Sunday 15 August 2021

A Ruined and Terrible Form of Life

Do you know how the Orcs came into being?

They arrived in a bundle of second hand Uruk-Hai I bought off eBay. 

You must have noticed that I'm on a bit of a Tolkein kick at the moment and I'm genuinely nearing the end of what I still have unpainted. However, I was in the right mood and so out came the Orcs which have sat just undercoated for a few years.

These 11 Mordor Orcs have taken a long time for me to get to for a number of reasons: they weren't necessary for anything I was working on; I'm never that keen on batch painting; and, to be frank, I wasn't overly keen on the sculpts.

They are plastic and about 20 years old, so, like much of the older plastic elements of the range, they show their age.

Having said that, I have warmed to them as I've painted them, and they are actually much better than I gave them credit for - although there are still some details that are a bit fugly.

In terms of painting, I kept things simple by deciding to keep all the cloth elements black and so began with a grey drybrush over the black undercoat.

I then kept consistent colours for the wood and the metal, but varied the skin colours and hit everything with a wash of Agrax Earthshade.

After that, I picked out the leather elements in Mournfang Brown and hit that with a wash of Nuln Oil, then I did any pieces of fur in Rhinox Hide and drybrushed it with Ushabti Bone. 

Finally I highlighted the faces, picking out eyes (which I did yellow) and teeth (I have noticed from these pictures that I missed the teeth on the one with the two-handed axe), and did the eye of Sauron on the blank shield - my freehand work is never that neat, but as this was painted by an Orc, it doesn't matter.

I think they work well enough, with the different poses and skin colours offering enough variation. If I was to do more, as well as doing some weapon swaps, I'd probably start with a different base colour before largely repeating the process.

In game terms this bunch are most likely to see action first as dismounts for my Isengard Warg Riders, or as Grishnakh's mob in War in Rohan, as Mordor Orcs don't show up in the Quest of the Ringbearer until very near the end.

However, that's 11 more models out of the lead pile, counteracting the four I've bought in preparation for the coming battle in Bree.

Acquired: 119
Painted: 144

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