Wednesday, January 30, 2013



   An altar can be placed in the centre of the battlefield to represent a holy ground. It can also be the objective task of a game, during which one player will try to capture it while the other to defend and hold it. 
   There are many interesting pictures of altars on the internet to be inspired by and make your own one. I used the following materials to make the altar: Styrofoam, wood putty, white glue, hard paper, little rocks and static grass.
   First of all, I drew places of the stones on the hard paper. I tried to place all eight of them in shape of a cycle. 

   After that I cut the pieces of styrofoam and glued them on the hard paper.

   I covered them with black wood putty.

   And then I spread wood putty on the hard paper as well. While it was still wet, I stuck some little rocks here and there.  

   When everything became dry, I painted the stones black and the ground brown.

   I used various tints of grey colour to highlight the stones and brown shades for the ground. Finally, I glued some static grass at the foot of the stones.   

   Drar and his Dwarf Rangers below help to have a sense of the altar size.

   That's it for today! Stay tuned for more!  

Friday, January 25, 2013

Fords of Isen

   The history
   During the War of the Ring there were two battles at the Fords of Isen. The first took place on February 25, 3019 of the Third Age. The second was on March 2, of the same year. The battles were between Saruman's Uruk-hai and the Rohirrim of Rohan.
First Battle of the Fords of Isen:
   Théodred, son of King Théoden of Rohan, was alerted by his scouts to the mustering taking place in Isengard. He manned both sides of the ford and went forward leaving three companies of riders to guard the eastern side. Early in the morning, he crossed over to the western side with a force mainly consisting of archers and cavalry. He planned to take the forces of Uruk-hai by surprise.
   However, Saruman had tricked the scouts; his army was already marching out to attack the ford. Twenty miles to the north of the ford, Théodred encountered the vanguard of the Uruk-hai and quickly cut through their lines. He then charged at the main force, who were prepared for the attack and were stationed behind trenches planted with pikes. Reinforcements came out of Isengard and outflanked the cavalry, nearly surrounding them. Hastily Théodred ordered a retreat, but the Uruk-hai could not be shaken off that easily. Grimbold, who was in command of the Rohirrim rearguard, had to cut down their pursuers many times.
   Saruman's eastern force was much smaller but more dangerous. It contained mounted Dunlendings, Warg riders, and Uruk-hai. The Rohirrim guard on the eastern side of the ford had been driven into retreat, and their attackers recrossed the ford to attack Théodred on both sides. Théodred and his men had dismounted on an islet to cover Grimbold's retreat. At the same time Grimbold's force was being attacked from the western side, and as Grimbold looked east, he saw Théodred's force being driven from the islet to a hill. Grimbold and a few men raced toward Théodred's position. Théodred was cutting his way through the Uruk-hai lines. But by the time Grimbold reached him, Théodred had fallen, cut down by a giant orc. Grimbold slew the orc and then found himself defending Théodred's body from orcs. He himself would have been killed had it not been for Elfhelm.
   Elfhelm had been leading four companies towards Helm's Deep, when it was reported to him that two Warg Riders had been spotted. He rode at full speed to the ford and, seeing the situation, ordered his men to charge. Before long his men held the western side of the ford. They then charged on the islet. From this surprise attack most of the Uruk-hai retreated toward Isengard. When they reached the islet they found Grimbold defending Théodred's body against two huge orcs. Elfhelm rushed to his aid and felled one orc while Grimbold slew the other.
   When they lifted Théodred's body, they found he was still alive. He lived long enough to say, "Let me lie here - to keep the ford until Éomer comes." The enemy attack ended by nightfall. The Rohirrim had held the ford but suffered heavy losses and were now leaderless.
   (The above text is taken from Wikipedia,
   The game
   The armies that we used to represent the fight were the following:
Rohan army/Grimbold (525 points)
Grimbold of Grimslade
Armour, sword, shield, Expert Rider
Armour, sword, Expert Rider
2 Banner-bearers on foot
Armour, sword, banner, Expert Rider
4 Royal guards on foot
Heavy armour, sword, spear, shield, Expert Rider, Bodyguard
16 Helmingas swordsmen
Armour, sword, shield, Expert Rider
16 Helmingas spearmen
Armour, sword, shield, throwing spear, Expert Rider
16 Archers
Armour, sword, bow, Expert Rider
Rohan cavalry/Erkenbrand (525 points)
Theodred, Heir of Rohan
Heavy armour, sword, horse, shield, Expert Rider
Heavy armour, sword, horse, shield, Horne of Hammerhand, Expert Rider
2 Banner-bearers
Armour, sword, horse, banner, Expert Rider
36 Riders
Armour, sword, horse, shield, bow, throwing spear,Expert Rider
Orc Patrol (348 points)
Armour, sword, warg
1 Orc Shaman
Heavy armour, spear, warg, spells
1 Orc banner-bearer
Armour, sword, warg, banner
14 Orcs
Armour, sword, warg, shield
Dunlendings (360 points)
Thrydan Wolfsbane
Armour, two-handed axe, Mighty blow, Lord of Dunland
1 Dunlending chariot
Armour, bow, two-handed axe
1 Banner-bearer
Armour, hand axe, banner
1 Drummer
Armour, hand axe, drum
16 Axemen
Armour, hand axe, shiled
8 Archers
Armour, hand axe, bow
Uruk-hai force (350 points)
Uruk-hai Captain
Heavy armour, sword, shield
1 Uruk-hai banner-bearer
Armour, banner
9 Uruk-hai swordsmen
Armour, sword, shield
8 Uruk-hai crossbowmen
Armour, crossbow
7 Uruk-hai pikemen
Armour, pike

