Goblins from Goblin-town

With a name like that, readers would be forgiven for assuming that this post was part of a series, possibly followed by “Hobbits from Hobbiton” and maybe preceded by “Free-peoples from Freepeopletown”, but it isn’t.

The possibility of playing some Middle-earth Strategy Battle Game: Battle Companies came up a couple of years ago, but has yet to actually happen, for all sorts of uninteresting reasons. At the time I decided to pick up a set of Goblin Warriors – the creepy, pinkish, diseased and deformed troglodytic little guys from “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”, rather than the vicious little armoured guys from The Lord of the Rings movies – because I liked their C.H.U.D. vibe.

To be honest, the Goblin-town faction looks pretty limited compared to the various other super-badass companies available. I haven’t ever played any of the Middle-earth games, but I have seen the movies. I struggle to imagine even a large number of these sickly, almost naked cowards being much of an obstacle to WETA Workshop powered, cartwheeling, infinite arrow firing elves and the like, but I wanted to paint these little guys, so that’s what I planned, but did nothing about it apart from assemble, spray and base them.


Then last week I saw a really nice take on 40k “Ur-Ghuls” by asslessman on Leadplague. I was immediately impressed. Seeing as the Ur-ghuls (essentially a troglodyte or ghoul in spaaace) looked so nice and were, according to asslessman, painted very rapidly using untaxing techniques, I immediately told him that I wanted to copy his scheme on these models (and some others) and asked him to share, which he kindly did. I had varied the approach slightly by the time I got my goblins done, but the inspiration is all from him.


There are 36 goblins in the box, two each of 18 sculpts. The goblin king (who I plan to add to these) is also accompanied by two leader goblins, the guy with the whip and the extra tiny little guy (above). I traded away the duplicate goblins, because 20 of these is all that I want and because with the two leaders they make twenty individual sculpts, which is fun.

The entire painting process was pretty painless, apart for this horrific jingle going around in my head for the duration. Substitute “goblin” for “bargain” and you will see what I mean.

That’s pretty much the end of the Goblin-town goblin project, apart from the Goblin King. The paint jobs are a little imperfect to be honest, but getting twenty of them done during a working week along with all of the usual boring grown up stuff that has to be done is a pretty good return on time spent I think.

I have more plans for this painting technique too, but I’ll talk about that, then. Thanks for looking!


22 Responses

  1. Excellent looking horse, and really lovely results. I do hope to copy Asslessman’s scheme 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    • Asslessman nailed a very good technique with this. It certainly suits how I want to paint. I’m excited about trying the scheme out on other figures, ones with more surface detail>

      Thanks for the feedback Axiom!


  2. Oh, I never considered this kind of scheme, and I have to admit it works much better than the original colours. I’m no fan of the design of these (at least as Goblins; I think they make excellent post-apoc rad mutants), but I love your take on them.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m not really that precious about Tolkien, it never grabbed me by the guts like say Star Wars did when I was a kid, so I am fairly indifferent about how things like these goblins were portrayed in the movies. As long as the movie is a well told story, then I don’t mind… which i8s where this analogy falls down somewhat.

      Like you Suber, I always wanted the figs to use as undercity troglodytes or wasteland mutants. I reckon that they will serve multiple purposes painted as they are.

      Thanks for the feedback!


  3. I love the morlock-style take on these, they look great! Also that Bargaintown jingle is a killer.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Ah Bargaintown… I have never visited, and with the grace of science, I never will. That jingle tells me everything I need to know… anti-catnip.

      Morlocks were definitely in mind. I actually watched “I Am Legend” (2007) with the directors cut ending etc while I was painting them and despite the well documented, kind of dodgy CG, I really did enjoy the bits with the Darkseekers. They display pretty much everything I expect from a ghoul (rather than a zombie) in quite a convincing way, apart from the rubbery CG in places.

      The altered cut makes the movie fit better with the original book, which I absolutely loved when I read it, so it’s all win. Recommended, to a zom-bro like you Mikko.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I didn’t know there was an altered cut, where can you find it? I remember the CGI being a bit off-putting when viewing the original cut, but I’m much better at looking past it nowadays.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I watched it on a streaming service Mikko, but I can’t remember which one, sorry.

          I enjoyed it far more than I expected I would, and it is definitely how I imagine ghouls since.

          Definitely worth watching.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Your paint job looks fantastic! They tie together as a unit really well, with their distinctive poses giving them individuality.

    I feel like these models play up the goblins’ sickliness to almost Nurgley levels, which is a bit odd. I get that they’re supposed to be a bit unhealthy, but they almost look like they’re rotting…

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks Al!

      The goblins in the movie definitely push into ghoul and zombie territory, and I really don’t know what the science they were thinking when they decided to make the Goblin King the same size as a troll.

      The idea of the Goblin Town goblins being inbred and/or having some sort of disease that has become the norm in their relatively small society is pleasingly creepy though. It reminds me of disturbing photos of some isolated tribe that I saw in an encyclopaedia as a kid, where what appeared to be every member of the tribe had elephantiasis, or something like that. Horrible and disturbingly real, it also fits with the sort of creepy horror that things like “The Hills Have Eyes” generates.

      As troglodytes, it absolutely fits with the Goblin Town goblin concept, but in my obsessive urge to categorise my “monsters”, I feel like it does veer too far into ghoul territory visually.

      Thanks for the comment as always Al!


  5. Very cool & well worth the effort on this underrated little set – nice idea to adapt JB’s scheme too! Works well mate 👍

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Nice work! And it’s deeply pleasing to read that there’s some Middle-earthSBMG plans for these, rather than them just being random mooks in the Big Tent of your Frostgrave project.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks Curis!
      I like the idea of having paired Good and Evil forces for Middle-earth games. I’m pretty sure that I will go for wood elves, probably the figs from the Hobbit movies, rather than the LotR versions.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Really unique take on them. Just a really cool “almost zombies” going on.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Definitely cannibalistic, humanoid underground dwellers… definitely encroaching on almost dead ghoul territory.

      As I mentioned above, the movie skin tone looks good too I think. It was the smarter, not harder painting approach that Asslessman used plus another buddy already painting his ghouls in that pinkish colour that that tipped the balance.

      When the miniatures based on a movie design and associated colour scheme colour scheme, I do like that I have something at least a little different with these.

      Thanks for the feedback Will!


  8. I can’t believe I just read a C.H.U.D. reference – saw that in theater in the mid- 80’s! Seriously nice work and I am impressed with your take on these goblins, uniquely awesome!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha, I’m glad that the C.H.U.D. mention got a giggle, Mark 🙂
      C.H.U.D was the VHS cover in the video rental place that I always wanted to see, but never managed until about 2010 or so. I can’t say that it lived up to several decades of anticipation, but it definitely contributed to how much entertainment I get out of acronyms 😀

      And y’know, if I put those down on a table opposite you and if you said “What are they?” and I said “CHUD”, there would be no doubt in anybody’s mind.

      Thanks for the feedback Mark!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. […] Goblins from Goblin-town […]


  10. That is a very good colour scheme for these guys, highlighting once again their versatility. I’m looking forward to seeing where and in what guise they will make an appearance in future!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Subedai!

      As mentioned, I took a method used by another and went with that, modifying it to suit my own approach, so much credit goes there.
      I’m pleased with how they worked out, and I even got to use them in game last week, which was great.

      Liked by 1 person

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