Monday, 22 January 2018

The Balgorg.

This week I have painted the Balgorg, an old Citadel Greater Demon released in 1988 as part of the C31 Giant Monsters range. I have had a little break from blogging as I have been conducting my ongoing sorting out of my 1980's miniatures into armies, and also been ill with the flu.

Now by 1988 the 'C-series' listings were coming to an end, with the serial number listing taking over, but the Balgorg was listed in the C31 Giant Monsters range. The Balgorg himself is a Greater Demon (Demon, not Deamon) and is, I would suggest, based on the Balrog idea from the Lord of the Rings. In Warhammer Fantasy Battle 3rd Edition, it was possible to summon Greater Demons via 4th Level Demonic Magic, making this miniature perfectly practical for gaming.

The info next to the advert suggests that the miniature is good not just for gaming, but of such a good quality for collectors and painters. Although there is nothing exceptional in the sculpting, it is still a lovely sculpt from Trisha Morrison (soon to be co-founder of Marauder Miniatures), and part of the great sculpting from the era. There is not a lot of fine detail, but the nature of the miniature does not allow for that. Personally I think the the miniature is a beautiful and looks like what it is meant to. 

I painted the Balgorg in the style of the Lord of the Rings Balrog. I opted for a dark colour. I undercoated the miniature black, and highlighted it with red. The 'hairy' parts of the model I painted to suggest flames, as I did with the sword and whip. All in all, I am happy with the model and how it turned out. A simple but effective paint.

Enjoy :)
 The original White Dwarf Advert from White Dwarf #97, 1988.
I am not sure, but I do not think that the miniature was a very widely released.
 My take on the Balgorg. I have based him on a 50mm round lipped base.
 Rear view.
The model is a two part miniature. The wings are seperate to the body.
 Close up of the face.
 The sword, with flame detail.
 Scale shot with 1980's Goblin.
 I decided to try something when photographing.
To give the idea of a Balrog in Moria, I photographed the Balgorg in the dark, with ambient lighing provided by a candle.
 Something stirs in the deep.
An old evil brought forth by Morgoth in an ancient age.

Next update should be on my ongiong sorting out of Oldhammer armies.

Thursday, 4 January 2018

The Pan Tang Army.

I have finally managed to photographed my completed Pan Tang army.

As with my other armies recently, I took the army over to my local gaming shop/club, The Dice Saloon, and hired a table, borrowing some of their scenery.  As per usual, here is the blatant plug for them, so check them out if you are ever in Brighton or Sussex: https://www.dicesaloon.com/

The Pan Tang, if you are not familiar with them, were one of the chief protaganists in Michael Moorcock's Elirc books. They are orginally from another plane of existence, they are followers of Chaos, great sorcerers and demonologists (they live on 'The Isle of Sorcerer's'), a piratical sea power, and general all round bad guys.

They were part of Citadel's Eternal Champion range, produced from 1986 to 1988, being one of the two miniature races produced for the range as a whole, the others being Melniboneans. Unlike some of the Melnibonean range which survived as High Elves until the 1990's, the Pan Tang never outlived the loss of the franchise, and disappeared from production. Personally I think that this a real shame as they were a nice range of miniatures, and like the Lord of the Rings ME44 Uruk-Hai alternative range which suffered a similar fate, they are now quite sought after. Here is a link to the range as a whole: http://www.solegends.com/citec/index.htm

Enjoy :)
From the sea come the raiders!
Rather fittingly, there was a storm raging and it was very dark when I took the photographs, so they might not be a clear and snazzy as perhaps previous photoshoots.
Side view.
I have designed the army so it can be fielded using the Chaos army list in the 3rd Edition Fantasy Battle supplement 'Warhammer Armies' book. The Pan Tang infantry can be used as Chaos Marauders, the tiger teams can be Chaos hounds, and the personalites can be catered for via the character model allowances.
Right wing of the army.
Centre.
Left wing of the army.
Tigers!
Jagreen Lern, General of the army, and Ruler of Pan Tang.
The sorcerer Theleb Kaarna and his two bodyguards.
 Theleb Kaarna had two bodyguards, one obese and pig faced, and the other with a snakelike head. I chose two non Eternal Champion range minatures from the 1980's, a C27 Beastman 'Guzgog', and a C27 Snakeman S'Sirron Fangthrane'.
Tiger teams.
Moving inland, stalking through the forest...
...picking up the scent of enemies, and closing in for the kill. 
Pang Tang Infantry.
Amongst the three units of Pan Tang infantry I have used a few non Eternal Champion range miniautres from Citadel, from the 1980's. I have used them mainly as standard bearers to save chopping up the Pan Tang range miniatures, and to add a few interesting variations.
I painted them with red armour, as per a description in one of the books, and added a few aquatic colours to give that seaborne feel.
Side view.
The second unit of Marauders.
Side view.
The third unit of Marauders, lead by the Pan Tang Officer Miniature from the EC05 Personalites range.
Side view.
Standard bearers.
I used a few broken Chaos Warrior and Thug miniatures, and converted up the standards from odds and ends in my bits box.
The three regiments.
Battle line.
As spied through the forest.
Marching in columns.
My 'Pan Tang' t-shirt.
I bought this in H&M a year or so ago, and the tiger head remind me of a sorcerous Tiger from Pan Tang.

