The Last Kingdom
Season one of the Last Kingdom finished its run on BBC television two weeks ago. I’d initially missed this TV series (I don’t have a TV Digibox at home) but thankfully my girlfriend Emma had recorded it on hers, and I’ve recently been catching up with The Last Kingdom (along with Dr Who and Jekyl and Hyde) on weekends. So far, I’m about halfway through the adventures of Uthred and I’ve really enjoyed the series up to this point.
Emma was really rooting for Uthred, until the point he ditched Mildreth for that seer … Me? Apart from this and a few anachronisms (what are Vikings doing with Saxon helmets and what are the Saxons doing with square shields?), I am really enjoying the series. This has naturally made me think about digging my Vikings and Saxons out once again. If I can combine a reinvigorated interest with my love of simple conversions, all the better.
I recently purchased a box of the Conquest Miniatures plastic medieval archers and immediately considered how I could convert them to Saxon spearmen using spare parts and a few bodies from both the plastic Norman Infantry boxed set and the Gripping Beast Dark Age Warriors. The archers have fourteen different heads to choose from, and with the heads and parts from the other two sets, provide excellent conversion possibilities.
The conversions themselves are pretty simple. All I’ve done is shave a little off the necks of the Beast models and remove the neck portion of the Conquest heads to make them fit snugly. The spare spear arms from the Beast sets, including some from the Arab infantry set, just need to be clipped at a point just above the elbow. You need to remove most, but not all of the forearm. I shaped the end of the arm into a flat rounded socket, so it would fit better in the arm recess.
I’m sure if I had a root around other plastic sets, I’d find more parts I could use for future conversions. Some of the Medieval Archer heads are likely to end up on Frostgrave models too. For me, conversion is fun and will give me a unique looking army. I have a friend with a Viking army which could do with dusting off, so he’ll soon have a new opponent. Destiny is all!