Archive for SAGA

Saga: Equites

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , on July 3, 2017 by Sean

I’ve been adding to my Romano-British force for Saga: Aetius & Arthur. I like both of the Roman and Briton factions’ battle boards, so I am designing some of my minies to be usable for either. These will be Romano-British, representing Britons and/or Romans in Britannia near the end of the occupation. In a pinch, they could even represent Goths (since at the time the Goths often were under the employ of the Romans anyway).

With that in mind, I picked up 2 blisters of mounted troops from Gripping Beast; one set of Roman armored cavalry and one of Briton cavalry. They will act as Commanipulares for the Britons or Knights for the Romans. These are the first 4 members of what will be an 8-man Hearthguard unit. I’ll also be able to attach 2 of them as the Companions for the Briton Warlord, the rest forming a 6-man unit.

The miniatures mix nicely together; the Late Roman legions were much more hodge-podge in their uniforms and unit designations. I also figured the Hearthguard, being of the equites social class, would have even more leeway and mixed equipment. The majority of the unit will have the roundel legion shield design, with a few unique designs mixed in. Along with the roundel, the chi-ro symbol shows up in a few places. Their clothing was procured locally, so they’re wearing British versions of the Roman tunics common at that period.

I painted the striping on their cavalry spears, since they apparently did paint them for both decoration and to protect the wooden shafts from rot. Technically, the spears might be a bit too long for this period (resembling full lances) but I’m ok with that to make them look more striking on the table.

The Warlord has been posted here before. However, after some thought and research, I decided he needed a little ‘oomph’. His original shield was a bit boring, and his javelin wasn’t really impressive. With that in mind, a weapon swap (to a proper Roman spatha) and a highly decorated shield. The Virgin will safeguard him through all future battles! The icon and the unit’s shields were all based on historical images I found.

The rest of the unit will come along eventually.

Saga: Aetius & Arthur

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , on June 10, 2017 by Sean

I’ve gotten in some games of Saga, with the Aetius & Arthur expansion. We’ve been playing the decline of the Western Roman Empire in Britannia. My regular opponents and I have been using our Dark Ages models, since they are generic enough to pass as ca. 400 AD, though it does make a stickler like myself twitch that my Saxons have the wrong shields. Oh well!

The first model I’ve done for the new expansion is a mounted Warlord. This is a Gripping Beast Late Roman General model, mounted on a 60mm base. I wanted him to stand out from his mounted soldiers. This model can stand in as both a Roman general as well as a Briton hero, and in a pinch could stand in as a Gothic Warlord (by this point in history the forces are almost nearly wearing the same gear anyway). I modeled him riding his horse down a dilapidated Roman path, next to a Roman road marker. I based the writing on a photo of a real marker from Britain.

We played 2 battles today. The first was Saxons versus Britons with the Frozen River scenario. My Saxons were using the frozen river surface to invade the lands of the Britons. We played 6-point forces. Saxons were Warlord, 40 Warriors, and 12 bow Levy. The Britons were Warlord and 2 Companions, 10 mounted Hearthguard, 16 Warriors, and 12 bow Levy.

My Saxons slowly crossed the river and fords, while the Britons turtled up waiting. The Briton battle board really encourages defense over offense. The Saxons have no choice but to advance!

The fights were very bloody, but the Saxons forced the defenders back at great cost. Eventually, the Warlord met in combat, pushing back and forth before the Briton’s lord was cast down (at a cost of a dozen Saxons). There wasn’t much left of either army by the end. The end result was 9-6 VP’s left, a Saxon victory!

The second battle was the Campfire scenario. This time I was using the Romans, while my friend stuck with the Britons. Maybe the Romans were chastising the Britons for letting the Saxons overrun the frontier earlier, or the Britons were negotiating military support from the typically arrogant Romans. Either way, things got out of hand, and swords were drawn…

The Romans had a mounted Warlord, 4 mounted Hearthguard, 24 spear Warriors, 8 bow Warriors, and 12 spear Levy. Except for the new mounted Roman Warlord, I used the Anglo-Saxons/Saxons models, with some donated mounted Hearthguard. The Roman frontier forces of the era were mostly Germans by this point anyway, right? The Britons had a mounted Warlord, 8 mounted Hearthguard, 24 Warriors, and 12 bow Levy.

The scenario requires the armies being split up among each other, which means the units are threatened from all sides. I scattered the Roman Forces in a rough circle, while the Britons had a few tight bulwarks of units. The fight began with the Roman Warlord drawing his sword and leading his nearest unit of soldiers against the British lord, cutting him down. After that the Romans had the upper hand, especially in Saga dice.

The movements of both armies was chaotic, but the Romans quickly redressed their ranks and tried to hold back the Britons. The Levy struck down several British Hearthguard with their plumbatae (heavy darts) and some lucky combats. The Roman defensive abilities served them well. On the other side the Britons were wearing the Romans down, both holding their own lines and performing repeated charges and volleys of bow shots. The Hearthguard performed a disastrous charge, the Briton shieldwall holding and wiping them out. Oops. Eventually though the Roman Warlord rallied his forces and crushed the flank, beating back the encirclement and winning the battle. Final VP’s were 19-14, victory for the Romans!

Saga: Gods and Monsters

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , on June 15, 2016 by Sean

I’ve been doing a few odd projects between larger ones for various clients (and myself, to prevent burnout). Some examples are a few characters for Saga: Dark Ages.

