Thursday, 29 March 2012

Black Orc Chopped Skull Tribe

Whilst the main focus of my army will be old Citadel and Chronicle metal I am not averse to using more recent releases and consequently have dragooned this unit of current plastic GW Black Orcs into the fold.

This unit was constructed and painted by Saul and myself a couple of years back but I wasn't overly keen on the plate armour look (the models would be sooo much better with some fur as a contrast), however drawing on the rusting techniques used on the Harlequin Great Orcs I am much happier with them now.

I also took the opportunity to replace the standard that came with the figures with one made from the foil from a tube of tomato puree. The design is similar to one I found on the web. To my mind Orcs are not the worlds greatest artists and the John Blanche designs of yore that many paint seem somewhat ridiculous to my eye, so all the banners and shields in the army will have a simple and rough look to them (the only exception possibly being the Hobgoblins when I get around to them).

Monday, 26 March 2012

Turning Nipponese...

This cursed unseasonal warm weather has seen 'She Who Must be Obeyed' cracking the whip and forcing me into the garden on various horticultural duties. This has had a negative impact pretty much any painting though I have discovered a unit of GW plastic Black Orcs that Saul and I painted up a couple of years back. I must confess I didn't like them, too much silver armour so I am taking the opportunity to rust it up and they are looking much better and I need to finish off the tomato puree to purloin the foil tube to make a standard! :-)

Wargames Factory Samurai (photo Wargames Factory)
In the meantime my mind has been pondering other armies and despite a lifetime fear of painting samurai I have become increasing intrigued with the idea of a small Nipponese army based on the Imperial Cathan list in WHFB2 and bits from the Warhammer Armies project Nippon sourcebook. The idea of Samurai, Ninja and Vimto Warior Monks on the tabletop does have a certain appeal and to this end I did a little ebaying, picking up a box of the new(ish) Wargames Factory plastic Samurai and a couple of boxes of their Ashigaru for £13 a box, slightly over 50p a figure which is pretty good value.

Wargames Factory Ashigaru with spear (photo Wargames Factory)
Whilst painting efforts will have to concentrate on the Goblinoids for the planned summer gaming project, planning out both the Undead and Nipponese for later in the year will, I hope, provide encouragement if I start to flag and suffer from Orc fatigue!

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Round And Round And Round And...

I've dug out three of my old Eighties Goblin Fanatics which I repainted a couple of years ago to use with the Night Goblins that came with the Skull Pass set. They have been rebased on the smaller 25mm round bases used in WHFB7 having previously been on larger bases which, IIRC, acted as the template for models in contact with the fanatic.

C13 - C27 Goblin Fanatics (1983 - 87)
The fanatics demonstrate the sheer pointlessness of the Warhammer points system and trying to create balanced armies given the unpredictability of the models who are as much a danger to your army as they are to the enemy. How do you points cost something like that? Whatever, they are completely bonkers and a lot of fun to use if you have a sense of humour...

C13 Goblin Fanatic swinging ball and chain (later C27 Dugga) (1983)
C27 Slotta-based Fanatic (1987?)
C27 Kang (1985)

Monday, 12 March 2012

Karkolg's Ogre Mercenary Slayers

Whilst work continues on the Goblinoid army I thought I'd fill the gaps on the blog with some photos of units from the OPFOR, Saul's Dwarf army of Karak-Zaul, kicking off with something a little bit unusual. a unit of Ogre Mercenary Slayers...

Their gaming origin echoes back to when Saul's Dwarf army got its butt royally kicked by an Ogre Kingdoms army a few years ago at the local GW. As part of the usual 'arms race' mentality of the young he started to badger me to get him an Ogre army. I did manage to resist this, a compromise reached upon reading the army lists to discover Ogres could be a mercenary ally choice...

Yuzgrot the Scavenger
Not one to make things up as per the box and liking to put my own stamp on things, having just read the first couple of Gotrek and Felix books I came up with the idea of a small unit of Ogres who had embraced the Slayer concept and with a bit of Green Stuff, some Black Orc axes (with orc iconography removed) and Dwarf shields for belly plates we ended up with this fun unit.

Gorgann Nailhead
One of the Ogres has nails driven into his skull in homage to Snorri from the books. This was an easy thing to do with three dress making pins liberated from the wife! :-)

Thugorgl Belchfist
Despite, to my mind, looking really cool and kick ass, unfortunately their battlefield history is one of glorious failure, normally outstripping the slow moving Dwarves, they ended up in their first battle against Lizardmen, surrounded, outnumbered and quickly dead! Still that's what being a Slayer is all about isn't it?

