Mars Miniatures

Mars Miniatures

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Orcs and the Battle Of Balin's Tomb Part 1

Its been a long time coming and now finally Im happy to show off some painted Orcs on this blog.  These are from Reaper, but I do have some vintage Citadel being prepped for painting.  I also plan on making some purchases from RalPartha Europe for Kev Adams Orcs and Gobbos, Harlequins from Black Tree, and more...  So the iron fist of the Orc will flame the fires of industry in our little Moria Project and will be sure to cause some Dwarven misery in the near future.  In this post we also show some story fluff and the initial defensive setup of the Dwarves as they struggle to defend the Chamber Of Mazarbul or Balin's Tomb as it is also known (but at this point, we still dont really know if Balin is dead, do we?  Perhaps he is just mostly dead?)

The leader of this band of ruthless Orcs is a Wraith with a sword of blue magickal fire.
 H.Boy: What's his name?
T. Manning: His name is Johann Krauss.

H.Boy: Johann Krauss? Sounds German.
T. Manning: He's the top man in...
A. Sapien: Ectoplasmic.
T. Manning: Yes, thank you. Ectoplasmic research.  Comes highly recommended by our European liaison.  "Liaison."  I love that word, don't you?  It's so hoity toity.
H.Boy: I don't like Germans
T. Manning: No fingerprints.
A. Sapien: Here he comes. 
H.Boy: Germans make me nervous.
T. Manning: No photo. Dossier says, and I translate, "He has a nice open face."

These 5 Orcs are massive brutes and the fella in the center is Gragg the Elf-Slayer.
Readers of this blog might know there are indeed some Elves in Moria who might have a problem with this monster.

More Orcs with their banners, drums, and horns.  And some pointy arrows!

These Orcs look pretty hungry.  Not a good thing, especially if you get caught by them.

Hungry Orc:  I'm starving. We ain't had nothing but maggoty bread for three stinking days.
Grishnak:  Yeah! Why can't we have some meat?!  What about them? They're fresh.
Ugluk:  They are not for eating.
Grishnak:  What about their legs? They don't need those.  They look tasty!

So those are the new additions!
Now on to more fluff and the disposition of the Dwarven forces.
When last we left you, Gimli and friends enter the mysterious glowing room...

A quiet solemnity falls over the grieving Dwarves as they enter the Chamber Of Mazarbul.  It is also known as the Chamber of Records.  In the center is a tomb.  Somewhere high above, light shines down upon the sarcophagus which reads "Here lies Balin, Son of Fundin, Lord of Moria"

Another view of the room where you can see the northward facing doors.

One dwarf picks up a book, which seems to be a record of the colony.
"Drums in the deep.  Bar the doors.  They are coming..." (You know the rest!)
It is grim reading, and a terrible end.  But wait...

Pickles the dwarf has found a small parchment.  "Thats not the end of the story!"
Pickles:  "Hmm.  Says here that Balin, son of Fundin, Lord of Moria...  has been raised from the dead by Ekalim the Mad.  What few dwarves survived have turned to the worship of Nergal and Khorn!  They have fallen back towards a secret fortress in the Underdeeps below"
Gimli:  "Balin lives!  Not sure who these Nergal and Khorn are, they sound friendly enough (doh!) but at least we know some of our kin are here.  We must find them!  Where is this secret fortress?"
Pickles:  "Ummm... sorry Gimli, the directions and map are on another page.  Look, theres hundreds of pages littered all over the floors here.  If it is still here, I will find it!"

At that moment, Captain Drogo, rushes in.
Drogo:  "Orcs have been spotted!  They are massing in the central hallways to the east!  If they take the crossroads we will be cut off from the rest of the colony!"
The Dwarf commanders decide to split their forces and send half to secure the crossroads, and half to remain here in the Chamber to guard Pickles as he searches for the map of the secret fortress.
Baron Hawk, Capt Drogo and his thirty dwarves, 4 of the Dwarf Lords, and a few others head out to the crossroads.  Hodor and his mercenaries are stationed between the crossroads and the Chamber and given orders to come to the rescue of whichever force needs help the most.
Gimli:  What about west?  We should send a few scouts to make sure we arent surrounded!

Overview of the western approach to the Chamber.  There is some flooded floors on the westernmost approach (bottom of the screen).  The left side of the Chamber is facing north and has some doors.  The right side is facing South and has an open doorway and stairs.

Gloin, Gimli's dad, takes some heavily armored dwarves to the south-western side and finds a rise that looks over the western approach.

Meanwhile, Grombrindal the White Dwarf, takes a few brave dwarves to the North-west... right to the edge of the flooded caverns.  If any enemies approach, they should hear a splash or two. 

The 4 remaining Dwarf Lords of Legend guard the Northern doors.

Right inside the Chamber itself looking at the Northern doors is Gimli and his personal guard

And the final defense of Pickles, is led by Nindalf the Wizard and 2 particularly grumpy looking Dwarves.

So there you have the setup.  Will Baron Hawk and Captain Drogo secure the crossroads?  Will Pickles find the map in time, before they are overrun by greenskins?  Will Hodor the mercenary hold the line or run for the hills?  Tune in next post to find out!  (Which should be in a day or two!)