Wednesday, 12 March 2014

This is the Orc (and Duergar) I am looking for

With the HMS Umbar on hold until I can pick up some dowel for the mast, and with paint drying on the second Frostgrave warband, I took the opportunity to muck around with some additional figures for the vaguely conceived Underdark raiding party (to accompany the Mindflayer and Cleric already built).

Two Duergar and an Orc.

I make no secret of the fact that I like Orcs. As a standard fixture of fantasy fiction, they're great. Unfortunately, I can't stand the GW-esque interpretation of bandy-legged, massive-mouthed green ape-things. The Peter Jackson version comes pretty close to my own image, but I can't say as I'm a huge fan of the LOTR figures (for the orcs, at least). I got a few plastic bits through the post today, and while most were earmarked for my two Duergar (evil dwarf) slavers, I thought a couple might be worth looking at alongside the two Wargames Factory Orcs I was given by a friend. Unfortunately, while I appreciate the Angus McBride-style feel of the WF set, they're a bit too gangly for my taste, even with slightly less simian arms from a Fireforge sprue. I really like the generic fantasy feel of the Bretonnian Men-at-Arms, and have used those bodies in a number of projects. I'd love them more if they didn't have the unfortunate join at the elbow for weapon and shield arms – it demands cutting off both sleeves in order to really do much. I also like the Beastmen Ungor heads – they've got a great savage look that I think is more effective than the actual Gor that form the bulk of a Beastman army. I'm amazed it took so long to combine the two, but here, finally, is what I suspect is as close to the perfect Orc as I'll ever get. I will make more in this vein, but probably keep the polearms and tower shield armament of the Bretonnians – the Ungor heads with the horns shaved off are enough for me without needing to go too wild on the weapon front.

As for the Duergar, they're based on my earlier dwarf conversion and again use Bretonnian bodies as the base. The chap on the left has an Empire head (shaved bald, of course), and Chaos warrior hands (like the Bretonnians, ending at the elbow – but much bulkier) trimmed down to fit. The only real effort was cutting back the left elbow and shoulder to get the mace resting nicely. The centre Duergar has an Empire flagellant head and a Chaos warhammer head (with the iconography filed off) added to an otherwise entirely Bretonnian physique. The hammer head is a) a little wonky and b) a little large due to my misjudging the length of the handle. Still, as he's a little shorter than the other dwarfs I've made, it's not too bad.

All in all, really quite fond of the lot of them. If I can find a spare Empire General with beard and eyepatch head (as seen on one of my Inquisitor models, below), there will be one more Duergar, otherwise I've just got plans for a couple of Drow and a few more Orcs as arrow-fodder.

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