Oni the Lonely…

Japanese myth and legend is populated with a wide variety of weird and wonderful creatures, from shape-shifting fox spirits to giant fire-breathing chickens. Unfortunately, as the majority of these beasts do not lend themselves to wargaming, they tend to be ignored by miniature manufacturers, who seem to think that slapping some Samurai armour on a goblin and calling it a ‘Bakemono’ is acceptable (it’s not).

Similarly, those who write rules set in Mythical Japan follow suit, possibly influenced by the figures available. So it came as a pleasant surprise when Craig Woodfield, author of the Ronin skirmish rules, released his Mythical Creatures supplement for the game, it was obvious that he had done his research properly, as all the creatures described were as they should be. Unfortunately, Osprey appear to have removed this from their website, but through the wonders of modern technology, you can download a Word copy wot I made of it here:

Mythical Creatures

However, whilst you’ve now got the rules, you still need the figures. I did a rather lengthy post on my previous blog listing all the Oni, Tengu and Kappa miniatures that I was able to find (to read this scholarly work, go here), but wasn’t entirely happy with the Oni available.  So in true Carrion Crow style, I decided to make my own…

My base figure for the conversion was a spare Heroscape Hulk that I had knocking around, as who needs more than one Hulk? (Unless you’re Marvel, of course, who have them in a variety of sexes and colours…a bit like M&M’s). This has to be one of the best 28mm Hulk sculpts out there, as it’s suitable imposing and looks like the Hulk is supposed to:


To change the Hulk into an Oni, however, we need to add, at the very least, horns and slightly more hair. My bits box provided me with; horns made from a GW Skeleton Horde bow, a length of wool for a twine belt, a hunk of meat hanging from the belt from the GW Kroot boxed set, a large mallet culled from a Mega Bloks knight and a mullet made from short lengths of pipe cleaner. A lick of paint, and this is where we are currently:


Not completely finished, but I’m sure you’ll agree, it’s starting to look a little more Oni than Hulk-i.

Now a confession – whilst I’d assigned August as Oriental Fantasy month, the siren call of Eternia is far too strong and I am only made from weak, weak flesh…

In other words, I’ve made a start on my Orko for the Masters of The Universe project, which started out as ‘He-Month’ on both this blog and Roger Webb’s – Rantings from Under the Wargames Table. Go there for superior sculpts of recognisable characters from the Masters of the Universe franchise, including the new additions of Teela and Evil-Lyn.

As for Orko, all I’ve managed so far is to butcher a GW skeleton and stick it to a flight stand, to act as an armature which I’ll be (hopefully) adding sculpted detail to, with the end result a semi-recognisable version of Orko. This is what it looks like so far:


Not particularly inspiring so far, but it can only get better…right?

Comments and feedback appreciated, as always.

9 thoughts on “Oni the Lonely…

  1. No. no, no!!! He-month is over, you can’t just go making Orko’s “willy nilly” you know. There I was all impressed with you Hulk conversion then you go and spoil it by starting another Eternian and putting me even further behind!

    Seriously though, good luck with Orko that’s one of the ways I considered doing him, so I look forward to your progress there.

    Just got back from our local wargames store (Myles has ordered Dropzone Commander) and I’ve been having a look through “Frostgrave”. Oh Simon what have you started!

    Cheers Roger.


    • The Eternia Project will run alongside whatever else I happen to be doing, and I have a feeling this one will be slow progress, so no need to worry on that score. I always seem to have two or three different things on the go, which is why I’m trying to be more focused. Thank you again for your generous gift – I’m itching to base and paint these figures now, and not just the oriental ones! I may save Khang for Mo’vember, but the supers and Destiny (who is ideal for something else) may find their way into the paint queue after I’m done with the Orient. Regards Jez


    • Captain Garrison and Ballistic Man will be joining Blackjack and Brass in my 70’s super team, the Guardians of America, as Paragon and Rocketman. The Ultra-Retrovian will be Paragon’s archenemy, Ultra-Mind. And when they appear on my blog, you’ll find out why there is a memorial to all five in Liberty City…


  2. Terrific stuff Jez. That’s a great conversion. Absolutely spot on and in many ways reminds me of the old 1978 TV series “Monkey”. Looking forward to seeing how Orko turns out too 🙂


    • Thanks Simon. I think that Monkey and The Water Margin (BBC2, around 6pm) may have been my introduction to Oriental Fantasy, and now you’ve said it, I do see it too. And now I want some figures for Monkey, Sandy and Pigsy. Black Hat do some, but I can’t recall if they were any good. Curse you, Simon! Must…resist…lol

      Liked by 1 person

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