The last few days have seen me painting up some of the High Elves for my Rivendell army. The spear and shield warriors have proved to be some of the fiddliest models I’ve ever worked on, but the results have been pretty pleasing. Deciding to mix gold and silver paints for the final highlight on the armour, I’ve been sticking to batch-painting these elves, which has been moving things along quite swiftly.
These troops feel pretty nostalgic to me, conjuring up images of the first few issues of the LotR magazine and the Warriors of the Last Alliance that I think I recall came attached to one of them. They’ve actually been a joy to work on, and are a nice contrast to the grubby hordes of Angmar orcs that I’ve been painting up recently.
Progress on the wild wargs has still been coming along, with the bases just needing done. I’ll be happy when their ravenous warband is up and running and I can get a game with them. They seem like a fun bunch to play as.
With various bits and pieces nearing completion, something was bound to slip through the cracks… Hello, and welcome back to another model update! This time we have another hero finished for my Angmar list, and leader of his own warg warband, the Wild Warg Chieftain.
Right off the bat, this creature is one of my favourites in the Lord of the Rings range. I love wargs as a standard anyway, and the thought of running a warband of wild hill wolves from the north was too much of an opportunity to pass up. I don’t min/max army builds, and my gut twists at the thought; although Angmar’s army bonus ties in with spirit heroes, I prefer the mixture of wildlife that the region has to offer. Rule of cool, and all that.
The Wild Warg Chieftain has one of those poses that just looks badass, pressing down on the chest of a slaughtered man, roaring into the cold winters air. I love the way the fur is grooved into the model, as it scratches that all-important ink wash itch, and the whole thing is a lot sturdier than I initially thought it would be for a metal miniature balancing on a rock.
For painting, I watched a few YouTube videos, building up the fur with Steel Legion Drab before mixing with Zamesi Desert. The mane stands out more in person I think, it looks quite dull on camera unfortunately. For the fella, I painted him in green, black and brown like that of the rangers’ attire.
In gaming terms, he has a 10″ move with Heroic March and Heroic Strength. His/her Packlord rule means that only their wild kin benefit from their heroic actions. The Chieftain is a pretty meaty model with defense 5 and 3 wounds, making it something of a discount beatstick/objective-grabber that can cover decent ground.
I’m gradually getting the remainder of their warband based, so will hopefully have them done in the next week. My initial plan was to have a Wraith-led warband alongside a band of Wild Wargs for smaller games, expanding on this to include a third to beef out the Orc numbers. We’ll see how things go though.
Time seems to be crawling along as well as bounding by, which is a strange feeling but I seem to be noticing it more and more… and with that, we are towards the end of another week and I have yet to post something!
I’ve started to work on the orcs for my Angmar force. These guys were an eBay rescue which was decent because I got the standard box of 24 for half the retail price; the catch was the models were still on the sprue and half primed. The black prime was spotty and very thin, so I primed right over the top of it (after freeing the orcs from the sprues, of course!) Painting these guys is taking me right back to my old room in my early teens, when I was working on an army of a similar style.
With the orc rabble, I’m intending on keeping the colour palette small for the clothing- this will mainly boil down to Steel Legion Drab, Eshin Grey, Leadbelcher, etc- and a variety of skin colours since orcs were shown to be quite mixed in the films. Bugman’s Glow is definitely in there, some of the more sickly green paints too (I’m poor at remembering my green paints’ names), and there were orcs with blueish/grey skin too, so all that will be going into the mob.
Due to the small sizes of the LotR armies in the game, I have also been slowly assembling a Rivendell force. I’ve long since failed one of my resolutions about not buying any more minis until my current ones are painted, but I still haven’t bought any bitz though, so there’s one win.
I’m in the process of putting together an Elf-based list and have started with Gildor Ingolrion, the singing wanderer who inadvertently scared away a Black Rider, saving Frodo, Sam and Pippin on their travels early on. His special rule allows Wood Elves to be taken in a Rivendell army as part of his warband, so I thought that I would start here with a small group taken straight from the novel.
That’s all for this update, I hope you’re all well. Take care.
I had a bit of a hobby push this morning before work and managed to finish up two of the three Dead Marsh Spectres for my Angmar army. The dead Elf and Numenorean have this chilling quality to them, but I can’t really say the same for the dead Orc that comes in the set. I think GW could have done better than an undead version of a creature that is by nature evil already; I’ll probably paint him last.
