Friday 13 June 2014


When collecting Lord of the Rings miniatures, it is pretty safe to say, you can’t have too many orcs. Mostly, I use Wargames Factory plastic kits to assemble my orc forces, but I’m not above throwing in models from elsewhere if they fit the part.

A few months ago, I acquired a Games Workshop Grishnak. This guy looks exactly how I imagine LOTR orcs to look: hunched, bandy limbed, wearing a rough mixture of clothing and armour and carrying a crude weapon. He also scales well with the Wargames Factory orcs.

Soon after painting up Grishnak, I acquired another copy of the figure as part of a large trade. While I’m not above using multiple copies of a figure on a battlefield, I thought I would try my hand at a little conversion. I figured, it’s an orc, it is supposed to be ugly, so how bad can I mess it up?

My first thought was to give him a helm, but when this proved beyond my sculpting ability, I changed it to a rough head scarf. It’s not perfect, but it works well enough. The model comes with a separate left arm. I replaced this with a WF orc arm, sculpted a shoulder sleeve, and gave him a big axe. I’m mostly happy with all of this, considering how little converting I’ve done before, but I thought it would be nice to have a feature to draw the eye away from the rougher edges. Luckily, I had the perfect thing, a spider shield. The shield actually comes from a 40mm Bronze Age skeleton, but works great for 28mm.

I don’t spend a lot of effort painting orcs; it doesn’t really seem worth the effort. A lot of black, brown, grey, red and metal generally gets the job done. By confining the red to the shield, it ensures that the eye is drawn there.

I dubbed my new orc, Ugrat, and I have plans for him to lead some goblins into battle soon.

(For those who are wondering, this was all done before Freya’s appearance. I haven’t had a chance to touch a paint brush since).


  1. It looks like ugrat is left-handed!
    But Orcs don't care for details like this I guess.

  2. Nice conversion. I love converting orcs you can't really go wrong.

  3. Dude with the axe looks pretty cool.