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Strelets

Set M101

Roman Imperial Legion (Ceremonial March)

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All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Stats
Date Released 2015
Contents 40 figures
Poses 8 poses
Material Plastic (Medium Consistency)
Colours Grey
Average Height 24.5 mm (= 1.77 m)

Review

Strelets have done a number of sets of troops on the march, and this time it is the turn of early imperial Romans. A general set of Roman infantry might have one marching pose if you are lucky, but this one has eight poses and 40 figures all on the march. Walking with right foot forward and carrying both spear and shield, this set is essentially one pose with a number of slight variations to create the usual natural mix that such a body of troops would demonstrate. All the variations look reasonable, and when placed side-by-side randomly they are enough to give a quite convincing impression of marching troops.

Having already done something similar with republican Roman infantry, this imperial version captures the Roman soldier during the first century CE, since all the men wear the lorica segmentata and classic helmet. The sword is on the right and the dagger on the left, and there is none of the helmet reinforcement or extra protection that appeared towards the end of the first century, but everything here is fine for that period. Since none of the men have any sort of baggage they are clearly not simply on a march, but perhaps moving into battle or, as the title loudly suggests, at some sort of ceremonial occasion.

By the time this set made its appearance Strelets had made a great many sets of Romans, and the quality is remarkably consistent for most of them, including this one. These are perhaps a little less heavy than some of the previous sculpting, but there is still a roughness to the finish, and smaller items tend to be exaggerated. The armour is nicely done, though the shoulder plates meet at the back, which is not correct. All the shields are separate, but fit quite comfortably onto the provided thick pegs, and we found almost no flash. The simple pose means there is no problem with extra plastic or flatness, so everything looks pretty good, with the shields in particular having a nicely done raised pattern on them (not strictly correct but an aid to painting).

The ambition of the set may be modest, but if you are in need of a large group of imperial Romans on some sort of parade or moving into battle then you can’t really argue with the poses in this set. The sculpting does not compare with the best on the market, but the historical accuracy is good so there is much to be said for this little set.

Ratings

Historical Accuracy 10
Pose Quality 10
Pose Number 8
Sculpting 7
Mould 9

Further Reading
Books
"Greece and Rome at War" - Greenhill - Peter Connolly - 9781853673030
"Roman Legionary AD 69 - 161" - Osprey (Warrior Series No.166) - Ross Cowan - 9781780965871
"The Armies and Enemies of Imperial Rome" - Wargames Research Group - Phil Barker - 9780904417173
"The Complete Roman Army" - Thames & Hudson - Adrian Goldsworthy - 9780500051245
"The Roman Legions Recreated in Colour Photographs" - Crowood Press (Europa Militaria Special Series No.2) - Daniel Peterson - 9781861262646

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