Moving on, this is probably the first time in 15 years (maybe longer) since I have painted Elf armour, and I was instantly taken back to painting up the Warriors of the Last Alliance when I was younger. I know a few more techniques these days so the experience was relatively pleasant! The only part that caused me hassle across both models was the vines that are coiled around their limbs- these were a bit of a pain, but they add some extra colour to the minis and work quite well with the bases.
In game terms, the Dead Marsh Spectres are an infantry choice, and a fairly expensive one at 15pts each. Their main draw is the power A Fell Light is in Them which can be used to target an enemy model and, providing said model fails a Courage test, allows you to move them; the same way the spectres drew Frodo into the water in the film. The spectres don’t have a great Fight value for duelling, however they do have decent defence and courage stats, coupled with their Terror rule that makes them unappealing to charge at.
April is flying by, though the way the time is going it feels like it’s passing swiftly and slowly simultaneously. It’s a strange feeling. On the other hand, my sleeping pattern has been stable for a little while now, so I’ve been feeling that little bit healthier; couple this with the fact that my work are doing a step-count challenge, and it’s given me a push to get more fresh air and exercise.
On the hobby side of things, I have been continuing to work on my Angmar army for Lord of the Rings. I like how the armies for this game are generally quite small and the pricing for the models isn’t outrageous (when compared to the likes of 40k). I think there’s a lot more incentive to get the models you really want into your force rather than saying “you need to take 10 of these to have this,” etc.
eBay has been pretty useful in finding heaps of cheap troops or the occasional hero. I’m yet to paint up any of my eBay-rescue Orcs, but they will be coming soon. This handsome chap above is another incarnation of the Witch-king, only without his flail. I think this is the Fellowship version, the one where he is about to stab Frodo at Weathertop. I like this version of him the best, as I reckon it’s the most sinister sculpt of the Witch-king available. Furthermore, he was only a couple of quid online so I wasn’t filled with that usual sick feeling I get when I buy something I know I shouldn’t have!
I’ve had fun painting up the Wargs, as it’s been mostly drybrushing. They are very textured miniatures so it’s been a satisfying process, and I’m happy with the end result of the fur. All that’s left are the gums, teeth and claws for the Wild Wargs rank-and-file, but I’ll save that torture for another day.
The Chieftain is a brilliant model and has been near-finished for a while now. This morning I focused on the rock underneath him/her and the body they are standing on. I tried to paint the corpse in the colours of the Rangers of the North/Dunedain, although I don’t think it’s too visible in this pic. I’ll get a clearer shot when the model is finished.
That’s all for this update, anyway. I’ve been looking into taking a postgraduate course in October so much of my free time has been diverted to doing preparatory work for that. I’m still finding the odd sliver of time to paint, so hopefully I can push some of these Angmar models across the finish line soon.
I present my second Ringwraith post, this time for the two remaining Angmar wraiths that I have painted up the on-foot models for.
The first is the Dwimmerlaik, a mysterious Ringwraith that is particularly loathed in Rohan for giving them hassle over the years (so his bio says). He’s equipped with a two-handed sword and has an interesting ability that can force your enemy to spend multiple points of their Hero’s Might, Will or Fate reserves when within 6″ of him. He’s got a pretty heroic pose for an undead servant of Sauron, I’ll say that much.
I have also finished up the Witch-king, Mr Angmar himself. While I would say that the Witch-king is one of my favourite characters in the Lord of the Rings, this particular incarnation of him is not. I don’t really like the flail too much as it’s quite fragile and almost snapped during painting; unlike the metal Dwimmerlaik, this Witch-king is resin and was a bit of a struggle to straighten out after his journey in the mail.
In game terms, the Witch-king has plenty of options for customising him with pieces of wargear (Morgul Blade included), and he has a few steed choices like his fell beast or armoured horse. I think he’ll be really interesting to play as in the LotR battle game, as he has a host of magical powers to cause the enemy some headaches.
Both Ringwraiths were primed grey, drybrushed to pick out the highlights and then coated with black contrast paint. I then applied lighter drybrushed layers on the edges to bring them up a little more in the mix before picking out the metallic details with Leadbelcher. Like pretty much everything in my Angmar force has/will have, I finished them with some snowy bases to replicate the wintery conditions in the north of Middle-Earth.
I have actually managed to get something completed! Presenting for this month’s challenge by Ann’s Immaterium, I show you my Tainted model for the Lord of the Rings strategy battle game, both the mounted and on-foot versions.
The Tainted is one of my hero choices for my army of Angmar, a foul ringwraith that ebbs decay and rot from his very being. I was a fan of the paint scheme he was given in the army book, the kind of spectre-like greenish glow to his robes giving me some mad Minas Morgul vibes, and so I tried to recreate this with my own miniatures. It involved a few runs of drybrushing to build up the layers of green, followed by some dulling down with Nuln Oil. It was hard to try and find a middle ground between the robes being too garish or not showing any kind of green at all, but I ended up with a result I’m happy with.
