Sunday, December 25, 2022

Merry Christmas and State of the Orc Army

 Merry Christmas everyone, I hope it's a safe, healthy holiday for you all. 

I took the opportunity to get the kitchen table cleared off, a 3'x3' battle mat unrolled, and rather than playing a game, I set up my entire Orc & Goblin army. I've been working on this army off and on since 2020, most notably in the 4th and 5th annual Old World Army Challenges.

I am hoping to take an expanded version of this army to Da Boyz GT in 2023 for 8th Edition Warhammer Fantasy Battles. I have a pretty good idea of what I want to see happen with this army in terms of enlarging it, but I wanted to make sure I took stock of what I had first.

First up, here's the whole army:

That's 90 Orcs, 31 Goblins, 14 Hobgoblins, 4 Trolls, 5 Boars, 6 Wolves and 1 Krung Beast. It's kind of wild to realize how much I've already done.


First up is the newest finished unit, a squad of five Goblin Wolfboyz with bows, with an attached Goblin Big Boss. These are from Knightmare Miniatures and are phenomenally characterful sculpts; the wolf the Big Boss is riding is actually from Warmonger, as I'd accidentally snapped the ankles on the sixth Knightmare wolf. I'll be adding a second squad of Wolfboyz with bows in 2023.

Next, we have six Goblin archers, mostly Knightmare but there is one Black Tree Designs figure in there. I have a bunch of Warmonger and Black Tree archers to paint and add to this unit; it's not a huge priority because I'm not anticipating fielding this regiment in November, but I'm happy to paint them regardless.

While we're on goblins, here's a dozen Goblins and three Goblin bosses from Knightmare. I have a ton of unpainted Black Tree goblins I'll be adding to this regiment. Ultimate goal is to get it up to 40 goblins. A Knightmare Orc Shaman is visible behind the goblins.

Harboth's Orc Archers, with Harboth. I have a dozen painted here, and have a box of maybe 20 more that I could strip and repaint if I wanted. I have a special fondness for these guys - they were released just weeks after I was born. Behind them, next to the mounted commander, is my current Battle Standard Bearer for the army, with a crowned skull and crossed swords mounted on some bound-together polearms. He may ultimately find his way into a unit and be replaced as the BSB.

"Dese Lads Ova 'Ere," 1 dozen Orc Warriors from Warmonger. This unit will be expanded to 25 this year. I love the tuba player, and the banner that just bafflingly says "Eat Yer Beans" is a perennial favorite of anyone who sees it. I've got an Orc crouching with his hands over his ears coming from Warmonger in the next couple weeks who I'm hoping will let me move the musician inwards from the edge of the line.

"Dem Lads Ova Dere," another dozen Warmonger orcs that will again be bolstered to 25 in the coming weeks. The "Foot of Gork" banner was my first attempt at doing shading and highlighting on a flat surface. The foot is traced off the Monty Python's Flying Circus foot. Behind them are four Bog Trolls from Troll Soup; I received another four yesterday in the mail. I might pick up another four later on, so I can field two units of six. I'm a big fan of the one picking his nose, with a nosepicking "Orcling" from Warmonger on his base.

"The Black Fire Boyz" are more art project than planned part of the army; 15 Warmonger "Mercenary Orcs" in landsknecht garb with spears. I like the idea of a band of orcs aping Empire battlefield tactics and style, but I really don't want to keep doing puff-and-slash after these 15, so I won't be expanding this unit.

"The Old Guard" - these are my Orc Big'uns, a mix of Citadel/GW and Heartbreaker Miniatures originally released between 1985 and 1995. I've got some more Heartbreaker figures on the way, and will be scrounging through ebay and various buy-and-sell forums to expand this regiment further. I think the ultimate plan will be 38 Big'uns, with the army battle standard bearer and maybe the general attached to the unit. 

10 "Barnorsk Great Orcs" from Harlequin, remolded and reissued by Black Tree Designs a couple years ago. Buying and painting these was what sparked this whole army project; I think I want to go back and remove their citadel shields, trim the pegs and replace them with sculpted face shields from Warmonger. And maybe expand the regiment; I see myself using these as Black Orcs in WHFB. They're a pain in the ass to try and rank up, incidentally.


6th edition WHFB Goblin Doom Diver; I originally painted this up as a proxy 3rd edition Orc Stone Thrower (since goblins are about as smart as stones), hence the orc crew. I like the guy shading his eyes best.

