Friday, 20 January 2017

My Sengoku adversaries completed

To help the local owner of the figure manufacturer Kingsford Miniatures start his business, I bought a bunch and agreed to paint up a mounted unit of the Sengoku era Samurai for him to photo for his gallery page. To be honest, I did not do much research at that time into this conflict so just saw the letter character (meaning ‘great’) was cool enough and I put it on a black background for the sashimono - the small flags attached to the warrior’s back.  I did nothing with the remainder of the collection for the past 7 years and originally thought to use it for DBA.  But with the advent of the ‘Lion Rampant’ rules I became motivated to bring them out of storage.  Needed a shovel as they were deep in the back of the cabinet but I managed.
The Takeda mounted samurai with a rather antiquated horse archer model.  However I will use the unit modifier for ranged weapons.  Verses the Okudaira it will be old tactics mostly using bow within combat unit rather than devoted arquebus groups.  

I am a firm believer in completing both sides of a battle or conflict and I am always a bit tied to the realism of history so I endeavoured to stay to the actual history to gain a matching adversary for the Takeda Katsuyori whose mon -personal/family symbol- was painted on that first unit. I found my historical adversary in Okudaira Sadamasa whose sashimono device is a simple red and white pattern for ease of painting and the mon of a red fan.  His family was killed by Katsuyori who did not appreciate his departing after the death of Katsuyori’s father, Takeda Shingen who had Sadamasa’s family as hostage.  The Okudaira took part in the final campaign against the Takeda in 1582.
The newly painted Okudaira 'expert' fighting ashigaru.  The poses seem aggressive enough!

a samurai unit showing the use of different shapes and sizes of bases.
I have mounted all my units on bases of circles, ovals and rounds of various sizes which work well for these rules and look quite good in my eyes. I added tufts and model flowers to give a nice organic look to the terrain work.

Teppo unit.  My handgun units are 6 strong.

My Takeda ashigaru units are considered a mixed weapon yeoman classification so have some archers within.
The two clans clash near a farm house.

Besides the combat units,  the Okudaira have the addition of a musical party sporting a large uma jirushi standard with the red fan personal symbol which is used also on the conch shell horn-blower's tunic and on the war drum.


  1. Fantastic work Doug. These really are a treat. Looking forward to seeing them all take to the battlefield.

    1. Thanks. It should be interesting to see the missile armed Takeda go against the melee motivated Okudaira.

  2. Great stuff. You should tells Kingsford to link or steal your photos. Your painting and presentation do great credit to the figs.

    1. Thanks Dave for the notion. They are nice crisp figures which I did not really acknowledge until I started painting them and so wanted to do a good job on the collection.
      Now onto the actual playing!

  3. Beautiful work. I love the orange on the Okudaira especially - very crisp and eye-catching.

    1. My red paint I use, Bill, is very much a scarlet tone and the highlight a lighter red - yes, almost, orange and with the poor yellow lighting, does look very much orange. You are certainly correct; the eye sees them more red in reality.
      Thanks for the compliment.

  4. I too have Kingsford figures for my samurai, and 4Ground houses for terrain! I want to ask you about how you painted the sashimono? Not the patterns, but the shading. It looks very effective. I have just got block colours on mine, and they don;t look natural. But when I tried shading, it didn't look good either. You've got it just right. On the red/white sashimono, have you use different shades of red and white for the shading, and just matched them up where the red and white shade meet? Or is it some sort of ink wash applied over both colours?

  5. Sorry for the slow response but recovering from a three day wargame convention
    For the red/white sashimono I placed individual strips of painter's masking tape (green tape) carefully positioned on each and painted both base and highlight (light grey and white) before removing to then paint the red; matching the highlights of the red with the previous white.

    The mon of the Takeda was by a template of sorts made from a small bit of clear product packaging by which I could position at the same place on each sashimono and put a dot of paint at each appropriate end of the letter. With this done I would use these points as reference to fill in the letter's strokes

    I don't like working with or the effect of transfers so hand paint all the mons. I make sure to pick easy ones!
    Trust that is clear-ish and answers your enquiry