How does it work with historical timings and different armies fighting?
Oh you’ll find that DBA 3.0 is excellent in this regard Sirsteve (love the name by the way ).
DBA uses a very sensible system. To quote from the rules:- “Troops are defined by battlefield behaviour instead of the usual formation, armour, weapons and morale.”
So it really doesn’t matter if New Kingdom Egyptian Blades of 1400 BC are facing plate armoured men-at-arms or dismounted medieval knight Blades of 1400 AD…as far as the rules are concerned, a Blade is a Blade, no matter what the period in history. (Now you might think that light ancient Egyptians wearing little more than a loin cloth wouldn’t stand much of a chance against men in full medieval plate armour…but the lightly armoured English longbowmen did all right fighting hand-to-hand against the French knights at Agincourt)
This means that any army of any period can fight against any army from any other period. Indeed, in competitions this is often unavoidable, as people bring various armies with them. But many players at home or in a club setting prefer to play against actual historical opponents, for added authenticity, although this is not compulsory.
Last Edit: Sept 29, 2021 0:18:42 GMT by stevie: ..."all armies are equal"...well, at least in theory...☺
I grew up near Chester, Pennsylvania, so greetings across the sea.
Since Ancients / 'the pre-gunpowder era' / before 1500 AD or CE (I ain't going to argue) is a matter of big knives and sharp sticks, slings and arrows, some monstrous beasties and infernal engines, and outrageous fortuna, it's possible to match up armies from different periods. Some people are put off by this, but it means you'll seldom lack for some competition.
If you find a group of good people playing historical miniatures... I'd rather play good people using poor rules, than the inverse.
My experience with DBA dates back to around 2001. I had been a Warhammer Fantasy Battle 2-4th edition guy, then moved to Fantasy Rules! This was a DBA based system around fantasy armies, in a similar vein to HOTT (Hordes of the Things). But that led me to historicals, and then DBA. DBA was my first historical rule set, and I was able to build an army using 2 Italeri Greek Hoplites box + Cavalry Box. Easy Peasy.
Even when I've moved to other periods and systems such as Bolt Action, Flames of War, 40k, and more recently Saga, Musket & Tomahawk etc. I have always swung back to DBA for it's relative simplicity. There are nuances around contact, and the exceptions for combat, but it's pretty solid, and questions are easily answered here or on the FB page. The "DBx" basing system of 40mm width + various depths has been copied by many other ancient and medieval rules sets mainly because there are lots of guys out there with large DBMM armies that they don't want to rebase. You've heard the names before, DBMM, FOG, L'ADG... I might be spoiled on DBA, but I find these latter systems to be a bit inaccessible unless you were weened on DBM decades ago. That is an opinion, and you mentioned that you'd gotten through DBMM, so all I can say is well done!
There are also several systems which base themselves on the DBA combat and PIP system (Fantasy Rules, Triumph, Pz8 Series, Songs of Blades and Heroes etc.). There are also a whole set of systems which I call "derived from Warhammer Fantasy", such as Warhammer Ancients, and other individually based troops. Nowadays, there are also some fun grid systems (To the Strongest is one of the best) where you don't have to worry about bases at all since everything is in a square.
So my advice is pick an army that shouts to you. I picked Hoplites and Carthaginians because I love colorful Hoplite shields, Corinthian Helmets, and I love war elephants. If nothing else, building a DBA army will give you a flavor for the army you've picked, even if you move onto a different set, and the base size is so standard these days that you'll almost certainly be able to use a 15mm DBA army in another rule set. Big Battle DBA is triple sized, and most other rule sets tend to play in this level of figure commitment. So you can't really go wrong with at least starting with DBA. But I warn you, you might get hooked and end up like some of the guys here who build LOTS of different armies for DBA and play it as their main game
Welcome to the community!
PS I just started reading Neil Thomas' books "One Hour Wargames" which are 2 page rules for a variety of periods, and also his "Ancient and Medieval Wargaming". I will report back when I have more.
Thanks for the reply. Have watched a couple of videos on basing and that seems straight forward.
Need to see if I can get to some conventions. I can really see there usefulness.
In terms of videos I'd recommend the ones on You Tube put up by Tony Aguilar, particularly some of the earlier ones which explain the rules.
Regarding conventions, not all of them have DBA games on show. For example Fiasco in Leeds and Recon in Pudsey I doubt would have a DBA game, so if you're going mainly for that it may be best to check with the organisers first. (Although the Pudsey show will hopefully have a HOTT tournament which is played by DBA gamers.)
The DBA competitions are mainly held in: Youlgrave/Bakewell - Derbyshire Newark Cardiff (I think) Coventry (maybe?) Hampshire - Portsmouth or Alton There is one on the 6th Nov at Tarrington (between Hereford and Ledbury, further details on this site under the Tournaments heading.) And next year there will hopefully be a DBA competition at Britcon (wherever that is held) (Apologies to anyone I've missed)
Most tournaments will have a theme to them, either armies from an historical period, matched pairs, scramble (where you take an army but mainly play with other armies) or historical match ups.
A lot of these will only be DBA competitions, e.g. held in a pub or village hall etc and won't be part of other larger wargaming shows. However if you wanted to come along I'm sure you'd find everyone very friendly and willing to chat between games.
Not sure if it was covered by other replies, but the majority of tournament DBA games are played with 15mm figures, although in matched pairs I've also seen 28mm and 6mm armies fielded.