Sunday, 27 June 2021

More Late Roman Sub-generals


These two additional sub-generals are the final elements I needed to field a 10,000pt army for Mortem et Gloriam. 

I wanted to have all three horses in each group with the same gait - either walking or galloping and with all the horses different.

As before, the quality level of the general is shown by the shield colour - the MeG standards of red for 'Legendary', yellow for 'Talented', green for 'Competent' and white for 'Mediocre'. For the army commander and first sub-general, I used a rare earth magnet glued into the base and made the shields out of washers. That gave a really strong attractive force - so strong that the snap as the magnet grabs the washer risked chipping the paint! For these I used the same rare earth magnets but made the shields from a circle of plasticard, backed with steel paper and the dome and boss made from Milliput. This gives a weaker attraction but I think it will still be enough and it is much easier to swap the shields around as needed.

In common with my Late Roman army commander and previous sub-general, the guards have the shield pattern of the Scola Scutariorum Secunda.

The first sub-general is a Gladiator Games rider from their armoured cavalry command group on a Minifigs Byzantine half-armoured horse. Strangely, for a commander of cataphracts or clibanarii, he was modelled with knee-length breeches and open-toed sandals so I covered his legs and feet with a bit of Milliput to give him trousers and shoes / late Roman military sandals. 

The vexillum bearer is a Minifigs heavy cavalryman mounted on a spare horse of unknown origin. I made the vexillum from soldering two pieces of brass rod the glueing on a piece of aluminium foil and a circle of plastic. The design is hand painted and based on a surviving 3rd century vexillum from Egypt, depicted in the Osprey book 'Roman Standards & Standard-Bearers (2)'. For the earlier sub-general's vexillum, I used metallic paint but I found that quite hard to control and achieve the depth and subtlety of tone that I wanted so used shades of brown-yellow this time. I think I prefer the non-metallic metal style for standards.

The vexillum bearer for the second, galloping, group is a Minifigs figure on an Asgard horse. Again the vexillum design is based on one in the Osprey book, with the inscription 'soli invicto' - the unconquered sun.

The vexillum bearer's shield was much smaller than the other heavy cavalry figures. I'd used one of these figures before (Heavy Cavalry: Equites Honoriani Taifali Iuniores) and let it go but afterwards regretted it as it stood out a bit compared to the rest of the unit. This time I made a new shield from plasticard and Milliput. The figure was cast with a mail coat and bare arms but the definition on the mail was very soft and looked quite different to the two Asgard figures so I smoothed it right off and used more Miliput to add sleeves for an un-armoured look.

The sub-general is an Asgard cavalry officer with a spear replacing his mace. The horse is Minifigs - I had two like this but have no idea what pack they came in. His shield is based on a pattern of unknown colour (taken from carved ivory showing 4th/5th C guardsmen) in the old WRG Armies and Enemies book. I chose the colours to pick up on the unconquered sun theme. 

The escorting heavy cavalryman is an Asgard rider and horse, unmodified apart from replacing the cast spear with brass rod and making a new shield boss to match the smaller ones of the other vexillum bearers and guards.

Although I have a few additions and alternatives still to complete, now I have a usable Late Roman army, I'm going to have a break from Romans and switch over to painting WW2 models and making scenery for a while.