Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

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Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

Sat Sep 26, 2015 1:56 pm

So here is my introduction, I started collecting LOTR SBG after picking up ( imo ) the best hardcover version of the hobbit, highly inspired by Alan Lee's wonderful watercolor in the Illustrated version, on a whim I bought a blister pack of the ( then ) Goblin King and 4 Moria metal Goblins, soon after my addiction followed.

I'm sure I'm not the only one with a pile of unpainted minis, in my own defense I can say the last 5 years has been extremely busy for me in business along with art. As a few know by now I am more of a Tolkien purist when it comes to my army's, how I build them, the scenarios and story's around them etc. I was fortunate at the time to be able ( since this was rather late-ish into SBG's life in 2008 ) to buy what was still readily available at the time new for 35% off, later on I took some breaks and through local indy shops who outright stopped selling GW in general, many of their SBG products were as low as 55% off.

Knowing the sad but realistic future of SBG ( and I had hunches The Hobbit would be the semi failure that it is ) I was very strategic about my purchases, little did I know that metal would be stopped and we would end up with this nasty failcrap fiasco. So I bought with future planning, that is to say I filled out metal first with what I considered to be must haves for expanding to larger point games, and what characters, troops and so on I would need for the specific army's I would work on later. In fact knowing most of the movie heroes were ( at the time and still a bit ) in abundance and dirt cheap, I decided to pick up what I figured would end up being rare or in demand at a later date, so I would not have to deal with the sickening greed and exploitation of both gamers and sellers with what we are experiencing now on ebay. In fact not too long ago I finished off my 2500 point FB armies with a similar strategy and glad that I did, although I have a feeling that SBG will be a nice little nest egg for many of us...if...if...we ever choose to years from now to move on, although I doubt I will as Middle Earth and SBG has a special place with me and I feel firm over that.

I have a few armies I'm working on and that have been in various WIP stages since getting into the game, as I read the history of middle earth volumes and became more engrossed in the deeper history of these ages, I settled mainly on arnor and angmar ( centered around unknown heroes and the years of fighting the witch king, with some grey company later ideas ), moria ( mainly being around balins expedition and those battles ), Rivendell ( many different ideas for this ) and my most recent and probably last as I have 90% of what I will need for life, Dol Guldur. While I have a very themed Cirith Ungol sized force, I bought that in fact more for a future display army rather than for gaming, although I specifically bought the mordor uruks for moria itself, but since I had that many and orcs already with the tower duo, I said what the hell and bought shelob just for the future if I feel like using them and decide to branch into gondor which would probably be Ost G.

There is quite a few small and mid sized gaming tables I plan to work on outside of this, these will naturally be outdoor wooded areas dealing with haunted locations, spider areas and ruins + wilderness in general, along with some interior moria and cave like locations. I feel there is quite a bit of interesting things to be done with those for both gameplay and to set battles around.

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Kursnak the degenerate orc captain, servant of angmar and his growing warband under the watchful gaze of the witch king. This one is mainly in the basecoat stages and some metal on the weapons, it will be updated first I think over the coming months. Ironically my dog chewed up one of my wild wargs...so I'm down to 5.

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This is all of my unpainted metals to date, interesting to note and this is something specific I have encountered with SBG minis ( I can only imagine how bad failcrap is ), I have 3 Glorindel second verisons ( while GW sent them free I gave up after the third one and even asked them to check their stock and sure enough all of them had this problem ), whoever sculpted this one did a terrible job on the joint of the hand where it meets the blade, first of all there is no guard or anything, so the joint is VERY thin and out of 3 blisters all suffered this problem where its cracked and any bending literally snaps the sword off trying to work it into place, having a quick look around the net at others it seems most of them have this similar issue with a replacement sword added on, this is going to be a DELICATE ( as glue and greenstuff wont hold something that tiny and thin for long ) pinning job but I prefer him over gary's version. The K Guard dwarve's suffer a similar issue with a few of the sculpts, the axe handles being too fine to be secure it's why we often see many of them broken, I've opened a few of those blisters where the joint is cracked and just hanging where it meets the axe blade.

A reflection on this situation ( and I doubt I'm the only one who has encountered it over the years ) is that yes the SBG range is sculpted lovely and more realistic, however many of the weapons or blades are so fine that a trade off to have them a bit thicker for stability would have been wiser in my view.

