to the army spreadsheet with identifying color, # of painted miniatures in unit, # of unpainted miniatures based in present unit, required miniatures to complete the unit (future purchase), and generic notes including the miniature company manufacturer if known.

(9) Write the unit number with a gold fine marker on rear base edge or bottom side of base (larger bases). By doing this action every unit has an identifying unit number and ease of returning the individual miniatures to the original unit formation, and more importantly, anyone can return the miniatures to the correct labelled storage box location (slotted space in storage apple boxes) without WR direct involvement. Complete unpainted miniature units still in their box or plastic OEM bag are still labelled on the box or bag with black marker unit number.

(10) Lay out the ancient army into the storage cut down apple boxes, construct cardboard gridded zones for each unit based upon unit size. Then label each unit storage gridded zone to match the previously determined unit identifying number. Finally create a unique nationalistic box label to identify each nation’s storage boxes for quick visual locating in the storage shed. Continue reading

Armee d’Orient paraded

During the 1990’s various gaming and modeling magazines publish articles on the French republican wars, especially on the French Armee d’Orient. Viewing the crazy patchwork of colors and uniform styles for the Kleber period army, WR decided to paint up several units, eventually leading to the near completion of the infantry component. WR decided to hold off on painting the cavalry regiments (dragoons, chasseur, and hussar) till his French Republican army takes final shape, since the cavalry can be used for both era armies. The artillery uniform was basically unchanged so WR uses his artillerymen miniatures from the French Republican collection to man the cannon in Egypt.

Totals 325 miniatures now, almost all painted 25mm Dixon broken down as 309 foot, 16 dromedaries, and General Bonaparte himself at army headquarters. Still have a few minor units to paint; the French Guides and Chasseurs unit for one, the French Ottoman (Syrian) unit, and local France inspired locals. Photos of collection below…. click on to enlarge and again on the photo size coding highlighted for full screen.


The complete 25mm Armee d’Orient infantry collection paraded. Miniatures from the 1990’s Dixon line.

WR’s collection has ten Demi-Brigades of infantry each of three battalions (10 DB of 3×6 miniatures), four Demi-Brigades Legere (4 DBL of 3×6 miniatures), converged battalion of Esclarieurs (1×7), Legion Nautical (ex sailors 1×8), Legion Greek (1×5), Legion Coptic (1×5) and Legion Maltese (1×5). The region specific cavalry or dromedaries is six miniatures. For small-scale desert skirmisher actions, WR painted some DB mounted camel infantry detachments (2×5). Army headquarters has a small sapper group and engineer officer. Each Demi-Brigade has their regimental or battalion cannoneers miniature for attaching battalion cannon.


View from right flank showing 88th DB, 85 DB, 75th DB, 69th DB, 61st, 32nd DB, 25th Demi-Brigades (r to l) in order. Each DB has three battalions of six miniatures.


View from left flank showing 2nd DBL, 4th DBL, 9th DB, 13th DB, 18th, 21st DBL, 22nd DBL (l to r). Each Demi-Brigade (or Legere) has three battalions of  six miniature each plus their cannoneers miniature.

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Kingdom of Italy paraded

My Kingdom of Italy army, commanded by the Viceroy Eugene himself, has a long history with WR, both on the tabletop and during several 1809 and 1812 historical simulation miniature campaigns. Sordid tales from the past attempt to explain why WR started painting this army… too many bottles of Chianti drunk… too much pasta eaten… frozen ravioli stuck on the regimental miniature flag pole to represent Italian units… couldn’t paint another blue coated Frenchman “fever” back in years past… take you pick. WR thinks the last reason has the best explanation but which napoleonic era wargamer cannot have a division of those green and white coats. So, it is time to parade the Kingdom of Italy army to the WR readers.

Grand view of my Northern Italian army circa 1808-1812.

Grand view of my Kingdom if Italy or Northern Italian army circa 1808-1812.