There’s not much to say regarding this fella. His base was finished with Stirland Battlemire technical paint and some Valhallan Blizzard (which might as well be my new favourite paint!) In game terms, the Tainted is a Hero of Valour, so he can take a warband of up to 15 models; he also has the spirit keyword which grants nearby Angmar orcs the Terror special rule, making it a bit more difficult for the enemy to charge into their ranks.
Hi and welcome back to another progress update. Painting minis has been a fairly odd affair lately, as I’m really just painting whatever I feel like at the moment, rather than sticking to any one unit. I’ve drifted from the wild wargs to the Ringwraiths to the spectres on a whim. Again I find myself in the position of having lots of models nearly finished with very little actually completed.
The weather was reasonable last weekend so I was able to get my orcs primed without them blowing away. I reckon once I get the warg warband painted up then I can move onto the orc rabble for my Angmar force.
Painting the wraiths has been fairly straightforward, with only really the Tainted needing some extra work done to make him look slightly luminous and rotten. The Dwimmerlaik has been something of a test wraith for painting, but he’s endured the worst of it and come out looking alright so far. I’ve been priming them grey, drybrushing highlights and then using the Black Templar contrast paint on them, going back over with some light highlights afterwards. It’s the most painless way I can think of painting the riders in black!
I’ve not been sleeping very well over the course of the last two weeks, with sleep disturbed by odd wake-up times and the odd nightmare. As such, my day-to-day workings have been fairly skewed and that goes for the painting as well. Still, I’ve found some pockets of time to get work done on the minis in my cabinet, and have managed to finish a couple of Lord of the Rings models. Being tired as hell, they are two of the easiest miniatures that I could paint.
The Barrow-wights act as ‘captains’ for an Angmar army, being classed as a Hero of Fortitude which allows them to lead their own warband of 12. With decent stats and the ability to paralyse enemies, a Barrow-wight seems to be a bargain at 50pts. I painted them up to reflect their appearance in various pieces of Lord of the Rings artwork, having a more earthy/dead flesh colour to them than the default paintjob from the website. I would have liked to have attempted an even darker colour to match that of the spirit that appeared on the Barrow-downs in the LotR: War in the North video game, but I didn’t want them to end up blending in with the Ringwraiths.
As for the models themselves, they bring back pleasant memories. I used to have the ‘Fog on the Barrow-downs’ set that GW came out with about 15 years ago, a set that included Tom Bombadil, Goldberry and a quartet of Barrow-wights; unfortunately the contents of that kit have long since left my possession. I recently bought this pair of Barrow-wights from GW, overjoyed (and also surprised) that they were still in production.
I’m aiming to getting my Imperial Guard Scions finished by the end of April, which is a generous deadline to say the least. I’ll see how my sleeping improves.
The last few days I’ve been taking it fairly easy, on the back of finishing the first draft of the latest short story I was working on. My brain took this to mean that I was now free to mosey around on Skyrim, which is what I’ve been doing for an hour or two here and there.
Hobby-wise, I’ve taken the time to work on painting up another Troops choice for my Imperial Guard, this time the Scions. There are just 5 bodies in this unit so it’s a bitesize squad to tide me over, and the paint scheme is quite simplistic. I’ve opted to go with the Iotan Dragons’ scheme, as they are a regiment that trains in dark environments and specialises in cavernous warfare, normally in the pursuit of the xenos menace. This ties in with my own army’s background, as I originally wrote them as being recruits from a harsh mining world themselves.
Secondly, I have been doing a lot of reading into the Lord of the Rings battle game lately. In one of my earlier posts, I mentioned replacing my old destroyed Witch-King with a box of Ringwraiths of Angmar. Since building the kit, I started to read up on the rules and watch a few videos, and did a little list building. Before long, I’d ordered a box of wargs, a warg chieftain (because the model is beautiful), and some Dead Marsh spectres. I would like to get a small force ready for getting out the gates and playing when society eases back into something resembling normality, and I just really love the LOTR models.
A potential theme might be an army based on the Angmar invasion force at the Battle of Fornost, lead by the Witch-King on horseback. I need to pick up a box of orcs for the actual fodder, but I’m aiming for a 500pt force that could get me through a few games and get a hang of the rules with to start out. Until then, I have a little chunk of models to assemble and paint up.
Anyway, that’s all for this post. Thanks for reading, take care.