Wednesday 7 September 2016

Asgard Fantasy Monsters FM35 Hill Troll v1

And now for a bit of detective work. I am a collector of Asgard miniatures, and one of the difficulties is that for some figures in the Fantasy Monster (FM) range, there are no photographs or line drawings to show what the figures are supposed to look like - for example, FM18a Secrom, FM97 Sea Dragon, FM101 Dragonnewt (the latter may well be a re-listed FM76 Dragon-newt), and FM35 Hill Troll. I thought I'd found the FM35 Hill Troll last year - Viking Forge have the rights to a lot of the old Asgard mini's, and they have a Hill Troll on their site which I thought was the original Asgard FM35 Hill Troll, and which I posted here. However, I started to have my doubts - it looked too crisp for an Asgard figure, which were notoriously crudely sculpted, and Viking Forge are well known for replacing some of the Asgard line with new figures. In the absence of a photo or line drawing of the original FM35 Hill Troll - could the one I posted be a new variant? The answer came when I bought this chappie in a joblot, which included a lot of Asgard figures. There are no marking on the base, and no-one was able to identify it, not even the good folks at Lost Minis. Eventually the figure was extracted from the Lead Mountain, and it was only when I started prepping and priming it for painting that I started to think, "this has got to be an Asgard mini". It has all of the trademarks of an Asgard - a base that wasn't big enough to keep the figure stable, and really crude sculpting, especially on the muscle definition and the fingers - and in fact, the figure it most reminded me of was the Asgard FM19 Storm Giant, and when I checked I think it was pretty obvious that they were by the same sculptor. With that in mind - I think I can safely present Asgard FM35 Hill Troll v1. When I got the figure, it had been broken off at the ankles - superglue and Milliput to the rescue - and was missing a weapon, as something had been snapped off from its right hand, so I replaced it with a cocktail stick, which was painted up to resemble a spear. As with all early minis, the trick is to keep it simple - so a basic paint job, Army Painter soft tone on that, and then lots and lots of dry brushing to bring out the detail, which is actually pretty good around the face and the animal skin - not so great on the arms and hands. As with a lot of the bigger Asgard figures, it needed a base to keep it stable, and the base is just sand and flock. I'm pleased with the way this turned out, though I am not sure it will see too much table top time - I have better Hill Troll figures, though he may make an occasional appearance to fill up the numbers.

What does everyone else think? Is he the missing FM35 Hill Troll or not?