The Kingdom of Italy 1808-1814 army…. KOI for short, is complete except for a few 1813 era line regiments. The majority of the army covers the epic invasion of Russia time period (1811-1812), where the majority of this fine army perished in the Russian campaign. Moments of glory, like the battlefields of Borodino and Malo-Jaroslawitz (Maloyaroslavets), mainly suffered just like the larger French army from hunger, long marches, and frozen “pasta” weather. Continue reading

1809 Germanic Insurrection paraded

Why would someone paint these 1809 units? Well, the answer comes from several reasons. First, WR had some extra Brunswick miniatures from the 1815 era Brunswick army so a brief search of the Brunswick reading material zeroed in on the 1809 campaign. Those 25mm Minifig Leib guardsmen miniatures cover many possible unit projects so was a quick rabbit brainer. Second, WR has his Westphalian army and the 1809 actions of Jerome are, to say the least, interesting reading (see John Gill’s 1809 book noted below) in relation to these rebellions and raiders, Third, we have a tie in with the 1807 Danish army, which recently WR finally completed, but WR had a Danish infantry brigade all along. Fourth, WR expects he is the only rabbit on the local block with such a collection of oddball 1809 units, or in other words, miniature ownership status in low places… out by the trash cans, as these units truly act the part on the tabletop.

Herzog Friedrich Wilhelm von Braunschweig-Oels.

Herzog Friedrich Wilhelm von Braunschweig-Oels.

Die Schwarze Schar: WR’s black clad horde has the classical feel of the later 1815 era Brunswick corps but smaller in scale. Three battalions of line infantry plus one “hasty raised” battalion during the march from POW’s and “on the march” impressed recruit drive. Leading the German state tour was the Hussar regiment with a puny detachment of uhlans glued to their side. The Austrians supplied a small contingent of artillery (2x 6 pdr and 2x 7 pdr howitzers) for the Black horde to use. In general, the basic uniforms were similar to the 1815 era except for the Scharfschutzen company and the unlan squadron dressed in green.

WR’s force consists of: The classic nearly all black Hussar regiment (1×8), the ulhan squadron (1×1), 3 battalions of black clothed infantry (3×6), the recruit battalion (1×6), the Scharfschutzen company (1×2), and a small “horse in name only” battery of 4 cannon. Black raider corps headquarters (the Black Duke himself) with 2 ADC’s round out the Die Schwarze Schar. Continue reading

Danish Army paraded

Back in the late 70’s, WR had two and a half regiments of Danish infantry painted (nine battalions). A small brigade for the tabletop conflicts fought within the gaming group during the 70’s and 80’s. Years later, during the late 90’s, WR added some light infantry (jager or sharpshooter) battalions, cavalry regiments, and foot artillery batteries to create a small divisional sized command. Finally, back in YR2013, WR finally dragged out the collected unpainted Danish lead pile (box), and spent time painting all the miniatures previously organized for my Danish collection (even swiped some infantry from the unpainted Swedes). Like my Westphalian army recently posted, the Danish are mostly classical 25mm Minifigs and Hinchcliffe since they were the miniatures readily available back then. The Danish Corps sized army now can proudly enter the tabletop battlefield with their red coats, hot red cannon carriages, and those Bosniak ulhans.

Danish army fully deployed for battle.

Danish army fully deployed for battle. Grown since the old days of nine battalions.

As can be seen in the photos, the Danish army has grown to a full corps of infantry, cavalry and artillery. Mostly painted with the pre-1808 uniform, WR does have several regiments in the later regulation 1808 French styled shako. Currently, the army has the following painted regiments, battalions and batteries:

Headquarters:  Corp commander and his headquarter base with two hussar ADC’s, five divisional level commanders, a pioneer detachment (1×3), and engineer officer. Engineer officers perform tasks on our tabletop battles so commonly found attached to headquarters.

