Tony Archer
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In late ’06 I was getting ready to play War of the Ring - it looked daunting. A lot of people suggested it was much easier if the figures were painted first, so you could tell the different tribes apart. Then I read a lot of warnings about it taking a lot of time and exhorting strongly “Don’t Do It!!!

Lesson 1: Thinking about painting all the figures? Don’t!




I didn’t listen – it would have been a lot easier to just spray paint them or paint the bases but I read this article, and it was very good… “How To Paint a Load of Miniatures In Almost No Time At All”

I have little artistic talent and almost no creativity but this article gave a good step by step process for painting the Rohan elite unites in red, yellow and green.

Lesson 2: Get some guidance and some good examples to follow.

I knew once I’d started and I was warned, I’d have to finish them and that was the worst thing. I had to resist a number times finding my different tribes all falling into the red, yellow and green pattern because it worked so well the first time.

Lesson 3: Rastafarian music can be refreshing but not when it’s the only music.



Then I went through a purple phase (after all that was markedly different than the Rastafaian colors I was trying to avoid). This just about sunk me – I may as well have poured beetroot juice over the lot of them.

Lesson 4: Beetroot invades your lunch like cancer. Purple has a tendency to take over.



After finishing painting the various armies I began to read the rules only to discover that there were definite colors that the units needed to be. Aghast I saw that I had purples next to each other and too many greens so then I had to redo quite a few bases. (Fortunately most of mine were based on good photos available on this site and they’d read the rules before they’d painted their figures).

Lesson 5: Read the instruction, they may just be helpful.



Then I set them up again and noticed that three reserve figures were missing so I wrote to Fantasy Flight Games, who very kindly sent me the missing figures, which I then painted. I also found three extra unnecessary figures which I calculate adds up to three wasted hours painting.

Lesson 6: Check the completeness (or otherwise) of your figures early on.

Lastly I painted the characters and found some photo where they had painted the key color as a ring around the circumference, that looked really good. I then saw the pre-painted version you can buy and noticed they’d done the same with that. I now wished I’d done that with all my figures to make use of the terrain feel of some of them. I contemplated redoing all the bases for about three seconds and decided against it.

Lesson 7: As with life, know from early on what you want in the end.



One thing I did right (which I should’ve done with Agricola) was to play the introductory game before launching into and reading the full rules. It wasn’t as daunting as some had made it out this way.

Having now read the rules it doesn’t seem as bad as some of the post I’d read. Probably because I’d already tried and failed at getting around the escalating exceptions of the game, Paths of Glory. This was like a walk in the park compared to that.

Lesson 8: Play the introductory game first – it is not too bad and it makes it much easier to get your head around the full rules.




Now (after almost two years) I’m ready to play War of the Ring, I hope I like it…


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Brad Miller
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Very nice work...

Too bad you really have to have the expansion to play it...

[/joke]
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Well done!! Now THAT is perseverance!

Now all you need to do to make this game easier to play is add the following:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/2508499#2508499
 
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All that amazing hard work only to find out that the game isn't really all that worth it - it's fun but it has its issues.
 
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Hey, I've created a video channel! Hover over my avatar to get more info! :) - Josh -
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wytefang wrote:
All that amazing hard work only to find out that the game isn't really all that worth it - it's fun but it has its issues.


Those issues can be fixed if one is willing to put the time into addressing them.

Of course, this is my favourite game of all time for 2 players, so I'm a little biased!
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I hear that for the proper experience, you now need to redo the map in 3-D terrain. Otherwise your great figures are truly out of place.
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Billy McBoatface
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GeneSteeler wrote:
I hear that for the proper experience, you now need to redo the map in 3-D terrain.
And 1:12 scale. It won't fit on your table that way, but you can always move to a larger place, right?
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Tony Archer
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After three and a half minutes of play-time I have succumb to the other big piece of advice when it comes to this game: "You must glue 5c coins (or equivalent) to the bases of the giant Nazgul figures."

Otherwise they will do their own version of dominoes and topple your carefully laid pieces throughout the game.

Lesson 9: It is usually worth listening to the advice of those who have gone before you.
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Ricky Bayu
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Great job! It looks so much better than the collector's edition one.
 
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Joseph Kopena
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Your figures look pretty good. I hope you've enjoyed all the effort, and like the game enough for them to not sit in the box in perpetuity! I think it's a pretty good game, though hard to get on the table due to sheer complexity and time involved. In fact, a friend and I are taking advantage of the holidays later today to break this one out for what basically amounts to our annual session of War of the Ring!
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Gilad Yarnitzky
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Are you crazy? And let other people touch those amazing painted figurings? You can't play with this game copy. you need to buy a new one
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Louise Holden
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They're an awful lot better painted than mine! I like the game, despite being 0 and 6 currently, and painted figures make a lot of difference.

 
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Barry Kendall
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You guys are a hoot! Way to tease the poor guy. Expansion, indeed! 1:12 scale, good grief! 3-D terrain, oi!

