Category: Dark Ages

Dark Ages are the Early Middle Ages which I interpret as from the fall of Rome (476 AD) to 1000 AD


Welsh versus Picts 2 – An Arthurian HOTT Battle Report

Arthurian HOTT 799 The Morrigan appears in front of the Pictish host

Chris Harrod and I had another game of Arthurian HOTT. This featured Chris’s Chris’s Picts on sabots to provide Big Bases. I fielded my Welsh (Cymry) with Arthurian and Reconquista Christian Elements for Big Base HOTT. I went for my traditional historical Welsh option where the religion is implicit. Chris put a Goddess on table (the Morrigan).

Summary: The Morrigan was scary and my Welsh had to dance around a bit, but it turned out god was on our side and Arthur’s host took the day.

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Welsh versus Saxons – An Arthurian HOTT Battle Report

Arthurian HOTT 671 Welsh mounted go in again

Jamie fancied a bit of Dark Age gaming. So I dragged out my Welsh (Cymry) for Britannia 600 AD and more Fall of Rome figures to make a Saxon army for Jamie.

Hordes of the Things (HOTT) is fast becoming my go to rules for the Dark Ages so this was going to be a bit of Big Base HOTT. Or, more precisely, Arthurian HOTT.

Summary: Grindy dark age affair with lots of flavour. Bad going made the battle bitsy. Arthur took the day.

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Steven’s Arthurian and Reconquista Christian Elements for Big Base HOTT

Christian HOTT 920 Religious Stronghold

I recently rebased my Reconquista armies on Big Bases. That includes the elements I use for Big Base HOTT. In this post I feature the Christians which can also serve in Arthurian HOTT. You might have seen some of these guys on small bases in my Strathclyde Welsh (Northern Cymry) for Britannia 600 AD. Of course they complement my “El Cid” Feudal Spanish Army for Big Base DBA and my Dark Age Horde.

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Welsh versus Picts – An Arthurian HOTT Battle Report

01 King Arthur advances on right

I recently transferred my Dark Age figures for Hordes of the Things (HOTT) to Big Bases. Magicians, beasts, clerics, hordes, that kind of thing, making Big Base HOTT. This included my Strathclyde Welsh (Northern Cymry) for Britannia 600 AD.

To celebrate the big basing, Chris Harrod and I had a game of Arthurian HOTT. Chris brought along his Picts and we used sabots to give him big bases.

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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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Who Were the Gardingi in Visigothic Spain? And were they armoured?

DBx and FOG are wrong. The gardingi were personal military retainers of the Visigothic king. They were wealthy and led their own retainers into battle. Given they were wealthy, and a military elite, they probably fought mounted. And in an army where even some slaves wore armour, it is beyond belief that these palatine officials were unarmoured.

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Revised DBA Army List for a Western German Horde

Vandals

It bugs me when rules writers introduce arbitrary distinctions between troop types and armies. From what I’ve read there was little difference between the Germanic tribes operating in western europe during the migration period leading to the Fall of Rome. I’m interested in the Early Visigothic, Early Vandal and Suevi because they operated in Spain and Portugal, either passing through or settling permanently. The DBA army lists for these armies, II/65, II/66 and II/72c respectively, highlight the issue for me as they differ in ways that are inexplicable to me. DBA is not alone as other rule systems also distinguish

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DBA II/72c Suevi 250AD-584AD

The Suevi are covered by DBA army list II/72c Suevi 250AD-584AD, an option within II/72 Early Frankish, Alamannic, Quadi, Suevi, Rugian or Turcilingi. They were part of the general chaos during the Fall of the Western Roman Empire and ended up in Iberia. This post is part of my series on Troop Identities in DBA Army Lists.

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Simon MacDowall – Germanic Warrior AD 236-568

Simon MacDowall Germanic Warrior

I was thinking about a revised DBA army list covering Early Visigothic, Early Vandal and Suevi so thought I’d better do a bit of research. So on a rainy sunday I browsed through Simon MacDowall’s book on the Germanic Warrior at the end of the Western Roman Empire. As usual I couldn’t help taking a few notes.

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DBA III/34 Andalusian 710AD-1172AD

The DBA army list III/34 Andalusian 710AD-1172AD is one of the two main Muslim armies of the Reconquista. I think the standard DBA list is pretty rubbish due to the high number light infantry. I don’t like it because it makes for a very weak army in DBA but also because it isn’t particularly historical. I’ll post a revision in due course. This post is part of my series on Troop Identities in DBA Army Lists.

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Troop Identities in DBA Army Lists

I play DBA quite a lot and with my current enthusiasm for Big Bases I’m rebasing my ancients and medieval armies for Big Base DBA. To help with that process I wanted to know what nationalities the DBA elements correspond to.

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What Wargaming Rules to use for the Fall of Rome and Dark Ages?

What wargaming rules to use for the Fall of Rome and the Barbarian Kingdoms? I’ve considered DBA, HOTT, FOG, and Commititus.

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Steven’s Fall of Rome Barbarian Horde

For the Fall of Rome and the Barbarian Kingdoms I’ve a Barbarian Horde that can act as Suevi, Vandal, Visigothic, or similar, plus Alan allies, and the Romans to fend them off. My favourite Horde are the Suevi = but my overall favourites are the Alans.

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Introduction to the Hispania Board Game

Hispania is a board game of the history of the Iberian peninsular (Spain and Portugal). It is uses the mechanisms from Britannia. I love Britannia so picked up a copy of Hispania.

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Germanic Lancer versus Light Spear Cavalry in Field of Glory

I was wondering why some Germanic cavalry during the Fall of Rome and Barbarian Kingdoms are counted as lancers in Field of Glory and some as light spear. It isn’t clear to me why the Early Frankish, Alamanni, Burgundi, Rugii, Suebi or Turcilingi and the Gardingi of the Later Visigoths count as light spear rather than lancer like the rest. Or vice versa.

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