I summon you to fulfill your Oath!
As Dave mentioned in Blood for Blood – Part II, the best laid plans of mice and men oft go awry (translated/paraphrased from the original Scottish). I imagine that when Isildur first summoned the Men of Dunharrow, only to have them refuse to join him in the battle against Sauron, he was a little put out. Not all has gone to plan with this project either and while this maybe isn’t quite as serious as an expected ally dropping out before a major battle because they began following your mortal enemy, I’ve had to change my approach on this project a bit. Not bad enough to curse the models to a fate worse than death, to be sure, but annoying all the same.
Things started off alright. I picked up the King and Heralds box with the intent to use the Heralds as standards in some of my secondary infantry blocks, or as Heralds for the the force out of the Gondor at War supplement. I put together the King model and folks, it’s a blast. I love this model! It’s really dynamic, capturing that movie moment when the King charges past Aragorn as the Dead overwhelm the Corsairs of Umbar. I also really like this sort of hollow design for the model, though I’m more curious to see how it looks with paint. I highly recommend this kit for anyone running Dead for their games.
I also then put together a bunch of the regular Dead from the sprues I had, a mix of spear armed and hand-weapon armed models to use as the King’s retinue. For reasons I’m still not entirely sure of I decided I’d use some different shields for my force, perhaps to give it a different look and because the ones supplied on the sprue are somewhat blasé. This is where I discovered just how difficult it is to source plastic pavise or kite shields. Striking out a few times I decided to take a chance on some resin/printed kite shields from Last Stand Convertibles. They’re… not great. The print lines are very pronounced so I ended up having to do a fair bit of green stuff and messy filing to smooth them out a little. Hopefully this works, but we’ll see when the paint goes on. I’m not dreading it at all! Why do you ask?
Being somewhat unsure of what the results will be, and also waiting for the banner bearer model to ship from GW to complete the core unit before priming, I decided to build out one of the secondary infantry blocks. Here’s that block, complete with one of those Heralds as a standard bearer, a leader-looking guy, and some of those shields I mentioned. One of the neat things about this army is that a group of eight or more doesn’t require an actual Hero to lead them, so I gave the one model a different shield to pick him out as the leader. Anyway, I’ll prime and paint these guys first, to see how it looks before going all in on the main block with the King. Those shields will be a main focus of this first unit.
Right then! Material update is that I’ve either acquired and assembled, or have on order, all of the infantry for my first 800-ish points. The King and his retinue are assembled, save the inbound Banner model. One of the secondary units is also assembled, and shall go into the priming step soon. That leaves me a fair bit of assembly to do yet when the other box arrives, but hopefully I can make up time in the painting and still leave Andrew’s Rohirrim quaking in unpainted fear at the foot of the Dwimorberg. Insane goal to paint the infantry by the end of March, go!
The Dead awaken; for the hour is come for the Oathbreakers.