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Shadows of the Apt : Army Lists for Hordes of the Things


This is some entirely unofficial thoughts on army lists for Hordes of the Things (rules available to download for free here http://wrg.me.uk/HISTORY/HOTT2.pdf) based on the excellent fantasy novels of Adrian Tchaikovsky in which various themes of humanity are alternatively technologically aware (‘apt’) or magical (‘apt’) and have various traits according to insect totems (more here www.shadowoftheapt.com )

Hordes of the Things (HOTT) are simple, quick rules which uses armies of around 48 figures which is quite affordable.

Adrian has a helpful article on armies here http://shadowsoftheapt.com/blog/73 which I have used to inform my thoughts on the various armies in the Shadow of the Apt world.

If you’ve read the books let me know what you think of these lists.



The ‘big bads’ of the initial novels the Wasp Empire is disciplined

Number Type Force Points
1 Behemoth Automotive (or Mole Cricket Auxillian) 4
1 Artillery Artillery 3
1 Airboat Helicopters 3
2 Blades Sentinels 4
4 Flyers Light Airborne/Ornithopters 8
1 Warband Hornets 2

Stronghold would be an army camp or captured city.

Some units could be replaced by spears (Grasshopper/Beetle), shooters (fly) or blades (bee) Auxillians.

Dragonfly Commonweal

Think of a feudalist Russia with a Japanese ruling class. There army reflects this with tip top noble forces and peasant hordes.

Number Type Force Points
1 Hero House Weaponmasters 4
1 Knights Heavy Mercers 2
1 Riders Light Mercers 2
1 Shooters House Retainers 2
1 Spears House Retainers 2
12 Hordes Peasant Levys 12


Stronghold would be a frugal Dragonfly castle.


The Aristoi of the Spiderlands recruit and manipulate many and sundry forces into their armies when war comes across them.

Number Type Force Points
1 Warband Spider Skirmishers 2
1 Shooters Dragonfly Archers 2
1 Shooters Fly Slingers 2
1 Beasts Scorpion Line Breakers and giant scorpion packs 2
1 Blades Ant Mercenaries 2
2 Riders Spider mounted Cavalry 4
1 Flyers Fly/Dragonfly airborne skirmishers 2
1 Artillery Beetle Artillery 3
1 Behemoth Beetle Automotives 3
2 Hordes Dregs of Banditry 2


Automotives could be swapped for spider assassin sneakers.

Stronghold would be a luxurious Spider Aristoi camp.


Number Type Force Points
7 Blades Line Infantry 14
3 Shooters Crossbows 6
2 Riders Ant mounted scouts 4

This is a ‘typical’ ant city – a more technologically developed one like Sarn would replace some Blades with artillery/automotives etc;

Stronghold would be an Ant walled city.


This represents Collegium after they have an army after/during attempted invasions of the books.

Number Type Force Points
2 Artillery College jury rigged pieces 6
3 Shooters Artificers & Mercenaries 6
1 Blades Ants 2
2 Spears Beetle Volunteers 4
1 Flyers Fly/Dragonfly 2
1 Warband Mantis/Dragonfly/Scorpion Exiles 2
1 Airboat Airships and similar 3
1 Lurker Thieves, Assassins & Rogues 1

Stronghold would be Collegium itself.


My first thoughts is to use renaissance figures with a smattering of ancients for the likes of ants. I fancy doing it in 15mm though my regular opponent has a stock of old games workshop figures so 28mm is a possibility on the basis that  we could use them (Wasps v Orc hordes seems tempting.)


One comment on “Shadows of the Apt : Army Lists for Hordes of the Things

  1. […] of how things meshed. I accept the casual reader wouldn’t care but if I compare it with Adrian Tchaichovsky’s shadow of the apt series – there you get a much clear picture of how the Wasp Empire military […]

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