Sunday, November 30, 2008

Deathrays over Mars!

Prince Gopotty's First Recruits Take to the Skies

A few months ago, our readers were treated to the first photostats of Martian Prince Musta Gopotty of Galfor mounted upon his (somewhat) domesticated golden whorled deathray, gliding gracefully through the cerulean skies of the Red Planet. Prince Gopotty has named his personal deathray mount "Rogor," which translates to "Slasher" in English.

Since that time, the Prince has been consumed with the difficult task of finding Martians brave enough to join him in the pursuit of mounted aeronautics. A few hardy souls have answered his call and received the intense training required. And you can see photostats here!

We have here the man who will be captain of the flying cavalry, Lord Impaw Sibbel. He is armed with what appears to be (at great distance, to be sure) an American .41 cal Navy revolver, with a brass frame, as was popular in the Confederate States during the War Between the States.

The next photostat is a drummer, apparently intended to fly with the prince to provide signalling to the rest of his army far below.

This last photostat is a shot of the first of the 'other ranks' for the Prince's Own Deathray Guards Cavalry. He is armed with a lance and a revolver. This journal's military contacts are not exactly convinced of the effectiveness of the lance when used on a flying mount, but reserve final judgment until such time as an entire unit of flying lancers can be observed in action.

When shown the evidence of this airborne threat, a spokesman for Viceroy DeGroot's government had this to say:

"We are used to the flying ships of the Martian natives. And we have countered them, to their consternation and our benefit. This new force is merely a response to the success, here on Mars, of our superior Earthly civilization.

"Thankfully for our peace of mind, it seems that Prince Gopotty is having some difficulty finding recruits with both the nerve to mount a large, carnivorous, not-totally-domesticated flying beast and the skill to master the use of weapons while controlling said beast in flight. It will be some time still before these aerial marauders can threaten our security here in the Crown Colony. By then, the Viceroy is confident that our professional military, naval, and aeronaval officers shall have some sort of counter for this sort of perfidious, nearly silent but deadly force."

[Editor's Note: Finally! Progress on this project. I am torn on the main armament of the Prince's Own, though. A poll in the making. Which should it be, rifles or lances, or a mix? I lean towards lances, myself, but am not quite sure. There are two more saddled up and ready to be strapped onto their deathrays, a standard bearer and a rifleman. Just need to get some more leather lacing to strap them on with. Hope you like the photos. As before, the figures are Black Hat's Martian Cavalry, a mix of Command, w/Guns, w/Lances, and Mounted Princes packs. The deathrays are Safari, Ltd. Spotted Eagle Rays, and the saddles were cast by me in resin. If you want one or two, I could probably be talked into making some for you. I have actually thought about neatening up the sculpt and casting them for sale so others could do the same kind of conversions on any creature they wanted. What do you think?]


Eli Arndt said...

Incredible work there, sir! I have been waiting to see these and here they are.

As for the weaponry, you may want to stay away from a lance. Falling from a horse because of lance recoil is one thing, but falling from your sky ray is another thing. Also, if these ray-mounted cav are a response to the colonials on Mars, then they are likely going to have been made with a mind for gunfights. I would arm them like dragoons carrying carbines and swords, maybe some grenades? The sword would be for boarding actions, perhaps?


J Womack, Esq. said...

Glad you like them!

However, I must point out that your rationale for arming the cavalry with carbines is far too... rational, I suppose. The lances are all about style over substance. Maybe its just a Martian thing.

There are other kinds of mounted flying cavalry I am sort of percolating on right now. Actually, I have some ideas for 25mm, but nothing definite for the smaller stuff like these.

Plus, I was thinking a big chunk of explosive on the end of the lance would be kinda fun. Sort of a handheld spar torpedo, triggered as a line runs out while you fly away.

Any rate, thanks for the encouragement. I have two more pretty much ready to go, the standard and a rifleman. I'll try to get them done this week and posted.