Goblin warriors skilled in archery. They can be found in both the Eastern and Western areas of Moria in the video game The Lord of The Rings: The Third Age.
Moria, one of several names for the enormous complex of tunnels, mines, and dwarven halls located within the bowels of the Misty Mountains Range, was once a Dwarven stronghold in happier times--now it is a den of evil. Years ago, the dwarves, in their pursuit of the magical metal ore Mythril, delved too deeply into the mountain's depths and awakened a sleeping Balrog of Morgoth, much to their sorrow. After the destruction and eviction of the dwarves at the claws of that fiery and terrible fiend, goblins, a smaller 'breed' of orc, infested Moria and have reproduced in great numbers. Durin's Bane tolerates the proliferation of these lesser creatures, within reason, as they serve the same dark master and save the Balrog the trouble of destroying would-be trespassers. In the video game, the types of goblins your party of adventurers will most frequently encounter in Eastern and Western Moria fall into three general categories: Sword Fighters (Warriors and Veterans), Archers, and Mages (Shadow Chieftains).
[Note: The video game, and the movies it is based on, take a number of liberties with the story and details found in J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of The Rings trilogy.]
Moria Goblin Archer Rabble have spent many hours honing their archery skills, making them proficient shooters. The creatures' innate ability to see well in almost complete darkness makes them particularly effective in the ruins of Moria, where very little natural illumination can be found. When engaged in battle, these fiends will often immediately answer a physical attack with an arrow (counter skill). Goblins are excellent climbers; their sharp nails and light frames allow them to quickly scale and descend the crags and towering, dwarven-wrought pillars found throughout Moria. Living in close proximity to the Balrog for many years has given these creatures a natural resistance to flame and heat.
The patchwork armor these creatures wear provides very little protection against piercing attacks, although it does provide adequate resistance to slashing and blunt assaults. Goblin Archers, being unclean creatures, are vulnerable to the elemental force of water. The Goblins of Moria fear the Balrog more than death itself; they will flee in terror, regardless of their numbers, whenever it draws near.
(A) This is the state of the figure after two days of work (image captured on the morning of 3/30/07). The head and body are pretty much complete and painted. Initially, I was going to keep these brighter, solid colors, as they gave the figure a nice 'toy' look which I liked, seeing as how I intended it to be an action figure from the get-go, but, I later decided to darken everything with a black paint wash as that's more accurate to the source material.
(B) Here's a photo of the right thigh and one of the pieces of leg armor (image captured 3/31/07). The rough sculpt is complete on both, they just need detailing, wire attached for the articulation, and paint.
(C) This is the left leg, prior to painting and final assembly (image captured 3/31/07). The brown marks all over the individual pieces are burns--after I finish the rough sculpt on something, I often use a woodburner to add small details and/or deepen lines I've already sculpted. In this case, I added pits and scratches to the leg armor, burned the existing, sculpted lines in the musculature of the thigh to emphasize them further, and added skin wrinkles, cracks in the toenails, etc., to the foot. Note the wires sticking out at the ends of each piece, this is how I use wire twist ties to articulate my joints. I've had a number of people ask me about that, so I specifically took this photo to help illustrate the process. The wires protruding from the foot go into the bottom of the leg armor, the wires sticking out of the top of the leg armor go into the 'knee' area of the thigh, and the wires coming out of the top of the thigh go into the pelvis of the goblin's body. A very small length of the wire is left exposed in between the two pieces in each case; this is where the joint bends. For added strength, depending on the size and weight of the figure I'm making, I bend the wire over itself 2-4 times (in this example, the knee and ankle joints have three bends, the thigh four). The wire twist ties shown are the kind that have a thin, rubbery, transparent coating over them. I recommend these because the covering makes them less prone to breaking (I haven't had a single one of this type break on me yet, I can't say the same of 'naked' wire I've used on other figures in the past) and resistant to oxidation (rust). I collect toys, which are a good source of these type of ties, as they're frequently used to anchor the figures/accessories in their packaging. I imagine you could also find them used in the packaging of other types of items as well and maybe you could just buy a box of them somwhere, but I don't know where. Bread/garbage bag ties also work pretty well.
(D) This image shows the two arm sculpts, in various states of completion (image captured 4/2/07). The right arm, on the left, is still rough. The left arm, on the right, has had all the smaller detail work added to it with a wood burner. Note that I didn't make these in pieces like the legs. I intentionally did this, both for variety and experimentation, deciding to sculpt the arm in its entirety and then chop it up into smaller pieces when articulating it, rather than making each component separate from the beginning.
(E) This is a mock-up photo showing the two incomplete arms sitting in the shoulder sockets of the goblin figure (image captured 4/2/07). Compare the colors from (A) with this image to see the effect of the previously mentioned black paint wash on the body and head.
(F) This is a sheet of paper with all the notes and reference sketches I put down while making this figure on it. The large leg/arm/body illustration on the right is my rough guide for scaling the limbs to the body. The smaller drawings are very fast sketches I made, before doing any sculpting, while watching the character attack in the video game. The bow design came from one of Elegost's, the '3rd Age Moria Goblin Shortbow'. The writing in the top left corner says, from top to bottom, 'Misty Mountains', 'Khazad-Dum', 'West' (which refers to Western Moria, where I got the HP and AP stats from, I noted this at the time, because I intended to travel to Eastern Moria and see if there was any difference in HP/AP totals for the Goblin Archers there),'1,871 HP', and '141 AP'.
For comparison purposes, below is a close-up screenshot of a Moria Goblin Archer Rabble, preparing to fire an arrow, taken from the 'Lord of The Rings: The Third Age' Playstation 2 video game:
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