An Unexpected Return



“Sorry! I don’t want any adventures, thank you. Not Today. Good morning! But please come to tea -any time you like! Why not tomorrow? Good bye!” – Bilbo Baggins, The Hobbit

Well , its time to blow the dust off this blog.  While I haven’t been posting on my own blog, I’ve still been quite busy with various hobby projects.  I also check in on some of my favorite blogs (Dave Taylor Miniatures, Cursed Treasures, and Plastic Legions and their respective blog rolls) on a near daily basis.  On some of these websites, I’ve seen the Leiber awards being passed handed out.  Seeing these blogs getting recognition inspired me to try and reenergize my own blog.

 So what to blog about?  Well today, I’m going to weigh in on The Hobbit: The Unexpected Journey Strategy Battle Game (whew that’s quite a title).  Anyone who is reading this blog post is probably already very familiar with Games Workshop’s latest version of the Strategy Battle Game.  You are also probably well aware of the consternation over the price increase for the new Hobbit line and how they changed the “model” for the mini-rule book so that it doesn’t contain the all the profiles for the miniatures.  I understand everyone being up in arms over these changes and feeling slighted by Games Workshop.  However, this isn’t another blog where I’m going to rant on Games Workshop.

 Why am I interested in the Hobbit?  Well, I’m interested because I enjoy the game.  I’m interested because I’ve made a lot of friends over the years playing this game.  No one is holding a gun to my head making me buy these new rules or the new rules.  However, I will buy them… because I enjoy the game!  Has GW flipped the model on us?  Absolutely.  Are the miniatures and the rules overpriced?  Absolutely.  Do I want to play this new version of the game?  Absolutely.  Maybe I’m just being “fanboy” here but I’m excited by these new rules.  I’m excited by (some) of the new models.  I’m really excited that for the next three years I’ll have new movies based on the stories of Middle Earth to look forward too. 

 So how am I handling this Unexpected Journey…  I’m buying the Escape from GoblinTown set, the Hardback Rulebook, The Trolls, and the Goblin Town Scenery Kits.

 Escape of Goblin Town, Limited Edition:


While the price is high at $125 for the limited edition set, its really a good “value” (rationalizing I know) when comparing the contents to the other releases.  Here’s my break down for the value:

  •  Thorin’s Company (including Bilbo and Gandalf) – 15 plastic hero models.  Compare this to the recently released Mines of Moria Fellowship boxed set (crappy sculpts and all) and this sprue would likely sell for $45
  • 36 MistyMountain Goblines – At retail, these would sell for $70
  • Goblin King and Throne – I figure this would sell individually for at least $25 (compare to the Mordor Troll or Ent plastic kit and its not hard to imagine this being even higher).
  • Goblin Captians (Grinna, the mini dude, and the Scribe) – I assume that a plastic set of three captains would be at least $20 (again probably under estimated)
  • GoblinTown Scenery – Two of the three sprues from the Goblin Town Scenery kit are included in the Boxed Game.  The Scenery kit is 3 Sprues for $60 so I figure the terrain included in the game is worth $40
  • Limited Edition Radagast – I count him as $10 but only because the Escape from GoblinTown will also be sold without this mini for $10 less.
  • The Mini-Rule book – If the hardback rule book is $85 for all the rules, profiles, and “hobby stuff”, I figure the miniature rule book is probably worth about $25

 Adding all this up and the total value of the Boxed Set is probably somewhere north of $230.  I know that I’m just “justifying” things in my mind, but still it feels like a good deal.

 The Hardback rulebook


I’m a sucker for rule books and I like having a big beefy tome that I can read at my house.  I love looking at the pretty pictures and getting additional inspiration.  I’m not one that is grossly upset that the profiles for the new Hobbit models are only in the Big Rulebook.  Sure I would have preferred to have them in the mini-rule book too.  However, in reality, even with the One Ring version of the mini-rule book (the one that came with the Mines of Moria) not all of the profiles were included.  What do I want from a mini version of the rule book.  Well I want a small portable copy of the RULES that I can take with me when I go and play games.

 The Trolls

TheTrollsWell I admit, this one was an impulse.  Long time followers of my blog will remember my first foray into the Unexpected Party.  I had acquired a set of stone trolls from an online vendor and used them as part of my display base.  So to me, the Trolls are just an iconic part of story and I had to get them.  Yes they are overpriced but are cheaper than buying three Mordor trolls (for what’s that worth).

 Goblin Town Scenery


Now were talking… I haven’t talked a big terrain project in a long time.  This Goblin town terrain really got me thinking.  So I’m on a mission to get my hands on as much of this as I can so that I can build a fun GoblinTown game board for use at Adepticon and Bilbo’s Birthday Bash. 


Everything else in this release.  Well, I’m just waiting.  I like a lot of the other new models but I don’t feel compelled to buy them.  Maybe someday I’ll do a Hunter Orc army and go out and buy them.  However, for now, I’ll just admire them from afar. 

One last thought regarding the costs… although most griping is pointed at the Games Workshop Retail prices.  You don’t have to buy your models at the stores.  Three are plenty of online resellers that offer a discount.  Now that the Hobbit will be returned as a “Core Game”, I suspect the number of sites offering the Hobbit products will likely increase.

 There I am back and I blogged again.  Hopefully I won’t be a stranger in the future.  I’ve done a lot of hobbying in the year since my Blog was last updated.  I hope to bring some new content that from Middle Earth, 40K, and CMON and Guillotine Games’ Zombicide!

2 Responses to “An Unexpected Return”

  1. Welcome back. I’m looking forward to more of your LotR content. Sometimes a long break is what one needs to regroup and come back stronger than ever.

  2. Nice assessment – the major problem with the starter set is that for those of us who only want a handful of the Dwarves, there’s no good option for us to buy the units that we like (as most people who want Thorin’s Company want all of Thorin’s Company). I do like the detail work they did on the models, though, especially the Hunter Orcs.

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