   We placed the forces on both sides of the river. As you can see below, the Orc patrol is on the right corner of the table, the Rohan cavalry on the left, the Rohan army on the right centre and the Dunlendings and the Uruk-hai (and two hands!) on the far left corner.

The battlefield

Rohan cavalry 

Rohan army on the hill

Dunlendings and Uruk-hai

   At the beginning of the game the Orc patrol Warg-riders attacked the Rohan army on the hill while the Rohan cavalry released their arrows on them. In the meanwhile, the Dunlendings and the Uruk-hai marched ahead to face their enemies. Unfortunately for the evil forces, the patrol was engaged too soon with the majority of the enemy force. That was a mistake and as expected, the patrol was defeated and destroyed.

Dunlending and Uruk-hai march

Rohan release their arrows

Warg-riders' attack

Τhe rest evil force still on the march

A panoramic view of the battlefield

   When the Orc patrol Warg riders were reduced a lot, the Rohan cavalry turned to attack the Dunlendings.  Another mistake for the evil force was that the Dunlendings were split from the Uruk-hai force. So, a 360-points unit alone tried to stop a 525-points one! It was impossible! It is all about maths! 

Rohan cavalry attack

   Although the Uruk-hai force tried to attack the Rohan army they changed their minds and turned to support the Dunlendings! It was too late though! At that point the repeated wrong decisions turned the tide and it was clear that the Rohirrims would be victorious. 

   On the right corner the fight was in full swing! But, it was a matter of time for the Warg riders to be eliminated. Failed courage tests helped this a lot. 

   The clash between Dunlendings and Rohirrims was tremendous! Thrydan wolfsbane killed Erkenbrand with his Mighty Blow special rule and gave the last hope to the evil forces until the moment the infantry of Rohan turned against them. 

Uruk-hai retreat

The clash

Rohan infantry marched ahead

More Rohirrims marched

Another panoramic view

The archers continued to shoot

Dunlendings' fall

Uruk-hai continued to hold the passage, in vain though... 

   At this point we stopped. Uruk-hai survived but the day belonged to Rohan! 
   That's it for today! Stay tuned for more!

Monday, January 21, 2013


   It makes the game more enjoyable to have some beautiful terrain pieces on your battlefield table. Since I have just a few of them, my goal for the next weeks is to increase their numbers.  
   First of all comes the "Rocks" project. I followed the same steps to make them as I did with the "Secret Entrances of Moria". By the way, it seems that the later had a great success, if we take under consideration how many people visited that post. Of course, Miniature Wargaming helped this a lot. A big thank you!
   I used the following materials to make four "Rocks" terrain pieces: Styrofoam, white glue, pins, hard paper and wood putty. I painted all four of them with various shadows of grey colour and  added some grass at their bases. Below you can see the results:

Side A

Side B

The first two rocks 

and the other two.

   That's it for today. Stay tuned for more!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Balin goes to Moria!

The Moria Battlefield

   Some days ago, we played a huge battle! A 2006 points Balin's dwarves army fought against a 1999 points Moria army (Balrog was included)! Both armies consisted of plethora of warriors' kins. We placed all our relevant terrain pieces, the dwarf mine workings, the mirrors, the secret entrances and the Khazad-dum columns on the table to create a dark Moria atmosphere! The scenario was the easiest that can be. No objectives - just kill all your hatred enemies to win the game! We were three players in total. Me and my friend, a newcomer to the game who loved it as he said when we finished, controlled the Dwarf army. Below you can see the two army lists:

DWARVEN ARMY 122 miniatures (2006 points)
Dain Ironfoot, King of Erebor
Mithril armour, Great axe Barazantathul
Heavy dwarven armour, Durin's axe, Throwing axes 
Dwarven armour, Shield, Kalazal   
Dwarven armour, Hand axe, Dwarven Bow
2 Banner bearers
Dwarven armour, Banner
18 Iron Guards
Dwarven armour, Hand axe, Broad sword, Thr.axes
26 Khazad Guards
Heavy dwarven armour, Hand axe, Two-handed axe
16 Rangers with longbow
Leather armour, Hand axe, Dwarven longbow
8 Rangers with thr.axes 
Leather armour, Hand axe, Thtowing axes
18 Axemen with shield  
Dwarven armour, Shield, Hand axe
18 Archers     
Dwarven armour, Dwarven bow, Hand axe
8 Vault Warden Teams
Crew: Iron shield & Foe spear         
Iron Shield 
Dwarf heavy armour, Hand axe, Tower shield             
Foe Spear
Light armour, Spear           
4 Dwarf Ballistae (Crew: 2)
Dwarven armour, Hand axe

GOBLIN ARMY 100miniatures (1999points)
The Balrog
Sword, Lash
Buhrdur, Cave Troll Chieftain
Ashrak, the Spiderkin
Armour, 2-handed stuff
Goblin Shaman
Armour, Spear
2 Dwellers in the Dark

18 Giant Spiders

4 Goblin Prowlers
Light armour, rusty blade, thr.weapons, 2-handed
22 Goblin Swordmen
Light armour, Hand weapon, Shield
22 Goblin Spearmen
Light armour, Hand weapon, Spear
22 Goblin Archers
Light armour, Hand weapon, Orc bow
2 Cave Troll with spear
Hand weapon, Spear
3 Cave Troll witn chain
Hand weapon, Troll chain
1 Goblin Drum (Crew: 2)
Armour, Daggers
   And of course, the photos. First, the Evil army from right to left:

Ashrak, the Spiderkin and the Goblin Shaman

The Balrog


Trolls and spiders

Buhrdur, the Cave Troll Chieftain and his lads!
Goblin Drum is hidden behind the column! 

Dwellers in the Dark and spiders

More Goblins and spiders

   The Dwarf army from left to right:

Drar's Rangers

Drar and the "field artillery"

Balin (third from the right)

Khazad Guards, Dwarf warriors and archers

Vault Warden teams

Dain Ironfoot, King of Erebor and Murin

The "mountain artillery"

   The first move. There wasn't any tactical plan, just the simple "run towards your enemy" tactic:

The right,

the centre

and the left.

   The clash! The best part of the game, where dice and heads are rolling! As we didn't have any specific objectives, we followed the  “Kill! Kill! Kill! And may you drink wine in their skulls tonight!” tactic! I have to confess that it is my favourite one.

The Iron Guards didn't have problem with the spiders,

neither the Vault Warden teams had with the Dwellers.

Balin and his Khazad Guards faced some problems,

which were Buhrdur and his boys' three wounds and their high F.

But above all, the Balrog was the real problem!

   Since we had plenty of warriors to play with, we didn't have problem with losses. That's why, as you can see, the fight was unstoppable!

"Kill someone!"

The green dice represented the remaining lives

"We trapped him!"

The Dwarves adopted the shieldwall tactic to stop the Balrog! 
But in vain, as you will see later.

Vault Warden teams killed the Dwellers!

And Iron Guards with their two A won easily the spiders! 

Our "guru of LotR SBG" moves his warriors! 

Where are the rests of the shieldwall? All dead!

   Buhrdur, Cave Troll Chieftain and his boys troubled a lot Balin and his Khazad Guards. In the meanwhile, Iron Guards and Vault Warden teams cleaned all the left side of the table from evil warriors and creatures and ra to help Balin.

Everybody runs to help Balin!

The left side of the table. Only the mountain artillery left!

   By the way, the mountain artillery had a big success. It shot accurately and killed one of the two Goblin drummers! The Courage stats were restored after that. 
   At the moment, Dwarf warriors were moving from the left side towards the centre of the battlefield to face first the Trolls and then the Balrog! On the far right, the Rangers killed Ashrak, the Spiderkin and the Goblin shaman together with their spiders and Goblins.

Trolls were our first obstacle,

and the Balrog the second to win the game.

A panoramic view

Dwarf army losses, even in death they dressed their lines! 

Evil army losses, chaos, as expected!

   After five hours of gaming we played the last turn. During that turn, a wave of Dwarf warriors crashed on the Trolls and the game ended after that. The condition was the following: Evil army had already started to pass Courage tests, the remaining Trolls hadn't Might, Fate, etc, anymore, so they became vulnerable; on the opposite, the Balrog was strong, had still nine out of ten Wounds. On the other side, no Dwarf hero or banner bearer was killed, Dwarf warriors were still a lot and all the Ballistae engines were on the field to spread death!   
   Anyway, although we didn't have a winner we had a great fun!

  Dwarf warriors have encircled the Trolls

   That's it for today! More battle reports are coming!
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