Karkolg the Flatulant
Names inspired by the Ogre name generator, found here.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Döda Vatten Trolls

Over the years I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with Citadel's Troll models. I loved the superb Fantasy Tribe Trolls and hated the comic idiot ones that replaced them. I did however quite like the River Troll models released in the Nineties and have now managed to slap a coat of paint on the three I bought back then.

They are wonderfully sculpted models with lots of details and make a great addition to the Goblinoid army. It was also fun to paint something using Scaly Green and Hawk Turquoise, two colours in my collection that have very limited use over the years...

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Doing Double Duty...

One of the great things in Warhammer II is the diversity of human types from Old Worlders to Norse, Arabians to Nomads, Orientals to Southrons. The Bestiary also included army lists for Old World Imperialists, Old World Southern City States and Imperial Cathan (complete with Samurai and Vimto Monks!)

Burgundian Command (Citadel with Grenadier Musician)
Back in the Eighties I developed a growing fascination with the medieval Burgundian army of Charles the Bold that was defeated in a series of decisive battles in the 1470's and decided that I would kill two birds with one stone and raise a Burgundian army in 28mm using the Citadel Wars of the Roses range, with odd bits sourced from other manufacturers.I had an idea that it would fight both the Swiss and Orcs (as an Old World City State) but unfortunately this project did not get very far. However, over the last year and a bit I have started painting up the models bought at the time as well as buying lead and plastic to fill the gaps.

Burgundian Pike (Corvus Miniatures)
The miniatures have been based on multi-figure bases to use with Terry Gore's Medieval Warfare rules but this is not a major problem with Warhammer as I can use counters to represent casualties before removing troop blocks.

Burgundian Pike element (Corvus Miniatures)
Burgundian Mounted Archers (Citadel)
I am not sure whether I will go down the route of using the Burgundians in this project as I also have some Dark Ages figures I would like to paint up and use but it gives me an option to consider although I will need to come up with some decent pike rules...

Burgundian Handgunners (Grenadier)
Burgundian Artillery (Grenadier)

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Black Orc Blood Face Tribe

And so it begins... I managed to finish the first unit of Orcs today, the Blood Face Tribe!

The miniatures are the ex-Harlequin, now Black Tree Design, Great Orcs, sculpted by Kev Adams. They are wonderfully detailed and will make great Black Orcs, being somewhat on the large side (as you can see here!).

Whilst painting them I got it in my head that Orcs would probably wear some form of warpaint and came up with this half red look (mirrored on the shields) based on an African tribal pattern.

I've never been a fan of the John Blanche school of Orc shield painting, it just doesn't fit the Orc psyche, so shield designs and banners will be fairly simplistic designs befitting the nature of the beast. The standard bearer was a converted axe wielding Orc, the flag being made from Tomato Puree tube foil...

One Orc had his shield replaced with a makeshift wooden one scratch-built from plasticard...

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Characters And Units...

Flicking through the 2nd edition scenario packs including Orcs Drift it struck me how much effort was put into characterisation, not only of individuals but also units. Rather than just being miscellaneous units of 'Orc infantry with hand weapons' and 'Goblin archers' we have The Crooked Tooth Tribe and the Bent Arrow Boys. Some units also get specific rules to reflect their history and background all of which adds to the flavour of any game you are playing (this isn't really unique to Warhammer, I find a WW2 game is better if you have the 'Hell on Wheels' 2nd Armored Division on the table rather than a genreic US armoured division).

FTG13 Gnoll/Goblin Chieftain's Chariot (1979)
Characters are also important in Warhammer and need developing before joining battle on the tabletop. Special rules need not be all beardy and make them better than a generic character. My original Goblin wizard suffered from alcoholism as bad as any Dwarf (he also had a baboon familiar for some reason long forgotten!).

My original eighties Goblinoid army (the Blue Öyster Cult - you may have noticed the markings on the shields and lyrics on flags...) were commanded by Gorbage the Goblin from his boar powered chariot. Whilst his fighting characteristics were pretty standard, his personal characteristics were boosted to reflect his intelligence and general canniness playing off stronger Orc characters against each other on his rise to the top (his subordinates were reminded of this by his personal standard that says 'Gorbage Eats Three Shredded Wheat'. Who'd argue with a leader who could do that?!!).

Having started painting up Orcs for the new army and organising the unpainted white metal I am pondering whether it is time for a new (Orc?) army general. Gorbage has a special place in my gaming history but I am wondering whether someone big with a huge axe might need to assume control...