Monday, September 6, 2010

Royal Armies of The Hyborean Age: Vendhya

2500 points

Banner: Color varies by which prince is leading the army but all would have the national emblem in the center. This emblem is a stylized mammoth's head with cold balls at the ends of the tusks.

Vendhya is a mythical prehistoric India. As would be expected the army depended heavily upon the Wooly Mammoth. These fearsome creatures were "tamed" to carry war howdahs and used extensively in the armies of Vendhya.

Due to the crushing impact of charges by the mammoths the military in Vendhya totally neglected the development of a cavalry arm. thus the bulk of the army is made up of medium spearmen who were well trained regulars. Extensive use was made of archers, both in the Mammoth's howdahs and on foot.

All Vendhyan troops wore yellow uniforms with unit distinctions being in the color of their sashes and turbans, Their shields were the same color as their sashes and turbans and bore their regimental insignia. These regimental insignia were generally not terribly warlike, as often the case in European coats of arms. They were often stylized flowers or stars. The insignia was always yellow. The insignia would also appear on the regimental banner which would be the color of the unit's sash and turban.

Each unit of archers and each unit of mammoths was generally assigned to a given unit of spearmen and would wear the same sash and turban colors. The archers would have no banner but one of the mammoth crews would carry a regimental banner. Each wooly mammoth has a crew of four. The crew includes a mahout, one spearman, and two archers. This regimental system was based on the custom of having regiments raised and maintained by prestigious noble families to that the regimental insignia compared to the family crest carried by men at armis in the Western Kingdoms.

Whichever of the royal princes was leading the army would bring along his personal guard. This guard unit was heavier infantry and it would have the special privilege of wearing purple as a sash and turban color. THe shild would also be purple with the Royal emblem (mammoth's head) embossed on the shield. Their banner color would vary but it would always have the royal emblem in it's center.

The following is a breakdown of a Vendhyan Army.

Unit Type Class # figures % of army

Regular Infantry MI B 24 50-85
Archers LI B 12 10-25
Royal Guard HI A 30 1 unit
Wooly Mammoths WM C 3 5-8

***As a side note, I'm not sure if I remember any mention of mammoths in Hyboria, so I'm not completely sold on using them in my game, still undecided at this point***

Black Raven war mammoth should I choose to use mammoths. Although I would add more indian figures to the howdah.

Khurasan Miniatures Indian range fit the bill as well!


  1. I have a mental picture of jungles associated with Vendhya, though I don't have any Conan stories set there so I'm not sure what Howard actually wrote.

    If you're thinking 15mm, take a look at Grumpy Miniatures Malay/Indonesians and Moghuls. While Renaissance ranges, the basic troopers didn't change a lot from the Classical period - and the elephants are very nice.

  2. I caught this thread yesterday and have spent the last hour "catching up". Great work so far.

  3. Thanks for the suggestion, Kobold! I don't know why I always overlook Eureka miniatures. Those are great!

    Thanks for checking it out, Whiskyrat!

  4. Were not mailed lancers mentioned in 'People of the Black Circle'?
    I tend to 'see' them as historical Moghul mailed cavalry, but with a greenstuff huge 'Bengal lancers' turban (and beard, if they don't already sport one) to look more 'archetypical Indians';

    No mammoths in Howard's canon, as far as I remember? Anyway they would be in Hyperborea rather than Vendhya, I suspect.

  5. Abdul666, I plan on adding some Moghul cavalry. I'm not sure why there wasn't any mention of mailed warriors, I know I've read about them. Plus Khurasan Miniatures has some of the best Indian miniatures I have seen!

    I would think that Mammoths would've only been in the Northern parts of Hyboria, the thick fur would kill them in the Vendhyan jungles.

  6. There's a very inconclusive reference to Mammoths in the Hyborian Age:

    What human hands could rear such a mammoth pile as now met his eyes, in the few weeks which had elapsed?

    Obviously that's open to interpretation ("mesmerism" is used in descriptions, though it doesn't mean there was a Hyborian-era Frank Mesmer) but since the Hyborian Age was pre-Ice Age, it makes sense that the megafauna would be present. Certainly mastodons appear to be ("We encountered a bench-legged monstrosity about the size of a mastodon"), as are sabretooth tigers, albeit rare in Conan's time.

    If there were Mammoths in Vendhya, they would be likely constrained to the high Himelians: either that, or they would be be "bald" mammoths. My thinking is that Vendhyans would use Stegodons (not Stegadons), since they're effectively huge elephants with long, deadly tusks, and they were around at the time.

    Excellent choices for minis, too.

  7. Thanks, Taranaich. I'll check on Stegodons, I'm not sure if anyone makes those in 15mm but maybe I can convert an elephant.