Seriously, you are an ambitious soul and your perseverance is admirable. Your wry "lessons learned" are apt and your paintwork is very nice indeed.

Two suggestions . . . I know you dread the thought, but I'd really encourage you to go ahead and paint the tops of the bases in a naturalistic tone of green-brown or some such, leaving the colored ring for identification. Painting bases is easy compared to picking out detail on a sculpted mini; it won't take you that long and you'll like the effect.

If the notion is too overwhelming, how about painting the tops of the rank and file, leaving full-color identifier bases for the Leaders?

I suggest this first because of my second suggestion, which is:

If you haven't already done so, be sure to put a protective clear coat over your painted figures, something like matte acrylic varnish or acrylic matte medium art spray. All that work mustn't be rubbed off by handling!

Again, great job. Now, you can relax and enjoy the game (and you will).
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Tony Archer
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Barry Kendall wrote:
Seriously, you are an ambitious soul and your perseverance is admirable. Your wry "lessons learned" are apt and your paintwork is very nice indeed.

Two suggestions . . . I know you dread the thought, but I'd really encourage you to go ahead and paint the tops of the bases in a naturalistic tone of green-brown or some such, leaving the colored ring for identification. Painting bases is easy compared to picking out detail on a sculpted mini; it won't take you that long and you'll like the effect.

If the notion is too overwhelming, how about painting the tops of the rank and file, leaving full-color identifier bases for the Leaders?

I suggest this first because of my second suggestion, which is:

If you haven't already done so, be sure to put a protective clear coat over your painted figures, something like matte acrylic varnish or acrylic matte medium art spray. All that work mustn't be rubbed off by handling!

Again, great job. Now, you can relax and enjoy the game (and you will).


Thanks for your kind words and suggestions. I may revisit the terrain question on another far off day. You are right it wouldn't be too difficult compared to picking out the detail on the miniatures.

As to the protective coat I used a dull coat and gradually decided I would have preferred to use the shiny gloss. Someone said the dull coat looked more realistic. I think I could have lived with a bit more shine and sparkle. But once I'd done a few I couldn't bear to change half way through.

Lesson 10: Test a few and think before you lock yourself into something you may regret.


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Mike Miller
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Your miniatures look great. But you should have tried playing War of the Ring first. Then you would have realized that there will be times where you can't even fit enough figures in a given map section. Then you need to use a proxy to represent all those figs, possibly even a cardboard chit.

War of the Ring is a good game marred by some poor production decisions. FFG should have used high-quality cardboard chits instead of miniatures, like in Arkham Horror. That way there are no stacking problems and you can fit more information right where it's needed. Also, the cards are difficult to read, with tiny fonts and dark backgrounds.
 
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Corin A. Friesen
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Too bad the Gondorians look like they have pink blouses on.
 
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aPilgrim wrote:
Barry Kendall wrote:
Seriously, you are an ambitious soul and your perseverance is admirable. Your wry "lessons learned" are apt and your paintwork is very nice indeed.

Two suggestions . . . I know you dread the thought, but I'd really encourage you to go ahead and paint the tops of the bases in a naturalistic tone of green-brown or some such, leaving the colored ring for identification. Painting bases is easy compared to picking out detail on a sculpted mini; it won't take you that long and you'll like the effect.

If the notion is too overwhelming, how about painting the tops of the rank and file, leaving full-color identifier bases for the Leaders?

I suggest this first because of my second suggestion, which is:

If you haven't already done so, be sure to put a protective clear coat over your painted figures, something like matte acrylic varnish or acrylic matte medium art spray. All that work mustn't be rubbed off by handling!

Again, great job. Now, you can relax and enjoy the game (and you will).


Thanks for your kind words and suggestions. I may revisit the terrain question on another far off day. You are right it wouldn't be too difficult compared to picking out the detail on the miniatures.

As to the protective coat I used a dull coat and gradually decided I would have preferred to use the shiny gloss. Someone said the dull coat looked more realistic. I think I could have lived with a bit more shine and sparkle. But once I'd done a few I couldn't bear to change half way through.

Lesson 10: Test a few and think before you lock yourself into something you may regret.




You can still spray glossy coat over dull coat to achieve the glossy finish if that's what you want.
Just make sure you shake the can very well and spray it sparsely from about 12" from the miniature.
Try one to test it first.
 
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Ingo Ahrens
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Congrats! It's well worth it, imho. But... two years really? It took me not a half, and I'm no experienced minipainter at all... otoh we don't have kids, which might have helped timewise
 
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CthIngo wrote:
Congrats! It's well worth it, imho. But... two years really? It took me not a half, and I'm no experienced minipainter at all... otoh we don't have kids, which might have helped timewise


That was approximately one night a week painting while simultaneously juggling four children...laugh
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aPilgrim wrote:

Then I (...) noticed that three reserve figures were missing (...). I also found three extra unnecessary figures (...).


 
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