Impetus Parthians and more

Just about recovering from last weeks late nights and the round trip to Sheffield to the Joy of Six. As you will be aware from this blog and the forums we tried to get an Impetus tournament off the ground. As such Ken (Pilgrim) wanted to take part and wanted to play a Parthian army. I scratched around in my boxes to discover somewhere in the past I had bought a 1,000 point Warmaster army from Rapier – sorted with a few additions in the form of Persian Takabara javelinmen to constitute the hill tribes. The list was drawn up to 350 points using the as yet unpublished Parthian list that I was kindly sent (Parthians_Impetus_350_1).

A couple of nights spent cleaning up the models and 5 evenings painting saw the army done. Another couple of evenings saw them based. At between 1 and 3 hours an evening the whole army was painted start to finish in around 18 hours – 11 bases and 3 command teams. As I plan to do a number of forces I decided to avoid confusion by doing each army in a theme or colour. For the Parthians I chose blue as the uniting army colour. Using a variety of colours would be more interesting but my prime aim was to avoid confusion on the battlefield especially where I am painting both sides with the potential for similar troops. Here is the finished product :-

The Army, the larger village base acting as ‘baggage camp’

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The Light Horse Archers

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The Cataphracts

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The Hill Tribes with Javelin

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The Commander

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Very tidy figures to paint quickly and effectively. Rapier saw them at the JoS and are now rumored to be considering revisiting their ancient ranges with a view to additional poses especially for the horse archers to help create a little more motion on bases. Further to discussion with Ken I shall be adding in some more Hill Tribes to create a bit more variety and the list he latterly suggested. Possibly even expand the army up to a three command 400 then 500 point army.

Painting Guide – Parthian Cataphracts

Undercoat – Halfords Grey primer, horses then block painted v150 German Camouflage Black Brown, Black Wash

Barding and rider armour – v 175 Bronze, and ‘elite’ riders/commanders v179 Gunmetal Grey

Helmets – v175 Bronze to lower half lames, v 179 Gunmetal Grey to skull bowl

Horses – Standard selection of browns tending to the darker colours including nuzzles and ears.

Flesh – v021 Medium Fleshtone

Beards – v 169 Black

Chest Surcoat, and banner – v130 Amarantha Red

Kontos shaft – v143 Flat Earth

Cloaks – v053 Dark Blue, drybrushed v065 Andrea Blue

Shoes and reigns – v127 Ochre Brown

Commander helmet plume – v029 Red.

The ‘elite’ unit I did with chainmail riders armour, white plume for the commander, and yellow banner.

W&N Nutbrown Wash, Scorched Brown base, varnish

Painting Guide – Parthian Horse Archers

Undercoat – Halfords Grey primer, horses then block painted v150 German Camouflage Black Brown, Black Wash

Horses – Standard selection of browns

Saddle blanket – v130 Amaranth Red

Shirts – v053 Dark Blue, drybrushed v065 Andrea Blue

Trousers – v110 Deck Tan

Flesh – v021 Medium Fleshtone

Moustaches – v 169 Black

Bows – v134 USA Tan Earth

Boots – v143 Flat Earth

Reigns – v127 Ochre Brown

Hats – v121 Yellow Ochre

W&N Nutbrown Wash, Scorched Brown base, varnish

Painting Guide – Parthian Archers

Undercoat – Halfords Grey primer, Black Wash

Tunics – v053 Dark Blue, drybrushed v065 Andrea Blue

Trousers – v110 Deck Tan

Boots – v143 Flat Earth

Flesh – v021 Medium Fleshtone

Bows – v126 Ochre Brown

Quivers – v130 Amarantha Red

Headband – v001 White

Hair – v169 Black

W&N Nutbrown Wash, Scorched Brown base, varnish

Parthian Light Infantry Javelinmen

Undercoat – Halfords Grey primer, Black Wash

Tunics – v053 Dark Blue, drybrushed v065 Andrea Blue

Trousers – v110 Deck Tan

Boots – v143 Flat Earth

Flesh – v021 Medium Fleshtone

Javelin shafts – v126 Ochre Brown

Quivers – v130 Amarantha Red

Bows – v136 USA Tan Earth

Shields and fletches – v001 White

Headgear – v136 Red Leather

Horn, Standard, commander shield boss – v174 Brass

Javelin heads – v178 Natural Steel

W&N Nutbrown Wash, gentle wipe over shields with tissue to lift off and preserve white a bit better, Scorched Brown base.

