The Shire ~ a Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle Game Force

I have played in several games (and in one tournament) with a Hobbit/Dunedain SBG army. All told I have won 2 games, and had a draw against a dwarven army…so they can win, but you need to have sound strategy and have alot of patience and play smart when using this kind of army. I personally love it because of the challenge…just building the strongest army and thumping across the battlefield doesn’t fill me with pride when I win. Winning with a bunch of Shire rats is a blast and gives the ego a nice stroking, plus your opponent’s stressed out face is priceless to watch when everything is going right for you.

Because of model maximums at certain game points limits it can be interesting trying to fill out an army comprised of hobbits. First off, you definitely need to take Gandalf, with his Blinding Light spell he can keep your hobbits alive alot longer. Another must…Dunedain Rangers of the North. Because hobbits (and hobbit heroes) are so cheap you need to fill in the points with higher point units (and stronger ones too)…Dunedain come in very handy for this. Their firing power and Might points are almost as much of a must have for a Shire army as Gandalf is. Aragorn/Strider is another must have in high point games…very effective I must say. Next…forget about the Shire Militia…stick strictly to the Shirriffs and Archers…more bang for your 4 points. A hornblower (or two, maybe three depending on the army points) is another must. Spread these guys about the field and as long as one of these little buggers is running about you can gain +1 to your hobbits courage (they don’t stack if you have more than one hornblower). Hobbit heroes…take ’em…take ’em all if you have too to fill up your points. One of the hobbit heroes you will want to make sure you have is Meriadoc, Knight of the Mark with his Horn of the Riddermark…in conjunction with your hobbit hornblower this will add a total of +2 to your hobbits courage, most handy for charges!

This is a very fun (and frustrating if you let it get to you) army to play with, but the reward of winning a battle is worth the zillions of dollars spent on this kind of army. GW really needs to make a plastic set of hobbits.

Here are a few shots of my army.

Gandalf, Bilbo and Strider (each of these three have been converted and modified)

Meriadoc Brandybuck and Peregrin Took (again some modifications to these to make them unique)

Dunedain Rangers of the North (winter garb)

Farmer Maggot, Fredegar ‘Fatty’ Bolger and Paladin Took (Fatty and Took have been modified)

Hobbit Shirriffs (one conversion and use of a militia as a shirriff)

Finally here are a few Hobbit Archers (two conversions one modification)

As you can see I like to convert and modify these models…being that there are just a few different poses of each style. Archers are pretty easy to make…just get the shortbows and quivers from the plastic Warg Rider sprues and add them to any hobbit…above you can see I used a spare Fatty Bolger and a spare Meriadoc for two of these new poses.

With the shirriffs pretty much anything can work as long as he isn’t carrying a bow, so the militia units can either take the place of or be converted into shirriffs…just don’t waste your time using them as militia, they aren’t worth their points.

Lesser hobbit heroes are great to use too, Lobelia Sackville-Baggins, Fatty Bolger, Farmer Maggot (and his hounds) and Paladin Took…all well worth their points.

Here is a roster that I used in the tournament and won 1 out of 4 games with it including a draw (1-2-1).

750 Pts – The Shire Roster (SBG)

Hero (5#, 490 Pts)
1 Aragorn / Strider @ 175 Pts
Mighty Hero; Hand Weapon
1 Gandalf the Grey @ 170 Pts
Glamdring; Narya; Staff of Power; Blinding Light; Command; Immobilise; Sorcerous Blast; Strengthen WIll; Terrifying Aura; Hand Weapon
1 Bilbo Baggins @ 90 Pts
Resistance to Magic; Throw Stones; Sting; Mithril Coat; One Ring
1 Meriadoc Brandybuck- Knight of Mark @ 30 Pts
Resistance to Magic; Throw Stones; Hand Weapon; Armour; Shield
1 Peregrin Took – Guard of the Citadel @ 25 Pts
Resistance to Magic; Throw Stones; Hand Weapon; Armour

Minor Hero (4#, 96 Pts)
1 Dunedain @ 24 Pts
Hand Weapon; Bow
1 Dunedain @ 24 Pts
Hand Weapon; Bow
1 Dunedain @ 24 Pts
Hand Weapon; Bow
1 Dunedain @ 24 Pts
Hand Weapon; Bow

Hobbits (24#, 96 Pts)
24 Hobbit Shirriffs @ 96 Pts
Resistance to Magic; Throw Stones; Hand Weapon

Hobbits (12#, 68 Pts)
11 Hobbit Bowmen @ 44 Pts
Resistance to Magic; Throw Stones; Unarmed; Shortbow
1 Hobbit Bowmen @ 24 Pts
Resistance to Magic; Signal Horns; Throw Stones; Unarmed; Shortbow

Total Roster Cost: 750

Now, I did soak alot of points into Aragron in this list, but it was the first time I used him in a Shire army…surprisingly he did well and more than made up for the points I used on him.

Hope I inspired you to think differently about Hobbits on the battlefield. 🙂

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