The first is an Irish (really, very Celtic) Warlord/Priest for a client’s Irish warband. He’s aggressively naked, ready to go on his rampage. Unafraid of the enemy, his only adornment, aside from the fancy hood, is warpaint. I sourced the imagery from various places, but favored spirals, swirls, and random symbols. I went for an asymmetric approach to make it more interesting. Beside him he has a trusty Irish wolfhound. His druidic weapons are bloody sickles. The miniature is from Warlord Games, from the same set as the Irish priests from the previous Saga: Celtic Lore post.

The second pic is a Welsh bannerman from my own Welsh warband. He will carry one of the force’s standards, or just ‘count as’ just for visual flavor. His banner is much less showy than the other Welsh standard, so he might be a Warrior instead of a Hearthguard. I painted the banner based on contemporary art styles. The minie is from the Gripping Beast Defenders of the Faith set. I like the idea of a local monk joining up with the warband for some proper religious fun (he might even be a brother or cousin of the Warlord).

Saga: Fantasy- Chaos Ascendant

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , on May 28, 2016 by Sean


I’ve converted more Warhammer Fantasy factions to Saga: Dark Ages. The Chaos Pantheon gets its final member, as well as the Cult of Chaos Undivided. The rest of the Chaos factions are found in previous posts.

Tzeentch: The Franks’ action/reaction system and the ability to manipulate the battleboard on a whim make a good translation of Tzeentch’s mastery of change. The Franks faction allows you to choose from 3 Dynastic rules; the Carolingians rules probably best represent the faction.

Warlords are the Champions of Tzeentch, powerful fighters and masters of sorcery. They may be mounted on a Chaos steed.

Hearthguard are the Chosen, the fighters decided by fate and effort to serve their master, wielding the finest weapons and foul magics. They may be mounted on Chaos steeds.

Warriors are the Conspirators, a mix of Chaos Warriors and Sorcerers. Any units may be fielded as a Coven of Chaos, counting as being armed with bows (magic spells) but they wear lighter armor, reduced to Armor 3. Warriors can also be equipped with normal weapons and armor; they may also be mounted on steeds.

Levies are Cultists, lesser members of the warband. They represent hangers-on, pawns, and apprentices. They are armed with bows (though again this could represent a spell blast).

Chaos Undivided: This faction represents the mortals who worship the Chaos Gods as a pantheon of equals, praying to each in turn. This version is closer to a tribe of Northmen, seeking to achieve the favor of the gods. The Norse-Gaels faction seems a good match, with its emphasis on Challenges (trying to catch the attention of the gods) and brutal close combat.

Warlords are Champions of Chaos, leaders of Northmen tribes, or marked by the gods on the path of Damnation. They can be equipped with Great Weapons (Dane axes, flails, two-handed swords, etc.).

Hearthguard are the Warriors of Chaos, armored brutes dedicated to their gods. They may be equipped with Great Weapons (Dane axes, halberds, etc.)

Warriors of the warband are the Marauders, aggressive mortal tribesmen. They are armed with either Great Weapons (often axes or flails) or throwing axes (javelins) reducing their Armor to 3.

Levy are the Cultists, the weakest tribesmen. They are often slaves from defeated tribes or newcomers to the worship of Chaos, striving to gain favor. They carry throwing axes and javelins. This could also represent a sorcerous coven like with Tzeentch.

Saga: Celtic Lore

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , on April 9, 2016 by Sean

The Irish get a little Celtic pride with the addition of a Warlord and some priests. These guys are from an Irish Saga warband I’m working on for a client.

The Warlord is a sort of Celtic throw-back for the Irish host. The miniature itself a Barbarian King from CMON, an obvious Conan expy. He’s certainly not really historical, with his mismatched armor and weapons. I painted the loincloth a red/white plaid to tie him in with the rest of the army. He also got some wode and tattoos with common Celtic symbols. The rocky base also emphasizes his more ‘primitive’ nature.

The other pic is a pair of Druids from Warlord Games. They’ll stand in as warriors or priest for the warband. Fairly simple in detail, I used broad earthy colors to make them fit into their natural roles. They’ll stand out nicely as a pair of old codgers in the mass of troops.

Saga: Avalon

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , , on March 16, 2016 by Sean

I have started a Saga campaign, based on a mysterious island in the English Channel called Avalon. I have 11 players involved so far. We did the first turn this week, with the first battles. I’m very happy it’s gotten Saga back in play at my FLGS, with 4 new armies started!  My own Anglo-Saxons hit the field, as well as some of the Irish I’ve done for a client (also in the campaign).

-Anglo-Saxons vs. Moors

-Vikings vs. Milites Christi

-Saracens vs. Bretons

-Irish vs. Vikings

Saga: D’ya like dags?

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , on February 22, 2016 by Sean


More Irish for Saga: Dark Ages!

These fellows are Bonnachts from Gripping Beast, the Warriors for the warband. I’ll probably be dong another group of these eventually. They show more skin and no armor, with simpler color schemes compared to the Fianna. For decoration, I gave them a mix of plaid and striped trousers. Like the Fianna, I added detail shots of the shields and cloaks.

Irish warbands can field 8 Warriors as Wolfhounds, so here’s a full unit for the client to swap if he wants. These hounds are from North Star miniatures. They’re pretty simple sculpts (there are only 2 sculpts out of 8, unfortunately). I converted some of them to add some variety; I cut the bases of the striding dogs to change them up.