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An autumn tree I finished, I plan to work on a few of these but they are quite time consuming but worth it.

When time permits I will be adding quite a few more wip shots. I won't claim to be a top end painter but I do my best and tend to take my time, they may not be GD quality but usually above table top standards.

Unshown for now as they are mainly undercoated black or simply bare plastic are:

2x24 warriors of the last alliance
24 rangers
2x24 mordor orcs
6x riders of rohan
24 dwarf warriors
12 dwarf rangers
12 warriors of gondor
2x bat swarms
2x 24 moria goblins
Some dunedain, spectres, dwarf command, arnor command and some goblin heroes and orc command and some barrow wights.

More to come later...

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Re: Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

Tue Sep 29, 2015 3:28 am

That is quite a project, DoS :D

BTW, that tree is terrific.

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Re: Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

Tue Sep 29, 2015 2:37 pm

I have so many unopened blisters (like 100 or so), 30 boxes of plastics sitting next to my desk alone, bags of plastics bought for conversions from ebay... yup this hobby is about creating a backlog. :)
As far as defects go, I have mostly metal models, but sculpting and converting is something I enjoy. There is little that GW can do if the quality person at the production plant in China wasn't able to pick up what is a very small short. We hobbyists see these defects but are trained to look at details we need to paint, QC people are trained to measure ID's and OD's for part fits or easy to see visual defects. Models and toys are hard to train a person to see. And of course by the time the person notices a defect at a production plant, chances are that many parts are already produced. I think you can manage it.
Finecast swords are definitely a common problem. Metals obviously can bend when the blister is jostled around, but finecast breaks. it is not a fail in molding, they made the finecast mold based on the metal version which worked just fine (thankfully I still have mine in metal) and they were not going to sell enough of them in a reproduction to warrant changing the sculpt. I did a small tutorial on fixing a sword using one of the Hunter Orcs captains (fingul?) who had the same problem.
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"So comes snow after fire, and even dragons have their ending!" \m/

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Re: Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

Wed Sep 30, 2015 7:54 pm

I made some orders last week to fill out some areas I needed to. So I now have a Buhrdur and a second cave troll, these will act as hill trolls for my angmar army and also for rivendell trollshaw skirmishes. I also picked up a spider queen to finish off my spider portion of DG, and lastly Celeborn in armor and a box of galladhrim warriors, because it was Celeborn and Galadriel who ended up attacking and storming DG during the war of the ring ( and who were in turn attacked about 3 times I believe ) I settled on starting a wood elf army to run battles against DG during this time, and since moria is close and sometimes they would have allied with the dwarves ( even if they hated eachother ) I can always make use of my moria and wood elf army for fun. although this last part will not take place during the war of the ring since moria was empty of freeps by then.

I think one area GW ignored with mirkwood however that may set some enjoyable scenarios, is having aragorn and maybe some rangers and wood elves encounter some skirmish battles. We know he did enter mirkwood and that smeagol was captured and brought to Thranduil's palace before the fellowship, so there is plenty of room for these sorts of scenarios keeping with the lore. We also know Aragorn entered moria in order to travel there, unfortunately tolkien never wrote deeper on this but what is odd is the fact the door problems in the fellowship when aragorn had already been to moria, so one has to wonder about these very questionable details, unless he used some other entrance ? since it's never written about past this I guess we will never know.

As previously mentioned I passed early on for many of the common popular heroes, but I was able to pick up these loose in great condition unpainted for cheap, so this has almost filled out my "white council" I have radagast sealed on the way ( old one I like him better vs pj's hobo bumbling idiot version ) and a galadhrim banner coming too, all I really need now is cirdan, and probably the older thranduil, I could probably get the failcrap version and I admit the design is fitting with the rest of the range but I like the older version better as it has more of a tolkien feel just like the older radagast, as much as GW makes stupid choices I really feel they did a great job on the fall of the necromancer releases and kept within tolkiens visions.

Oh and I have a boromir on the way too, thus fully completing my all metal "hand picked" fellowship, where previously I only had the MOM version, and while the hobbits are great in that one, the rest of them suck...ok aragorn's sculpt is good but his one arm ruins it.