Infantry: The Danish guard is represented by the single battalion of the King’s Liv Garde. The line regiments painted include: Funen I.R., Oldenburg I.R., Queens I.R., Holstein I.R., 1st Jutland I.R., Prinz Frederick I.R., King’s I.R., and Liv I.R.  All are four battalions of seven miniatures each (4×7) in strength. Each battalion has one elite company miniature, the 1st battalion with the Grenadier co., the other three battalions with one rifle armed chasseur co. each. Up till 1808, the line regiments had only two battalions. In 1808 the army was expanded to have four battalion I.R., the extra soldiers generally drafted from the disbanded militia battalions raised in 1807. The newly raised battalions generally wore the new french styled shako, especially from 1812 onwards, but WR has them in the older (ex militia) headgear. Alongside the line regiments are three jager or sharpshooter corps of two battalions each (2×6) and WR’s favorite, the King’s Liv Jager corps (former volunteer unit from the 1807 campaign) at a strength of two smaller battalions (2×5). The jager corps of Schleswig, Zealand Sharpshooter corps, and the Holstein Sharpshooter corps. Last to include with the regulars is the Marine regiment (1×7), commonly found defending the naval base at Copenhagen. Landwehr or militia strength has twelve battalions (12×5) plus an unusual two battalions made from converged elite co’s of the militia battalions.. Two groups from the North and South Zealand militia raised for the brief 1807 British invasion. They were the forces that the future Lord Wellington defeated at the battle of Koge. Lastly, being that Norway is part of Denmark during the napoleonic period, WR has a few Norwegian militia battalions to defend Norway from the Swedish intrigue.

Cavalry: The small Liv Garde of horse regiment (1×2) completes the Danish guard. The heavy horse regiment are represented by the Liv, Zealand and Holstein regiments (3×5). Danish light cavalry includes the Hussar regiment (1×5), Jutland light dragoons (1×4), Funen light dragoons (1×4) and the battlefield favorite child, the Bosniak uhlan squadron (1×2).

Artillery: 12lb reserve positional battery, four-foot 6lb batteries, two foot 3lb batteries, a small converged howitzer battery and two 3lb horse artillery batteries. Danish batteries tended to be 10 cannon in size and still used 3lb cannon late in the napoleonic wars.

Right flank view of the Danish army.

Right flank view of the Danish army.

Left flank view of the Danish army.

Left flank view of the Danish army.

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Westphalian Army paraded

Back in the late 70’s, WR painted up his Westphalian 1809-1813 era army. Westphalia was the first “Corps level” army completely finished in WR’s napoleonic era collection. The paint work has stood the tests of time while the miniatures have won & lost many tabletop actions. Mostly 25mm Minifigs and Hinchcliffe since they were the miniatures readily available back then during the 70’s.

Headquarters: Corp commander (Jerome) and his headquarter base with three ADC’s, three divisional level commanders, and a pioneer (sapper) detachment (1×3) with engineer officer.

Infantry: The Westphalian guard infantry has the Garde Grenadier btn. (1×8), the Garde Jager-Karabinier btn. (1×5) and Garde Chasseur btn. (1×7). Lastly, the Garde brigade has the Fusilier regiment (2×6) raised in 1812.

Line regiments are painted in two uniform time periods, 1809 and 1812. WR liked the different facing colors of the 1809 era, before the uniform change of all dark blue facing for 1812 era uniforms. All eight line regiments are present for tabletop duty, each having three battalions and attached regimental artillery marker (3×6+1). Three Legere battalions, painted in their dark green uniforms (3×6) plus two National guard battalions (2×4) complete the regular infantry.

Cavalry: Jerome’s “pets”, the Garde du Korps squadron, has attached the Westphalian Gendarmerie squadron (1×2). Military police to keep in check the palace rowdies. Jerome’s Hussars of ex-Frenchmen (1×5, later the 13th French hussars) and the Garde Chevau-legers (1×4) complete the Westphalian guard cavalry.

Line cavalry regiments include: 1st and 2nd Kuirassier regiments, 1st and 2nd Hussar regiments, and finally the two chevau-leger regiments which WR painted with the 1811 era lances. All regiments have five miniatures on strength.

Artillery: Reserve 12lb battery, four 6lb foot artillery batteries, garde 6lb horse battery, and a 4lb line horse battery. All batteries are six cannon each except for the reserve 12lb with 8 cannon.

Westphalian napoleonic army paraded for review.

Westphalian napoleonic army paraded for review by Jerome.

