Friday, 1 April 2011

The Three Lives of Gandalf the Grey

Unlike a Cat with 9 Lives, in the Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle Game, Gandalf the Grey only has 3 wounds before he is ignominiously removed from play.

I don't like book keeping. Sure as fate I'll forget to write something down and then there will be the inevitable debate about is he dead or isn't he and so on.

I then remembered a clever idea that Barry Hilton of "Republic to Empire" rules fame used in the re-fight of the Battle of Waterloo that took place in Kirriemuir a few years back. As is well documented elsewhere Old Boney was not in the best of health on that day and to reflect the varying states of Napoleon's health at different times of the battle, Barry used a different model for him, so when the Emperor was in tip top shape, he was depicted in full uniform atop his charger and looking every inch L'Empereur de Francais, whereas when the gips were getting him down, the model used had the Emperor, with head in hands, despairing. Okay Barry may not have thought of the idea first but he was the first peson that I saw using this method.

I had a few Gandalf models lying about, since he appeared in quite a few of the boxed sets released by GW, when the first Lord of the Rings film came out (and of course like the fanboy I am I got them all). So plagiarising Barry's idea I came up with the following to represent Gandalf in his various states of healthiness: -

Gandalf is feeling good. Still got his hat on so that means he has 3 wounds left.

Hat has gone but still wielding the beat stick Glamdring, so that means he has 2 wounds left.

Uh Oh, he's reduced to pointing his staff in a threatening manner, not looking good for old Gandalf Greyhame with only 1 wound left.

Using the different models makes it a lot easier for both me and my opponent to know the state of play, although it doesn't get round the problem of still having to keep a note of how many might points he has left but at least it's one thing less to keep a note of.

I've done the same for Saruman, and if I ever get round to it, I have enough models to do the same for Aragorn, Boromir and the other Fellowship characters.

Mind you it would help if I actually played SBG once in a while.........


  1. Good painting and a damn good idea, as you said and it happens to us all we do not game enough.

  2. They are cracking!!! Very well painted...very nice indeed :-D

  3. Thanks Guys. And you are right Fran, we gamers need to game a lot more!!!!