Cast your mind back to the heady days of June 2020 and you may recall that I painted a Bonesplitterz Wardokk (or a Savage Orc shaman if you speak English). If you need a reminder he looked a little bit like this…
Secretly I was never entirely happy with him. His skin, painted exactly the same way as all my other Orcs and Orks, looked too dark and drab. Perhaps it was the way it contrasted against all the bones he’s wearing but it didn’t look right to me (although I’m perfectly happy with how it looks on all my other greenskins). Plus he needed some tattoos and warpaint to really look the part of a crazed barbarian shaman. In fact it was this dissatisfaction that lead me to try a different shade of skin for my Savage Orcs when I put together a warband of them last Orctober. Here’s an example of the new style.
Since then I’ve been meaning to go back to the old Wardokk and repaint his skin to bring him into line with the rest of the crew, and now I’ve finally got around to it.
And here he is hanging out with a couple of his new buddies as he finally finds his place in the tribe.
Needless to say I’m much happier with him now and he can take his place at last alongside the rest of the ladz.
Let’s be honest, some miniatures are just a bit duff. Take the Bonesplitters Wardokk for instance (which used to be a Savage Orc shaman of some description). Let’s not beat about the bush, it’s past its best. In fact, it’s hard to say exactly when it’s best was…
For those unfamiliar the Wardokk is essentially an assistant shaman amongst the Bonesplitters. This faction of Orcs are lead by cabals of savage mystics, with a Wurrgog Prophet (the model for which, confusingly, used to be the special character Wurrzag, Da Great Green Prophet – something I still find takes a little getting used to). Each Wurrgog Prophet has a few acolytes around to assist in imposing his orders (however mad they may sound) on the recalcitrant boyz, to whip the clan up ready for battle and to perform the secret dances by which they channel the power of the greenskin god. One of these so-called Wardokks will go on to become the Wurrgog’s successor, to quote the army book, “should the Prophet fall in battle or accidentally blow himself up”.
At first I found myself wondering why GW continue to give the Wardokk miniature a place in the ranks of the Orc (or should I say Orruk) Warclans range. There’s no denying it’s letting the side down a little, when compared with some of the brilliant models that march alongside it. However after giving it some thought I came to realise that actually they made a smart move here. Keeping the Wardokk around adds another option to the range, and kitbashing your own version from the Bonesplitters set, plus a few odds and ends, is actually pretty straightforward and a lot of fun.
The key elements to capture were the skull mask (taken from the Ironjaws Brutes), the dancing pose and the bone-fetish rattle (made from bits and bobs in the savage orcs kit, rather than wire wool as the original appears to have been). The army book describes how the Wardokk will do whatever is required to get the boys in a fighting mood (surely not that hard) including, but not limited to, a quick punch in the face – something I thought the clenched fist on his free hand conveyed rather well. I might raise him up on something to make him stand out a little amongst any future boyz but otherwise I’m pretty pleased with him (although as ever I’m open to any and all feedback). In fact he was so straightforward to build that I’m now feeling tempted to make a couple more – the book does describe multiple Wardokks in each clan after all. Not sure when I’ll get around to painting him but he was great fun to make, and he’s certainly given me the itch to tackle some more green boys soon.