Monday 24 February 2014

Gnolls / Great Goblins

I have got distracted...

One of the reasons I started my blog was to focus my painting and collecting so I would'nt get too distracted or overwhelmed. So last weekend, after completing the Squat army, I started sorting out the Rogue Trader Marines. However, without a clear plan of action by mid week I was sorting out Slann, and then looking for Mithril Orcs, and by the end of the week realised that my lack of focus was due to Goblins!

Well, not actual Goblins, but I realised that I was'nt really in the mood for 40k at the moment, and really wanted to get back to painting and sorting out Goblins. After sorting out some of the Iron Claw Goblin range (I will do an 'Iron Claw' update soon) I realised that I really wanted to return to the Fantasy Tribes FTG range of Gnolls/Great Goblins. They are one of my favorite ranges of miniatures ever produced, and I love the characterfulness of them. It's also fun looking in the first three Warhammer Fantasy Editions and noticing artwork for the Gnolls/Great Goblins.

I have'nt done any painting in about a week and a half, and so thought why not re-visit a range of Goblins I really like but have never been too happy with my painting of them. It will also give me a subject to post on and a chance to look at them all prior to re/painting. I intend touching up the paintwork and re-doing the flesh tone. In the 1st Edition 'Forces of Fantasy' supplement they suggest the the Great Goblins have ruddy flesh colour, and dark clothing. I want to take the pinkness out of the flesh tone but not go too dark, and I want to keep the clothing brighter. I always see the Great Goblins as more sophisticated Goblin Tribes, and would even be tempted to field them as an alternative stand in for Half Orcs.
I will at some point return to painting up my 3rd Edition armies from the Warhammer Armies book too! Anyway....

The Fantasy Tribes FTG range of Gnolls were released from late 1980 to about 1984, over which time they were re-named 'Great Goblins' and ended up as the C12 and C13 ranges. Like a lot of solid based miniatures they were then avalible for a few more years until slotta bases miniatures totally replaced them. It was still possible to pick them up in places in the late 1980's or second hand in the 1990's. I last bought them new at GW Brighton in about 1990 in one of thier big stock clearances, and managed to pick them up at shows in the 1990's until the advent of e-bay! 

Design wise, they seem very similar in style to Brian Froud's artwork concerning Goblins and Faeries, and is one of the reasons I really like them. Many of them look very much like 'Hoggle' from the Labyrinth Film, on which Brian Froud contributed much of the design work. However it should be remembered that Labyrinth was made in 1986, so the Goblins look was probably inspired from the artwork, as well as springing from the creative minds of the sculptors. I am not sure who sculpted them but I think it was the Perry Twins and Bryan Ansell. If anyone know better, please let me know! :)

Like a lot of Citadel sculpting they used a few basic models and then swapped over heads/weapons/etc to create different models. However I recall reading on the 'Stuff of Legends' site some time ago that this was taken to an extreme with this range with a many of the Citadel studio swapping weapons and heads in great numbers, but with little track kept of them. Consequently, apparently, it is not known the full extent of the different models in the range. Personally, I have collected many different ones, and will always pick up a resonably priced one I have'nt already got, but have not desire or illusions of collecting them all.
Here are a couple of useful links to the ones known, although I do seem to have several not on there!

and with the Fantasy Tribes codes (FTG):

I have photographed one each of all the different Gnolls/Great Goblins I own to give an idea of the variety of the range, and have given the specific FTG codes where known. Otherwise they are C series C12 and C13 Great Goblins. None of them are conversions, except where I have noted repairs.
Enjoy :)

