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Author Topic: BIBLESHOCK! (Biblical Skirmishes in 1000 BC)  (Read 3407 times)

Offline tikitang

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BIBLESHOCK! (Biblical Skirmishes in 1000 BC)
« on: January 27, 2022, 11:13:05 PM »
The Project

The idea is to use the free wargame ruleset Ravenfeast, ACIDSHOCK!, originally designed for Viking skirmishes, to play man-to-man combat in Biblical times! In particular, I'm focussing on the period during the reign of King Saul of Israel era of the Judges: a time of constant warfare between the various peoples inhabiting the land once known as Canaan.


Biblical Background

The Kingdom of Israel, circa 1000 BC.

Since their mass exodus from Egypt and subsequent conquest of Canaan, centuries ago, the "Twelve Tribes" of Israel have lived in a loose confederacy, ruled by warlords known as the Judges.

Meanwhile, the Philistines, originally "Sea People" from the Aegean, expelled from Egypt by Rameses III, have also made a homeland for themselves in Canaan, along the western coastline, forming the Pentapolis of Philistia, a confederation of five cities: Gath, Gaza, Aphek, Ekron and Askalon. From there, they began to make incursions into Israelite territory, growing ever stronger, stripping the tribesmen of their weapons and subjugating them beneath Philistine rule.

After decades of oppression, the Israelites cry out to one of their prophets, Samuel, to appoint a king over them. A king to unite the tribes into one strong nation and rise up against their Philistine overlords. Reluctantly, Samuel chooses a man from the tribe of Benjamin: Saul, son of Kish, to be their king. Saul proves an effective warrior, crushing Israel's neighbouring enemies on every border: the Ammonites, Amalekites, Arameans, Moabites and Edomites. He also fights hard against the Philistines, but is never able to hold them back for long.

Among Saul's hand-picked warriors is a young man from the tribe of Judah: David, son of Jesse. Originally a shepherd-boy from Bethlehem, David had entered Saul's court as a musician and song-writer. In those days, the Philistines had absorbed a tribe of gigantic men, the Anakim -- survivors of an earlier age -- into their Pentapolis. These giants became champions in the Philistine ranks; mighty warriors such as Goliath, Lahmi, Ishbi-benob, Saph and others unnamed. As a reward for defeating Goliath in single-combat, David was given Saul's daughter, Michal, as a wife, and made a commander in Saul's army, where he gained great prestige among the fighting men. There he became close friends with Jonathan, Saul's firstborn son and heir apparent.

However, the prophet Samuel announced that YHWH, the God of Israel, was displeased with Saul and would choose another king in his place. Unbeknownst to Saul, Samuel anointed David as the future king. While David continued to grow in fame and popularity, Saul grew weaker, as his grip on power and sanity dwindled. In time he came to resent David, and attempted to assassinate him on several occassions. With the help of Michal and Jonathan, as well as the High Priest Ahimelech, David fled the Kingdom of Israel as a fugitive and, armed with Goliath's sword, went into hiding in the mountains near the border of Philistia.

During this time of exile, David gathered together a band of four hundred loyal warriors, all of them renegades and outlaws. David and his outlaw band, which grew to six-hundred before long, launched many guerilla raids on the Philistines. But, after being relentlessly hunted down by Saul (who now seemed more concerned about destroying David than his actual enemies), David and his men joined the Philistines as mercenaries, in return for their protection. As a mercenary, David fought against the Philistines' other nearby foes, the Geshurites, Gezerites and Amalekites, and within a year was made the personal bodyguard of Achish, the Philistine Lord of Gath. When Saul found out David had joined the Philistines, he gave up the pursuit of his nemesis.

Eventually, the Philistines defeated King Saul at the Battle of Gilboa, where Saul, Jonathan, and two more of his sons, were slain. Hearing this news, David left Philistia, returned to Israel, and claimed Saul's crown for himself, by right of his anointing by Samuel. After defeating another claimant to the throne, Ishbosheth (Saul's sole surviving son and heir), David strengthened the monarchy, expanded the kingdom, subdued the Philistines, and wrested the city of Jerusalem from another Canaanite tribe, the Jebusites, which henceforth became his capital and seat of power. In Jerusalem, David began a royal dynasty which would survive four centuries, until the destruction of Jerusalem at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon, in 587 BC.


The Philistines

Raiding bands went out from the camp of the Philistines in three groups.

- 1 Samuel 13:17



Here is my Philistine warband; seven warriors including an Anakim champion (possibly one of Goliath's brothers or cousins).

The Philistines are famous for their colourful kilts, elaborate headgear, and their manufacturing of long iron swords.

The miniatures are mostly 28mm 'Sea People' from the Northstar Kadesh range, with a 54mm 'Philistine Warrior' I ordered from a company called 'Tin Skulptures' (based in Ukraine) as the Anakim.


I'll post up further warbands, and battle reports, as they become available...
   


« Last Edit: March 02, 2022, 09:03:31 AM by tikitang »
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal."

- Jesus

Offline Easy E

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2022, 03:09:07 PM »
Very cool.  The background was fascinating. 
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https://www.patreon.com/Bloodandspectaclespublishing

Offline Hobgoblin

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2022, 03:41:20 PM »
They look great! Love the (ox-hide?) shields!

Offline has.been

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2022, 05:09:36 PM »
Lovely figures & great background.
I will follow this with interest.

