Doughty & Smol

Not to be confused with doughy and smol – that’s hobbits.

Looking through the 2E bestiary, one of the distinguishing features of the Norse Dwarfs was the presence of shield maidens. They’re a fun character type that I’ve run a few times in MMOs over the years:

So here’s a roundup of non-GW models I could use in an all-female dwarf warband:

Jabberwocky

I have a vivid memory of being eight years old, tucked into bed by my grandmother in her guest room. The room seemed very grand to me, with its huge bed and decorative wallpaper, and its balcony overlooked the river where boats lay on silver sand, with names like The Lady Kay, which made me think of Arthurian tales and far-off places. The view was in the eyes of adults marred by a junkyard on the far shore, but to my eyes the mountains of twisted metal and looming dinosaurian cranes were equally fantastical. I’d wake to the distant sound of crashing metal and draw the curtain and look across the water and watch the great claw endlessly lifting and dropping piles of scrap.

But it was bedtime, and my grandmother was tucking me in, and I asked her if I could read to her a little before I went to sleep. I wanted to read to her from the Battle Bestiary, and I wanted to find in it something she could relate to. I knew that in the study nearby were old hardcover books of Alice in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking Glass, with beautiful John Tenniel illustrations, so I read the entry on the Jabberwock.

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BOYL 2018

Rigg’s Shrine

Amazons battle to defend Rigg’s Shrine at BOYL 2018.

This was a chaotic but fun game with some great people – nobody even gave me a hard time for showing up with round bases to a 2nd edition game. We had at least two different sources for the Goddess Rigg’s stats, so her abilities ended up changing round by round depending on whose notes we were looking at.

My Amazons started off guarding the approach to the shrine. They maintained a truce with the Pygmies on the basis that both groups hate the Slann, and marched across the table through the jungle to fight off some of the Norse invaders. Having dealt with them they took out the Slann leader with an extremely long shot fireball, before heading through the teleport gate into the shrine and all arriving on different floors.

Rigg found herself in a room full of leopards. The leopards wisely decided discretion was the better part of valour and tried to climb the ladder, leaving her free to help clear the main temple of outsiders, slaying the Norse leader in an epic melee.

Helsreach

A brief visit to Helsreach; it was late in the day and the Tyranid’s retinue didn’t get to do much other than make their way into town and murder anyone who questioned whether they ought to be there.

Amazons vs Slann/Dark Elves

Some Blades & Heroes skirmishes between the Amazons and Dark Elves, and some shots with the Slann from the Lustria game.

Hannah and Ben took joint control of the Amazons in the second game; it was one of the high points of the con for me when I asked Hannah which side they wanted to play and she enthusiastically said “Amazons!” I really got into the lore of that faction while I was working on them – they’re probably my favourite thing I’ve ever painted – and it was nice to feel like that was just as cool to someone else.

The Amazons won that engagement.

Amazons WIP

WIP photos of my 1984 C30 Amazon warband for #BOYL2018.

I love the Amazons of 2nd edition, and when I heard they were doing Rigg’s Shrine for BOYL this year it was the perfect excuse to go out and buy them all.

This faction is such a wonderful melange of varied 80s influences – There’s Mysterious Cities of Gold and von Daniken’s ancient astronauts, 70s feminism, punk rock, and native imagery.

They’re a rule-breaking faction, bringing boltguns to a swordfight, and bringing some gonzo to the pathetic aesthetic of early WFB.

1984 Warband Project Part 2

In the last post I covered the army lists mentioned in the Battle Bestiary, here we’ll look at the possibilities in the rest of the book.

Pictures from other blogs are used here without permission, for reference and inspiration. I’ve provided credit and links where possible. If you see anything of yours and don’t want it shared, send an ask and I’ll replace it.

Wood Elves

Don’t have any ideas for these, and I don’t think there were any good treeman figures before MB14 in ‘93.

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Chaos Dwarfs

Chaos Dwarfs – I don’t know that there’s much available pre-slotta, but the petard and bazooka combined with Clam Miniatures Ewal Dvergar (seen here painted by Chris Sabick) or some figures from Four A Miniatures would make for a neat little band.

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Lizardmen & Troglodytes

It’s interesting that they’re completely distinct from the Slann here, and their schtick is living in deep caverns, even deeper than those of the goblins and dwarves.

I have some Tom Meier Troglodytes from Iron Wind Metals. Image again from Shamutantis.

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Undead & Demons

There are a lot of different types of undead in the rulebook, and some nice figures like C34 Chaos Demon. With the Necromancy and Demonology rules in WFB2E both armies seem to lend themselves to being built around a wizard, in the vein of The Conjurations of the Insane Necromancer Colin. Shaitan’s Possessed Warband makes me want to come up with something themed around the 1980s Satanic Panic, House of Hell-style Hammer Horror satanic goat-cults.

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Halflings

I’ve always wanted to do a Rotten Borough of thoroughly corrupt, backstabbing halflings, similar in tone to the Dwarves of Horrorwell. The kind of place where the mayor is stuffing the ballot box, the sheriff’s men are extortionists and the less said about whatever the butcher is up to the better. C11 are the right figures for the era and look comical enough.

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Arabians, Southrons, New World Natives, Steppe Nomads & Norse

More faux-historical armies. Of these, I can picture coming up with an Arabian force, based around this figure from my youth – or perhaps a misfist force with one or two figures from each nation?

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Ogres, trolls, giants, etc.