Not quite sure what my next blog update will be on. I am hoping to paint a few test models for armies, and for fun. I am currently sorting out all of my 'Oldhammer era fantasy armies, so more on that soon.

Sunday, 24 December 2017

Deadcember: Undead Horseman.

It's Deadcember, that time of year for Oldhammer-ers to paint something Undead related.

I have chosen paint an old Citadel Horseman of the early 1980's. I had planned to paint a lot of other things as well. However, I have been very busy at work with Xmas, been lost in sorting out my Oldhammer era miniatures in armies (more of that in the new year), and I have also been very very unwell after having an allergic reaction to lunch one day (I am lactose intolerant). This is also why I still have'nt photographed the Pan Tang.

As for the Horseman, he's a two-piece old pre-slotta miniature. Originally he was the FF66 Skeleton Rider on Horse from Hell, from the Fiend Factory range from 1982. Later, he was moved to the C21 Fantasy Cavalry range in 1983, and re-named 'Skeletal Fanatic'.

I have been informed that the later C21 version was a one-piece casting, rider and horse no longer seperate. That suggests to me that the C21 version was a 're-casting' by Citadel of the earlier FF66 version. This something which Wargames Foundry have been doing in order to re-release old 1980's Citadel ranges. It would also suggest that the C21 might be slightly smaller than the FF66, as with Wargames Foundry's miniatures, although I don't know for sure as I only have the FF66.

The sculpting is superb. Whilst the nature of the miniature require very little detailing, the actual sculpting of the robes and horse give a great sense of movement. It is one of my favourite miniatures.

I have painted him up for use as a Spectre in Warhammer fantasy Battle 3rd Edition.  It was a very quick paint job. Black undercoat, drybrush with white, and a wash with Citadels Nihilakh Oxide Technical paint. I added a couple of flowers to the base to give the almost artwork feel to the miniature riding through a meadow. 

Enjoy. :)
 C21 Fantasy Cavalry.
 Lef hand side, shield side.
 Right hand side.
 Close up
Not Santa, but the Nightmare before Christmas!

Next update should be the Pan Tang army photographing.

Sunday, 10 December 2017

Cloud Giant Treeman.

I have'nt had time to photograph the full Pan Tang army yet. I want to photograph them on a large gaming table, as I have done with the Snakemen and Dark Elves. In the meantime I have re-painted an old Giant miniature.

I saw a photograph online where someone had painted a Giant model as Treeman, which I thought was a good idea. So I thought I would give it a try by re-painting an my old Ral Partha RP01-109 Cloud Giant. It's painting was very simple. I painted the body a dark brown base with lighter browns to represent the woody trunk of his body. The hair and beard I painted greens, to suggest the foilage. To constrast with the browns and greens I painted the fur greys, similar to wolf fur.

I am very happy with how he turned out. People may wonder why a Treeman would require a stone axe and fur clothing, but I just consider him to be more of a tree-ish spirit, working with trees, rather than a tree that has come to life. Also, as I am slowly assembling miniatures for the McDeath Scenario, I thought that this Treeman would work nicely as one of Klinty's Treemen.

Apart from the Treeman, I have been very, very busy sorting out all of my Oldhammer era Fantasy Battle miniatures. The idea is to have a change in approach to my collection and collecting. Before, I just wanted to have a few armies, and cram as many of the relevant miniatures into it as I could. With that end, I spent ages trying to compose armies lists of perfection.

