Thursday, August 18, 2011

Undead Horsey-Things

I'm back!

I haven’t done much over the last week and a half or so due to some houseguests last week and a little vacation earlier this week. Last night I finished up a couple more things for my legions of undead….

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

These are some Skeleton Cavalry from Iron Wind Metals. I thought I’d class them as “riders” – they do have a bow and arrows in a holster-like-thing hanging off the side of their saddle.

Actually I’m kind of torn on the whole undead thing…. Should I have “riders” and “bow”…? Or should I just mix them ALL up on big bases with loads of other assorted foot and call them HORDES!?

I know… Hordes “suck”… I don’t care – most of my undead army will be hordes. I have a load of spear and sword armed foot set aside to build my Hordes of…well… “Horde”.

It says right in the definition “…Those armed with bows use them only at very close range, so that the effect is part of close combat…” Is it therefore “cheesy” to have separate bow-armed skeletons classed at “Bow”? Who makes these bows for the skeletons anyway? Do necromancers raise undead bowyers? Most armour and weapons I imagine the skeletons have on hand – buried with them on an ancient field of battle. But bows and bow strings…? Of course I suppose the same can be said of spear shafts and anything else made of wood or leather…

I’m putting waaaaaaaay too much thought into this.

Strange undead horsey-thing. I have no idea who manufactured this one. I can’t even remember if I got it in a trade or out of a bargain bin…? This one is based for HotT.

Same as above based for skirmishing. I had thought of putting both on one base – to make it look more like a “unit” – also one on it’s own doesn’t look nearly imposing enough to be a “Behemoth” in it’s own right (which is what I was planning on classifying it as). But then decided the two together in the same pose would look goofy, and this way I have one that I can bust out on a Savage Saturday and truly horrify my players.

(I suppose I could have put this in the middle of a “Horde” stand as well…)

The Necromancer. I’m not entirely sure about eh origin of these either. I think the mount might have been a Celtos figure and the Necromancer from Games Workshop (Which would mean, in their little world, I’m breaching their intellectual property rights by using other manufacturers miniatures in a “conversion” with their own models… hopefully this one will fly "under the radar"... seriously, how many of you out there buy exclusively GW product and after seeing this might stop and start buying other stuff... vs. how many of you would never have considered GW product but after seeing some painted on my blog and used in conjunction with other manufacturers thought "hey, those aren't half-bad... I might actually make use of those...?").

The Necromancer will also be the General. I know, I know… not the smartest move game-wise. But I’ve always been of the mind that things should be as they ought to be, not what’s good in the game. Necromancers always struck me as being megalomaniac control freaks… and what megalomaniac control freak would raise an army of the dead and then hand over the command to someone that genuinely has better head for tactics… (or is at least less vulnerable to being stuck down by adventuring heroic types!)?

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Maybe I should get moving on the rest of these undead… I have two more stands of riders, then it’s loads of infantry (“Hordes“).


  1. I hear you on the undead HotT thingy. When I read that the undead were primary composed of hordes I furrowed my brow but I can see the point. I would imagine mobs of zombies and skeletons as only moderately effective fighters... but... I think making some shooter units still works. I've always felt that undead archery units obtain bows and arrows from their slain foes, just as they are risen from the dead to fill the ranks of the army they still have their bows right?

    By the way, really nice work :)

  2. The unidentified horse creature is a skeletal equiceph from WOTC's Chainmail reboot in the early 2000s.

  3. I think a horde is better...they are chaos types anyway, so a regimented structure would be not within thier grasp..unless a very powerfull magician type made them ordered.

  4. Thanks peteB!

    Ah... a Bargain bin find it was then - the local gaming store blew out a pile of those Chainmail figures at $1 per box a number of years ago. I picked up piles of them. Because the boxes were so... voluminous (compared to the figures) I emptied them out and threw them in piles with other stuff. Some I remember, others - like this one - I forget...


  5. Nothing wrong with non-hordes elements in your undead army! My own skeletal forces include four elements of Spears (the Nightmare Legion) and four Shooters (skeletal archers and handgunners), along with Artillery (a screaming skull catapult) and a lurker (skeleton springing from the grave), all led by a Magician general (lich or necromancer).

  6. Hordes are great to create that never ending wave of death feeling but there is plenty of room for other troops in an undead army.

    Some thoughts

    Nazgul-type, barrow-wights, vampires and mummies are hardly horde elements. All have a internal directing intelligence and enough "combat power" to act alone or in small groups.

    If undead are brought back to life by forcing the deceased's souls back into the remains, these souls may well retain enough knowledge of their pre-death military service to be able to act in coordinated groups.

    To reanimate the dead requires organization of energies - not chaos but anti-chaos. Is it easier for a necromancer to control an amorphous horde of skellies, or is the magic simplified by arranging them in columns and rows?

    Lots of room here for other than "Mg and Hd" undead armies

  7. Sometimes I think things can be 'over-thought' in fantasy - it is fantasy after all. Go with what looks good on the tabletop and with what you have in your lead pile. I am really liking what you have done so far with your undead army and thoroughly looking forward to seeing a lot more where that came from.