I’ve been painting some new armies up for De Bellis Antiquitatis recently and I am going to start introducing some of them to the battlefields now. We are going to start by taking a look at the New Kingdom Egyptians. Of course these guys are an early ancient army so they will be in book 1, list 22b. The Egyptians muster a lot of solid formations along with the typical skirmishing line for that era, and then there are the chariots as well. Lot’s of ’em! One third (four elements) of the Egyptian army is made up of light chariots. This fighting platform was somewhat common in those times and the Egyptians excelled in skill if not by numbers alone.
I felt that list 22b suited my preferred tactical setup given the type of warfare and unit choice provided. This list fields 3x4Bd spearmen as opposed to list 21a’s 3x3Bd spearmen. It’s also worthy to note that list A is also much more ranged heavy with up to twice the amount of solid bow formations on the field at any given time. Both lists run four element of light chariot, one of which being the general (usually the Pharaoh) and all include plenty of javelin-armed runners as well.
I will eventually paint up the extras and base them so I can run both of the lists throughout a wide scope of conflicts against the many nations and invaders that came to Egypt. The more specific reasons I prefer the later list include a few good reasons in my humble opinions. With this specific line up a general has a very large and very reliable block of core soldiers with some heavy ranged support. The core soldiers from list A are only based by three so they are not as solid, they are more fleet of foot however. Like I said before, the opinion is mainly personal preference. An option of 3Bd or 4Bd Sherden allow for extra support to be given to your core or flanks when necessary. In comparison list A gives you either a 4Bd or 4Bw selection, usually limiting you to only expanding your main line. This is not a good thing in constricted terrain, especially if your army already made up of chariots! My selections for list B also include an element of 3Wb Libyans, and an element of Ps Libyan javelins.
For me, list B allows for a more solid and defined core, with just as much potential for support, while giving greater flexibility on the flanks when needed. All those solid troops lined up along with the chariots create a high potential of bottle necking your forces in almost any type of terrain other than clear. This can be a big negative. Thankfully the NKE aggression rating is two, this should help them keep the battlefield biased towards them with any luck!