Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Baltic Crusades 13th century

Back in 2010 I got a questions from Bishop Lord , that was planing a 10mm Medieval Scandinavian army, about some reference information. The question got me thinking of a Baltic Crusades project of my own...but I newer got around untill now...I hope;)

My first thoughts was to mak a 15mm Early Medeval Swedish army, using all my vikings, focus around the Swedish crusade to Balticum in 1240 and the Battle at Neva...

BUT 15mm are not my main scale at the moment...so I have decided to go with 28mm.

The Battle at Neva was fought between the Swedish Crusading force (including Bishop Thomas of Finland) under command of Birger Jarl (might have been Birger Jarl? At least in my version) and The Russians under command of the Novgorod Prince Alexander Yaroslavich (to become Alexander Nevsky after this victory.) Read more here.

The Swedish force I will start to make will be composed of some Noblemen and their Hird (the only pro soldiers in the army), they was probably mounted i.e knights, I plan to mix some armoured knights with a lot of less armoured followers, Probably not more than 2 units, like 1 for Birger Jarl and one for the Bishop Thomas.

The Infantry by the time was the Swedish Ledunge, freemen that was oblige to serve for the King/Jarl a set number of days each year. They will have quite outdate equipment (round shield was still often used) mixed with the latest, and led by some dismounted noblemen… So I will use a mix of vikings, normans and other back dated minis as well as some more up to date minis with iron hatts and some dismounted knights as commanders. I also plan to mix in one or two bow/x-bow men in the back of the units.

Lastly I will make some skirmish units…one with Bow and one with X-Bow or a mix…most of the missile armed men fought in the back of the Shieldwall, so just a few skirmishers for the Swedes.

There are not many books in English about Sweden in this period but Ospery have 2 that can give some more info if you are intereste in the period.

Osprey - Men At Arms 436 The Scandinavian Baltic Crusades 1100-1500


Osprey - Men At Arms 396 Medieval Scandinavian Armies (1) 1100-1300


Both books have the Swedish David Lindholm as authour he are a MA of University of Lund in Sweden where he studied medieval archaeology, history and ethnology. He is also a specialist of medieval weaponry and warfare, and I think he have made a good work with these books.

There are also the Osprey book about the Battle of Lake Peipis 1242 that gives god information about the setting, the Russians and olso mention some about the Battle at Neva 1240

Osprey - Campaign 46 Lake Peipus 1242


And here are a short inspiration...a film clip from a russian movie about the Battle at Neva 1240:


Part 1:


Part 2:

31 comments:

  1. Damn you... I was just thinking if It wasn´t time to start up a Swedish mediaeval force when I saw some Firefirge knickets painted up as Danes.
    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.463554013663928.109297.271339052885426&type=3

    And then they posted some pictures of the coming infantry.
    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.481357498550246.114214.271339052885426&type=1

    And now this… I think it will be hard to resist medieval from now on.

    Granted, the Fireforge stuff isn´t perfect but maybe some of them could be useful. At least they could be used as a cheap way a lure some gaming buddies into this.

    I will follow this closely.
    Best of luck / Jonas

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    1. :) I hope you get inspired:)

      The Danish Knights was nice, even danes...

      Hadent seen the sprues of the Fire Forge infantry, just the 3-ups at salute, they look realy good, better then the knights, might be possible to mix them with the GB vikigs to get the right Swedish feel;)

      Best regards Michael

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  2. Once again, a really inspiring project.

    I don't know why, but I can't see the videos. :'(

    J-B

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    1. I hope it will Inspire to some more baltic Crusade project around the globe;) But I supouse most people will make Teutons...

      I have fixed the videos, at least they work for me... I hope you also can se them.

      Best regards Michael

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  3. I look forward to seeing some painted units:-)
    Alas for me it was another project that didn't get up and running. What base sizes are you going for?

    Jason.

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    1. Hi Jason.

      Sorry that you din´t get around runing your Baltic medival project, might you get new inspiration and start it all up again;)

      Bases...the ever lasting question...or shold it be Quest...

      I´m not sure... the ones I started to paint i put on round 20mm bases to use with my 80x50mm trays for borth skirmish and battle games, not sure about it might switch to the same as for my Kalmar Union War project i.e. 3 minis on a 40x40 base...any sugestions are welcome...

      Havent decided about rules either, the Baltic Crusade was most smal scale raid warfare with the occasional bigger battle. Hail Caesar of course but I might try to Migrate Dux Britanniarum...still to see...

      Best regards Michael

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  4. A very cool project! I've always had a soft spot for the look of the knights of that period.
    Difficult choice when it comes to basing. Your individual basing and trays that you've used for Dux etc looks great and would give a few different options when it comes to choice of rules - both for small skirmish and bigger battles.
    /Mattias

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    1. Hi Mattias

      The Knights was one of the reasons:) But I still wanted the Swedish connection.

      Basing...I will probably go for the singelbases as the trays are working quite nice for my Arthurian minis, but I will need to use some magnets for the extra safe move over the battlefield;)

      Best regards Michael

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  5. This is super cool! Looking forward to seeing the miniatures. And of course I'm very interested in joining the gaming once you get enough models ready.

