Saturday, May 14, 2011

DBA IV/84 Burgundian Ordonnance

IV/84 Burgundian Ordonnance 1471-1477AD
1x3 Kn (Gen), 1x 3Kn, 3x 3Kn//4Bd, 2x 4Lb, 1x 4Cb, 2x 4Pk or 8Bw, 1x 2Ps, 1x Art

 Army with all options shown.

As previously blogged last year I fielded a Burgundian Ordonnance army at Cangames. It was a hodge-podge collection of miniatures that were selected from various fantasy and renaissance units about an hour before I headed to the train station. In spite of having more than enough time, I failed to plan ahead. I flipped open the DBA rulebook and browsed for something that I could throw together in 15mm scale.  My object was to avoid the armies that I used in previous years. And that was how the army of Charles the Bold went to Ottawa.

I decided that I will bring the Burgundian Ordonnance army to Ottawa again, but it would have to be a totally dedicated force. I found some figures that I had not painted in my collection of renaissance lead, that would work for the period and the remaining were ordered from Essex Miniatures. The past two weeks were spent in preparation.

I am not content to just paint an element, I feel the deep desire to field units. The photo above shows all the elements of this DBA army, but the following photographs are the entire body of troops I painted. The primary colours for the Burgundians were Blue and White. Infantry were to wear a Blue and White surcoat  along with a red Saint Andrew cross  for identification. Knights were encouraged to use Blue and White for the feathers worn in their helms or on their horses. I have tried to incorporate these guidelines to some degree with my figures. I was not happy with my attempts to paint a small clear St. Andrew's cross and as a result painted over most of them. I just could not get a thin steady line that I was happy with.

1x3 Kn (Gen) and 1x 3Kn

When I searched through my collection I discovered I had 15 gendarmes without horses. I wrote to Essex Miniatures and they were very happy to provide me 6 horses, without riders for the same price of a regular package of figures. I asked for a 3 package mix of the horses used for MER52 and MER53. Enough horses to provide me with 5 elements of knights. Banners and Flags are by Warflag. These accessories help bring this unit to life. The General Element bears the banner of an ordonnace company.

3x 3Kn//4Bd (Mounted)

The army list includes 3 Elements of knights that can fight dismounted. Instead of using the same figures as the General and a second gendarme element I found I had another 16 figures in plate armour bearing a lance. Their horses did not have barding or caparison. From their squat appearance I labeled them as Mike's Models. I know that the Mike's line was purchased by Essex Miniatures in the late 1980s and these figures could have been produced by Essex Miniatures after their take over.

I painted 8 elements of men-at-arms. They have the same general appearance of the knights above and provide the needed 4 man Blades Elements. This unit (or two units) was built from 4 packs of Essex MER36 (Dismounted Knights).

3x 3Kn//4Bd (Dismounted) 

2x 4Pk or 8Bw
The two elements of pike (MER40 and MER41) may be replaced by two elements of 8 Bow. These double element units were an innovation of Charles the Bold and are represented by 4 pike placed in front of 4 archers on a 40mm x 40mm base. I tried to keep to the Blue and White colour scheme but added some red and yellows to add some variety.

2x 4Lb

1x 2Ps

The archers which were used for the 8Bw elements and the 4LB and the 2P are all from the same set. MER84 provides two main figures and I had 4 packs. One was used to make 4 elements of 2 man Psiloi, one for the two elements of 8 man Bow and two for 4 elements of 4 man Long Bow.

1x 4Cb

Two packages of Essex Miniatures MER45 provided the figures for the crossbow unit.


I already had the artillery train, but I had to paint crew figures. I found 11 figures that had the appearance of  the Mike's Model line.  It is possible they were some form of Squat Football Team, but I drafted them for the Bleu et Blanc.

To complete the army list I needed a camp. An assembled supply train with escort fulfills this function.

As I stated I was not content to just paint one DBA army. The figures here allow me to field close to two and a half armies for a Big DBA game. With other figures I already I can easily field the 36 elements needed. Just to be safe I'll just have to pick up a few more packages of pikemen next weekend at Cangames.


  1. These are really nice. Great job!

  2. They look good to me. Those old Mike's Models were odd little fellows but they had their own charm. I was quite fond of some Reiters I had.

  3. Nice work and so many, I love medieval.

  4. Thank you gentlemen.

    To Ross. I too always liked the look of Mike's Models medievals. As you say they have a charm all their own. If you look closely, three of the horses have pistols located at the front of their saddles and could past themselves off as Reiters.

    To Ray. I love the pageantry that only massed troops can provide. To quote Stalin, "Quantity has a quality all of its own."