Orcs, it turns out, come in all shapes and sizes and dwell in all sorts of places. We’ve already seen Orcs from the Mortal Realms (both hulking armoured behemoths and underdressed nutters), Orks from the savage war zones of the 41st Millennium and even Orcs that just want to have a kick about on the Blood Bowl pitch. Even that old plagiarist JRR Tolkien got in on the act. Borrowing heavily from Warhammer, D&D and other contemporary sources he cooked up some Orcs of his own to serve as baddies in The Lord of the Rings.
I’ve previously noted that, much as I loved the Lord of the Rings (both the books and the films) I never really got into the game. For the most part the miniatures just didn’t do anything for me so I passed over them in favour of other things. I’m told that the game itself is great and the tournament scene very friendly but given that I’m barely a gamer and wouldn’t go to a tournament unless I was carried there kicking and screaming by a band of Uruk Hai that doesn’t really sway me much. I do however have a bunch of Mordor Orcs which I acquired for some reason (I blame GW’s saturation advertising of the game several years ago combined with one of my periodic infatuations with all things Hobbity). I feel that the least I can do is get them painted up and there’s no time like the present is there?
I admit they’re not my best work but the small scale of these models combined with the less-than-amazing quality of sculpting doesn’t exactly inspire. By the time I got to the one with the bow I really couldn’t be arsed any more, although looking at him I get the impression whoever sculpted it felt the same way. Anyway I’m happy enough though and I might even knock through a few more before the month is out.
Once upon a time I had a plan that I would spend a good chunk of Orctober painting either my long-untouched Orc Blood Bowl team or bolstering the number of Orks in my 40k army (or possibly adding a few more Orc Brutes to those available as part of my Warcry collection). As it turns out I ended up focussing on other projects instead, although I did manage to at least make a start on the Blood Bowl team (at last!) and hopefully I’ll be cracking on with the rest of them soon. However just when it looked as though that was going to be all the Orcs I managed this month I stumbled upon these four disreputable lads lurking in the bottom of a box; dusty, part-painted and in need of some love. How could I resist getting them painted up at last?
I’ll confess I didn’t try to go mad painting these to the best of my ability, as I’ve commented here before on several occasions I’ve never really been that enthusiastic about the Lord of the Rings miniatures but credit where its due, these were fun to paint. Being so small and lacking in detail compared to modern models they called for a more “quick and dirty” or sketchy style, and they certainly fit the stereotype associated with the Middle Earth range of being a little bit of a step down in comparison to the quality of the models elsewhere in GW’s stable (something that, in all fairness, the more recent releases have done a lot to counteract). That didn’t stop them being entertaining to work on though, and my hat is definitely off to anyone who can manage to produce really nice looking results with them. I’m pretty sure the rest of the set is still around somewhere, stored away after an abortive attempt to try out the LotR miniatures game many, many moons ago – I’ll keep an eye out for it and, when I find it, get the rest of them painted up.
Just a quick one today, something a bit different that I spotted in amongst some other models and took a fancy to painting; a warrior of Minas Tirith. To the best of my knowledge this is the first Lord of the Rings model I’ve painted (that hadn’t been converted into something else – more on that soon). I received it as part of a bits drop from fellow blogger IRO and rather than cannibalise it for components for other projects decided to just paint him as is.
I don’t really know why I’ve always steered away from painting Lord of the Rings models. For me the books were one of the key moments in my introduction to fantasy fiction and something which has proved to have a lifelong influence, and the films are, in my view, amongst the greatest movies ever made (I even enjoyed the Hobbit trilogy, although I admit there were a few moments that missed the mark). However the aesthetic of the Middle Earth models from GW have never really done anything for me so although it all sounds great in theory I’ve instead ended up focusing my interests in the myriad other possible settings. Still I did enjoy painting this brave warrior of Gondor so who knows, perhaps the age of men isn’t over quite yet.