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Author Topic: Arn inspired  (Read 1672 times)

Offline Machinegunkelly

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Arn inspired
« on: July 28, 2019, 04:13:49 PM »
Hi.

This summer I have (again) read the books, written by a swedish writer Guillou, about Arn Magnusson. And I have come to the conclusion that my next project will be an army inspired by his books. For those who haven´t got a clue of what I am talking about, the books could be described as a story heavily inspired by swedish history during approximatly the years 1150 - 1200, but fiction rather than fact. Although many of the books people and events have existed the main character Arn is made up.

This epoc in time can in a way be decribed as the time when what is to become Sweden left the Viking age and entered the Medieval age. This is what I am going to try to capture in the army rather than trying to be as accurate as possible. To this end I will probably mostly use Fireforge models as I am used to them, and my infantry will be a mix of FFs footknights and Scandinavian plastic ranges. The aim is to show units where the times are changing. There are modern armour but also conservative individuals whom are still living in the past. Also in the books it is described that there where a large complement of Archers made up by free men and newly released "trälar" which I will have to find a way to show in the army. And lastly one or two squads of light cavalry in "Folkunga" colours.

Visually I will be using a lot of blue and white as the army will be made up mostly of infantry from the "Eriksaätten", and the reason for this is ego. IRL my name is Erik. Blue and white are according to the books  the main colours of "Erikskaätten".

The composition of the army will mostly be heavy infantry in closed ranks. The reason for this is apart from Guillous books  from another book who had a really amusing theory of why the backwater swedish forces could defeat the danes at Gerstriljen and Lena. It goes something like this. The danes where at this time a medieval army with mounted knights, whom where used to fight other knights. When they encountered infantry it was mostly press ganged peasants whom scattered before their charge. There where no knight who remembered how to defeat a shieldwall. So when they invaded sweden that is what the danes expected. The problem was that the swedish people were still more or less viking in their thinking and way of fighting. The suedes fought the way their ancestors always fought and if they died they wold go to paradise. Ergo when the danish knight charged the swedish shieldwall they believed that it would scatter. It didn´t.
I seriously doubt this hypothesesis but I find it highly amusing that the swedish won because they more or less was a grumpy backwater people who had no intentions to change just becuse the rest of the world did...

As I already have a large fantasy force intended for skirmish this army will be made in blocks and ranks. I haven´t played or build this kind of armies since Warhammer 5th edition, and I will not make the same mistake as i did back then. I built a whole empire army as single figures, and there for had to rank and move them as single figures. When it comes to rules to use I am going to need a rule set where there is a difference between heavy and light infantry, and where the armament of the unit matters. Using spears and shield against cavalry rather than just a sword should be a positive thing.

I could use some advice on rulesset to use and also how to build for them. Example: In this ruleset I would avice building five men ranks on a single line. In this ruleset it works to build ten man squads in two ranks.

Many thanks in advance MGK

Offline Dr. Zombie

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2019, 07:35:49 AM »
This sounds great. I will be following with interest. I am in the progress of turning the army I did for the Baltic Crusades (elsewhere on this forum) into a more generic type 1200 +/- style army. Where I use the Baltic pagans as Leding troops. The conscripted commoners who fought like they always have and none of this modern nonsense with horse, lance and heater shields.

I was actually given the opportunity to to play a Knight templar extra in the Arn Movie/miniseries. But I had to go to Morocco for 4-6 weeks and it was just around the time I had to turn in my Masters paper. So sadly I had to decline. But a few of my friends are in the movie.

As for rules I always keep returning to Lions Rampant and Hail Caesar. Lions Rampant while you build up your forces and then Hail Caesar once you have enough. 

Offline Machinegunkelly

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2019, 10:07:12 AM »
Thanks Dr.Zombie. I´ve been reading your thread and it is really inspiring. I´ve looked up your rules suggestion and from vids on Youtube it seems as Lions Rampand is individual models. But from what I can see Hail Caesar is more what I am looking for with more models on bases. What sizes of bases are you using for your army?


Offline tin shed gamer

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2019, 10:13:11 AM »
Interested to see were your going with this.I must admit I've not had time to read the book. The film how ever is often on as background noise and sense of time while Im working.(mind so is the Princess Bride and north by northwest.)

