Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Which looks better?

At Cerignola there were about three and a half thousand Swiss pikemen. I'm currently planning on re-fighting this battle at a figure scale of about 1:20. This gives, using nice round numbers, 180 Swiss pike figures (30 stands of 6). That is a lot of figures to deploy as a block, and far more than I'm used to - so which of the following looks better?

Please note: I do know that there are 12 stands of Landsknechts in this unit - I'm in the process of painting up the 72 Swiss replacement figures.


 The two shots above show them deployed in 6 ranks of 30 files - I'll call this "Linear".


The two shots above show them deployed in 10 ranks of 18 files. I'll call this "Square".

So, which do you think is better, looks better, etc?

29 comments:

Stokie Steve said...

Wow! Those look the business. I know absolutely nothing about the era but I prefer the 'linear' formation.

Monty said...

It's difficult to tell... Both blocks look like an fearsome mass of pikes. But I prefer the second one. It looks even more unbreakable to me.

Anyway great paint job however you'll arrange them!

Cheers
Monty

Jason Meyers said...

I love a long battle line so the "Linear" formation gets my vote. Great looking figs all the same.

BigRedBat said...

I like the deep one.

fireymonkeyboy said...

Linear looks better. Still looks "deep", but far more sprawling.

Oli said...

I think the square formation looks much better. The classic tactic of the vorhut was to use a deeper formation to punch through a more linear enemy formation. I remember reading somewhere they would deliberately aim for the opposing commanders flags as they looked where to smash into the opposing side.

Emilio said...

Linear for me.

scotty said...

Wow, they look great. I'd go for the second option, Pikes in a block

Fire at Will said...

Square, it provides more punch and staying power. Similar to the Swiss pike blocks we deployed at Vapa

Crazy Joe said...

I think the deeper formation would be more accurate. The Swiss pike formations were noted for being quite rapid and linear formations don't lend themselves to this. The need to keep the integrity of the formation would be paramount: disordered pike units are just a mob of men with long poles!

;O)

matheo said...

"Square" looks better, and in my opinion has more resemblance to how the pikes deployed.

matheo said...

"Square" looks better, and in my opinion has more resemblance to how the pikes deployed.

Hendrid said...

Going to go for the 'square' formation myself.

Think it looks more like the real thing. Like what Oli says :-) punchier.

Christopher(aka Axebreaker) said...

The deeper formation looks more unyielding and it still looks wide enough to have good frontage. It gives the appearance of a solid square that will roll through the enemy ranks. So, the deeper gets my vote.

Christopher

James said...

I prefer the square, it looks more like a proper kiel.

But the question to ask is this: did the Swiss in the 16th century use a deep kiel or a linear phalanx?

The answer to that is the proper answer to your connundrum.

Gonsalvo said...

Even for a pike block, the Deep looks too deep for me - 6 ranks deep seems like plenty. If the actual formation were 30 men deep (and that's perhaps a bit dubious by the 1500's), it would be 120 men wide.

To each their own. of course!

Victor said...

First of all, "WOW!" I love the layout. I would go with the square formation. Looks more menacing and allows you to place more units into the area.

Tarty said...

The deep square formation looks like a pike block....awesome !!

Phil said...

Fantastic looking pikes, fabulous!
Phil.

Steve-the-Wargamer said...

Either!!Fantastic.. :o)

Nate said...

I think the Square formation looks better out of the two. Far more menacing!

Ubique Matt said...

Another vote for the 'Square' formation. It looks unstoppable.

Jim Hale said...

'Square' all the way. All contemporary illustrations show quite vast square (or rectangular by depth) formations of pikes.

rct75001 said...

Second one for me - says a might of power and one that would be immovable if pushed against

Gunny Highway said...

James,

[]

Respectfully,

Gunny

Nick Lemming said...

It's a difficult one, because they look astounding either way, but I think I'd have to go with Square too.

Jim Sweeney said...

Linear looks superb but the square gets my vote for your re-enactment.
Jim.

Stuart M said...

I have to say square, it looks more true to life.

sebastosfig said...

Square/deep formation for me. They really look terrifying.

AndI always like your eye candy