Remember me? I’m the Force Focus series. All the way back in January you met the Seleucid infantry and I promised a follow-up. Well, here we are. Today we’re going to meet the cavalry contingent. Now, if you remember the “whole army” shot from the previous blog post then you might be forgiven for wondering how I can make a whole post out of 1 unit. I wondered the same thing but keep the faith!
First a note: I’m building this army for the Warmaster: Ancients rules (I know that there are limits to what information I can repeat from the rules/army lists but hopefully I can carefully skirt around any issues)and am basing and organising it as such. This may cause issues if I choose to use other systems but for now I haven’t found one I prefer. The only exception to this might be Kallistra’s hex based rules which my son enjoys and works on 4 bases to a unit rather than 3, I’ll cope with that!
Warmaster: Ancients terms both Agema and Companion Cavalry to be “Guard Cavalry”. In game terms these are the hard hitting shock cavalry and limited to one 1 unit per 1000 points. This becomes quite a significant expenditure when you consider the minimums you have buy in every 1000 points and so should retain their status of elite and not commonplace.
Other than the prominent bases the only other issue with these guys is my mistake in how they are based. As shock cavalry they should be facing the short edge of the base. There are alternative rules for using long edge facing shock cavalry but I’d rather be consistent.
Author’s Opinion: I have something of a love/hate relationship with Rapier’s models. They are anatomically beautiful with deep detailing and really clear to paint but this leads them to taking up more space on the base than other 6mm models. They also have a rather thick base which is difficult to hide and makes mixing manufacturers tricky. However, if you can get past these, quite frankly tiny, niggles then the models really are very nice.
Models: Baccus AMA06
A more standard cavalry unit, the mounted equivalent of the phalanx, these must be included in every 1000 points and there’s no set limit on how many you can take (other than points cost of course!). They are only slightly weaker than the Guard Cavalry and are still shock cavalry. For these I am using Thessalian cavalry though these are an Alexandrian unit, most likely the heavy cavalry would have been Politikoi and Nisaean.
Right now I don’t have any painted up but they are undercoated and on the painting table (sadly along with many other things…). I’ll post pictures when they leap to the front of the queue! (I nearly said “edit this post” but I’m not doing that.. you get chronological content from me now!)
Models: Baccus AMA15
Tarantine cavalry armed with javelins, less armour but the ability to skirmish while still packing a punch in combat. What’s not to love?
I don’t have any of these yet (I was sure I had some somewhere, I’m sure I’ll find them when I order some more!) but I can see them being a numerous portion of the army.
Parthians! Well what else would I use for horse archers? Historically these could well have been Parthian or any of the other surrounding peoples so why not. What is there to say other than no armour, pretty terrible in combat and limited to 1 unit per 1000 points. Bows! Missile fire may not be devastating in WMA but it plays an important role and skirmishing mounted archers open up a lot of options on the battlefield.
I have a fair few of the Rapier models which were part of the 500pt starter set. Again, usual pros and cons, thick bases, not easy to rank up though in the case of skirmishers it hardly matters. The benefit here is that the models will serve just as well in either force and I do intend to put together a full Parthian force to oppose the Seleucids, along with an early Republican Roman army (pre-Marian).
Models: Baccus ACE09
Celtic Light Cavalry, that’s it, he really has gone mad this time! The paint fumes have finally got to the boy, or have they? Take a closer look. I came across these in my search for, much to Peter’s continued amusement, Dothraki Screamers. Armed with javelins rather than bows (compared to the horse archers above) these have a shorter range and are cheaper for it, you can also take more of them per 1000 points.
Sadly at this point another one to add to the “I don’t have them yet” list.
Models: Baccus CMA04
Now look, you’re really taking the Michael now aren’t you? Colonial Era? Yes, but they are guys on camels with spears. No rifles, no modern (relative) equipment. These guys are spot on for Camelry! (I love that word)
In historical terms these represent the Arabic cavalry that fought at Magnesia. Gaming wise these are an upgrade to light cavalry for only one unit in an entire army which reduces their attack (can’t see a reason why) but also brings in the “camel” special rules. These rules are very impressive and can really cause problems for your opponent (and allies!).
Oh, we’re back to Macedonian style models are we, I was starting to worry! So I’ve bundled these together as really a cataphract is a cataphract is a cataphract. It’s a very heavily armoured guy on a horse, unless someone wants to educate me on the differences through time and space? The standard cataphract is a paid upgrade of the heavy cavalry and, you guessed it, the guard cataphract is an upgrade of the guard cavalry. This adds more armour and unsurprisingly makes them slow.
These I do have! Well, I have some of the Rapier ones, again from the Parthian starter pack. In this unit I’ve taken 1 of the 3 command models and placed them at the front of each of the bases. This is a touch that I really quite like, especially since WMA doesn’t distinguish “command bases” within units.
And so that’s it.