The result was not always the best gaming armies, nor were they I felt really capturing the 'feel' of the armies (with the possible exception of the Skaven). In addition, I rarely made use of allies or hosts, and never used Mercenaries, leaving large sections of my collections in boxes with no future other than to be possiblty painted at some time as a whim or curiosity. So I am expanding the numbers of armies, and the range of the the miniature types, and working to the idea of compiling 3,000 point armies. This project of sorting out things will take the next few weeks, and so I will be doing a series of updates on the results in the new year. 

In addition, I am 'Oldhammering' the armies, that is making sure I only use miniatures that would have been avalible at the time (from the late 1970's to 1992). Models wise, I am largely using Citadel miniatures, Marauder, Chronicle, Iorn Claw, with the occasional Grenadier, ral Partha, or Asgard, all form the time of course. Although I like the combination of newer elements to old armies, I wanted to take the 'purest' approach. My only concession to this is that using the ex-Citadel mintures that are now being produced by Foundry Miniatures.

The Snakeman and Pan Tang armies are not included in this approach, as they are projects of their own. The Slann army/ies have some modern elements, but I regard my Slann as a collection all of it's own, and anyway, I can easily field 3,000 points of Oldhammer Slann without any problem.

Finally, it's the 'Oldhammer' Deadcember. So I have dug out (so to speak!) my old RRD2 Nightmare Legion to re-paint. These were my first box set I ever bought (I received them for my 13th birthday), and so I have a soft soft for them. I painted them, not greatly, at the time (on the day to be precise!), and then attempted a tyding excercise about 20 years ago, but they deserve better. I am also going to paint a pre-slotta C21 Skeletal Fanatic up as a Spectre as well.

Enjoy :)
 The Giant/Treeman bestrides the hill country.
 Close up.
 Close up.
I painted the eyes brown, with black pupils, to give that extra tree-ish look.
 Rear view.
 Goblin-eye view!
 RD2 Nightmare Legion Regiment of Renown.
 C21 Skeletal Fanatic.
I am also painting the DRAG3 Green Dragon. It'll end up in a as a bound Dragon in one of the armies, maybe Bretonnians.

Next update will be the army photoshoot of the Pan tang army.

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

The Tigers of Pan Tang.

After much foot dragging I have finally finished my Pan Tang Army. I have enjoyed painting them, and will conduct a full army photoshoot for next weeks blog update. In the meantime I am posting photographs of the last element to the Pan Tang army to be completed; the Tigers of Pan Tang. I was going to add some Chaos Thug archers to the army too, but I did'nt think that really worked with the feel of the collection.

As I have mentioned before, The Tigers are an iconic component in a Pan Tang army, and no Pan Tang force would be really 'Pan Tang' without them (well maybe less so when fighting ship-to-ship!). I was very reluctant to paint them as I was'nt sure how to tackle painting Tiger stripes. I recall a White Dwarf article from the 1980's about painting Tiger stripes, and it kind of put me off. However, in the end I just went for it, and used Google photographs of actual Tigers for reference. I don't think that they turned out too badly.

Gaming wise, as the Pan Tang army itself is compiled used the 3rd Edition Warhammer Fantasy Battle Army Chaos Army list, the Tigers will be used as 'Proxy' Chaos Hounds. Given the smaller size of the army, four Tiger teams seems a good number. They are somewhat ticky to source now, so four also seemed a good point from which to stop.

Enjoy :)
 The four Tiger teams.
 From the left side.
 ...and right side.
 A Tiger team in action.
 Close up of the roaring Tiger 'Great Tooth'.
 Right side.
 Stalking Death.
 Right side.
 Tiger handler Vashtar Mu'ar.
I went for a Tiger skin paint scheme for the handlers to tie-in with the tigers, but kept the red armour to tie-in with the rest of the Pan Tang army. I like the tiger head/helmet.
 Kaaltar Beastlord.
 Rear view.
 As I had more Tigers than Handlers I decided to use a spare pair of Pan Tang infantry to step in.
This is Grar.
I kept the same indea of colours scheme for these as with the other 'proper' handler miniatures.
 Handler Vandar.
 A group shot of all of the Tigers.
I really like the Tiger miniatures, as I do all of the Pan Tang range. It is a shame that they disappeared from Citadels production. I am sure that they could have been produced under the banner of 'Chaos' miniatures, in the same way the Melniboneans became 'High Elves'. However at the time there were a lot of new miniatures being produced and things going one. It was a fun time in which to collect and game. :)
WIP...
...Lord and Lady McDeath. But more on these at a later date.

The next update will be an army update on the completed Pan Tang army.