Monday, January 30, 2012

Anglo-Danish (Saxon) deep impetus units

I liked the look of the rebased Vikings so much I redid the rear bases of my Saxons (Anglo-Danish in the Impetus army lists).  While I was at it, I added a few LBMS banners to the army.
Harold's Huscarls -- 10 figures on front base, 6 on rear
The reason for the change was visual.  I originally based this army for a different rule set, where these were not deep units.  I've been really enjoying Impetus, and am committed to playing Impetus for a while.  My unit bases, the front ones, are 12 cm by 6 cm, and this is standard across all my 28 mm dark age armies.  I usually put 10 figures on a close order infantry base, organized in two ranks, and crowded together in the center of the stand.  This creates a visual density in of figures, and a buffer to protect the figures in play.  When I was using two of these as a deep unit I always saw one unit behind another -- the appearance of a SYW second line in close support.  Not good!  I went to a dedicated rear base that is 12 cm by 4 cm in size, with the figures organized in one line on the front of the base.  I'm not totally satisfied with the look of the deep unit as there is still a gap between the second and third rank, but it is visually a huge improvement.  Time will tell if I rebase the entire army or not -- although I've felt very postive about my rebasing efforts so far, I do share the common despair about rebasing. The new look is very good from the front and back (which are, after all, the primary way we see the units in a game), and better from the side than the old appearance of two unit bases.
Side view, old deep unit (2 12x6 bases) and new deep unit (12x6 & 12x4 base)
There has been a discussion of how many figures to but on a 28mm FP (foot pondorous, or heavy foot) base on the Impetus Forum.  I use ten 28 mm figures for most of my armies, but for the Saxons I used twelve figures.  It does make the unit look dense!  I only used ten figures on the Huscarl units, as these are warriors fighting in the Scandinavian tradition.
Select fyrd (12 fig/main base) & Huscarls (10 fig/main base)
Finally, because a picture is worth a thousand words, and ours is indeed a visual hobby, here are more gratuitous pictures of figures!

New deep unit on left, old deep unit on right

Upcoming future posts will include some AARs and photo-presentations of other SPI members (St. Paul Irregulars) 28mm Impetus armies.  Your welcome to come back and visit soon . . .


  1. Very nice! The banners and basing look top notch!!

  2. Looking pretty good.

    Impetus are my Ancients rules of choice at the moment as well but I have gone for the sabot base approach as I do still use other rules as well. The downside is that they never look as good as the diorama style bases.

  3. They look great. The look of Impetus bases is certainly part of the appeal of the game to me.

  4. The new style definitely tightens things up. I think that the only way you're going to get a "clump" effect is to rebase. Not sure it's needed - the sense of mass and momentum is there.

  5. The rebasing and banners make them shine even brighter! Must resist the siren song of 28mm.

  6. Thanks, gentlemen, for your gracious comments.

    I've got split desires now -- one part of me wants to work on some scenario design and custom terrain, and another is anxious to start on more figures. Oh, the joy of the dilemma!

  7. Cher Brent,

    Thank you for introducing me to your lovely blog and very attractive miniatures. I wish I still had my Normans, Saxons and Vikings which I think were lost in a flood here twenty years ago. One aspect of many that appeals to me are shield patterns. Yours are superb. I really enjoyed painting mine years ago.

    "1066 and all that" was something special for me because of The Conquest and perhaps because in my youth my parents bought a book about William The Conqueror for me which interested me if only for his name!

    Bill (William)

  8. Is there a Saxon army list for 300 points available anywheres can view