As a former player of the Warhammer Role Playing Game, I've always liked the Empire described in the Enemy Within campaign... quite different from the one depicted in Warhammer Fantasy Battle from the 4th edition, where Karl Franz rules as the undisputed leader of a united country.
In "my" Empire, I imagined smaller armies, with poorly equipped militia, brutish soldiers, greedy mercenaries, and noble houses fighting each other, unaware of the very distant Chaos threat. Actually, checking the 3rd edition Warhammer Armies supplement, the introduction to the Empire section corresponded rather well to this vision.
The Emperor maintains his own Imperial Guard, and each province within the Empire also raises small standing armies, supplemented by town militia and peasant levies. In addition to these forces, there are the feudal retinues of provincial nobles and the various secular and religious orders of knighthood.
An army might represent either the full military might of the Empire, led by the Emperor at the head of the Imperial Guard and supported by Templars of all the knightly orders, or just the standing army of a single Elector state, bolstered by mercenary contingents or Templars of the local cult.Obviously, what we saw in the White Dwarf issues preparing the release of the 4th edition of WFB was the army of the Empire in full glory: bright colors, impeccable uniforms, pistoliers, handgunners, and war machines that would make the most hardened dwarf engineer blush.
|White Dwarf 151 (July 2012) "The Imperial Army Advances"|
Don't get me wrong, I like the job done by the Perry brothers on these models (I've even started to collect a small force of them), it's just that it doesn't fit with what I have in mind for the Empire.
So, my army won't use anything from the 1992-1993 Citadel range. I guess I could have selected instead the imperial range sculpted in the 80s by the Citadel team, which includes great models for town militia, peasants and mercenaries. Unfortunately, the number of fanatics is very limited (one or two models), and the cavalry has an historic flavor that I don't like... which leads to my final choice: Aly and Trish Morrison's Marauder Miniatures.
Compared to Citadel, the range is rather limited (which is good for an obsessive collector), but also rather expensive (less good), even for poorly sculpted models. In summary, we have:
- 30 fighters (MM60),
- 5 fighter command models (MM61),
- 30 citizens (MM62),
- 6 halfling militia (MM64),
- 5 Reiksguard knights (MM65/1),
- 5 flagellants (MM65/2),
- 5 mounted Reiksguard knights with 2 models of war horse (MM66),
- the Emperor riding Deathclaw,
- 1 Imperial Hero riding a Pegasus (MB15),
- and a few unreleased models, 5 wizards and 1 warrior (check here if you're curious).
|WANTED: DEAD or ALIVE|
I'm mainly after the hero on pegasus, plus a few fighters and citizens (check my Want list if you want to sell some), and of course the unreleased models (the fighter and possibly one wizard), but all in all, I think I've gathered enough miniatures to field a 2000 point army.
The main issue I have is the lack of shooting troops: within the MM60/MM62 range, there is only 1 handgunner (F7) and 4 archers (F10, F19, CZ18, plus CZ9 with a bow tied in the back), and absolutely no crossbowman. Problem: I need at least 10 of them to comply with the minima defined in Warhammer Armies. It will probably end with some simple conversions of duplicates, unless I violate my self-imposed constraints and incorporate some Citadel models. I also plan to add at least one warmachine, but the dwarf siege gun (MM12) will do the job without much effort (conversions of MM62 models should be easy to make the crew).
In the end, regarding the Empire army list, my painting priorities should be the 20 mandatory Helblitzen, followed by 10 Armbrustschutzen. I'm also planning to work on at least 10 Reiksgard knights, 8 to 16 Fleglers and 5 Bergjaeger. For the cavalry (most probably Stadtsknechtes), the Reiks Kanone Batterie and the characters, we'll see later.
I still have to define a color scheme for the army. Next year ;)
PS. Hmm too bad these illustrations were not in color. Still a great inspiration for an imperial force: