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Seleucid

My first DBM army was Later Hungarian and so for my second I wanted an army with elements I wasn't used to playing.  It had to be a different period so I can enter more a broader range of themed competitions. Because painting is as much of a hobby for me as playing, I didn't want masses of the same troop type. I wanted as much as I can that I dont get access to with the Hungarians: camels, elephants, artillery, cataphracts, pike, warband, naval, chariots and fast knights. The answer... Seleucid!

Below are all of my Seleucid troops however mixed thoughout are additional elements I have added, firstly to enable the fielding of a decent sized aitolian ally for the Seleucids, and secondly to morph the army into an Asiatic Early Successor Army led by none other than  Demetrios Poliktretes "Beseiger of Citites"

Mounted

The period I have selected is Late Seleucid. This was because I wanted cataphracts, naval, superior elephants, warband and artillery- all of which are only available to later period Seleucid armies. The Cataphract Commander in Chief... Antiochus III Eupator.

My cataphracts are all Essex and are a mix of Seleucid, Parthian, Armenien, Roman and Sassanid. My problem was that none of these had a general figure that would stand out. Museum do a Parthian cataphract general but they are smaller than Essex and it would look like the king had the mangiest lice-ridden nag of the lot.

I had bought a pack of xyston Greek mounted generals and although they were on unarmoured horses and lightly armoured themselves I thought I could use one for my general. An Armenian cataphract was decapitated for the cause and I cut the body away from one of the generals until the two fit together. The handy thing is that all of the scrappy cutting work is under the cloak so you really cant see the butchery.

The figures have all been respeared with steel xyston pikes cut to size.

In the last pic you can just see some of the detail on one of the elephants, which sometimes ride with the knights.

The fast knights are also Essex (Seleucid extra heavy cavalry) however the subgeneral is another of the xyston mounted Greek generals. Although the human figure was fine to mix in with the rest the horse was completely unarmoured so modifications were necessary. Both the front bronze horse breastplate and the feather crest are made of cardboard cut and bent into shape.

At this time period only 2 non-general fast knights are allowable- one unit of companions and one for the agema. I have distinguished the two by cloak colour. The Companions have the royal purple. So far these figures have avoided the spaghetti spear syndrome however I may respear them as I did the cataphracts.

 

Since the first lot of Fast Knights above Xyston have released Macedonian generals and Persian Xystophoroi.  Couldnt help myself here so got them instead.  Now only both essex and xyston fast knights get onto the table if I am running the Seleucids Early and need more than 3 non general knights.

 

For Demetrios' army I also needed some Irregualr Cavalry.  I cant remember exactly what these guys are called but they are all from Xyston.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Again a left-over general rounds out the figs to the multiple of three that I need.

 

 

 

 

 

Bedouin are also available to the Seleucids. I have two ordinary camel units and one unit of skirmishers (inferior light horse). Figs are all museum and although they are my preferred camel figures are too long for a 30mm deep base. I toyed with the idea of basing them on chariot bases but in the end trimmed the bases as much as possible then disjointed the rearmost foot from the base and bent it forwards to just fit on the base.

Its takes careful alignment of the figs to make sure they will rank up in column formation but it can be done.

I think my camel scouts must have stolen thier shields from some lost Zulus.

The other light horse that I have are the fast LH skythian horse archers and ordinary city militia. I thought I was in for a boring time with these guys as I had already done a pile of Cuman LH for my Hungarians but after reading through Duncan Head's Armies of the Macedonian and Punic Wars I realised that these chaps were actually pretty snappy dressers. Accordingly they get the fancy-pants and stripey shirt treatment.

 

 

In order to field an Aitolian Ally I needed a Light horse general and two Tarantines.  Here a left over chap from my Xyston Mounted Greek general pack came in handy.  The Tarantines are essex.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I tried to give the tarantines

 

 

Although I can have up to three superior elephants I have only done one two so far. the one on the right of the pic is an Irregular successor elephant with a xyston Hellenistic Thracian in support. I also added a long lance for one crew member and drilled out a second hole to give the javelin thrower a second shot.

The other elephant is gladiator or corvus belli, I cant remember which.

Expendables

Here we have Essex Seleucid expendables. I prefer the Essex horses and driver although the Donnington chariot base is less plain. If I got inspired I might have glued additional crossbeams to the front of the chariot body but it was fiddly enough.My charioteers are very style conscious as their primary concern over horse choice is having a consistent colour. Ive only got two chariots done so far (perhaps another one will make a showing if the others do well after practice games).I didn't like the type of scythe blades that came with the model (the ones that have two arcing up and out from each wheel that would spin with the axle. I prefer the bent forward knifing design. As such I ditched the old one and made up my own out of brass wire. After a couple of tries it worked much better to do it all with one piece of wire bending the middle section into a yoke for all 4 horses then bending the ends out to the side and forwards.

Then smashing the bejesus out of the blade-to-be's, a bit of work with the tin snips and bobs your uncle! I also had to file down the blades to smooth off the rough edges. They hang over the base edge somewhat so I may have to trim them down further but for now I'll just have to let them go impetuous sooner so they don't decapitate my own troops alongside them.

