Men-at-Arms is nearing a quite incredible landmark, its 500th edition. The longest-running series in the Osprey stable, Men-at-Arms has become an icon... and today, over four decades since it first hit bookshelves the series remains as treasured and well-loved as it ever was. In fact, the series is so old that we can't even come up with a terribly accurate number of copies of MAA sold, as the sales data we have on our earliest books is a bit sketchy. But even a conservative estimate puts the total figure for Men-at-Arms sales at over 4.5 million copies sold!
Normally we are very firm in our stance about not revealing the details of our upcoming titles too far in advance, but we have decided to make a very rare exception to our rule and reveal the title for Men-at-Arms 500 (before an over-eager website gazumps us!).
And so... here we go...
Publishing in April 2015, Men-at-Arms 500 will be: Armies of Castile and Aragon 1370–1516 by John Pohl and illustrated by Gerry Embleton.
But that isn't the end of the story, we have of course known for a while that MAA 500 was just around the corner, and there was a lot of debate here at Osprey over which title should get the honour. Long-time Men-at-Arms editor and Osprey legend Martin Windrow had brought the Armies of Castile and Aragon title to a couple of publishing meetings - but we just couldn't get the numbers to work. But Martin was adamant that the book deserved it's place in the series. So we did what we have so often done in recent years and opened up the debate to our fans, using the book poll. In January 2013 a book vote went up containing the Castile and Aragon title. Thousands of you voted that month in one of the most tightly contested book votes we had seen in a long while. And although Castile faded towards the end of the month, it still came a commendable second place. Martin Windrow was vindicated (you were right all along Martin!) and Castile promptly returned to the publishing meeting and was approved.
So when the final decision needed to be made on which of our 2015 titles would get the '500' tag it was decided that the honour should go to the book that would never have happened without the support and feedback of all of our fantastic fans.
It is our way of acknowledging your role in getting MAA to such a notable milestone. Thank you all!