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"Not much love for hobbit armies" Topic

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Col Durnford Supporting Member of TMP06 Sep 2022 12:56 p.m. PST

In a recent poll hobbits came In rather low.

Do you have a hobbit force in your collection?

Why do you have it?

Tell us about your troops.

Since I'm asking these questions, I'll go first.

I do have a small hobbit force. I started as an ACW/WWII gamer and was attracted by D&D. As a result I picked up some hobbits for my players. The collection grew during the late 70's thru the 80's.

It took until last year before I finally got around to painting them all up.

I have 1 mounted leader accompanied by a two figures color party from the old Heritage's LOTR set.

There are 5 other units.

6 archer scouts
12 with spear and shield
12 with sword (and I'll claim sling)
12 militia with farm implements.
12 sitting around a table eating (Heritage Bilbo's birthday party set).
There are a few other random figures including hobbit children playing.

Choctaw06 Sep 2022 2:10 p.m. PST

He who would pun would pick your pocket. :)

Zephyr106 Sep 2022 2:29 p.m. PST

"Do you have a hobbit force in your collection?"

I would, but they don't exactly fit into Imperial Stormtrooper armor… ;-)

Father of Cats Supporting Member of TMP06 Sep 2022 2:46 p.m. PST

As an army, they just come up short.

djbthesecond06 Sep 2022 3:06 p.m. PST

Photos, or it didn't happen :-)

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP06 Sep 2022 3:59 p.m. PST

I make it 148 28mm (scale, not figure size) and mostly old GW. My tendency is to use Dragon Rampant rules and OHW scenario generation, so think 4 units of bows, 2 of horse (well pony, actually) archers, 2 of levies and 2 treant "monsters." But given they're all individually based and about 80% + missile armed, easy enough to produce a swarm of skirmisher units if the scenario calls for such.

Stryderg06 Sep 2022 4:34 p.m. PST

I wouldn't think Hobbits would make a viable army, what with having to sneak everyone around the other army to get the first back-stab attack in.

SBminisguy06 Sep 2022 4:42 p.m. PST

I have Hobbits as attachments to other armies. For example, in the Dux Arda LOTR fan-mod for Dux Britanniarum, the Men of Bree can have Hobbit skirmishers and Archers in support. This tracks from JRRT's works, when described how some Hobbit archers/skirmishers supported Arnor in the war against the Witch King of Angmar. The figures are Copplestone and Mirliton.

HMS Exeter06 Sep 2022 5:41 p.m. PST

I have a Hobbit HotT army. Mostly Hordes. Loses almost always, but they're hard to finish off.

Korvessa06 Sep 2022 6:00 p.m. PST

A friend has a Hobbit army (based on Warhammer Night
Goblins) it's pretty good

jgawne06 Sep 2022 7:30 p.m. PST

I may be wrong, but I seem to recall that "Hobbits" are claimed as IP of the Tolkein Estate, and to actually market something as "Hobbits" you have to pay them a fee. Something TSR ran afoul of in the 70's, and had to change everything to "Halflings". This may account for why few companies and rules allow for them.

Grattan54 Supporting Member of TMP06 Sep 2022 7:40 p.m. PST

If I did fantasy armies, I would do a Hobbit army.

bandit86 Supporting Member of TMP06 Sep 2022 9:45 p.m. PST

I have a bunch of singles hobbit/halfling figures not really an army. But I mostly just paint so it works for me

Martin Rapier07 Sep 2022 1:46 a.m. PST

Back when we used to play the old Skytrex 'Middle Earth' rules we had roughly a unit of hobbits between us. They were just a bit dull compared to massed ranks of Elves, Orcs, Trolls, Men, Dwarves etc. and used to sneak around being annoying. When I played Saruman or Saurons lot, I used to go out of my way to squash the annoying little bu**gers.

The mainly ended up getting used as Hobbit characters in D&D games.

LongshotGC Supporting Member of TMP07 Sep 2022 4:40 a.m. PST

I believe (as demonstrated by some of the finest early responses *smile*) that Hobbits, by whatever name, weren't portrayed in a way that encouraged anyone to think of them in the light of "Wow, that'd make for a pretty cool unit!".

In the early days, nobody even made much of a selection beyond "adventurer/character/NPC" types of one-offs that provided much of an option. Heritage LOTR had some okay minis, but it wasn't until Warhammer started providing some options that one really thought in terms of "a unit", and even then those minis (IMO) have a super caricature quality that doesn't encourage much beyond "camp fun".

These days, there are many good options of quality minis with which to build…that FEEL like "Now these guys might cause a bit of pain". I personally have plenty of GW LOTR, and plan to get into a bunch of the nice stuff from the North Star Oathmark line.

There's also a lack of "background" and/set piece scenarios to get the creative juices flowing…there just aren't a ton of "Halflings going to war" stories out there.

Bottom line, I'll field an army once I get the volume and mix right.

Dave Gamer07 Sep 2022 5:39 a.m. PST

Mantic released a halfling army for their Kings of War ruleset. And very nice figures they are too. A halfling army is on my radar as soon as I finish my Northern Alliance, Orc, Goblin, Kingdoms of Men, and Ratkin armies – so maybe 2035 or so…


YogiBearMinis07 Sep 2022 5:46 a.m. PST

I have a couple hundred-large painted GW Warhammer Halfling force, classic sculpts, plus a Kickstarter's worth of compatible but still unpainted Battleforge Halflings. I also have a medium-sized unpainted GW Lord of the Rings Hobbit army.

I have a hobbit problem.

