Saturday, 23 April 2011

The Spirit of Dungeonpunk '86-87ish

Ahh. Dungeonpunk Elves, courtesy of Mr. Jes Goodwin.

Glam, the Laughing Warrior  in Scarlocks Wood Elf Archers was the first Wardancer. Half pseudo-celtic beserker, half red-haired punk, released in 1986.
Glam the Laughing Warrior | Jes Goodwin | via Thantsants

Punk Elf

1987, just into the release of Warhammer 3rd edition, we saw the release of a wider range of punk elf miniatures, most sporting the trademark Wardancer mohawk hair-do, and occasional leather, studs and buckles armour. Full page advert in White Dwarf 96 also features a page of rules and fluff. Excuse the nasty low-res  phone-camera shots, but I'm too lazy to scan the page properly.

Punk Elf Wardancer with mohawk | Jes Goodwin (1987)

 Punk Elf Wardancer bondage gear | Jes Goodwin (1987)
Just to put this into some form of gaming contest, back then White Dwarf was still printing articles about Roleplaying Games, scenarios for Advanced Dungeons and Dragons had silently stopped 3 issues ago (WD93) but WD continued to support RPGs that Games Workshop published including Runequest, Stormbringer, Call of Cthulhu (all of course originally Chaosium) and their own Warhammer Fantasy Role Play and Judge Dredd RPG.

With the (by now) well established punk berserker Dwarf Troll-slayers, and the introduction of the punk berserker wood elves, and the anarcho-feminist drug addict punk berzerker Amazons, it seemed like almost every Warhammer race was to get it's elite bezerker punk units. In fact, from a purely symbolic point of view, 'punk' as an icon for the berserk works quite well.
Dungeonpunk Elf Wardancers | Jes Goodwin (1987) | via SoL
Science Fantasy Punk Elves | Eldar Harlequins (1988) | via SoL
What's good for WFB is good for W40K, so why not add some bezerker punk space elves into the mix. Actually if Eldar Harlequins were painted in more earth tones, they might just pass as Wardancers who have picked up some mysterious Power Weapons from some WFB 2nd edition ancient Slann monument. hmm...

On the other hand a few mohawks don't override the undeniably huge high-camp glam-rock influence.

1970's Eldar Harlequin cosplay
Oi, Bowie -where's ya Shuriken catapult?


  1. not to mention the "savage orcs" who were also mohawked berserkers, starting in 2nd ed. (Ravening Hordes?)

  2. The elf team in Blood Bowl went for the punk look too, and then of course there's the troll slayer on the front cover of the first WFRP.

  3. guys! it's like you've been sneaking a peek in my 'drafts' - Orcs (and Goblins) and Bloodbowl all coming up.

  4. Just to say I love these punk related articles.
    More, more, more...