Tuesday, July 25, 2006

More on Taiko! and our armies

As I mentioned in my previous post, for Taiko! I decided to treat figure basing a little differently. I also tweaked the army lists a bit to fit my own peculiar prejudices:

  • I eliminated the requirement that 1/3 of the ashigaru in an army be armed with regular hand weapons. Although the percentage is accurate, that third usually stayed "in the rear with the gear" and only joined the battle in truly desperate circumstances. The fighting ashigaru were inevitably armed with yari of some sort or missile weapons.
  • Similarly, I negated the "1/3" weapon requirement for the sohei.
  • I intend to use the Weather Table from Daimyo, especially since the Taiko! rules for setting fires specifically mention modifiers for rain and high winds.
  • I'm thinking of writing up point costs for pavises and palisades, but I want to try out the basic rules first before I start coming up with points values out of thin air. Might send an email to the folks at Flagship and see how they've handled defensive works in past games.
I think that's about it. The rules themselves are really solid and I can't wait to give 'em a test spin. To that end, I've come up with a neat scenario. But first, let's look at the armies...

Our armies are based around a fairly specific time frame, namely late 1563 into early 1564. This was when a young Tokugawa Ieyasu (still at this time known as Matsudaira Motoyasu) came head to head with local Ikko Ikki contingents in his home province of Mikawa. Several skirmishes and a large battle were fought in which the young Tokugawa impetuously led from the front, famously returning from a charge with his armor full of enemy musket balls! One of his future trusted generals, Ishikawa Ienari, started out on the side of the Ikko Ikki but later switched sides.

With all this in mind when designing my army, I decided that I wanted to have a mounted Army Commander (the impetuous Motoyasu himself!) along with his "right hand man" Honda Tadakatsu and the general, Sakai Masachika, who started the whole conflict when he was sent to collect rice from a temple without its consent. I also took Hattori Hanzo as a sub-commander, because how could I not? The content of the army is fairly conventional--a mix of Veteran and Young Samurai, most armed with pole arms (which in Taiko! include weapons like the no-dachi), ashigaru wielding short and long yari, and missile troops. Since it's still relatively early in the firearms era, I have slightly more bows than teppo. Thank you Arsenal for making that possible! ;)

The Ikko Ikki are an eclectic mix, as they should be. Peasants form the backbone of the army, but we can also find sohei, both on foot and mounted, samurai, under the leadership of that shifty fellow Ienari (it'll be interesting to see if he defects like he did in real life--another reason I love Taiko!), and even some shifty ronin armed with, of all things, muskets! There are actually more firearms in this army than in mine, which is as it should be. The Ikko Ikki were early proponents of the teppo.

Oh, and there are rumors the fanatics have contracted with the mysterious ninja. Wish I had points in my army for a yojimbo body guard...oh dear...

At any rate, the scenario I referred to above will be a fun way to teach ourselves the rules and kick off the campaign. Basically I want to represent the sparking point of the whole conflict, when Sakai arrives to collect rice from the Joguji temple and the peasants and monks therein beg to differ. Each army will have one cavalry, one infantry and one missile unit, as follows:

Sakai's Forces
  • Army Commander, Mounted (Sakai)
  • 2x Mounted Samurai, with Pole Arms
  • 6x Ashigaru, with Pole Arms
  • 4x Ashigaru, with Bows
The Ikko Ikki
  • Army Commander, Mounted (Outraged Sohei)
  • 2x Mounted Sohei, with Pole Arms
  • 6x Peasants, with Pole Arms (hoes and pitchforks)
  • 4x Ashigaru, with Teppo
All the Ikki are rated Fanatic, and the Peasants have been upgraded and the Ashigaru downgraded so they have comparable Class and Armor values.

A small complex (two buildings, a watch tower and a tree-stump wall) represents the temple's granary. The objective for Sakai is to raid the granary, or burn it down. The Ikki must prevent this. Simple, fun, guaranteed mayhem! Can't wait to play! :D


  1. I know it's been years since you posted this, but I have been enjoying your posts on the 10mm samurai army and was wondering if you ever finshed them up. It would be awesome to see some pictures if you have them avalible. Also, it seems that you settled with the Taiko! rule set. How has that worked out for you?
    Thanks again for the entertaining posts. =)

  2. This is very interesting timing. As I write this, I have the minis sitting next to my desk, based and ready for primering. I went ahead and painted up the Matsudaira command base earlier this week and it turned out great. I'll post a picture in the next couple days.

    Thanks for the compliments and the extra little shot in the arm! :)

    Since the minis have been in cold storage we unfortanately haven't had a chance to give the Taiko! rules a test run. Hope to rectify that soon.

  3. Awesome! I look forward to seeing them and in the mean time I'll be posting pic's of my mins on my site. Just started painting them yesterday but I should have some pics up in a few days or so. =D


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