Offline Dr. Zombie

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2019, 10:18:08 AM »
The bases I use are 6cmX4cm

It is true that Lions Rampant is a more skirmish type game. But we have found that it works just as well with multibased minis. You just have to have a way of tracking wounds in stead of removing minis. The movement rules of LR are so loose that it does not really matter if your minis are based individually or together.

Offline Machinegunkelly

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2019, 12:03:30 PM »
I´ll start with sorry ´bout the quality of the photos but I am in a bit of a rush today.

So I have gotten my copy of Hail Caesar and started to understand how to build a force in it. This have also helped me thinking about how to show this mix of old and new. This is one way. This is the commander of the force. A king called Erik from the "Eriks ätt". He is still very much a Viking using his family sword. I will add a knight shield to him to show that the time is changing. But he have chosen a young warrior from the "folkunga ätten" to carry his standard. To show that they are driving what is to become Sweden forward I chosed a modern armor. I have also tried to pose them so there is a feeling is the knight making sure the King is kept in line. When it comes to colours I have chosen a regal/ Imperial blue for Folkungarna while the Eriks will get a lighter blue. Of course when it comes to rank and file there will be more shades of blue (50 shades of blue?).
There is still a lot to do so this is a WIP picture. I have still to start painting the banner and tidying up the kings legs. And there is ofcourse basing and fixing the knights shield.

DSC06419 by Erik Lagerborg, on Flickr

DSC06420 by Erik Lagerborg, on Flickr
« Last Edit: August 11, 2019, 12:23:11 PM by Machinegunkelly »

Offline Machinegunkelly

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2019, 09:28:46 PM »
Hi you all.

After long consideration I have come up with my approach for the coming summers Arn Project. I will use Hail Ceasar as my Foundation rule set. The first part will be a division consisting of four medium sized units. They will be meant to represent the core of "Erikska ättens" infantry and will be commanded by the general of the army, King Erik. The dominant colours will be blue and white but I will drop in some other colours to show that there are representants of other families in there as well.
One unit will be armed with two handed weapons, the thought is that they are battle hardened veterans. Two units will be ordinary melee units. The last one will be a unit of archers. This will make the division all round and therefore possible to use in small battles.

I am probably going to use Fireforge plastic Scandinavians as the core, but I will mix them up with some plastic Vikings from different suppliers. This is to show that the Swedish are traditionalist and conservative. If it worked for my grandfather it will work for me.

Offline tin shed gamer

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2019, 12:20:52 PM »
An interesting start . looking forward to seeing more.
Mark.

Offline Aesthete

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #8 on: October 28, 2019, 10:10:02 PM »
I'm a big fan of those books, and the aesthetic and social organization of the period - Scandinavia exiting the viking age - forms the basis of a lot of the fantasy stuff I like as well.

That bit with the "if one of ours is killed, they will be killed within three days" is so damn evocative and something I'll use in a game of fiction one day.

Looking forward to seeing more.

« Last Edit: October 28, 2019, 10:12:17 PM by Aesthete »
Dispatches from the Miniature Front - my occasionally updated blog

Offline Engel

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2019, 08:55:13 AM »
Ohh... Will follow this with interest  :-*


A rather nice read (in Swedish) about the battle of Lena 1208 can be found here: http://stewegee.se/public_html/Slaget_vid_Lena_150826.html Maybe people can use sort of google translate on the page to get a rough understanding of it.

As that battle was thought in January it is of my thinking that heavy snow could have made an huge impact on the Danish cavalry supporting the House of Sverker. The terrain could have stopped the cavalry and the archers could have had a picking, a sort of cold Scandinavian Agincourt variant.



And while Im at it... A couple of shameless plugs for inspirations from the House of Erik  ;)

http://kampgruppe-engel.blogspot.com/2018/11/riddare-fran-eriksatten.html

http://kampgruppe-engel.blogspot.com/2019/07/bagskyttar-tillhorandes-eriksatten.html

Offline Machinegunkelly

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Re: Arn inspired
« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2019, 05:34:32 PM »
Hi.

Sorry I haven´t responded on the thread and thanks for all the nice pepping for the project. It is still on for the summer, but we are selling our house and moving to a much smaller apartement. This will of course mean that I will need to stream line my hobby Collection and start focusing. But as this project and my fantasy project are using the same models and colour range it is still a high priority. And I Think it will be fun.

MGK