First Look: Baccus DBA Early Imperial Roman Army (25mm GS)

Note: The “First Look” series are not intended to be in-depth reviews of the products in question. Rather, they are supposed to convey the first impressions I had when I first received the product.

Direct Link:
Price: 21.28 GBP
Shipping: 25% of order (5.32 GBP if only ordering this item)
Contents: 436 figures

Baccus is well known for producing remarkably good-looking 6mm miniatures. In fact, I’ve seen people say that Baccus’s miniatures actually have crisper detail than some 10mm counterparts. While I can’t verify this statement for myself (since I don’t own any 10mm miniatures myself… at least not yet), I can say for sure that Baccus miniatures look good enough for me to believe it.

My order of Baccus’s “25mm Ground Scale DBA Early Imperial Roman Army” has arrived last night, so I decided to write up a First Look article for it.

For those of you who are not familiar with DBA, it’s an abbreviation for “De Bellis Antiquitatis” and one of the most popular rulesets for miniature wargaming in the Ancients era. DBA is supposed to be played with either 15mm or 25/28mm miniatures, and provide different “ground scales” for each size.
If you are using 15mm miniatures, the width of the base of each unit should be 40mm, and 1 inch will equal 100 paces.
If you are using 25/28mm miniatures, the base width is 60mm instead, and 40mm will stand for 100 paces.

The idea behind Baccus’s “25mm Ground Scale DBA Army Pack” is to provide enough 6mm miniatures for you to cram onto a 60mm base. The objective is to make them look more like actual units, as opposed to the “few soldiers hanging around” look with larger miniatures.

Since the actual number of miniatures that are put on a base does not matter in DBA rules, this is a good method of making your game look more spectacular without having to change anything in how the game actually plays.

The first thing you’ll notice about this army, is how unbelievably small it is. I mean, a whole Roman army that fits in a postal package the size of a generic magazine?


Here’s what the army looks like, after I’ve grouped them into units and laid them out on a sheet of A4 (210mm x 297mm) paper. The round metallic thing in the middle is a 100 KRW coin (measuring 24mm in diameter), which I’ve put there for comparison.

The contents of this DBA Army Pack is as follows:

  • 60 strips of Legionaries, 4 figures on each strip
  • 36 strips of Auxiliary Infantry, 4 figures on each strip
  • 12 strips of Auxiliary Cavalry, 3 horses on each strip
  • 4 strips Bolt Throwers, a Bolt Thrower and crew on each strip
  • 4 strips of Moorish Cavalry, 3 horses on each strip

That’s a whopping 436 figures in all!

Next, let’s take a look at each of these little guys up close and personal.

First up is the quintessential “Roman soldier”, the Legionary.

Most of the spears have been bent out of shape during their voyage halfway across the globe. But then nothing’s broken, and white metal is flexible enough for me to straighten them easily enough.

You may also notice the amount of detail that has gone into a miniature this small. One important point to remember is that this close-up is probably a lot closer than an average gamer will ever see (or care to see) these miniatures in real life!
Another nice touch is that each unit contains a “command strip”, which has a commander (centurion? decurion? I’m not familiar with Roman-era TO&E) and his retinue.

Next is the Auxiliary Infantry.

And here’s the Auxiliary Cavalry.

And the Moorish Cavalry…

And lastly the Bolt Throwers.

I think the Bolt Throwers are supposed to be cut off from the base, and assembled separately. I’ll have to fiddle around with it to be sure.

Anyway, it’s really fantastic to be able to field a suitably large-looking army for the cost of a couple of dinners!

I’ll follow up with another review when I get around to painting these guys. But don’t hold your breath, because it may take me a while to paint 400+ figures…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s