I have been a long time enthusiast of Sword and Sandal/Peplum flicks, and Gladiator movies in particular. There is nothing quite like watching a mid-60's flick of oily, sweaty beefcake Italians westling around in short shorts to get the heart stirred... or maybe that's just me. In addition, I have done some research into the real world of Gladiators. I am also an avid wargamer and really like 28mm skirmish rules. These two loves seemed to logically combine into a desire, nay NEED; to start a Gladiator Ludus or two of my own.
I'm not entirely new to the Gladiator wargaming scene. I have dabbled in the past with Familia Gladiatoria, Mino Sin Missio (sp), and a few others. However, for this project I am going to be using The Games: Blood and Spectacle as my base rule set. These rules can be found here: https://app.box.com/s/ntrgx0qon573jt6ttsis
I like these rules as they balance some tactical play with a campaign system, and they have a lot of different Gladiator fight types and not just straight up Mano-a-mano clashes. Plus, I wrote them myself so that limits rule disputes. However, Gladiators don't rely on a single ruleset to work. A murmillo is a murmillo no matter what ruleset you are using! The other great thing is that you don't need a ton of Gladiator models for a good night of gaming. A handful will suffice.
Now, onto the Gladiators. For this project I decided to use some of Crusader's beautiful 28mm models. I ordered from their US Distributor Age of Glory. Here is what I started with....
You can see a nice big piece of MDF that use to be a Cake board, a few Roman Pillars for cake decorating, a box of washers for bases and some miniatures. So far I have recieved:
1. Gladiator Characters- really I only wanted the Gladiator with the two-handed axe, but the others might be useful too.
2. Equites- This pack has them mounted and dismounted. Cool since Equites typically both dismounted when one ro the other was dismounted.
3. Thraeces and Hoplomachi- Curved Sword and Spear armed type respectively.
4. Secutores and Scissori- The Secutor is the traditional for of the Retarious (Net and Trident) and the Scissori is also known as a Arbelas. They have a stranged curved blade arm thing.
5. Retarius and Laquerius- Net and Trident and Spear and Lasso armed light gladiator types.
Here is a closer look at the two groups I plan on working on first, the Secutors and Retarius packs. You can also see the Arbelas and Laquerius in this picture. Since Secutors and Retarius are a "classic" gladiator match up they seem like painting up one of each is a good start.
Here are these guys to scale with the arena I plan on using.
Obviously this is just the beginning stages of the project. Much will need to be done, but here is the start.