Saturday, 22 April 2017

Gnomes And Gnome Miniatures For RPGs

Gnomes? I mean gnomes? Well I suppose Tunnels and Trolls got away with leprechauns and faeries so gnomes can't be all bad as a player race. When I think back, I can only think of one gnome character ever being played in any D+D game. "No gnome characters" is usually rule three in my tabletop law (with rule one being no use of inappropriate quotes from star wars, hitch hikers, super hero movies star trek etc and rule two being no quotes from Gimli or Legolas). This rule three is there because there are no suitable figures in my collection.

I have two problems with gnomes in RPGs...

Gnomes, in my head, have no real image of what they look like. Dwarves are stubby and bearded, elves are lanky and hobbits are short, not so beardy and have stupid looking feet that won't feet into shoes. Gnomes seem to be be just short people who maybe have a big nose. Similarly there is no personality standard for gnomes. They are gem obsessed tinkerers and mages. That is about all she wrote for them. As NPCs they are difficult to make feel different than anyone else. When I have been forced to run them they end up like goblins from Harry Potter. Regardless, they always seem to be illusionists or assassins. In my head, all gnomes look like Tim The Enchanter (and yes someone does a figure).
All gnomes look like really
My second problem has been that nobody does a good range of fantasy gnomes for RPG games. One of my biggest gripes about mini manufacturers is that it no one produces niche character figures. You can get an all but uncountable rage of human fighter figures, fewer mages, fewer still bards and clerics and even fewer thieves. That said, there is major no problem getting figures for both males and females. If you want a female dwarf mage, you have your work cut out for you and if you get lucky it won't cost six or even twelve pounds for the figure. Now being realistic there is little cause for a female halfling barbarian but on my tick list for all things RPG miniature figure related, I sneakily want one. This is not because I am an OCD nerd, it's just because. Obviously manufacturers want to make money and no one is going to make such a niche figure. It's a pressing thing for me as I want to do some stuff for Titansgravethat, I just cannot enough find figures for a lot of the races. The same goes for fantasy. But gnomes, gnomes are really hard work.

I have three gnome figures all are from the now ancient Games Workshop/Citadel C11 Gnome range I think. They were badly painted and oddly sized I would guess that they are about half the height of a contemporary human 28mm figure. A few manufacturers do odd figures most of which are variable in size and style Reaper being about the best of a bad lot. Brigade do loads of gnomes but only f you want the, in a 19th or 20th century style. In my Northmen Viking game it has been an easy thing to bypass them but they are one of the main races in Titansgrave and I have just had to cut them out for lack of figures just like I have done in fantasy games.

For the sake of argument, I suppose I should say until now. I noticed today that CP Models were doing some gnome figures. Not a huge range but perhaps the biggest I have seen and there are four female figures. There are definite gaps but I am pretty sure that I could work to fill them. A drill, my bits box and some green stuff and I could have a figure for almost every character class. With a bit more jigging around I could even have gnomes for Titansgrave. Who would have thought that it would be easier to get gnome figures that I can make fit for Titansgrave than elf figures.
Just in case you are asking yourself this, no I am not getting paid for this although I would dearly love to be. I am a gamer and absence of gnome figures and those for other D+D races just seems glaring. However, I would love to see some more. Clerics and wizards perhaps, some with swords and cloaks maybe even a bard....How will I get to sleep now (and no, I am not being serious).


  1. I really like Gnomes as well.

    You can get some nice Gnomes from StoneHaven miniatures.

    Otherworld do 3 wonderful figures in there adventurer lines.

    Ral Partha and Ironwind metals also do some nice Gnome figures.

    1. There are many out there but no one does more than 3 or 4 and most are obviously different in terms of height and style. These are nice because they all fit together.