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Re: Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

Thu Oct 01, 2015 5:06 am

I hope you can paint as well as you catalog purchases. I was lucky enough to be collecting right along with releases since The Two Towers was in Theaters, when plastics were in boxes of 24 and hero blisters were $10. There are definitely great sculpts out there. The original Radaghast was a great sculpt (probably should repaint mine someday), it is kind of basic, many companies produce great wizard models, but I like that one too. The new one is ok too though, I never saw him as hobo or Bumbling (not sure how much page time he got in tolkiens books to paint such a perfect picture to anyone), I often find PJ's Gandalf to be a bit bumbling and of course dressed in grey rags most of the time, but I think it hides his skillful play on people, steering them to change the course of middle earth while pretending he didn't do anything.
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"So comes snow after fire, and even dragons have their ending!" \m/

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Re: Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

Thu Oct 01, 2015 1:18 pm

While my vision is not nearly as good as it used to be, and these are not specifically "lotr" it does display my average painting standards, they are above tabletop quality but not to say GD standards, I do feel that many of the lotr range suits muted colors at times more ( due to the more realistic sculpts ) vs GW's other game ranges however, right now I'm actually working on my Galadhrim warriors and think I've come up with a good scheme for them using coat d arms, the new citadel line and some of my special FW inks ( which I also use along side citadel shades and w&n inks ), outside of this hobby I'm an artist and have learned quite a bit over the years since I started mini painting in the late 80s. One thing I wish I had used years ago was flow improver and matte mediums, but I do now and boy does it help loads with dif techniques.

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My main issue with PJ and his version of Radagast, is the way he portrayed him I felt he was a bit too over the top silly and childlike considering the hobbit movies were presented more from the "quest for erebor" serious lotr style, he just seems far too silly and idiotic, with gandalf I don't see that in the movies I think IM did an outstanding job at worst gandalf seems more forgetful than anything which certainly would reflect his time spent in middle earth, when he becomes gandalf the white he takes on a more colder serious tone though. Radagast the entire time simply feels like he was ripped out of an 80s childrens fantasy movie, gandalf and saruman other than their ranks which is evident in the movies both take on far more serious calculating and wiser attitudes.

Oh and his hat and the bird poop adds to that too. The GW sculpt at least retains some theme and dignity that the other two wizards have. I almost felt it was partly out of something like the muppets and dark crystal, which I find degrading to tolkiens written works, I can certainly understand why Christopher was horrified over many choices PJ made and I feel tolkien himself would have been disgusted with many of them too, PJ may have visually done justice to middle earth but story wise he really did degrade quite a bit by adding in meaningless political and self made crap to suit his own agendas, which simply has no place at all in such a wonderful written work that is outside such mundane stupidity.

I'm also working on an vampire counts, empire and nurgle WHFB armies. Although SBG is my main interest for painting right now. Totally ignoring this age of s%#@ though and have some small deathskulls and dark angels forces for 40k as well. I don't plan to tackle all of this stuff at once it would be an extreme undertaking and some will be more tabletop level gaming standards, but I was wise to buy much of this over the years when I could before bigger price rises and before FB was killed outright.

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Re: Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:44 pm

I like many of the idea's presented in WHF, I have some of the Vampires myself as well as some Chaos, Lizardmen, and scatterings of others. I never played the game but bought some of the models for other RPG uses and for the 'coolness' factor.
What you have presented here for painting isn't bad. I have been accused of not using muted colors on my LOTR models, but I do also paint to a high standard when I can. I think you will do fine if you have been painting that long. I still don't use any flow mediums, water and a wet pallet when needed is about it. Since I paint one or two models at a time at most, I never need paint wet for more than a few layers before I am on to the next color. I have watched high level pro's that do a lot of blending and even then I don't see an over use of flow mediums, usually only in specific color glazes. But it is good to be aware of them, and of course, everyone paints to their own style and technique they are comfortable with. If the result is a good paint job then it was not wrong, right?

Looking forward to seeing some of those new LOTr models of yours painted up.
http://www.sithious.webs.com
"So comes snow after fire, and even dragons have their ending!" \m/

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Re: Disciple Of Sauron's WIP

Thu Oct 01, 2015 10:50 pm

I'm debating about which lotr figure to work on from my undercoated lot right now actually, I should finish one this week.

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