Thursday 28 May 2015

The individual Great Goblin/Gnoll project.

Now it may have escaped some peoples attention, but I like Goblins. Of all the many Goblins that have been released into the wild to cause mischief, I really like the old Great Goblin/Gnoll range produced by Citadel in the early to mid 1980's.  And I feel I have neglected my Goblins for far too long. 

Unlike later 1980's Goblins and beyond, which I still like, the Great Goblins/Gnolls have in my eyes a special charm and character about them. The Great Goblins/Gnolls seem to have more a 'civilised' looking (well most of them, but more on that later) feel to them, more akin to a Goblin version of Hobbits, with their better looking clothing and more 17th/18th Century feel. They remind me of Brian Froud's Goblins, and of course 'Hoggle' from the Labryinth (which Brian Froud worked on).
For people unaware of the range here is a useful link:

and a link to an earlier blog update of mine:

Anyway, I always liked the range and have endeavoured to buy them, both at the time when they were available, and since, including when they pop up on e-bay. However when putting them into regiments I felt that they never really got the credit for their individuality which I felt they deserved. Also I have been aware that I tend to batch paint masses of troops, rather than always take the time on miniatures. So I have decided to embark on this particular project of spending a little more time on these Goblins. I might still take on other things to do, time allowing, but will keep treating the Goblins with more time and attention.  Incidentally, I have this crazy notion of naming each of these Goblins, and painting the names on the base edges!

The idea is to base the Goblins on 30mm round bases, which are a lot bigger than the normal 20mm for Goblins. By doing this I feel that I can give each model the space to explore its individuality, and allow for a much better decorated base, something which I have wanted to do for a while on miniatures. I feel the 30mm base is good medium between being a display base and a skirmish size.  For the Boar Riders I plan to use 40mm bases and the few Trolls and Giants I'll include I'll use 50mm bases.

Here are a few of  the test models I have painted today, enjoy :)

I kind of cheated a little. I worked on four Goblin which were already painted, but I went back and re-did/updated some of the paint work and of course, re-based them. 

FTG4 Gnoll/Goblin Chieftain. 
I ended up painting him up as an older looking Goblin, with grey beard and eyebrows. He looks like he is considering things more than your average Goblin. He has a slightly muddy cloak as well.
The big plant on the base is a 'Butterbur' from the 'Noch' range, more details of which futher down in this update.
Left hand side.
I placed him slightly to one side of the base to allow the use of a plant, to seem like he is walking around it.
 FTG14 Gnorman the Gnoll aka Gilbert the Goblin.
Rear view showing rock and the tall grass.
C12 Goblin/Gnoll.
In the 1st Edition Warhammer supplement 'Forces of Fantasy' it suggests that the Great Goblins dress in dark colours. However I wanted to make them have more of a fairytale fantasy vibe, and so have gone for brighter colours. 
The flower on the base is a primrose according to the box.
Side/rear view showing more colourful Goblin clothing and a log on the base (left over from my Autumnal Wood Elf project).
 Another C12 Goblin. 
He looks fed up bless him :(
I like the poncho/cloak...
...which I painted up a little muddy. 
Like Gnorman's base, I have added some longer grass/reeds to the base.
WIP on the painting table.
I have filled the gap between the solid base on the goblins and the lip of the base with Millput. The lipped bases allow for the solding base to be lower down and not so prominant. I will on some of the bases add dips and water filled puddles.
Those of you familar with this range might have noticed I have'nt as of yet painted or based up any of the  'long eared' Great Goblins/Gnolls, such as those above.
I have a plan for these. As they are bare chested, wearing leggings and what looks like a kilt, and seem different in style from the other Great Goblins/Gnolls, I am going to paint these up with a slightly Scottish vibe, with plaid clothing and blue warpaint.
I popped over to a model shop in Worthing and picked up some little tiny model plants for bases. 
These are apparently Primroses, ideal for Goblins raiding Hobbits gardens!
 So cute and tiny. :)
 Also, I popped over to Lancing to a model train shop to buy these laser cut model plants as well.
I bought Butterbur, Hollyhocks, and Hosta's.
The Butterbur.
They come in sheets, and just pop out and then you squish them into shape. I include the 20mm square base for scale.
Modelling flock with rock bits, made from cork. 

I do have another couple of packs of model flowers in the post from e-bay. I can recommend looking at model railway plants etc as they can be suprisingly interesting. 
I still have all manner of bits, flock, and random items for which to add to bases. I even have a 28mm metal goat to add. 

Next update will either be more Goblins, or the long promised anaylsis of the High Elf army list.


  1. A wonderful project/mission, Goblin Lee, and one that I am excited to watch unfold. Of all your marvellous armies, it is your Goblins that I most admire. Everytime I visit your site I always linger over the top blog-header photo enjoying the massed ranks of goblin goodness. And the great Goblins/Gnolls are so terrific and underappreciated and too rarely seen on the Blogosphere, so it will be a great joy to see your collection as they all get special treatment and attention.

    1. Thank you, glad you still enjoy the Goblins on the header, they make me smile everytime I log on to my blog :)

      I do feel I have neglected the Goblins for too long, and intend to rectify that now. You are right, the Great Goblins/Gnolls are an underappreciated range, and not seen often.

      I think it might be because they are a very early range, and outside the late 1980's are, Also, not a lot of people collect them, especailly as they look quite different to the later Goblins ranges.

      There are a few who snuck into the back of the army photographs in the 3rd Edition 'Warhammer Armies' book though :) .

  2. Noone else coule honour those wonderful litlle fellows like you ! I'm eager to ses tour Progress on those!

    1. Thank you, I have been wanted to spend some time getting back to the Goblins, and spending some more time and care on each one. I thought the 30mm bases would help with that, allowing more detailed bases. I think there are too nice a range of miniatures to just end up in ranks and files.

  3. I absolutely agree with Private W. and Mr A. above - looking forward to seeing these little fellas get some love. Great work on the basing by the way.

    1. I really wanted to spend more time and effort on the bases, as well as taking time on the painting. Glad you liked them.
      As I mentioned above they are a great range, full of indiviual character and charm (and mischief no doubt!) and so deserve some individual time spent on them.

  4. Thanks for this post - you have just crystallised thoughts that have been lurking in my subconscious for a long time. I've been collecting a few of these critters on and off for a while, but not quite realising why I was drawn to them!

    1. Cool, glad you hear you enjoyed the post and it's given you some ideas on what to do with your Great Goblins/Gnoll.

      They are an usual and charming range of miniatures, and you're right they do have something about them . It will be good to see what how you end up painting them.