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The Eighty Years War

The Eighty Years War

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Project Blog by Umbra

Recommendations: 125

About the Project

For the past two years I wanted to get into historical wargaming and I finally did! I bought my first historical miniatures for the Eighty Years War. Never heard of this war? The extremely short description: a war between the Netherlands and Spain from 1568 till 1648. I want to paint two forces, one for each side. While this is more a painting and collecting project than a gaming project, I will follow the rules Pikeman’s Lament (Osprey Games) for unit size, shape and size of the bases,… The goal is to paint them as historically accurate as possible. I’ve been reading a lot about this war and other wars in this period over the past two years. My miniatures will represent soldiers from around 1600. This will be reflected in their look and armament as well as the composition of both forces. This project isn’t my main project for this year. It will go on hold once the miniatures arrive from a kickstarter I’ve backed.

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Review - Knights Hospitaller

Tutoring 3
Skill 1
Idea 3
2 Comments

Finally! New miniatures begin to reach my mailbox! I had nothing to paint for weeks. ☹

This is a set of four miniatures Warlord Games released last year named “Knights Hospitaller” (also know als the Knights of Malta and the Knights of Saint John). They were designed to replay the Siege of Malta. I will add them to my Spanish and Dutch forces.

Out of the blister.Out of the blister.
Assembled.Assembled.

Each miniature is armoured and armed differently:

  • Pike
  • Harquebus
  • Twohanded sword
  • Sword and shield.

The last one wears a tabard with a cross on the front and back. Not sure what to do with this one yet. It’s the wrong cross for the Spaniards (the Burgundy cross has diagonal lines). The Dutch didn’t use crosses as their symbol.

This blister comes without bases.

Dutch armoured pikemen

Tutoring 1
Skill 5
Idea 5
2 Comments
Dutch armoured pikemen

And I have painted all my 16th century miniatures! Now I’ve got to wait until my new miniatures reach my mailbox. 😊

Spanish armoured pikemen

Tutoring 0
Skill 4
Idea 5
4 Comments
Spanish armoured pikemen

Spanish unarmoured pike and drummer

Tutoring 0
Skill 4
Idea 4
No Comments

The box Wars of Religion infantry from Warlord Games came with twelve pikeman: ten armoured and two unarmoured. I have no idea why Warlord Games decided to put two unarmoured ones in there, but here they are along with the drummer:

Spanish unarmoured pike and drummer

Firepower!

Tutoring 0
Skill 5
Idea 6
2 Comments
Dutch arquebusiersDutch arquebusiers

Spanish reinforcements from Brother Vinni

Tutoring 1
Skill 4
Idea 5
No Comments
Hmm, I don’t manage to properly paint faces yet.Hmm, I don’t manage to properly paint faces yet.

On a convention in Antwerp last year, I bought these two miniatures from Brother Vinni. Brother Vinni has a small range of historical miniatures from the 16th century. He calls his Spaniards “Iberians”. The woman with the skulls on the base, is probably meant for fantasy games. The style of her clothes fits in well in the 16th century though.

For some reason I wanted to give the man a blackened helmet. Either he bought a more expensive helmet then the other Spanish soldiers or he got it form a Dutch soldier he killed.

Spanish reinforcements from Brother Vinni

On this photo you see the swordsman from Brother Vinni beside a miniature from Warlord Games. Brother Vinni’s miniature is taller. The miniatures from Warlord Games are exactly 28 mm from the ground to the eyes. The ones from Brother Vinny are closer to 32mm. Ah well, in the real world people don’t all have the exact same height either and they are very nice models. The difference in size is less evident after painting them, then when unpainted.

The Ragged Cross

Tutoring 1
Skill 5
Idea 6
2 Comments
The Ragged Cross

And here they are: my first Spanish soldiers! Yes, except for the ensign, they are the same miniatures as the Dutch ones painted differently. This will often happen in this project.

The colour scheme:

  • Shiny metallic helmets and armour
  • Red sashes and feathers
  • Red and different browns for the clothes. Some black here and there too.

The time of year

The Ragged Cross

The basing materials I ordered a while ago, have arrived. This lets me finish the bases for both the Spanish and the Dutch. The Spanish bases reflect spring: bright green grass, flowers, rim in bright green.

The Dutch bases reflect autumn: mixture of dark green and brown grass, fallen leaves, dark brown rim.

