One of my first armies in 1/72 was Imperial Romans. Like most new wargamers, I went with something familiar, impressive, and badass. Since then I’ve come to like more of the underdogs of history, but if you’re going to go with a winner, you might as well pick one of the winningest armies in history.*
I began with some recasts of the Airfix Romans set, made by HäT, and later added ESCI, Revell, and HäT originals.
Front line, Airfix recasts; behind them, ESCI, trying to form a Testudo or “tortoise” formation. Third line, in blue, Italieri Republican-era Romans; fourth line, barely visible, Revell. The blue uniformed troops I gave a dark wash. Usually I avoid any shading on my wargaming 1/72s both to speed things up and to keep a cleaner, toy-soldier look. The only exception is that I usually shade steel with black and flesh with a darker tone.
Some stands with command elements. Center, all Airfix; right, all ESCI; left, ESCI troopers but I think Italieri command. Behind them a Revell tribune standing over a fallen Airfix trooper and an ESCI Caesar standing over a fallen Airfix Briton. (They don’t serve any role in a DBA army; I had originally planned to use Might of Arms as my war game rules but found it a little too complex for what I was after, and I really the simplicity of DBx type rules.) You can also see some cavalry (HäT Republican Romans) and a ballista in the background.
Revell auxilia — in this case, lightly armed recruits, probably Gauls in Roman gear.
HäT auxilia — in this case Batavi, some Germanic tribesmen famous for using their traditional clubs in battle and for being excellent amphibious troops — or at least able to swim across rivers that gave the legionaries pause. Behind them are some auxiliary archers. Both the Airfix and ESCI sets had what looked like legionaries with bows, so I painted them in legionary colors, but really they would probably be archers from subject lands in more native dress — Syrian archers are often mentioned. The second line of archers are Britons from the Airfix Briton set. I’m not sure if any Britons served as archers for Rome but I didn’t need many missile troops for my Ancient British army so the Romans took them.
Some miscellaneous stands of troops did not get close-ups. Those are more auxilia in Roman dress, camp followrs, and some skirmishers. The army is far larger than I need for DBA and could probably form several Early Imperial Armies — perfect for a civil war. I also made some Roman camps, as DBA armies usually need one unless there is a settlement on the battlefield. I have couple of simple, generic palisades, but I also did a funner one, which I always get out for Good Friday:
With any luck I’ll find some time to photograph some more stuff this weekend — my Roman mile fort, and the Republican Romans, as well as some Etruscans & Italian Hill Tribes, Thracians, Carthage, and so on….
*Well, that’s their reputation anyway. They certainly conquered a big area and held it a long time. Superior numbers, technology, logistics, and training seems to do that.