Welcome to Mordgrave

This week will see me dusting off my copy of Frostgrave to finally have a game. A mate and I are planning on getting a campaign going, hopefully recruiting along the way.

Rather than setting the story in Felstad, we’ll be drawing on the background of the Old World however, so it is more akin to Mordheim with wizards and various fantasy races. As gangs, I am therefore drawing on my existing Warhammer Fantasy Battle armies without having to paint everything from scratch. For the first gaming session I put together Night Goblins, Dwarfs and Undead, only needing to finish painting a shaman and warrior of their respective armies which had been long overdue anyway.

Goblin in black robes wielding a staff facing off against Dwarf with shield and hammer

Old enemies clash

While there are no different racial characteristics and stats in Frostgrave, I selected the war bands to reflect some of their archetypes. The Dwarfs are fewer in numbers but with better equipment and stats due to their troop types.

Group of six Dwarfs in a medieval city

Enchanter, Apprentice, Marksman, Knight, Man-at-Arms and Thug

For the Night Goblins I am mainly using the Kev Adams sculpts by Knightmare Miniatures, reinforced by some Citadel figures from my Warhammer Fantasy Battle army.

Band of Goblins amidst medieval houses

Witch, Apprentice, Infantryman, Man-at-Arms, War Hound, Archers and Thugs

The Undead are raised from my Warhammer 3rd Edition forces, with zombies representing thugs and skeletons other troop types.

Skeletons, zombies and wizards on a cobblestoned street

Necromancer, Apprentice, Men-at-Arms, Infantrymen and Thugs

How these work as gangs in Frostgrave, we’ll find out. A drawback of using “soldiers” from other armies is the lack of figures representing certain character classes like thieves, but with a bit of artistic licence and kit bashing I could add them where needed. In any case I would want to stick with classes to fit a certain fantasy race, and where that is the case, miniatures will also be easier to find.

The Doom Goblins’ Saga

I have added a couple of expansions from Knightmare Miniatures’ latest Kickstarter of goblin sculpts by Kev Adams to my collection. The Doom Goblins in particular, which are the only faction I have painted so far, were in need of reinforcements.

I’m also looking forward to the fantasy expansions for Saga 2 which I’d like to use for warband size forces like this. While not clear yet how the system of heroes will work with magic users and monsters, it already makes sense to organise all the troops into units of 4, 8 or 12 respectively. For archers I was still short, so after adding another bow armed figure from the range, I also glued together and painted a plastic Citadel Night Goblin.

Group of goblin archers wearing black hooded tunics

A salvo of arrows softens up the enemy

I do like the style Brian Nelson gave the Orcs & Goblins back then, though their faces were much more repetitive than previously. This particular multi-part plastic set was one of Citadel’s earliest, and the proportions are all over the place, making it pretty much incompatible with any Night Goblins they released before and after. As a tribute to the evolution of the Night Goblins, I like having one of these guys in the warband though.

Night Goblin archers aiming and loading their bows

Goblins are a mixed bunch

With the new sculpts to be delivered soon, I can form another unit of 8 warriors, which should give me a minimum of 4 points of troops to use in Saga. Since archers are often classed as levies, 4 more to increase this group might also be useful, but I’ll see about that once the army lists are out.

Warband of Night Goblins with trolls and giant mushrooms in the background

From their mountain lair the Doom Goblins emerge

Guardian of the Fungi Forest

I completed the final troll and fungi for my Doom Goblins with these impressive specimen from Knightmare Miniatures.

Two giant red capped mushrooms with faces flanking a troll with a helmet and large sword

A troll champion guards the sacred mushroom grove

The mushrooms have grown to truly giant proportions and are probably worshipped by the Doom Goblins or consulted as deranged oracles. The cave troll must be a champion of its kind, gifted with an unusual intelligence and cunning that let’s him appreciate the benefits of metal armour and bladed weapons.

