Tuesday, March 5, 2013

dwarves or dwarfs?

I prefer dwarves for some reason, perhaps as it is an excuse to cheat at scrabble! Growing up in the 70's , stories I was told revolved around the Trickster and intrepid heroes of Native American Woods. Lots of animal spirits and tales regarding personal growth. One of the first books I read was King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, followed by Ivanhoe, Robin Hood, William Tell, etc.
Dungeons and Dragons was a pastime as well. I didn't go for the knights in gleaming armor, and I didn't go for the effeminate elves in their over cultivated forests. I liked the dwarves! Tough, strong, stubborn....note that my vision of dwarves do not use swords. Hammers and axes are tools of a working man, er dwarf! They do not use bows either, Crossbows are the way! Imagine getting your beard tangled in an arrow fletching held to your check...;)

I started this force a long time ago shortly after I first got married. As newly weds, I couldn't afford a huge metal army. Games workshop did release a kit that featured clansman made from plastic that could be armed with hand weapons, great weapons, or crossbows. I found a few suitable metal heroes, then kited out two regiments of dwarves to get to grips with the foe. The only missile weapon they had was the organ gun. To irritate my cousin, who liked the tree hugging wood elves, I painted a wood grain on the organ gun and the standard bearer's staff for my currently being redesigned army standard. My lads borrowed a few wood elf trees to make them!
For a long time they fellows were skirmishing in Mordenheim, or being loaned out to talisman or runequest games with an occasional heroquest one tossed in. One of my heroes is the dwarf fighter from a heroquest reprint.
Shortly after buying our home, my wife and kids surprised me with a lot of dwarf reinforcements.
a shot of my first army including the newer ironbreakers...they are really proud in all of that armor!

from left to right; the white dwarf, the general, a longbeard bearing the army standard...sans standard, and my heroic heroquest dwarf fighter.

a regiment of clansmen with hand weapons and sheilds

the clansmen with great weapons..

just an isolated pic showing off some of the many beards in this army

my ironbreakers with a lord in great armor and greater axe

the rangers with great axes and crossbows.

I looted all my plastic sets to get cloaks for the rangers

the longbeards all have white/grey beards and are equipped with great axes. they also have facesheilds and a few cloaked bodies not used for rangers were given purple cloaks to further showcase these wiser warriors.

dwarves with guns. they have an optional musician for just in case I want to include a full command.

a troll slayer, the new general, the old general and a runesmith.
after seeing the nonplussed visage of the newer lord model, my old general was demoted!

pipes and beer are scattered liberally throughout the regiments

the new artillery section with attendant engineer models and extra dwarves including the three pewter thunderer models from the Mordenheim band.

a back shot of the new plastic artillery crew.

the crossbowmen waiting to be finished. base colors of dark blue, grey, and metal have been applied.
I use a three color method so midtone and highlight needs to be done. the final bit will be the beard as random blocks of dwarves will be slotted into blonde, ginger, brown, and black haired lads. further differences in hair is done with even more highlights and washes till I think they look good.

the new army mostly ready to rumble.
These were painted up really quickly as Ironbreakers and new customizable plastics were included in the mix. They have fought my cousins wood elves and my own Bretonians. My first force has faced my wife's vampire count army a few times too. My daughters have high elves, wood elves, and Khemiri tomb kings, while my son has a beastie heavy dark elf force. I got a dwarven terrain piece from my wife last Christmas which is also now in the painting que.
these fellows mainly need for me to finish up the basing and my last missile unit. I will have to hurry on them too. I placed an order for the new zombicide kickstarter. While a good deal getting me the new stuff and the original game missed from the first kickstarter since I was overseas......I broke the groundrules established by my wife. She has added to the forces I must complete.

I can't sneak in new stuff, as she does know what I do have. The Napoleonic forces have been added( which isn't too bad as I really want to paint something other than blue and grey). She also added my battlefleet gothic ships into the que. This last will be a challenge. The BFG ships were further along than my dwarven army with only some ork and chaos ships not at my standard of finished. while making room for our first child, I bought some track shelves to store minis on.
The track shelves eventually collapsed waking our new child from down the hall as well as smashing all of my ships into pieces and parts. I loved that spaceship game, but I haven't played it nor looked at the carnage that still resides in that cardboard box of shame. Due to my indiscretion with kickstarter, I have been ordered to make the fleets ready for battle once again!


  1. Well the age old question of dwarfs or dwarves. Technically dwarfs is the proper plural. Spelling the plural as dwarves is technically incorrect. JRR Tolkien spelled it this way because visually it compliments the spelling of elves better. Its certainly the spelling that I prefer. Nice looking dwarves! I have many of those in my collection but its been a long times since they have seen the light of day.

    1. Thanks for the compliment, Kris!
      I prefer Tolkien's spelling too. Of all the fantasy races, I like these fellows the best. I eventually want to add a regiment of trollslayers, but they seem almost cliché for use in a dwarven army.