The Dutch have arrived

Tutoring 7
Skill 8
Idea 8
2 Comments
The Dutch have arrived

And here they are! My first soldiers of this project. Following the images in the Osprey books on the Dutch army during the eighty years war, I’ve painted the armour black, the clothes blue and the feather and slash of the captain orange. This will be my colour scheme for the Dutch for this project.

I’ve tried to paint the captain in “black and white armour”. This means most of the armour is blackened, but some parts aren’t, mostly on the edges. This is a more expensive type of armour. On this webpage you can find photo’s of black and white armour: http://www.ageofarmour.com/blackwhite.html

Review Armoured Swordsmen – Warlord Games

Tutoring 5
Skill 5
Idea 6
2 Comments

Continuing with the reviews, I also bought the armoured swordsmen from Warlord Games. They come in a blister with eight miniatures. Four different sculpts, two of each. Three of the sculpts come with a sperate sword arm. I’ve tried to attach the arm of one sulpt to another sculpt: that didn’t look good. You have to use the right sword arm with the right miniature. The shields come separately as well.

Review Armoured Swordsmen – Warlord Games

Style and historical accuracy

The miniatures look good and each sculpt wears slightly different armour and a different helmet. Just like the box with the War of Religion Infantry Regiment: still no feathers on the helmets! But no more sashes.

Review Armoured Swordsmen – Warlord Games

Don’t worry: in my next update there will finally be painted miniatures!

Inbox review War of Religion Infantry Regiment – Warlord Games

Tutoring 6
Skill 5
Idea 7
4 Comments

Why do I start this project with an inbox review? Because there doesn’t exist one yet! I looked for a review of this box on the internet before buying it and couldn’t find one anywhere. So here it is: the worlds very first review of the War of Religion Infantry Regiment from Warlord Games:

The front cover of the box.The front cover of the box.
This is what you see when you open the box.This is what you see when you open the box.
And this is what you see when you turn it upside down.And this is what you see when you turn it upside down.
The box comes with this small leaflet with a bit of history, but more importantly: flags!The box comes with this small leaflet with a bit of history, but more importantly: flags!

One of the miniatures is an ensign who carries a flag. Warlord Games provided these seven flags:

  • France: white flag with yellow fleurs de lis
  • Burgundy cross (also: ragged cross, Saint Andrews cross): the flag of Spain. Also used by the Holy Roman Empire (= Germany). This is the flag I will use for my Spaniards.
  • Flag of Malta with Saint Elena. Perfect if you want to replay the siege of Malta.
  • House of Sforza: The dukes of Milan. I had never heard of them. 😊
  • Cross of Saint George: the English flag.
  • The double headed Eagle of the Holy Roman Empire.
  • The same eagle with a crown.

Let’s move on to the miniatures. There are 24 in the box:

  • 12 pikemen
  • 8 arquebusiers
  • 1 officer
  • 1 ensign
  • 1 drummer
  • 1 flutist

No bases? No, my box came without any bases. The box and the website say they are supposed to be in the box. Someone forgot, I suppose. Ah well, I was planning to put them all on different bases anyway. I’ll use round 25mm bases for this project.

The pikemen: 5 different sculptsThe pikemen: 5 different sculpts
The arquebusiers: 4 different sculpts. Also: the HQ miniatures and some metal spears.The arquebusiers: 4 different sculpts. Also: the HQ miniatures and some metal spears.
Metal spears. 14 in total, which means you’ve got 2 spare. A separate flag pole for the ensign.Metal spears. 14 in total, which means you’ve got 2 spare. A separate flag pole for the ensign.

Style and historical accuracy

The overall look of the miniatures captures the time period well (1570-1600). Some pikemen still remind of landsknechts, who were disappearing in that period but not entirely gone yet. The miniatures are nicely sculpted.

If we are very critical: I miss feathers. Soldiers used to put feathers on their hats or helmets in the colour of the army in which they served. In this set only the officer and the flutist have a feather on their headgear. Almost all miniatures wear a sash: only officers and non commissioned officers whore those. In this box only the officer and ensign (also an officer) should have a sash. Admittedly, these are details in wat is a very nice set of miniatures.

The pikes

At first I didn’t know how to put the pikes in the hands of the pikemen. Are you supposed to cut them in two? Then glue both halves to the hand? This won’t result in a straight pike. And there will be very little surface to glue the pike halfes to the hand.

No, that’s not how to do it. You drill a whole through the fist of the pikeman. I drilled a tiny whole first with my finest drill. This very fine whole then guides the bigger drill. This is the result:

Inbox review War of Religion Infantry Regiment – Warlord Games

Conclusion

This is a very nice set of miniatures. Recommend.

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