Thursday, 19 May 2016

The Return to Naggaroth

I have a confession to make...

...I don't really like the later 1980's Dark Elves.
I have never really been too happy with the C-series Citadel Dark Elves from 1985/6 as I don't like the sculpting, and next to Jes Goodwin's Elves they seemed patchy in quality, and just did'nt seem as good.

As for the Marauder Dark Elf range, I have a really never liked them. To me they were 'fat' Elves with roundish faces and big noses were not what I envisioned of a noble, capricious, and waspish evil looking Dark Elf. That they were larger than their Citadel counterparts, and that they never ranked up very easily with each other or Citadel Dark Elves did'nt help. The sculpting details were better, but I never liked the overall look of them. Bad 1980's hair too!
And don't get me get me started on the 1990's and onwards Dark Elves!

Why re-do my army? Well I have always preferred the Dark Elven artwork from the 2nd Edition of Warhammer, the Edition I started with. The look of the Dark Elves was more uniform and understated, and looked more evil without being over the top. The few 1st/2nd Edition Dark Elves I already had I really quite liked, and when I assembled my 3rd Edition Dark Army, I tried to keep the later C-series, and Marauder Miniatures to a minimum.

Recently I wanted to return to my Dark Elf army, but dreaded painting the Marauder Miniautres and so thought why not start the army again? This time with the early C-series solid based Dark Elves. I already had the compulsory 40 Warriors from the list, made up of Mengil Manhides regiment of Renown. I also had a few random warriors. So, as I have recently received my bonus from work, I would search e-bay for more.

In the Dark Elf army list in the Warhammer Armies book you require quite a lot of compulsory troops. You need 40 Warriors, 20 Crossbowmen, and 10 Witch Elves, meaning you have to have 70 miniatures even before you take any other options. I had about 44 solid based miniatures, and wanted to also include about 10 Shadows (Scouts) in the army. So I needed about 36 models, plus any odds and ends I wanted. No mean feat trying to collect them over 30 after they had been replaced!

Well, over the last 2 to 3 months I have done this, and a little more. I have collected the basis for an army, consisting of one Lord on a Dragon (I already owned the Dragon), 40 Warriors (which I already owned also), 20 Crossbowmen, 10 Witch Elves, 10 Shadow Socuts, 3 Mages, 10 Cold One Riders (well I had one already, but more on that later), two Ral Partha Gargoyles to use as Harpies, and a mounted Spectre. In all I think that the additions to the army cost me about £150.

So here is my 'new' very old Dark Elf army, all pre-slotta, with one exception. I intend to link all my do all the Dark Elf bases winter, with snow. This is part of my larger Elven plan, likning all the armies togather with a theme. I have a lot of Elves left after painting 3,000 point Wood Elf army. So I intend to work from the seasons. My Wood Elves are already Autumnal, my Dark Elves will be Winter based, my Sea Elves (using the High Elf list) will be based reminiscent of Spring (for the Spring Tides, as befitting Sea Elves), and the High Elves will be Summer, galloping through Summer Meadows.

As an aside, this is the start of me re-organising and sorting out the armies from the Warhammer Armies book. As I have noted before, I have (at least!) one of each of the main armies in the book, consisting of about 99% 1980's (Oldhammer era 1979-1992) miniatures. A small mail order to Wargames Foundry for some of their ex-Citadel ranges, will be filling in gaps in the Human armies (including my 3rd Edition Norse Army, which I have added to the Warhammer Armies grouping as well).

Enjoy :)

The pre-slotta C 09 Dark Elf range, sculpted by the Perry Twins.
A better look at the ranges can be found here:

Pre-Slotta Dark Elf army.
I am currently re-writing the army list for them. In fact I am currently re-writing all of the army lists for all of the armies in the Warhammer Armies book.
Dragon with Army General Rider.
This is the Dragon which was formally in my Bretonnian army, and painted gold. I have paint stripped him and will paint him, and the rider, based on the wonderful Rodney Mattews artwork below.
The Dragon is part of the Minifigs Aureola Rococo range. The Rider is a C 21Cold One rider, for which I will green stuff a saddle for.
'The Dragon Lord', by Rodney Matthews. 
This was also used for Citadel's Eternal Champion box set, and is of course Elric.

The one on the left is the 'Witch King'.
C21 Mounted Wizard.
Two Ral Partha Gargoyles, which I intend to use as stand-Harpies. I still have the scantily clad/naked Spyglass ones from the other Dark Elf Army, but they seem too large for the C Series pre-slotta Dark Elves.
Mounted Spectre, from the C21 Fantasy Cavalry range.