Stunted broad stemmed mushroom with bulging eyes and crooked teeth

This sentient mushroom is infused with chaotic energy

Tall and slender mushroom with a snarling grin and large red cap

The giant fungus sways in the currents of raw magic

Side view of grey skinned troll with helmet and shoulder guard, gripping a double handed curved sword

A determined troll with a sense of purpose is a frightening opponent

My plan was to complete 18 point forces for Dragon Rampant, but since I have enough miniatures already to muster 24 points for Hill Goblins and Steppe Goblins, I might extend the Doom Goblins as well. Also, I have a few spare guys with spears now since I placed another order from Knightmare Miniatures for a set that wasn’t included in the Kickstarter. So I am thinking, maybe add some squig herders?

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Dwellers in the Dark

I finished the second Cave Troll from the Knightmare Miniatures Green Skin Wars range to bolster my Night Goblin raiding party for Dragon Rampant. Once the third troll is finished, I’ll probably field them as a reduced model count unit of Bellicose Foot with Mystical Armour, to represent their regenerative abilities.

Pale skinned troll leaning on big club with two skulls in hand

The troll doesn’t tolerate intruders in its cave

The Kickstarter campaign also included a bunch of… sentient mushrooms I guess? As anyone knows, Night Goblins and mushrooms go together perfectly, so I am painting them up as themed terrain, or maybe even a playable unit in their own right.

Long stalked mushrooms of various colours with grinning faces

Strange magical energies have brought the cave fungus to life

The sculpting on the troll is once again excellent, and its facial expression one of the most characterful I have ever seen on a miniature.

Side view of the growling troll with purple mushroom in background

Living in a dark, dank cave doesn’t encourage a sunny disposition

View of the troll's gnarly back

Better sneak out while he’s not looking

Missiles, Monsters and Mages

The second half of the Doom Goblin tribe I am painting for Dragon Rampant consists of some archers, a shaman and a trio of cave trolls.

Since I was one bowman short of a six strong unit of scouts I added a plastic Night Goblin from the Warhammer 4th Edition box set. Unfortunately the Army Painter anti-shine spray applied over Citadel gloss varnish looks like a layer of dust on all the miniatures in the photos – might have to switch to another supplier.

Three goblins with dark hoods carrying bows

Sticking two fingers up to civilisation

Three goblin archers with black hoods

Goblin archers raiding a hamlet

The shaman with his mushroom staff is another characterful figure from the hands of Goblinmaster Kev Adams.

Goblin with black hood holding a staff shaped like a mushroom with a face

The shaman draws supernatural powers from shrooms

The first of the cave trolls I finished is a sculpt by Diego Serrata Pinilla, the owner of Knightmare Miniatures.

Pale skinned troll holding a big rock

Cave trolls often follow Doom Goblins on their raids

Now I am just missing two trolls, and a bunch of mushrooms as a bonus, which I’ll either use as terrain or to accompany the shaman in a unit.

Groups of goblin archers, shaman and a large troll in front of a medieval hovel

Doom Goblins only venture overground to pillage and plunder

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Doom Goblin Dozen

The first dozen Doom Goblins by Knightmare Miniatures is finished. Using Dragon Rampant, they’ll be fielded as a unit of Light Foot with the Offensive rule. They are all great individual sculpts, and I could well see them in some dungeon crawling too.

Group of twelve green skinned goblins with black hoods

The tribe’s leader with his retinue

The second lot I painted contains a standard bearer and some more fighters, with hoods up and down and a variety of weapons, giving the group a lot of variety.

Goblin holding a black banner with white flame motif flanked by two comrades

The Banner of Doom

Three goblins with spear, mace and sword respectively

The tribe’s fighters are vicious

The facial expressions of these little blighters are classic Kev Adams, and it’s still as much fun painting them as it was 25 years ago.

Close up of the banner bearer with his wide evil grin

The tribe’s banner inspires fanatical devotion

Goblin musician with skull drum and fighter with mace

Heavy maces are popular with the strongest goblins

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