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List of Paraded Armies

The following is the initial list of WR’s historical painted armies reviewed on Wargamerabbit. Reviewed armies, with photos and commentary notes, have direct blue links below with more linked material to add in future posts. As for almost all the photos on Wargamerabbit, the individual photo, if clicked on, can be enlarged to full size or enhanced detail (2MB, 2272 x 1704).

Post updated with new links:  Updated 03/01/2016

Ancients to Medieval (25/28mm):  Pending reviews on Anglo-Saxon,  Assyrian, Carthage,  Celtic,  Chinese,  Egyptian,  Germanic,  Greek,  Indian,  Irish,  Japanese,  Macedon,  Nomadic Steppes,  Norman,  Persia,  Pict,  Rome (various eras),  Successors,  War of the Roses.

French Revolutionary Wars (25/28mm):  Pending reviews on Austria,  Batavia Republic,  Army of Conde (Royalist),  British Empire (till 1800),  France Revolution (till 1800), French Armee d’Orient,  Indian Princes,  Northern Italian (till 1800),  North African states,  Ottoman,  Polish Legions (Italy),  Prussia (till 1807),  Russia (till 1807),  Sardinia 1790’s,  Saxony (till 1809),  Vendee Revolt,  Wurttemberg (till 1800).

Imperial Napoleonic (25/28mm): Baden,  Kleve-Berg,  Brunswick,  Denmark,  Hanover + KGL, H.E.I.C,  Hesse-Kassel,  Kingdom of Italy,  Portugal,  Confederation Rhine States,  Sardinia 1814,  Westphalia, 1809 Germanic Insurrection.

Pending reviews on: Austria,  Bavaria,  British Empire,  Duchy of Warsaw,  Dutch-Beligan 1815,  Hesse-Darmstadt,  Holland,  Joseph’s Afrancesados,  Naples,  Prussia,  Russia,  Saxony,  South American,  Spain,  Sweden (Finland),  United States, Wurttemberg,

Flames of War 20mm WWII (20mm): Pending reviews on British Empire,  China,  France,  Germany,  Italy,  Japan,  Minor Powers,  Russia,  United States. Vietnam collection too.

Other Periods:  Pending reviews on Modern Naval (1/3000), WWI aerial, TYW & ECW (15mm),  American Civil War (15mm),  Boxer Rebellion (28mm). Battlefield Evolution (near future 28mm). 

Lots to do. WR will be busy in the coming “years” cataloguing his collections..


Honorable East India Company (H.E.I.C.)

This month WR journeys to the subcontinent and reviews the favored troops of the Honorable East India Company (H.E.I.C.) along with some Maratha supporters. The H.E.I.C. army is organized along the historical three Presidencies of Madras, Bengal, and Bombay and is pictured deployed in lines of each Presidency.

Generally all the infantry battalions are 1×6 miniatures unless noted. Artillery batteries have 6 cannon basing and the British light dragoons are 4 miniatures (4 sqn.) strength. Native Infantry (N.I.) or sepoys form the majority of the army and have two battalions per regiment. Note: We use a 100:1 miniature gaming scale for the group battles. Napoleonic Game Primer

Madras Presidency: Madras European regiment, 4th N.I., 8th N.I., 12th N.I. (Light 2×7), 13th N.I., Madras “Extra battalion” (1×5), Madras Volunteer rifles.

Bengal Presidency: Bengal European regiment, 1st N.I., 10th N.I., 12th N.I.

Bombay Presidency: Bombay European regiment, Bombay N.I. Grenadiers (1×6), 2nd N.I., 3rd N.I., 13th N.I., Bombay marines (1×5), 1st Nasiri (Gurkha) battalion.

Common artillery for the Presidencies is 5x 6lb foot batteries, a horse battery, and the hard-hitting 24 lb elephant towed siege battery. Various artillery crews and native artillerymen man the cannon. Note that each N.I. regiment has regimental artillery attached (artillerymen miniature behind each regiment). Three “Irregular” or local native battalions march with the H.E.I.C. army. They are the Ramgarh local light infantry battalion (1×9), the Calcutta native militia (1×9), and the Bengal native regiment (1×9).

Attached are Crown troops: 74th Regiment of Foot, 19th Light Dragoons and 26th Light Dragoons.

H.E.I.C army overview.

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