Epigruel's Slop 'n' Go Chuck-Wagon. I painted this up as a baggage train in OWAC IV after finishing 1000 points of 3rd edition greenskins. The wagon and cauldron are 3D printed, the cooks, guard and boar are all Warmonger. There's a Warlord Games "Landsknecht Casualty" in the back of the wagon, waiting his turn in the pot. Obviously this is just a flavorful, fun accessory, and probably won't be making an appearance on any battlefields.

Some commanding officers; the boar chariot is a converted Warmonger Beastman chariot, with a new orc crew added. The orc in the puff-and-slash making a rude gesture was my general for OWAC IV. On the right is a classic Citadel/GW boar boy (with a shield from Knightmare), and on the left is a much larger mounted Orc Commander from Knightmare. I've been encouraged to field a general on foot, and I recognize the limitations of mounting my commander in a chariot, but I'm really tempted to put the Knightmare orc in command of the whole army, maybe attached to the unit of boar boyz I have primed and awaiting paint. 

Last but not least, we have a Hobgoblin Mercenary Contingent for 3rd edition; 12 Mourngul Renegades (I have three more to prime and paint), a commander on a Temple Dog (a Reaper Miniatures "Krung Beast" I sculpted a saddle on), and a beastmaster in need of some Hobhounds. I could use the hobgoblins to bulk out an orc regiment in 8th edition, but otherwise they might stay home.

So what's next?

First and foremost, I need to bulk out my Big'uns and my two mobs of Warmonger Boyz, along with my goblin regiment. I've got more Warmonger figures on the way, and need to sort out the goblins I have. 

More trolls. I've got four unpainted ones here, and may order another 4 to field two units of six.

Add a second Wolfboyz unit.

I have 10 Orc Boar Boyz to paint, all from Knightmare Miniatures; several of them were converted with weapon swaps, and I converted a standard bearer and musician. 

War machines will be a big addition as well; I have one bolt thrower half-painted and intend to add two more, as well as a proper Rock Lobba catapult. Two Goblin Wolf Chariots might be called for as well. 

I've been encouraged to field a Mangler Squig in 8th edition; I've got Knightmare's Giant Gnasher that will work perfectly as such.

Friday, December 16, 2022

Mounted Orc Warboss (Knightmare Miniatures)

 So in 2021 I painted 1000 points' worth of Orcs and Goblins for 3rd edition Warhammer Fantasy Battles as part of the Old World Army Challenge. I signed up to paint another 1000 points this year, but couldn't keep up on my painting and got disqualified halfway through. So I have a lot of greenskins here that have been primed and awaiting paint for a year now.

Earlier this month, I found out that a local tournament, Da Boyz GT, had a Warhammer Fantasy Battles 8th Edition tourney this year. And I have my wife's enthusiastic support for me to attend in 2023 (our health allowing), if I get enough minis painted up to qualify. I've never actually played Warhammer; 20-21 years ago I walked into a Games Workshop store for the first time and walked out with a box of plastic Night Goblins, a blister of Fanatics, a blister of Squigs and a River Troll. As a teenager I didn't have the money or the attention span to focus on an army long enough to get one built. So were I to attend it would fulfill a bunch of teenage dreams of mine. 

This got me inspired to dig out some primed greenskins and start painting, starting with this mounted Warboss from Knightmare Miniatures. He was a birthday present from my wife in 2021, and a great starting point to resume painting my orcs and goblins. I love that he's riding a warthog instead of a standard boar.

Sunday, December 11, 2022

Ah-Cahulka, the Golden (Lucid Eye Publications)

 Over on Instagram I'm participating in a "Deadcember" painting challenge this month, and posted my finished piece today. My undead of choice was "Ah-Cahulka, the Golden" from Lucid Eye Publications, a Mesoamerican-style liche from their "Savage Core" line, part of the "Maxzan" faction. 

The base is a couple layers of cork board, torn into irregular shapes and stacked on top of each other, painted in shades of gray (there was a green wash in there as well, for the humid, mossy stone look, but I think it got lost in the gray to some extent), then splodged with thinned white glue and dipped in a couple different shades and grades of flocking. I topped that off with a couple of green foam shrubbery bits. 

I had a really good time painting this figure; I'd originally thought he'd be a gaming piece but honestly, I might keep him as a display figure.