In the first part of this series, we looked at the senior commanders of the Scottish Covenanters, who sided with Parliament in the English Civil Wars, and this time we’re looking at the leaders included in the Montrose’s Scottish Royalist starter army – the other side of the coin! Let’s dive in!

James Graham, Marquis of Montrose

First up, to nobody’s surprise, is James Graham, 1st Marquis of Montrose. To avoid extra repetition, we’ll simply call him ‘Montrose’, and of course he lends his name to the Starter Army for his faction! Initially a Covenanter who would go on to become Charles I’s ‘man in Scotland’, Montrose was able to do something that had never been done before – rally the Highland clans under one banner – and carved a bloody swathe across Scotland, particularly bedevilling Argyll, who was his bitter opponent both on the battlefield and in politics. Crucial to his success was not only his skill as a commander and the wild aggression of his Highlanders, but mostly the disciplined Irish infantry who had crossed the sea to support him – we’ll talk about their commander in a second! Leading a deeply risky political life would eventually prove to be Montrose’s downfall, and with the restoration of the monarchy, he would be hanged and quartered in 1650 after an abortive final campaign, having been given up by Charles II in order to ensure the support of the Scottish Parliament. For many years, Montrose has been a figure of fascination for wargamers, and now you can recreate his campaigns (and hopefully keep your head!) in Pike & Shotte Epic Battles!

Alasdair Mac Colla, ‘The Devastator’

Next, we have the great ally of Montrose, Alasdair Mac Colla. A Hebridean scion of the legendary Clan MacDonald, who was active as a commander of the Irish Confederates during the 1630s and 40s. In 1644, he was chosen to command an expedition to Scotland to aid Royalists there, bringing 1,500-2,000 disciplined, experienced Irish troops with him, many of whom were veterans of Continental service. These men, led by Mac Colla, would be instrumental in many of Montrose’s famous victories, and Mac Colla himself was a capable commander, though oft overshadowed by Montrose himself. His forces would gain a fearful reputation for pillaging and looting, earning Mac Colla the nickname ‘the destroyer of houses’, particularly when fighting against the hated rival Clan Campbell, from whom they hoped to regain ancestral lands. He would eventually part company with Montrose to continue this vendetta, finally being forced to return to Ireland in 1647, where he would die at Knocknanauss in November of that year. A physically large man, and a fearsome fighter in his own right, Mac Colla would often lead his forces personally in the celebrated ‘Highland Charge’, against which undisciplined troops would frequently break and flee. Our awesome new model, included in the Starter Army, depicts Mac Colla in the thick of the fray, accompanied by a pair of wild Highland bodyguards – perfect for giving Montrose’s army the punch it needs!

Mounted Herald

To round out the trio of starter set characters, we have a fantastic Mounted Herald. This colourful character is the perfect accompaniment for one of your senior officers, or as a standalone officer, and really adds flavour to any force. Remember, the more important a commander is, the more flunkies, assistants, and supernumerary officers he’ll have around him – command groups are a great opportunity to really flex your creative hobbying muscles!

Montrose’s Scottish Royalists Starter Army

Rally the Clans! It’s time to set Scotland aflame with Montrose’s Royalists!

Pike & Shotte in 28mm!

These characters are also available to field within a 28mm Pike & Shotte army!

Marquis of Montrose
Alisdair Mac Colla & Bodyguard
Mounted Herald
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