Quick retouch v 001 White on shields, add shield designs.

Varnish

In preparation for the JoS I also cobbled together a 350 point Early Imperial Roman army (EIRoman_Impetus_350_1). The premise was they were on Parthian soil and hence the army was tailored to having some counter aspects to the masses of horse archers they would be facing. The only thing missing was some Armenian allies. Keen to keep this army essentially a Baccus incarnation I had another rummage and came up with some Sarmatians who make splendid stand ins for the one base of cataphracts and two bases of horse archers I needed. I did replace all the lead Kontos with pins for a bit more durability. All three units took around 2 hours to paint. The variation in the horse archers gives a little more movement and action on the bases compared to their Rapier counterparts – I like them both for different reasons. I am currently working on some army specific figures so will go into more detail in a future post.

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….. and a final thing was the Normans which was going to be the initial ‘loan’ army. 300 points worth have been painted but did not get to basing as my time was channeled into the Parthians and Romans. I plan to expand the force to at least 350 if not 400/500 before I base these, and then it will be onto a Saxon army to oppose them…

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Leven Miniatures and The Joy of Six

Well, 24 hours left before I need to pack for the trip to Sheffield for the Joy of Six. What a hectic 24 hrs I have ahead! Sadly the Impetus competition I was hoping to get people along to will not be happening – Plan B has created a little more unexpected preparation. We will now be setting up 4-6 tables for people to come and play on. Having painted up a Parthian army for Ken to use I am in the throes of the final touches to the opposing Early Imperial Roman Army – three units of cavalry to finish tonight!

To bestow this board with a bit of non-figure related eye candy I have been gratefully sponsored by Leven Miniatures (http://www.levenminiatures.co.uk) with a selection of Middle Eastern buildings. They looked pretty nice on their website and certainly not disappointed when they arrived. Only needing minimal cleaning up these were rapidly ready for undercoating, which was done in Army Painter Desert Yellow Spray.

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Above you see the work in progress a couple of hours ago (yes whats on the board needs painting before the Joy of Six!). To allow maximum flexibility I decided  to insert magnets into the bottom of the buildings so they could be mounted on different sizes of steel bases depending on the games needs (thanks for the idea Ian). To keep the magnets in close proximity to the steel I used a  textured stone effect spray paint from B&Q on the steel base, which I then drybrushed up.

So first up was a test building which turned out very pleasing. I particularly liked the patches where the plaster had come off exposing underlying brickwork. (Painting guide at the end).

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Happy with the scheme I went on to paint all the remaining buildings in about 60 minutes at a fairly leisurely pace.

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The wells are as yet unavailable, the ones pictured on the right have been filled with GW water effect. Very pleased how these have turned out and would highly recommend them. Leven Miniatures also do a nice variety of buildings for different eras.

Leven Miniatures – Middle Eastern Building Painting Guide

Undercoat – AP Desert Yellow

Main building walls – Overbrush v110 Deck Tan, Drybrush v001 White

Wooden doors and hatches – Block v133 Cork Brown

Slate Tiles – Block v137 Cavalry Brown, Drybrush v130 Amarantha Red

Windows and openings – Block v148 Burnt Umber

GW Agrax Earthshade wash applied to wood areas and exposed brick areas.

* for the brickwork on the wells I overbrushed v110 Deck Tan, then washed in Agrax Earthshade, then Drybrushed v001 White.

The Joy of Six


33 hours to go before this prestigious event… Still three units of Armenian Allies to paint, a roman marching fort to make, and a dozen or so bases to finish…. and I am out most of tomorrow. Its going to be a long night but well worth it I am sure! Better get cracking.

Lots to report on over the past four weeks but I shall be leaving that until the other side of the weekend!