Hoplomaca (Parmularii)

Gladiatoris - Hoplomaca (Parmularii)hoplomaca

The gladiator that “fights like a hoplite”, a Greek phalanx-style, is armed with a spear (hasta) and a round shield (hoplon). This small and convex shield hides a dagger she can use it to counterattack her enemies by surprise.

At Level III, she gains the attack Spear Strike (which adds to her attack dice); her Dagger under the Shield (1-die counterattack) can dissuade her rivals; and her Hoplite Phalanx skill gives her 2 free additional Stand Up results, making her very difficult to knock down. This gladiator begins with a fabulous spear (Long and Sharp weapon) and her Dagger under the Shield, so she is very good even at Level I: the best option if you don’t have enough money to level her up.

Hoplomachus (pl. hoplomachi): He sports two high ocreae, his helmet is adorned with a high crest of feathers and the helmet’s visor has two circular holes. He is the gladiator type who “fights as a hoplite”, using a lance (hasta), a dagger, and a reduced version of the Greek hoplite shield (called a hoplon). He is typically opposed to the murmillo and the thraex.

Excerpt from the glossary of GLADIATORIS, checked by Alfonso Mañas.

Design process

Hoplomachus of the prototype (Foundry Miniatures, modified)

Our old hoplomachus from the prototype was one of the less used fighters (due to the great popularity the Thraex had, obviously), so a little appeal was needed… We revised her game mechanics and decided to give special attention to this miniature.

As it was the case with other female gladiatrices, our expert historian Alfonso Mañas didn’t object, as long as we respected the proper hoplomachus equipment.

Gladiatoris - Alfonso Hoplomachus Mañas (April 2014)

Gladiatoris - Hoplomaca "Bruttia" David early (February 2016)We decided to remove the padded leg protections (they reminded me of Gozer, the Marshmallow God from that movie).

Alfonso Mañas: “We can’t find padded protections in any Roman representations. They used a just a simple trouser (we think they were made of leather, but they could be just cloth). Some modern recreationists place padded protections on the hoplomachus‘ legs… It might have been this way in some cases (…) but there are no sources to confirm that.”

Gladiatoris-Hoplomaca retouched by Alfonso MañasWe accepted Alfonso’s correction about the greaves, and decorated them both with a Medusa head. We also added that shoulder protection and changed the ribbons that were fastening the bracer, but, after giving it some thought (and contrary to Alfonso’s opinion), we decided to keep the cords with ornamental coins.

Regarding the helm (this one piece indeed approved by Alfonso), we replaced her visor with a bigger one, such as the one worn by the gladiator helmet from the Worcester Art Museum. And we took the opportunity to add, at the top of the crest, the panther’s head that Alfonso didn’t allow us to include in the Thraex‘s helm.

After looking at a lot of pictures of javelin throwers, 3DBreed sent us a great first 3D version:

Alfonso Mañas: “I like her a lot. It’s fine, I would only modify these details:

Gladiatoris - Hoplomaca 3D corrected by Alfonso Mañas– The belt decorations are not Roman at all. I suggest putting an open flower and four laurel branches in the center of the shield, and in the belt, an open flower in the front and waves on the sides (these are real motives found in historical sources for these equipment pieces).

– We must remove one or both of the nails from the spears point.

– We should also remove the piece at the end of the spear’s shaft; hoplomachi’s spears didn’t have it.

– The dagger should be a little longer.

Gladiatoris - Hoplomaca 3D corrected by Alfonso Mañas

– An adjustment mechanism should be included at the back of the belt. In this belt, I propose to use the X one (it appears in some belts).”

We accepted those changes and kept on arguing about the ornamental coins… until Luis joined the “yes” side and the discussion was over.

We also thought about hollowing the shield’s interior, but 3DBreed told us that leaving some space between the back of the hand, the forearm and the shield could create issues.

And here you have the finished miniature, with a wonderful battle stance ready to play with it on the arena. Congratulations, 3DBreed!