Category: Rise of Rome

I divide the Rise of Rome into three sections: the Punic Wars, Macedonian Wars and Iberian Wars. There is quite a lot of overlap between these. From 264 Roman fought three bitter wars with Carthage over the western Mediterranean – the Punic Wars. Roman triumphed and as a side effect began its conquest of Iberia – modern Spain and Portugal. But Iberia was a tough nut to crack. It took 200 years for the Romans to conquer the peninsular. Meanwhile the Romans conquered the Mediterranean. In the east Roman defeated the Macedonians and the Successors during the Macedonian Wars.


Using Big Bases for DBA

BBDBA Seleucid Companions

Big Base DBA (also known as Big Base De Bellis Antiquitatis or BBDBA) allows fast games with a small number of playing pieces and lots of figures. Big Base DBA requires few modifications from the standard DBA rules.

Inspired by Philip Sabin’s Analysis of Ancient Warfare in Lost Battles I’ve drifted further away from normal DBA than you need to, but I’ll explain why as I go along. Mostly it affects basing.

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The Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian (2016)

Megalomaniac surveying all those unfinished wargaming projects in 2016

It has been a year since my Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian so definitely time for the 2016 update. I figured that, by sharing what I’m working on (far too much) and where I was up to with it (not far enough), I’d feel bad enough about my lack of progress to limit my work in progress and get some projects finished. Well, it worked, but only partly. I still worked on seven projects this year and finished none.

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The Confessions of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian (2015)

Megalomaniac

One of the things that really impresses me about Paul Ward of Matakishi’s Tea House is his focus. He chooses a new project, plans the project, does the project, finishes it, and moves on.

I’m a bit more scatter gun myself despite the fact that at work I encourage teams to limit work in progress. I start with a focus and get a lot done but then often wander off on a tangent when something else comes up that sparks my interest. I let myself do that because this is my hobby, not my job. A hobby shouldn’t really

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Philip Sabin’s Analysis of Ancient Warfare in Lost Battles

Lost Battles

I really like the analyse of Ancient Warfare in Lost Battles by Philip Sabin. So I’ve written up what captured my attention.

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Ancient Spanish Cavalry

Spanish Mustang

A few notes about Ancient Spanish Cavalry.

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Wargaming the Battle of Zama

Simon Miller's Zama

I’m interested in refighting the Battle of Zama. This is quite a popular focus for historical scenarios so I thought I’d have a look at what other people have done before collating my own thoughts. By chance, Zama was the theme of the Society of Ancients Battle Day in 2010. Not surprisingly the Battle Day, and Zama, got a lot of coverage in the Slingshot, the society journal, over the next few months. I’ve used those accounts to explore some key questions about how to refight the battle.

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Romans versus Iberian – Two Big Base DBA Battle Reports

Uneven fight in woods

Chris Harrod and I played two games of Big Base DBA set in the Roman conquest of Iberia. So Polybian Roman with Spanish allies against an Iberian army with Celtiberian mercenaries. In the first game, as the Spanish defender, I fielded my newly painted Built-up-Area (BUA). Quite pretty it is too – but it does pose quite a lot of challenges for both sides. We liked the first game so much we played the game a second time but swapped sides.

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Steven’s Ancient Spanish for Big Base DBA

Big Base DBA Ancient Spanish - Infantry

I’ve been rebasing my Rise of Rome armies for Big Base DBA. The first off the re-flocking table are the Ancient Spanish. 14 big bases of Iberian glory.

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Did the Carthaginians introduce the oval shield into Spain?

Iberian warrior from bas-relief c. 200 BC

Conventional wargaming wisdom is that Ancient Spanish light infantry carried a small buckler (Caetrata) and heavy infantry carried a large oval shield (Scutum) (see for example Head, 1982). The implication is that this division was always true. There was a similar division in the cavalry although the change to large shields was about the time of Hannibal.

Duncan Head at the 2010 Society of Ancients Battle Day offered some evidence to suggest the Carthaginians introduced the oval shield into their part of Spain – the Iberian part. He suggest this was deliberate Barcid policy to increase the proportion of

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Pity Those Ancient Spanish in DBA – The Army Points Say It All

Big Base DBA Ancient Spanish - Infantry

I’ve always felt the 12 element army size of DBA doesn’t give balanced games. Some folks have come up with points systems to deal with this. I thought I’d tally the points total for a few armies to see how they compare under a couple of the points systems. I’ve focussed on the Macedonian and Punic Wars and not too surprisingly the Ancient Spanish are the poor relatives.

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Roman versus Carthaginian Big Base DBA

Big Base DBA - Roman v Carthaginian - Right Flank Action

Andrew Coleby and I had a go at Big Base DBA. Andrew took Carthaginians and I took Polybian Roman. Andrew won – those pesky Gauls cut through my Legionnaires (again). Aside from being a good game it also proved the concept of Big Base DBA, i.e. big bases with lots of figures, big table, but using standard DBA.

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Revised Pyrrhic DBA Army List

The official DBA II/27 Pyrrhic 300BC-272BC army list for DBA is okay but:

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Revised Ancient Spanish DBA Army List

There are a few reasons I don’t like the official II/39 Ancient Spanish 240BC-20BC army list for DBA:

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DBA II/39 Ancient Spanish 240BC-20BC

Big Base DBA Ancient Spanish - Standard Army List

The II/39 Ancient Spanish army list for DBA represents those tribes of Spain and Portugal who fought the Romans and Carthaginians in the period 240BC-20BC, before, during and after the Punic Wars . This post is part of my series on Troop Identities in DBA Army Lists.

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DBA II/18 Macedonian Early Successor 320BC-260BC

The II/18 Macedonian Early Successor DBA army list represents those Macedonians successor states based in Europe during in the Macedonian Wars. Just after Alexander died. This post is part of my series on Troop Identities in DBA Army Lists.

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