Offline DivisMal

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2022, 05:34:08 PM »
Blimey! Those are really good and I love the idea of Biblical skirmishes!
I’ve never heard about that ruleset. Please tell, if it’s worth its money.

Offline Comsquare

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2022, 05:42:03 PM »
Blimey! Those are really good and I love the idea of Biblical skirmishes!
I’ve never heard about that ruleset. Please tell, if it’s worth its money.

It's for free, so yes, it's worth its money ;)
For real, it's a nice set of rules, worth checking it out.
http://www.ravenfeast.com/

@ tikitang

Great job on those Philistines, well done :)

Offline DivisMal

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2022, 06:08:57 PM »
It's for free, so yes, it's worth its money ;)
For real, it's a nice set of rules, worth checking it out.
http://www.ravenfeast.com/

@ tikitang

Great job on those Philistines, well done :)

Thank you, Comsquare! Free is nice and I’ll check them.
Hope you’re well?

Offline Comsquare

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2022, 06:13:03 PM »
Thank you, Comsquare! Free is nice and I’ll check them.
Hope you’re well?


I am, hope you and your family as well.

Still have to come for a visit one day.
Vielleicht um Ostern ;)

Offline DivisMal

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2022, 07:05:46 PM »
I am, hope you and your family as well.

Still have to come for a visit one day.
Vielleicht um Ostern ;)

We are, thanks.
Try April, then we’ll have a new special exhibition, which keeps me very busy right now.

Sorry for the short thread hijack! You seem to inspire on many levels.

Concerning rules: I have downloaded the „Dolorous Stroke“ rules and while they are for medieval knights, they could also serve very well for Homeric/Biblical heroes!

Offline tikitang

  • Scientist
  • Posts: 210
Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2022, 11:05:16 PM »
Thank you for the kind comments, folks.

Love the (ox-hide?) shields!

Thanks! Yep; ox-hide was the intention! Not sure how well I pulled it off, but thought it would be visually interesting nevertheless.


The background was fascinating. 

Glad you enjoyed it. I was essentially summarising the events contained within the Old Testament Book of 1 Samuel, which chronicles the chaotic reign of King Saul and the rise of David, though I also referenced a few details found in the earlier OT books of Joshua and Judges.


Concerning rules: I have downloaded the „Dolorous Stroke“ rules and while they are for medieval knights, they could also serve very well for Homeric/Biblical heroes!

I remember all too well the initial excitement of discovering those particular rules, back in November 2018, but I found the card-drawing system way too fiddly! It became so unmanagable for me I think I might have developed an irrational phobia of playing cards as a result!

I did actually have a plan to use Mordheim for Biblical skirmishes a couple of years ago -- a project which I entitled 'Biblehammer' -- but I rather fell out of love with that idea after a while, mostly because the way I planned to do it required referencing multiple books to find all the special rules and information I needed (something I am sure most Warhammer players are used to), which was driving me nuts.

When I thought about reviving a Biblical skirmish project again in 2021 (I think it was around October), I initially planned to use The Fantasy Trip, which is why all my miniatures are mounted on hexagonal bases. I was going to call that project 'The Bible Trip', but TFT seems to work best with a smaller number of unique miniatures (maybe 2-3 per side), or perhaps Gladiatorial contests, rather than 'warbands', so I parked that idea too.

Ravenfeast was released right at the end of 2020 (though, as a point of interest, it is actually a 're-skin' of an older set of free rules called One Page Fantasy Skirmish, which might be useful to you). I praised it at the time and I remember thinking it was one of the best skirmish games available. It struck me recently that it is perfectly suited for Homeric or Biblical combat as much as Viking. So that's where I'm at currently. We'll see how it holds up after I've got another warband painted up!

« Last Edit: January 29, 2022, 08:59:29 AM by tikitang »

Offline Blackwolf

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2022, 11:49:37 PM »
Fascinating stuff,and nice painting! You can see the inspiration from Tolkien to Stafford in early biblical history.
May the Wolf  Walk With You
http://greywolf1066.blogspot.com.au/

Painting Clubs Joined: APC,MPC, PPC,PAPC,LPC.

Offline DivisMal

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2022, 08:35:29 AM »

I remember all too well the initial excitement of discovering those particular rules, back in November 2018, but I found the card-drawing system way too fiddly! It became so unmanagable for me I think I might have developed an irrational phobia of playing cards as a result!


Ravenfeast was released right at the end of 2020 (though, as a point of interest, it is actually a 're-skin' of an older set of free rules called One Page Fantasy Skirmish, which might be useful to you). I praised it at the time and I remember thinking it was one of the best skirmish games available. It struck me recently that it is perfectly suited for Homeric or Biblical combat as much as Viking. So that's where I'm at currently. We'll see how it holds up after I've got another warband painted up!

Okay, I need to check it. I was quite impressed with the SF skirmish variant by OnePageRules.

Offline tikitang

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2022, 08:58:46 AM »
Well, One Page Fantasy Skirmish isn't related to One Page Rules, despite having "One Page" in the title!

Offline Gibby

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2022, 08:31:42 PM »
Excellent start to the project. I look forward to seeing the Israelites and then following the chronicles of their battles!

Offline DivisMal

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Re: Ravenfeast: Stronger than Lions (Biblical Skirmishing in 1000 BC)
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2022, 08:54:38 PM »
Well, One Page Fantasy Skirmish isn't related to One Page Rules, despite having "One Page" in the title!

Darn! Why do they make it so complicated?!  lol My old brain cannot cope with it.  lol lol

 

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