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Author Topic: My Ethiopians and their enemies (28mm)  (Read 2464 times)
lowlylowlycook
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« on: 19 March 2017, 11:01:44 PM »

As I might have mentioned, I'm pretty new to historical wargaming, having played WHFB off and on for quite a few years.   So why on earth do I have a bunch of 28mm Ethiopians and why is there a large shipment coming from Australia with more?

One day a friend sent an email about how he and a few others had talked about playing a new game set during WW2 called Bolt Action since I had about a shelf full of WW2 history books I kind of knew that resistance was pointless and that I'd be joining in.   The official Bolt Action forums refused to let me register so I ended up at BoltAction.net where I noticed that someone had put together an unofficial Ethiopian army list.  That caught my eye because I had traveled to Ethiopia two times, once to help my brother adopt a son and once to help his whole family go and adopt a daughter.  The second time the whole family went because the country had made enough of an impression on me that I kind of insisted that my sister in law go and see it.  

So anyway, I've got some Ethiopians and eventually I had so many Ethiopians that I needed to buy some Italians for them to fight.  Some of the Ethiopians are even painted and based but let's start this thread in media res with a pics of minis in the middle of being based.




As you can see, I fully subscribe to Bolt Action's emphasis on ignoring historical platoon structure and putting whatever might seem plausible on the table.  Also, I swear that the Italians all facing away from the camera is happenstance and not any kind of attempt at humor.

The Ethiopians will be based with some long grass tufts  and flowers being inspired by the cover of this novel



The Italians will be based on a more harvest/desertish theme so they could possibly match someones desert rats.  Inspired by this painting



Eventual plans are to build more enemies to match against the Ethiopians.

  • More Italians for the First Italio-Ethiopian War.
    British from the Napier expedition.
    Muslims led by Ahmed Gran
    Possibly some Sudanese, but that raises the problem of Sudanese minis having been drafted into my Ethiopian Army.
Also I've started a Kings of War "Army of Prester John" that's kind of a fever dream combining what the Crusaders were hoping would rescue them, Ethiopian touches and fantasy elements like and Arc of the Covenant and Gnolls created by feeding hyenas by mouth.


That's enough for now, I'll post more later for sure.  Any and all comments, advice, questionsetc. welcome!
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paulr
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« Reply #1 on: 19 March 2017, 11:06:30 PM »

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mad lemmey
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« Reply #2 on: 19 March 2017, 11:11:37 PM »

Those are good.
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d_Guy
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WWW
« Reply #3 on: 20 March 2017, 01:10:21 AM »

Very much enjoyed your post, LLC  - stories and pictures both! That seems to be how it starts - the fever of another wargaming interest - getting a few figures - then more - then other figures as OpFor - then more figures.... Smiley

Good on your brother and his family BTW.
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Ithoriel
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« Reply #4 on: 20 March 2017, 03:28:29 AM »

Very nice looking armies!

Not a scale, period or ruleset that snags my interest but I hope read more about these and to see more pics!
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lowlylowlycook
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« Reply #5 on: 20 March 2017, 04:07:51 AM »

OK, lets continue combining stories with pics then.   Smiley

Let me tell you about the first time that my Ethiopians faced against a tank.  It was their second battle the first being a pretty good debut against some fallschirmjäger.  Of course realistically Ethiopians vs. Germans let alone fallschirmjäger doesn't really bear thinking about but hey it's a game.  So second game I asked my opponent to bring a tank just to see how things would work.  He brought his US paratroopers with a Sherman.  Of course my Ethiopians have essentially nothing that can touch the Sherman but Bolt Action is essentially an infantry game so maybe they'd be able to handle whatever objectives and ignore the tank.  First turn the US calls in an airstrike because of course they do.  My opponent rolls a 1 meaning that I can pick the target.  Scratch one Sherman  Grin


My current dilemma is whether this basing scheme is good enough for the Italians or if I maybe should order some more golden tufts to maybe match the coir fields I'm making.



You can see where I tried to use trimings from some coir mat fields on the askari on the left.  It didn't really turn out that well.

Here is one of my fields


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Techno
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« Reply #6 on: 20 March 2017, 07:19:34 AM »

Very nice looking figures.

Cheers - Phil.
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Leman
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« Reply #7 on: 20 March 2017, 10:04:35 AM »

A very interesting and esoteric WWII sub-period. The figures look very good.
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toxicpixie
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« Reply #8 on: 20 March 2017, 10:09:16 AM »

They look cracking - I like the Italian basing as is, to be honest and it does have double duty potential...

Well done on the Sherman kill Wink

I'm not sure I could help you justify proper tanks (American Lend-Lease to a restored Emperor, maybe?!), but certainly there's the possibility of some autocannons to deal with light armour...





Or perhaps some captured tankettes -

« Last Edit: 20 March 2017, 10:14:10 AM by toxicpixie » Logged

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lowlylowlycook
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« Reply #9 on: 20 March 2017, 01:07:44 PM »

Yeah, unlike that tankette, I think it might be hard to justify including a Sherman by claiming that my Ethiopians swarmed over one and then picked it up and ran off with it. 

It's interesting.  The fact that the Ethiopians were able to win at Adawa but were crushed in 1936 without too much problem shows just how much warfare was transformed by WW I.  The Ethiopians were still gunning for a big, one day, decisive battle and even if they had got it they weren't in any position to win it.
 However, as far as I've read,  Italian armor doesn't really feature too prominently.  Probably because Italian armor was never very reliable and Ethiopia isn't exactly prime tank country.

Perhaps the best policy is to show my opponent some pictures of Ethiopian terrain and then hopefully they politely decline to attempt to drive a Tiger through it.  Grin

But yeah, the list I use does have anti-air guns, FT-17s and artillery.  The last might be able to destroy a medium tank with a lot of luck.  I've read that the tanks never left Addis Ababa and at least one book claims that the Ethiopians bought some anti-tank guns, I think from Germany. 

I do have a Matilda II but haven't got around to painting or even buying many Brits to go along with it.


Finally, I do have a armchair theory that the Allies should have trained a division or two of Ethiopians for use later in the war.  The Italians had already started the work and I somehow think that they would have been useful additions to the French forces fighting in the mountains of Italy.  But it wouldn't be that interesting a force to model since they'd be just another Lend Lease force.  They'd even have to wear boots.   Shocked

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toxicpixie
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« Reply #10 on: 20 March 2017, 02:03:48 PM »

Heh, when you run into Tigers just make sure it's on a board you've set up, and as soon as it's on the table pop an unclimable set of rocks all round it Cheesy

Apparently the Germans gave them 30 Pak35's (to annoy the Italians who were supporting Austrian Fascists over Austrian Nazi's...), so you can have something that's similarly incapable of taking on even mid-war armour...

Direct fire field artillery is probably your best hope, I reckon. Either that or crowbars & hand grenades and hope you can swarm all over it :S
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lowlylowlycook
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« Reply #11 on: 21 March 2017, 07:22:21 PM »

Working on some Italian "armor."  Not really much of a vehicle painter.  Flory weathering washes seem to get them dirtied up without much effort.





Here are some of my finished Ethiopians with rifles in their traditional shammas, well most of them.  Some are Ethiopians from Empress or Askari others are plastics from Perry's Sudan range.

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Techno
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« Reply #12 on: 21 March 2017, 09:12:14 PM »

Damn fine work, once again.  Cool.

Cheers - Phil
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paulr
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« Reply #13 on: 21 March 2017, 10:41:39 PM »

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mad lemmey
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« Reply #14 on: 21 March 2017, 11:58:44 PM »

Nice work
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