One of a series of very influential pictures from The Art of Warfare by David Chandler. The figures are of course Peter Gilder's Sassanid army which I once had the pleasure of seeing in person (from the public side of a barrier).
Its been about a score of months since I began this Lydian-Mede War. It has lurched along uncertainly and more slowly than hoped for with few figures painted and almost as many Greek-Persian battles as Mede-Lydian ones. There are many external factors but clearly once my initial excitement over finally having a unit of Garrison Phrygians was over, what I needed to paint up were not what I had wanted to be painting and even without the high proportion of Greeks, it didn't feel as exotic and fantasy-ish as I hoped. So, once I have fudged a battle of Thymbra this fall, I am going to declare the campaign over.
Luckily, nothing that has been done has been wasted. The Phyrgians, Thracians and the best of the Greeks will be incorporated into the Persian army as subjects and mercenaries. Turning my eyes east in search of a new campaign, my eye has fallen on Hyrkania. (or Hyrcania) (yes there was an historical Hyrkania as well as the Hyborian one). A fertile outpost on the edge of the vast steppes, fortified with a long frontier wall studded with forts, this province on the shores of the Caspian Sea saw invasions and rebellions enough for any wargamer. The fact that we know so little about it is even more to the good. I haven't worked out the details but I intend to pit a post Cambyses polyglot, multi-racial Royal Persian army against a Rebel King with Saka, Drangian and various barbarian allies.