Ancients wargaming, focus attained!
One month into our project, Guy has picked an army to work on and he's sort-of given me away. He'd been hankering to upgrade his third century Carthaginians, so that was a given. We'd decided we wanted armies that at least could have gotten into a conflict. I'm not yet ready to commit to Romans - that's probably inevitable at some point, though issue XI.2 got me frankly almost more interested in the Italian peoples - so what's left?
Plenty, of course! A Spanish army would make for excellent opponents to Carthage, but I have a total of nothing to build from, so that's for later. Any of the Sicilian Greeks would make a good enemy for Carthage earlier in the third century, true. The very readable Truceless War (don't click the link to Amazon if you have a weak heart) inspires to build a Carthaginian mercenary army, but that's a bit redundant. I've got a Hellenistic basic army to work from and upgrade. I've also just started reading Fischer-Bovet's Army and Society in Ptolemaic Egypt, which is very interesting so far.
For now, it's going to be a Ptolemaic army. But they never fought Carthage, despite tensions over Cyrenaica. We'll probably solve that in the traditional wargaming way: make up an excuse for historical armies to fight over. Perhaps Ptolemy III Euergetes took advantage of Carthage's fight with its own mercenaries to act aggressively?
Speaking of mercenaries, I was glad to see readers would like to see another issue on this topic. So do I! As the quintessential hellenistic mercenaries, I decided to build a small unit of Cretan archers first. They figures are based on the wonderful illustration by Zvonimir Grbasic accompanying an article explaining how we might actually be able to trace the travels of a single unit of Cretans in issue XI.1, and on some of the background information by Ruben Post in our first issue on mercenaries, III.1. The figures are in 28mm size by Aventine Miniatures.