Wednesday, February 25, 2015

H is for Half-Orc

The unhappy fruit of blasphemous couplings between the bestial orcs and the most degenerate elements of humanity, the half-orcs are a despised and marginalized group, disliked and distrusted by both their parent races.  Abused and neglected, the spawn of these unhappy unions between mortal enemies rarely live long.  Those that do are tough, resourceful and unsentimental.  With loyalty to no society, they are quick to hire themselves out to the unscrupulous as assassins, scouts, mercenaries and thugs.  Others make a living as members of gangs of smugglers, pirates, or bandits, the only communities likely to tolerate their presence for long.  Presented here are four representatives of the strain.  Look on them, o man, and weep.
This individual is clearly a fighter, one of the mercenary warriors who can be found in the retinues of various less than reputable characters in the Western lands.  He has clearly been successful in his chosen profession, for his armour, equipment and clothing, though fashioned in a style recognizably Orcish, is of markedly superior workmanship compared to that owned by the vast majority of Orcish fighters.  He has undoubtedly had it made for him, and at considerable expense.

Whoever it is that has employed has paid him well for his service.  Perhaps he is less treacherous than most of his kind have a reputation for being.
Standing second from right in the above picture we have what appears to be one of the many lone half-orcs who haunt the forests and hills along the fringe of the Western lands.  Such half-orcs are wild and woods-crafty, and having knowledge of the worlds of both orcs and men, they frequently make a wage as scouts, trackers and guides, hiring out to adventurers and armies on either side as it suits them.  A hazardous, but sometimes rewarding profession,
Though the half orcs are not known for their intelligence or knowledge of magicks, the colorful individual above clearly fancies himself as a holy man or spell-caster of some sort.  Most likely he is a priest of the cult of Gruumsh, who, sadly, has a following not just among the half-orcs of the border-lands but among some of the human communities of those territories.  Doubtless a talented troublemaker in the wild region from which he hails.
Hardened by their lonely, bitter lives, tempted by the savage call of their violent orcish blood, capable of blending in amoung both men and monsters, many half-orcs adopt the profession of hired killers, Here their great strength, knowledge, cunning and absence of sentimentality stand them in good stead, and the half-orcs of the border country have traditionally produced many of the world's most famous daggers-for-hire, as the alarming looks of this ill-favoured fellow strongly suggest.
"Knife in yer back, gold in me sack!"

Monday, February 23, 2015

Lost Worlds Characters pt. 2: Fighter & Unicorn

It's been a pretty slow month for hobby stuff, unfortunately.  Twelve hour days don't leave much time off for painting little people and monsters.  Over the last day or two, however, I've had some very slow and quiet hours in the guard shack to get these additions to my Lost Worlds collection painted.  The rainy days have kept Colonels and Sergeants Major indoors and out of everybody's hair.  Keep it coming. Nature!

Here's the first of the new additions, the old, super-imaginatively titled "Man in chain-mail with sword and shield."  The subject of the very first Lost Worlds book, he is pretty under-powered compared with later characters.  He'll probably end up representing a retainer for more powerful characters in most of my games.

As with all my Lost Worlds minis, I tried to paint him to match the book as closely as possible.  Half the fun of this game is having the figure to go with the book.  It's nice how closely Nova games synched the book art to the Ral Partha miniatures.
This particular figure was originally released as a mounted/dismounted combination.  The only variance between the mini and the depiction on the book cover is that the mini is wearing small spurs.  You can make out the straps around his ankles if you look close.  On the book, however, the straps are shown as a fold or bunching of his mail.  Not sure if that was a mistake by Nova or intentional. I've painted him as shown on the book.
Brave, decent looking fellow,  He'll probably get killed a lot, sadly.  Oh, well.
A few months ago, I got the Lost Worlds adventure sets on ebay.  For the second time, actually.  Last time I bought them, the guy ripped me off and never sent them.  Mrs. Mouse confirms, however, that this time, the transaction was for real, and my sets are waiting for me back in Bag End.  Its in the

Monday, February 9, 2015

Nyarlathotep - The Crawling Chaos

 Nyarlathotep.  The Crawling Chaos.  I will tell the audient void...Spent the last week or so of painty time squinting down the brush at a batch of Black Skaven and had to take a break. Said break consisted of  Maiden's Strange World on repeat on the ear buds and working on Nyarlathotep, here.

Very possibly my favorite Lovecraft story.  Not sure what use I'll have for him on the table top, but I like him.  He makes me happy.  The Grenadier Cthulhu miniatures were much more compact than the RAFM line that followed them.  RAFM's minis were more appropriately weird, alien, horrible, and sculpted on a grander scale, but the Grenadier line still has a lot of charm.

Bossk about to have what has got to be just about the worst day imaginable on The Planet of Very Bad Things.

Back to work on the Black Skaven tonight.

For your listening pleasure...the tale read by the quite enjoyable Nick Gisburne...