 FTG13 Goblin Chieftain's Chariot. 
In the 'Forces of Fantasy' Book of Batallions, a set of sample armies, the Goblin entry has the Great Goblin army General, named Rug Longtooth riding a chariot. I assumed that this is him and it would be his chariot, and so painted his name in Dwarf Runes on the banner.
 Rug Longtooth, and driver.
 Standard Bearer.
 'Chicken Jorj', the Great Goblin Shaman who according the the army list is often tied to the chariot to stop him running away! 
The Chariot set is an awesome model, especally considering how old it is. Great details, good sculpting, fits together well, and a great concept having all for Great Goblins crammed onto the chariot.
 FTG15 Goblin Priest with Mace.
FTG4 Gnoll/Great Goblin Chieftian, left side and right.
 FTG5 Standard Bearer, back and front views.
 Great Goblins with bows.
The one on the left is C series,  the one on the right is listed as FTG17 Goblin Archer.
 The next four photographs are FTG1 Gnoll /Great Goblins with Pole arms. 
These 3 are equipped with farm equipment.
 Two with boat poles/polearms, and one with pole-axe.
 Two axe-men, and the one on the right with stick (quarterstaff?)
 Three more stick wielding Great Goblins.
 Two C series Great Goblins.
 FTG3 Gnoll/Great Goblins standing with Hand Weapons. 
These two are wielding a two-handed swords.
 FTG2 Gnoll/Great Goblins attacking with Hand Weapons, attacking to one side.
More FTG2 Gnoll/Great Goblins attacking with Hand Weapons, facing thier foes. The one of the right snapped at the ankles, and so is 'propped up' with bass rod . That will be hidden by flock, or painted up as a walking stick!
 The next four photographs are FTG3 Gnoll/Great Goblins standing with Hand Weapons.
 Sword and shield armed Great Goblins.
 Mace and shield, and morning star and shield.
 Hand weapons and wooden shields.
On the left is C12 Great Goblin with a mace, shield, and cloak/poncho. 
On the right is another FTG3 Great Goblin, with the two-handed sword at rest on his shoulder.
 Broken FTG3 and FTG3 Great Goblins. 
I intend repairing them, the FTG3 ones with new swords.
  FTG14 Gnorman the Gnoll (aka Gilbert the Goblin), and C12 Norman looking Great Goblin.  
 Two FTG7 Gnoll/Great Goblins with hand weapons. 
The FTG6 and FTG6 ranges are a slightly different style to the other Great Goblins in that the are usually bare chested, wearing leggings/wrappings and something that is either a kilt or a top wrapped around thier waist. In addition the style of the heads are more likely to have longer pointier ears.
 3 more showing the different types of sheilds. 
From left to right they are armed with a club, axe, and mace.
 2 more Great Goblins, both with the pointed ears.
2 Great Goblins, either calling or pointing (but not with thier pointy ears!). 
 3 more but without shields. 
Some of these style of Gnolls/Great Goblins and to me look a little Armish with thier beards!
 FTG6 Gnolls/Great Goblins Halbardiers.
I think the one on the right is the same the one on the left below, but with a miscast weapon head.
 FTG6 Gnolls/Great Goblins Halbardiers.
 2 more FTG6. These have both been repaired. 
The one on the left snapped so I drilled a hole in the hands and slotted in the pole arm to keep him armed with the weapon, albiet shorter. 
The one on the right was cast very thin and prone to bending so I just added some green stuff to strengthen it. Might re-model it a little better later.
 Two broken FTG6's .
 I want to replace the replacement weapons I did have with ones that look closer to the orginals.
 C12 Great Goblin with short sword and mace, and on the right FTG16 Great Goblin with short sword and sheild. They seem to be both variants of each other, the FTG16 one probably the first one.
 Two more C12 Great Goblins with the clothing and ears of the FTG6 and 7 ranges.
 Rear views.
 C12 Great Goblin with mace and shield. 
Centre and right are FTG12 Gnoll/Great Goblin Children. The girl is holding a rag doll. :)
 On the left I think is a FTG11 Female Gnoll/Great Goblin. 
Her face is obscured by her hair, and she does'nt seem to have a beard like some of the others. I never liked the idea of the female Goblins being bearded. Sculpting wise she's awful, but it's a fun miniature. 
The other two are crying Goblin children. Again, not sure if they are part of the Gnoll/Great Goblin range, but they are from the same era.
 FTG10 Two Drunken Gnolls/Great Goblins. 
A great pair of Great Goblins, full of character (and beer no doubt!). 
 The next three photographs are of the rear of the different body types used in the range. 
On the left the FTG1, on the right FTG2 and 3 ranges.
 The back ofthe FTG6 and 7 ranges. On the right the short sword Goblins.
 Back of Norman looking Gnolls/Great Goblins.
 Rear view of the C12 Great Goblin with cape/poncho.
On the right is a converted spare broken Chariot driver I had, now equipped with a pole arm.
 FTG9, Gnoll/Great Goblin General. 
I use him to lead with 10 strong boar cavalry unit.
He is a one piece casting.
 FTG9 Rider with hammer.
 FTG8 Gnoll/Great Goblin on Giant Boar. I have replaced with mace with one from Essex Miniatures as I boought him broken and the orginal had a mace.
  FTG9 Gnoll/Great Goblin on Giant Boar. 
I always liked the odd look of the Boars, I thuoght it gave them a more fantasy look. They do look a little like Ant Eaters to me though.
  FTG8 Gnoll/Great Goblin on Giant Boar, another one piece casting.
  FTG9 Gnoll/Great Goblin on Giant Boar.
  FTG9 Gnoll/Great Goblin on Giant Boar, again a one piece casting. 
I really like the leering look. He is Variation 3 on the CCM webiste link.
Finally a FTG9 Gnoll/Great Goblin armed with a sword, on Giant Boar.

As I have a busy few weeks ahead, my plan is to take on a fun, relaxing, and less demanding project (not that my other projects have'nt been fun!) .
 That is why I have chosen to re-visit the Gnolls/Great Goblins so I can tinker with the flesh tones and paint scheme, and get back to painting some Goblins, which I love to do, without having to get too much done or complete an army.
 The next few updates will be of stuff I have been meaning to photograph but have'nt yet, and the slower paced progress I make with the Gnolls/Great Goblins. :)