Saturday, 9 June 2018

Afghan Horse - OMG, soooooo many little horses.....

Miniature megalomania rears its head again...  

My favourite games tend to be relatively small, usually skirmishes with a half dozen figures up to a few dozen figures per side.  But when it comes to collecting, all reason goes out the window and I just need to get EVERYTHING.  A consequence is that I end up with loads of painted figures that I don't really need for a game, but since I have them I try to get them on the table, and then the game suffers as a result.  Smaller usually is better, especially in the context of being able to play a complete game in the typical 2-3 hour time frame for an evening game.

Games like The Men Who Would Be Kings and the rest of the Lion Rampant series are great when kept within the suggested two players, each with a 24-point force.  I just can't convince myself to stay within that limit!

That's a bit of a rambling introduction to my latest painting:  20 more mounted warriors for my Afghan/Pathan armies.  Just what I need to add to the dozen that I already have.

Over a year ago, I looked at the Castaway Arts cavalry and decided that I wanted the Afghans to have the option to bring two units of horse to a fight.  I looked at what was available and settled on the Old Glory NWF Pathan Tribesmen Mounted on Ponies and placed the order with Imperial Hobbies.  Of course, immediately afterward, Perry Miniatures expanded their Victoria's Little Wars line to include Pathan Tribal Cavalry, but I was already committed to OG.  Once the OG pack arrived, I was just not as 'in' to them as I needed, so they languished on the back bench for a long time.  And of course I got Perry Miniatures as well, including the Afghan High Command pack.

Oh, by the bye, Netflix provided me with a Bollywood movie to have playing in the background as I painted these!  Khuda Gawah, the epic story of the love between Badshah Khan and Behnazir, Pathans from rival tribes.  It starts off with a great buzkashi match, and moves on to Badshah Khan winning Behnazir's heart, but after the first half hour the story goes off to boring land as Badshah Khan takes the fall for murder and spend 18 years in prison in India.  It was partly filmed in Kabul and Mazar-i-Sharif (in 1992, just before Najibullah was overthrown), though, so there's some great, authentic background scenery!

Enough blather, time for pictures!

Here is the Emir.




Paint scheme was inspired by a photo of Afghanistan's Emir Mohammad Yaqub Khan meeting with British officials (including Major Cavagnari, in white helmet) in 1879.  Obviously I had to interpret or extrapolate the colour scheme somewhat!


Here is the full high command pack.




The chapan worn by the chap on the left is inspired by the one worn by former Afghan president Hamid Karzai.



Here are Perry Miniatures Afghan tribal cavalry:




If I've transcribed it correctly, the flag says something "William's little askari" in Pashto. 

Here are the Old Glory Pathan Tribesmen:




And finally a group shot showing all the mounted Afghans, including the Castaway Arts miniatures that I painted years ago, plus a couple of time travellers who might show up on a battlefield, just to see if anyone notices.  (here's an idea:  what if 'Guns of the South' was set in Kandahar in 1880?)