30 November 2011

Gladiator: Velite

Another ranged weapon specialist, obviously based on the early republican auxiliary unit with the same name. The Velites later disappeared from the Roman Legions after the Marius army reforms. In the arena their closest kin would be the much rarer dart throwing Gaetulian.

The Velite carries 4 Javelins  and either a Pugio (knife) or Gladius as his backup weapon. This gladiator also enjoys carrying a small shield for limited protection.

The main difference between the Javelin and the Darts are that the Javelin throwing distance is but half of that which the Gaetulian can throw his darts. Both classes however have no movement penalty when wanting to use their ranged weapon. Another difference between the Javelin and the Darts is the possibility to use the Javelin as a close combat weapon as well as throwing it.

In close combat the Javelin has a weapon strength of 4, while used as a thrown weapon it has a weapon strength of 5. What makes Javelins and Darts a notch better than regular bows is the fact that the projectiles are so heavy that if they hit a model carrying a shield - and fail to wound him - the shield has stopped the projectile but become to unwieldy to carry anymore, being impaled.

As the Gladiator book can have important rules scattered about here are the pages you need to know:

page 20 "Casualties" in regard to projectiles thrown/shot at models with shields

page 141 summary "Weapon strengths" for the weapon strengths when used in CC or when fired. The "Armory" section somehow left out the Javelin strength when used in close combat.

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