I have a lot of trolls and ogres. I was already planning to make a force of these in thrall to a wicked enchantress, but using a mix of oldhammer and much newer figures. I could just make a 1984 version out of a subset of those figures – I’ll need a contemporary enchantress, so I’ve picked up an FA23-2 Evil Priestess.

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1984 Warband Project Part 1

The last few posts have featured the art from the Warhammer 2nd Edition box set that introduced me to the game. As is often the case with images and forms from childhood, these are burned into my brain, and there’s a particular pleasure in seeing them take solid form as miniatures, or having them painted and active on the battlefield.

It was paging through those booklets one day, and seeing the same figures posted on FB, that made me want to make a Dark Elf Exiles warband. It was a good size project, and now I want to do more. By keeping the forces small I could realistically do a warband for every army in the setting.

So in this post I’m going to go through the options for 2nd Edition warbands, maintaining a similar feel to the elves – 1982-1984, early oldhammer, and largely solid based. To start with let’s look at the sample army lists in the back of the book.

Pictures from other blogs are used here without permission, for reference and inspiration. I’ve provided credit and links where possible. If you see anything of yours and don’t want it shared, send an ask and I’ll replace it.

Old World Imperialists/Southern City States

These seem to be Medeival and Rennaissance historical armies respectively (almost a reversal of the later dynamic where the Empire gets the steam tanks and Bretonnia gets the knights).

Steve over at Ye Olde Skool Warhammer has made a nice Southern City States army using Burgundian historical figures.

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Imperial Cathan

Imperial Cathay can’t seem to decide if it’s China or Japan. At this stage in development of the setting both sides use the same list, with Samurai and Vimto Monks.

Pictured:

Aly Morrison’s Oriental Heroes from the first Citadel Open Day.

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Goblin Raiders

Goblins have long been a favourite of mine, but my existing goblin collection is a Midhammer squigfest. Night goblins didn’t even have their famous pointy hoods back in ‘84. I’ve always loved Kev Adams’ goblin war machines with all the delightful plant and fungal life moulded into the bases, so maybe a Broken Nose warband based around the Skull Crusher and Lead Belcher?

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Chaos Band

This list consists of beastmen and chaos warriors only. I have enough of both lying around to make a force, even before counting more recent purchases such as the Pantheon of Chaos. This will be a good project because it won’t cost anything and will get some beloved older figures painted.

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Dark Elf Invasion

Already done. Though there are a couple of models I’d still like to add.

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Sea Elves & High Elves

My memories of High Elves are more tied to 4th Edition and WAR than 2nd ed, but Sea Elves might be fun. I’m not sure what minis they had other than the famous Riolta Snow. There was a set of Marauder Sea Elves (MM82) though they’re from later in the 80s.

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Orcs

The orcs of the era aren’t particularly exciting, though some of their armour designs in the art are interestingly ornate. Half-orcs, on the other hand, disappear in later editions and have some neat figures. I like C10 and their distinctive skull-and-ribcage shields.

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Norse Dwarfs &

Dwarven Warriors of Caraz-a-Carak

So the Dwarven Warriors have more seige engines and gnomes, and the Norse Dwarfs have shield maidens. The two miniatures I remember from the days of the manhole cover were dwarves – a C06 Dwarf Cleric, and one of Bugman’s rangers – which is a figure wonderful in its simplicity, a perfectly standard issue dwarf.

I’ve got an Asgard DW11 dwarf arquebusier who might fit with the more technically inclined faction. The rest of the range looks interesting – particularly DW6 and DW9.

Finally I have an Dwarf Juggernaut, (the one seen here painted by Shaitan) which might I could try to build a Caraz-a-Carak or some sort of land pirate faction around.

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Amazonian War Party

I have some Lustria-themed figures already – like the rogue Slann merchant and Power Weapon Bearer – but seeing these Amazons painted over at Shamutanti Helte inspires me to collect them. Always one of my favourite 2nd ed factions, I love the punk aesthetic and pink mohawks. I like the idea of Amazons allying with other natives but I don’t like the style of the old pygmy figures – questions of taste aside, they just seem too cartoony. The slaves of the Slann might make good auxiliaries, while being in keeping with the style of the other figures.

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Slann Empire

There are some great ones being released these days, I like them better than the original Slann and they’re certainly cheaper. I have a set of Tim Prow’s Eru-Kin, but I’ll save those for 40k – they’re lizardy and high-tech. For old school Slann I want to go more frog than lizard, so I’ve picked up a set of the Bizaza Guard from Seán O’Sullivan’s Katsina Miniatures. Mine are still unpainted, and I feel like I’ll need some cold ones or slaves to round out the warband.

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Warhammer 2nd Edition Art

Lustrians & Lizard-kin

Chaos & Demons

Undead & Monsters

Men & Elementals

Elves, Dwarfs, Gnomes & Halflings

Orcs, Goblins, Hobgoblins & Trolls

Exiles of Amheer – Backstory

In chambers vaulted with graceful arches carved from the living rock, beneath a hill studded with broken towers and dead gardens, under a sky shot through with strands of black smoke from burning cities, they gathered. Tarkan, who loved life’s pleasures, brooded silently at the ruin that had come to their ancestral home. Kong, loyal retainer, waited patiently to for Captain Valharik to speak.

“Any word from our scout?”

“Here, Captain,” said Candonyl the outrider in clipped tones, sweeping into the room and bringing with her the cold of the autumn wind outside and the bitter scent of smoke. Moving to the table she laid hands on the map spread out before the Captain.

“Ulthuan’s advance continues. We have perhaps two days before the fighting is upon us.”

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