Ten C21 Cold One Riders.
I am technically one sort, but added a pre-slotta Lizardman to be a Standard Bearer as bit of difference. Perhaps he can be a helper in catching and helping the Dark Elves with their Cold One mounts?
I might paint the Cold One's a muted grey colour. 
Side view.
Forty Warriors.
These are the first Edition of the Regiment of Renown RR4 Mengil Manhide' Dark Elf Company.
I did'nt include the later slotta Champion Ean Hawkbane as he did'nt really seem to fit.
Command Group.
Ten Witch Elves.
I'm not really that fussed with Witch Elves as a unit. They don't go into Frenzy very often, and have a limited range of weapon options. They are however a compulsaory troop choice, and are embelmatic of the Dark Elves.
As befitting Dark Elves the range as a whole has a good balance of male-female troopers, as does the composition of my army, excluding the Mengil Manhides whose ordinary trooper miniature is male. I don't see them as matriarchal like the D&D Drow, but just more gender equal than the other Elves and races.
One good thing about the Witch Elves is that you can give them posioned attacks (+1 strength to living creatures) and one unit can have crossbows. This means that they can shoot strength 5 shots, which can be a nasty suprise! I intend to give the leader a Hail of Doom arrow (bolt) too. :) 
Crossbowmen (and women).
The leader is the only slotta based Dark Elf in the army. He seemed to fit with the rest of the range, and is seperate from the C09 Series being the Evil Dark Elf Captain from the BC2 Monster Starter Box from 1985.
The other crossbow unit.
The unit leader is a broken Mengil Manhide miniature, repaired using a plastic sword fron the 1980's Skeleton Horde sprue.
Shadows (Dark Elf Scouts).
As is often with the vagaries of e-bay you one can end up with a lot of one particular sculpt when buying batches of miniatures or random bargins.
I ended up with ten of this sculpt, and so it would make sense to have them as my scout company. I will split them into two units of five.
The early C09 sculpts were in design and background slighly different from the later Dark Elves which followed. These Dark Elves still used bows as well as crossbows, and were (in 1st Edition) more likely to live in dark, dank, forests. I like to think of this range as the Dark Elves just post the Elven Civil war, still having ascpects of High Elven culture (such as the bows, and Elven looking helmets and shields).
I count any Dark Elves with these bows as having crossbows for ease of collecting, and to give a slightly different feel to the army.

 The next update might be on some painting of the Dark Elves. I have made a start, but due to working lots of overtime this week, I did'nt get very far. I am also, as mentioned above, sorting out my armies and re-writing army lists, and so there may be some photogrpahs of WIP armies.


  1. Very cool mate, while I'm the opposite of yourself by loving the c09 slottas and not keen on the pre-slottas I'm looking forward to seeing you progress with this wee project.

    1. Thank you Chico. I can see why people like the slotta Elves, but I just prefer the style and look of the old pre-slotta's.
      I am going to go for the same dark look I did with the old army, but this time add a bit more colour here and there, and some 'gothy' details, such as stripey leggings and dyed hair for the female Dark Elves.

  2. I think I painted up a few of these guys a few years back for a commission. I wasn't sure if they were Ral-partha or Citadel minis until now :)

    I like the Marauder range of Dark Elves, but only a few of the pre-slotta ones. I found the detail a bit soft on some of them.

    I can't get over the fact that you've got an army for each listing in the Armies book! Amazing and a scary thought to paint them all too :)


    1. They are'nt to everyone's taste, but I like them. You're right, they do look similar to Ral Partha miniatures. That was one of the reasons I decided to use the Ral Partha Gargoyles with them.

      I will be doing a blog update with all of the armies for each of the main armies in the Warhammer Armies book either next week or the week after.

      Yes, it's a scary thought to paint them all. The Skaven, Undead, Chaos, Slann, and Wood Elves and all done. A lot of the other armies are mostly painted or just need tinkering with. I will assemble a sample 3,000 point army for each list. :)

  3. I love this project. Well done for having the patience to collect them all. I just got a few Meghil's preslottas and a few other bits. I am so tempted to get more (esp Meghil hmself). Seeing this is not helping my resistance lol

    1. Thank you.
      Go on,succumb to temptation and buy some more Meghil's. They are nice miniatures and it would be good to see how you paint them. It did'nt take me very long to collect them. :)

  4. Amazing, Goblin Lee!! I can't wait to see this army when it is finished! Pre-slotta is the way - I find myself leaning more and more to that era as well.

    1. Thank you private w. I will making a start on this army in about a week or so. I am just sorting out all of the other armies for this weeks blog update.

      I am glad you're liking the pre-slotta miniatures. They are often overlooked because of the (quite right) focus on some of the lovely slotta based miniatures from 1984 onwards.

      I am of the opinion that there are some really nice miniatures in the various ranges. The Dark Elves are elegant, and the Dwarves and of course Goblins are full of charm and character.

      The only problem is that some sculpts in some ranges are not always as good as later slotta ones. Also that some ranges might look a little smaller in scale next to slotta based miniautres, such as some of the Chaos Warriors. But often this is'nt too much of a problem.

      Have fun looking though the pre-slotta ranges. I really do love the your 'Battle for the Pass'from the 2nd Edition Warhammer artwork. I am currently sorting out Fantasy Tribes Dwarves and (long-eared) Goblins so I can try a version of it. :)

  5. Love the minfigs Dragon - have one of my own for my RP high elf army!
    I am still using Fantasy Tribes and C-series Hobgoblins in my Kings of War (it's a fun game) armies.

    1. Thank you, it'sa nice old Dragon.
      I took a look at your blog and it's good to see some old Hobgoblins and Golgfag's Ogre's still in use.

    2. The first figures I bought were 3 FT Hobgoblins from a shop in Plymouth. Loved them even since - loads more character than the newer cartoonish GW brought out.
      Got lots of the Ral Partha Orcs too! From the Regiments of Renown Oreon's wood elves (who have fought Mengil's dark elves in their time) and Golgfag's other regiment ....