    Actually, I started reading up on this subject in the beginning of the summer, with the aim to get some models and fight some small(ish) skirmishes/raids between the Swedes, the Finnish tribes and the Novgorod forces. This was before I got sidetracked by this Dux business ...

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    1. Isn´t it:) Your most welcome in the gaming to, I was hoping for you to join in this little project.

      I will uses some of my Generic Saxons and Vikings as Finnish, Baltic tribemen. Havent opted for any Novgorod minis yet...

      I think the campaign rules for Dux Brittaniarum will work perfect for this setting.

      Best regards Michael

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  6. Great idea. I really like some of the colour schemes available.
    For flags;
    http://www.krigsspil.dk/download/download_9.html
    Cheers
    paul

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    1. Thanks Paul:)

      I will use those flags as inspiration, but I opting to make my own linnen flags:)

      Best regards Michael

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  7. Great idea, my favorite period.


    When I watch your projet I think of that story :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JRSyYdzlgqY

    But this Arn is really very famous in Sweden ??

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    1. Thanks !

      The 3+1 books about Arn are writen by one of Swedens most famous writers, It´s of coure all fiction but he have made a quite good work to use the real history to get a good story, so some people even belive Arn was for real...

      The books are ablolutely worth reading the first 3 books are in the period 1150-1220:ish and tells the story about Arn and he´s adventures in Sweden, The holy land and then sweden again. The 4th book are about the "grand son" of Arn, the man that founded the Capital Stockholm, Birger Jarl and tells the story from 1220:ish to about 1280.

      The Films that are OK... tells the story from the 3 first books.

      Best regards Michael

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    2. thank you for your explanations!

      I think I'll try to find these books in French ;)

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    3. It seems that they have been translated to french

      French (Le Chemin de Jérusalem - Trilogie d'Arn le templier - tome I, Le Chevalier du Temple - Trilogie d'Arn le templier - tome II, Le Royaume au bout du chemin - Trilogie d'Arn le templier - tome III, L'Héritage d'Arn le templier)

      found them a Amazon to: http://www.amazon.fr/s/ref=nb_sb_noss/277-7333069-1438064?__mk_fr_FR=%C5M%C5Z%D5%D1&url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Le+Chevalier+du+Temple+-+Trilogie+d%27Arn+le+templier

      Best regards Michael

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  8. Can't wait to see the painted miniatures.

    Loved the film clips too, though I had to watch them on a different server as they were stuttering. Did anyone else have this trouble? Or is it the fact that I live in the middle of nowhere to blame?

    Darrell.

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    1. Hi Darrell

      I can´t wait either;) I hope not to disappoint you...

      The film clips are realy nice, I will have to get hold of the whole film.

      The clips work fine for me both at hone and at work, but after all thats in Stockholm...

      Best regards Michael

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  9. Umm, I know some rules you might use. You just need lists ;-)

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    1. So you say...wounder what rules you are talking about;)

      You better come to Stockholm and run a introduction game Stephen:)

      Best regards Michael

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    2. Sounds like a plan, hope to have the drafts back to you this weekend.

      Regards,

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    3. Then I better get started to paint the minis...phuuu... ;)

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  10. A very interesting new project, Michael. I wish you the best with it and expect to see those units soon.

    Cheers!

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    1. Thnaks Juan !

      Please don´t stress me;)

      best regards Michael

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  11. Nice project. Love the period. The Russians have better re-enactors than we do, that's for sure....

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  12. This is a fascinating period and thanks for bringing it to a wider audience Michael. I've browsed through your many posts on this and have decided to give this a go in 10mm using Dux Bellorum as a starting point. As I have some Xmas money to spend and I wanted to do something medieval but a bit different, this seems to fit the bill. When I get round to starting it is another matter entirely!!!

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    1. Greate Steve that you get inspired by my blog ! Then its well woth the effort!

      Dux Bellorum is a wery nice set of rules and I thin they will work fine during the Baltic Crusades to.

      Just be sure to make some Swedish Crusaders;)

      Best regards Michael

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  13. Hi Michael,
    Yep, your Blog has inspired me without a shadow of a doubt. I need to try and find some 1/144th ships for use in a few scenarios. Glad that you think Dux Bellorum will work well for this period. The Osprey books mention the shieldwall still in widespread use so I think they will be fine.

    My plan is to 'avoid' the classic Teutonic Orders and go for Danes & Swedes as the Crusaders, with the Eastern Baltic area for the Heathens. I want my units to have some colour rather than the monochrome Teutons!

    From a quick re-through of the Osprey books, the Pendraken Vikings, Normans, Anglo-Saxon and Early Medieval ranges should give me the figures I need. Still in the early stages of this but nice to have a different period to research:).

    TTFN,
    Steve J.

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    1. Hi Steve
      Nice to hear that you will go for Swedish/Danish Crusaders. at the bottom of this page you can fins some banners for Danes and Swedes for the crusader period: http://www.krigsspil.dk/node/60

      Indeed the Leidand used Shieldwall tactic with integrated missile troops (Bow/Crossbow/Spears/Axes) so I would giv them a "Strategies and Tactic" option of Javelins or at least the Hurled Weapons to all Shield wall units.

      For minis I absolutely think a mix of them would work fine !

      For ships I would use Viking ships or similar.

      If you send me a mail at dalauppror@gmail.com I can see what info I have in english and mail it to you.

      Best regards Michael

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