The reins were made from dental floss. Now there is a new slogan for Oral B-
" It prevents decay... AND steers your chariot". I cut the floss in half longways as it was too broad across and painted it up.

Heavy foot

 

The backbone of the heavy foot are the pike. I have done 8 elements of ordinary pike & 4 sliver shields so far but may flesh this out with more ordinary and 8 superior argyraspids but it will mean dropping some other units I like to use. Since the first two pics here Ive finally got round to putting something on the argyraspid and chalkaspid shields.  Twelve of these are th minimum required for Demetrios so they double up in either role.

The other heavy foot are the super-looney Galatians (superior warband). These figs are xyston Hellenistic Celts. Usually these four would be ranked up, lurking in the pike block where the pike subgeneral can keep them on a short leash.I couldn't resist a short bout of Asterix fixation when painting these guys.

I only ever see the back of them commanding them in games (unless of course they become demoralised). I don't think they actually get demoralised though, they just forget which side pays for their beer, wenches and lice-powder.

The Seleucids round out their numbers with masses of rubbish asiatic hordes. Here they are in all three guises.

Irregular inferior Bow

Irregular ordinary psiloi archers and slingers

Irregular horde protecting the baggage

Hoplites are available to Demetrios.  Seen here are 6 regular and 6 irregular available to me so far

Light infantry

The Thracians were the first foot I painted for this army and are still my favorites. The figs are a mix of two varieties of Xyston Hellenistic thracians- with spear, and with rhompaia (sic). If the army ever gets demoralised its rarely due to a failure on the thracian' part. You can only get three of them but they are gold.

Theophori and Thorakitai: two of these are mandatory. Until decent models were available I used macedonian hypapsists. Now that Xyston have released models for one type Ive done three elements and have 3 more on the way so they can be used as a significant stike arm through rough going.

When fielding an Aitolian Ally I use all of these guys as the two blue sheilds are used as the Seleucid manadatory AxS while the Theophoroi make up the numbers in the Aitolian command.

 

City militia foot provide regular inferior auxillia- which are not really worth it in dbm3.1 when you can taek kapadokians for the same price.

They are now only used as reg AxO under Demetrios.

 

There are four regular Cretan archer mercenary elements of Psiloi (O). All of these are Museum Cretan archers. One day I might drybrush their hair so its not all black but have moved on since painting them so I will have to come back at some stage..

 

The Kappadokian hillmen round out the ranks of both the auxillia and the psiloi.

Naval

Here is the lembi (Bts I) from the list. One day it will be jam packed full of hillmen Psiloi (S) their normal embarked troop type. Now I know that this model is probably more like an Inferior Ship model as it has a deck but it looks cheap and nasty when compared to the war galleys and I really like the model so I'll have just cope with purist's

The bases were painted midnight blue then had wood glue thickly applied to the surface. When its half dry I attack it with a popstick to form waves & swells- as well as a bit of a wake out the back. In this model Ive brushed white over the crests but have yet to do some foam along the hull. The last step will be to wash the entire bass with watered down blue ink then a quick dry brush of the wave crests with white once more. That's the plan anyway so once it is done I will post a second complete shot for comparison.

For those unfamiliar with the scale Ive put a match next to this one to demonstrate.

The rigging for all ships was done with brown cotton. Its too poor quality as when you get close you can see the fluff hanging off the sides. If I get inspired I might rerig all of the galleys with surgical thread.

Here is the deck shot of the largest galley in the fleet. You can make out the two types of crew here. The sailors are in white while the marines are painted with bronze helmets and silver shields and spears. Its a little hard to see but the camera I have doesn't focus when I photograph any closer than this.

A seagulls eye view of the corvus and deck.

All of the naval pics above were taken before I had completed painting. The sea bases were only half done but seeing as the half way point is viewable I'll elaborate on how I did the bases:

- Paint the base mid blue
- When dry cover the base in PVA glue (not too thick)
- leave if for a half hour or so and when half dry sweep across the base with a matchstick to form troughs and wave crests remembering to put in a wake at the rear of the hull and oars.
- paint the wave crests white
- paint over the entire base with blue ink or watered down deep blue paint
- lightly touch up the wave crests to form white caps

 

Since my first 4 elements I've finished the other two galleys and a Boat X.  I did these in a different colour scheme so that I could use them in an opposing navy if I need to be able to field two at once at some time.

My regular army list has 1 boat, 2 G(O) and 1 Gal(S). Three is the minimum to get the compulsory waterway when invading in DBM but I add in the fourth because I wouldn't want to leave any behind.

 

Left is one of the main reasons I morphed My Seleucids in the direction of Demetrios.  Lovely BtX made by Xyston Miniatures.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Four story seige tower with crew and artillery at each level.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Superior artillery in the crows nest is something to write home about.  The crew are 2mm tall.  I've tried to do hair on these moonfaced little Burt Newton lookalikes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When the Artillery Naval dont get a geurnsey and have to deploy on land this little rippa is what they enemy face.  I know its not a stonethrower but is suitable large enough that none ever mistakes it for anything other than superior artillery.

The element has had a little accident in the box on the way to a comp as you can see from the chipped paint herre and there but for now there's far more other lead priorities.