Friday, May 10, 2024

"A New Power is Rising!"

The Lord of the Rings films depicted the most epic fantasy battles that have ever (and will ever) appear on screen. I wanted to capture a fraction of that with my Uruk-hai army– The White Hand of Saruman.


The Two Towers range offered a much wider variety of Uruk-hai armed with pikes, crossbows, and bombs, and it added leaders and banner bearers into the mix. 



The leader, of course, is Saruman the White, and I went with the model from the Escape from Orthanc metal box set. He had a nice pose, and came with the Palantir. I painted the Palantir's base to look like a marble slab.



Most of my Uruk-hai are from the Two Towers starter box. These pikemen had a special rule that allowed them to fight through models in front of them. They also have some of the flimsiest weapons ever designed. I think I find a new pike snapped in half every time I look in their foam tray. I had made repairs on the broken ones years ago, but as I was setting up these photos, I found another one broken, despite being in the same tray, unmoved since the last time I touched them.



I had gotten painting the Uruk-hai down to a science: Prime black, drybrush the metal, wash with brown ink, then pick out the skin, hair, leather clothes and straps, and weapon shafts. I used an assembly line process to paint them in batches.



I didn't do a lot of customization other than adding a skull to the top of each banner.



At first, I thought the model on the far right was Lurtz, but it's just a generic leader form the command pack.



To paint the hand prints on the models, I painted the hand with Screaming Skull (called Bleached Bone at the time), and then added some highlights with white.



I think the metal crossbowmen are some of my favorite models in the army. I like the variety of poses, and the reloading figures.



I added a Mordor Siege Bow from the Siege of Gondor range. I don't know where the actual crew are; that's a standard orc, and another leader. The leader is Gorbag from the Gorbag and Shagrat blister pack. The original model was holding Frodo's mithril shirt, but I swapped it for a shield so I could use him as an Uruk-hai captain.



Last up are the Berserkers. The ones with the torches are from the plastic Uruk-hai Siege Troops box. They came with bombs and ladders for breaching castle walls.



The others are from the metal blister pack. 



I added more white hand prints all over them, and blood running down from their helmets.



I had dreams of covering my floor with thousands of Uruk-hai, but this was about as far as I got. It's still a respectable force, and and army that I'm really proud of!


"To war!"


'Til next time!


  1. A lovely collection! I could hear the score as soon as I read the title! I do have quite a few converted Captains, they do lend themselves to it. But I don't think I have one based on Shagrat as of yet...

    1. Thank you! Shagrat was a weird model, because he represents one particular moment in the story, so it didn't seem right to have an orc just carrying around a mithril shirt for no reason, hence the change. Plus, I just looked in the RotK rulebook, and Shagrat had the option to be equipped with a shield, so maybe I intended to use him as Shagrat with a shield? (It's been a while.)


All comments are moderated. Any comments containing links will not be approved and will be marked as spam.