79thPA Supporting Member of TMP07 Sep 2022 6:32 a.m. PST

I like Hobbit armies, but I don't think they are very practical.

wizbangs07 Sep 2022 6:41 a.m. PST

I've got a small army of about 160 halflings . Most are old Grenadier models. I attempted to field them many years ago & usually got wiped out. I found that, using Warhammer Fantasy background, I had to make them from "The Moot" and augment them with units from my Empire army.

There was an unofficial halfling army book out there that made the army comedic, with things like a food cart to keep the troops motivated. I prefer to focus on their D&D skill sets like stealth & their expertise with missile weapons, but still not a viable army.

They now function as support units in my Dogs of War or Empire armies.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP07 Sep 2022 9:29 a.m. PST

jgawne, your kvetch is duly noted. Please feel free to go back through every discussion group on the Internet and tell everyone that they should use the word "Hobbit" only if all the castings under discussion have been licensed by the Tolkien estate, and "Ratling" only for those short, barefoot snipers which have been sold by Games Workshop. Take your time, be sure you've informed everyone, and then report back.

But I think the fundamental problem is those "massed ranks of Elves, Orcs, Trolls, Men, Dwarves etc." For every "fire and maneuver" miniatures player, there are about twelve who have to have the thickest armor and the largest-caliber gun the rules permit--which is why the near-obsession with Tiger tanks. And it doesn't seem to me to be (quite) as bad among the historical miniatures players as it is in the fantasy and SF crowd, where you can always count on something yet more heavily armed and armored in the next edition.

Why have halflings and goblins fighting over a bridge into the Shire when you can have knights in plate armor charging trolls?

Bandolier07 Sep 2022 9:53 p.m. PST

I have a large halfling army. Doesn't feel right to call them hobbits because they don't reflect the Middle-earth aesthetic. Rooster-riding cavalry, plate-armoured infantry and the like… However, most people that see the army call them "cute little hobbits".

Personal logo Sgt Slag Supporting Member of TMP08 Sep 2022 8:02 a.m. PST

Hobbits are for Tolkien's Middle Earth. I do not use them in my 2e AD&D games, at all. My 2e BattleSystem games are based on my RPG games, so no Hobbits there, either.

I am a huge fan of Gnomes, first, and Dwarves, second. I have large armies for each of them. Cheers!

Personal logo miniMo Supporting Member of TMP09 Sep 2022 9:15 a.m. PST

Not a full army, but a couple of units of Halflings as Auxilia for the Elves. Old Ral Partha figures: 1 unit of Border Militia with [short] spears; and 1 unit of Runtling Rangers with bows & slings and green berets added.

@Sft Slag: Halflings are totally D&D! In my old campaign, they weren't allowed to stay within the city walls after sunset because they were such notorious thieves.
: 3

Der Krieg Geist11 Sep 2022 11:32 p.m. PST

For the Hobbit/ Halfling army aficionados out there, I would recommend the game StrongSword by Westfalia. It is a free set of rules to download and you can have Hobbits battling Kobolds to your heart content. I've read them over and they look like quite a bit of fun.
Never been a huge admirer of the wee folk, but I am coming around. :)

ScottWashburn Sponsoring Member of TMP13 Sep 2022 10:48 a.m. PST

I wrote a novel ("Broken Alliance") to go with Mantic Games' release of a Halfling Army for their Kings of War game. They also gave me all of their miniatures sets that they released. So I DO have a Halfling /Hobbit army, but I have not painted it yet. :)

snurl115 Sep 2022 1:35 a.m. PST

My slayer army got shot to pieces by halflings during the Storm of Chaos campaign.

Albus Malum19 Sep 2022 7:53 p.m. PST

So for my 15mm army, I have painted a small batch of 10mm pendraken elves calvary up to be hobbit calvary on ponies. I also have a few Battlevalor hobbits and a few other hobbits from I think Splintered light. My intent isnt to use them as a army, but as a small unit that might fight along side of elves and or humans. I dont really consider Hobbits ie Halflings as a very militarist race, but that doesnt mean I cant include a few in a battle. So far though, they have not seen any combat, which likely suits them quite well. I assume they would probably run away anyways, and not really give much resistance.

Maybe I should try a small battle of Hobbits against Goblins sometime. Id put my money on the goblins.

I think in the old Chainmail rules hobbits were free ( pointwise?)

I also have a few 28mm scaled Hobbits/ halflings for dnd as well as a few 3d printed ones. I dont do Gnomes though. Dont think I have a single Gnome figure, not even in my yard, but I wouldnt mind finding a good Gnome for my yard though.

shawnzeppi216 Jan 2023 12:05 p.m. PST

I have about 70 hobbit minis from Elan Merch and Minifigs lines. They make for a nice small "army", if allied with, say, the Ents or various other forest folk, or humans. I see the Shire as akin to the Wurttemberger or Saxon equivalent in Fantasy miniatures. You can't make a viable army out of them as they suck, but they are nice allies to have on your side rather than opposing you ;)

79thPA Supporting Member of TMP18 Jan 2023 8:38 a.m. PST

Hey, I shouldn't be defending Wurttembergers on a Hobbit thread. I'll give you Baden instead.

I bought a plastic sprue of Hobbits just to check them out.

shawnzeppi220 Jan 2023 2:03 p.m. PST

79thPA: I'm fine with taking back what I said about the Wurttembergers and trading them for Baden (or maybe the Portuguese or Spanish?) in the crappy troops category.

I posted this before in a different thread, but here are some of my fine halflings in the epic struggle of the Battle of Bywater (they lost). Maybe more of a town militia than an army though..


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