Reviewing the Grenadier AD&D range (which got me hooked on miniatures lo these many years ago) I am struck by the fact that there just aren’t many decent hireling miniatures in production now. Greg Gillespie posted some pics of some mostly suitable plastic WotC miniatures but they just don’t hold a candle to the Grenadier stuff. Kenzer & Co. had two sort of whimsical sets — one of a pack ape and pixie lantern bearer; the other a scroll caddy and halfling torchbearer:
I will post the scroll caddy when I get him painted. The above are from a site that used to sell them. As far as I can tell these are out of “print”. So what other options are left?
I see Otherworld has announced a line, which is nice — I love their stuff, but so far I haven’t been able to swallow the prices, especially while I have so much unpainted lead waiting. And seriously — the mule first? An unladen mule? Sheesh. Reaper has a couple suitable figures too:
A Paladin in Citadel has a nice post which distinguishes among hirelings, henchmen, and followers. Perhaps because I never really read the 2e books closely, I tended to think of hirelings as possibly skilled but essentially non-combatant (like the Grenadier set above), henchmen as classed characters, and followers as possibly anything (didn’t Rangers and Druid attract woodland creatures in 1e?).
Anyway, meet Sifl, a pixie my C&C party rescued from a warren of wereats and who had promised to serve us for one month and a one day (which we might extend by either getting him some of the “golden honey” produced by the giant bees in the woods of the Mad Druid (he’ll add a year and a day for that) or who could become a henchman to our party if we revenge him against the evil elves of Dark Wood, who sold him to a wizard, which is how he ended up in a cage in a wererat warren:
This is the Kenzer pixie above. We have mostly had him carrying our lantern, since Torchy’s unfortunate end, although his Sleep and Confusion spells have been really helpful when he chooses to cast them.
Our party also has a ranger who has been with us from almost the be beginning of our campaign (Theoden), and we just lost a fighter (Nordi Jordi); a cleric (Crassus) has previously offered to join us if we’ll help him recover a holy item but we’ll need to cross a peryton-infested mountain range just ot reach the dungeon it lies in, so we’ve been putting that off:
You’ll recognize the cleric as the paladin figure from the Gygax dungeoneer set. Nordi was a GW LotR figure, and Theoden is an old GW figure.
While I’m on the topic of the C&C game, here is our party:
Left to right, Dagodart Stav, my illusionist; Drendel the paladin, and Trogar the dwarf fighter. You can just see the base of a fourth figure. That was an elf druid whose name I can’t ever remember (Kohlrabi?). He was edited out Soviet-style because his player has stopped showing up. Speaking of bases I really need to pick a style and stick with it. Lately I’ve been going with featureless black since it looks appropriate anywhere. The grassy bases are a holdover from war games painting. The illusionist’s base was how I thought I might paint dungeon adventurer’s bases but it is not all that conducive to town and country. Anyway The illusionist is Grenadier “Dragon Lords” figure (they deleted the awesome AD&D wizards & clerics box after losing the AD&D license and released a nice set including this guy); the paladin is a GW knight, and the dwarf is a Ral Partha AD&D figure.