One month on since my last post on Brush and Boltgun and I have managed to change a pile of unpainted metal Carolingians into, well, a partially painted pile of metal Carolingians!
I have had great fun painting these models. I am a massive fan of some of the Gripping Beast miniatures, whilst others fall into the ‘questionable’ category. Fortunately, these are decent, characterful models – still definitely Dark Ages but with that ‘slightly-more-civilised-than-a-Viking’ feel to them.
The first thing that I did, after basing, priming and painting the bases on the models (something I always do in this order: painting the bases first helps me set the ‘scene’ of where the model will be standing and helps me with my colour palette choices. Technically I am sure this is wrong and you should base afterwards!) was to go through and basecoate all the flesh with Doombull Brown. That is all 29 Cavalry and 32 infantry. I did the same for all of the metal using Leadbelcher, and then highlighted all the flesh using Bugman’s Glow.
I did this for the sake of speed. It is soul destroying to see the whole army progressing so slowly, but I think it is quicker than batch painting when I know all models will have the same colours applied in the same way.
After this, my priority was get the horses done.
For cavalry models, the horse is such a large part of the overall figure. I find if the horse and rider don’t contrast properly it can take away from the overall effect of the figure. For this reason, I wanted to know what colours the horses would be first. I also severely dislike painting horses- a shame as I have a number of cavalry based armies, and this made sure I got them done and out of the way.
The only exception to this was the Steppe Nomad mercenaries. As these are going to be part of my Byzantine force, I split them off after basecoating the flesh. These will now be the last models for me to complete: I have a 2500pts Byzantine army for Warhammer Ancient Battles, so I can definitely field any Saga band I want without the Nomads for now.
After the horses were done, I split everything into batches of cavalry or infantry, based on its points value in Saga – four hearthguard, eight warriors… and I don’t have levy in this army.
Overall progress gives me 1.5 of my batches of warriors complete-needing only static grass adding to the bases, and 1 point of hearthguard:
I have also been doing a bit of reading up on some thematic scenarios and how I can crowbar the Carolingians into fighting the other factions that Mike and Dave have already bought. Vikings should be fairly easy but finding Anglo-Saxons is a bit more difficult, unless they masquerade as the non-Anglo variety and settle in what would be modern day northern Germany for a bit!
The other half point of warriors that should be in the group above are almost complete, just needing a few bits highlighting and the arrows doing on the archers. I chose to spread the archers through the groups, rather than paint them all together, as I wanted to try and paint the same colours on as many models as possible whilst still maintaining a mixed scheme for the army.
My cavalry are all progressing too, I have been switching between groups to keep my momentum up! As I said before all horses are done, and I am fairly happy with the mix of colours and how they have turned out (Mounted Warriors to the left, Hearthguard to the right):
I have also been trying to block in some other colours on another point of warriors as I have progressed, so these are in a middling stage. Again, a few archers have found their way into this group:
Finally, there is a point of warriors, the Warlord and the steppe nomads, who have had no more than basic flesh added and the odd colour. I want to save my Warlord for last as he needs to stand out from all the other troops in the army and look suitably spectacular:
I have been reading up on the rules for these guys too, and they do seem as complicated as I feared. Proelium will make them a difficult force to use very dynamically, draining Saga dice as it does to improve other Saga abilities. On the other hand, if activated with decent amounts of Proelium in the bank, it is quite easy to generate defence dice and complete second activations without gaining fatigue.
In my head this would say that this is therefore an army which lends itself to being Hearthguard heavy, but only games will tell. If you have any experience of the Carolingians, either playing with or against the, please shout in the comments below and let me know what you think!
Overall, I am happy with my progress with the army in one month. Hopefully next time I will have the army finished to show you and will be able to comment further on the rules: I promise a full explanation of this Proelium I keep alluding to!
Thanks for reading! If you have any thoughts, Carolingian advice or Saga projects that you think we would think are awesome, please comment below. While you’re here, why not follow us on our other social media so you don’t miss out on any future content: