Finding a suitable miniature to represent this has been a little problematic. To start with there aren’t a great deal of Gorilla miniatures out there. The vast majority of these are either bearing firearms or wearing armour for Sci Fi games.
Wargames Foundry have a ‘Lord of the Jungle’ set that includes one with Tarzan, Jane and Belgian Colonial Officer miniatures. The downside is that it isn’t cheap – I’d have no use for the other miniatures in the set so it would have worked out at £16 (sharp intake of breath) for a single Gorilla. No chance.
Digging a bit deeper lead me to a Malifaux miniature that would do the trick. I have no idea what Malifaux is from a gaming point of view but the official miniatures seem to be a weird mix of Steampunk, Fantasy, Martial Arts and Demonic types – it has some really interesting miniatures amongst it’s range.
The miniature is called Cojo and normally retails at £15 but I managed to pick a discounted one up for under a tenner – still expensive in my mind but cheaper than the Foundry Gorilla.
On opening the box the Cojo figure is a large (actually it’s massive!) gorilla type creature with spiny growths protruding from it’s forearms and back and a ring piercing the skin on it’s sternum. It’s so big it needs a 50mm standard round base to stand on – the 40 and 50mm lipped bases supplied with it are too small for it to stand on properly. I decided to keep the spines but cut away the ring piercing so it seemed more of a wild animal than a creature willing and able to accept body modifications.
Wanting to get some quick ideas for painting, a Google image search brought me instantly to Snowflake, the only known Albino Gorilla.
I was surprised at this as I assumed there were several Albino Gorillas around the world’s zoos. Snowflake died in captivity in 2003 but not before the world’s press had photographed him extensively. Snowflake’s intrusions from the Paparazzi might have irked or confused him but at least it gave me some reference material to paint Cojo.
I tried something a little different with the base. Instead of just my usual mix of gritty sands I added a bit of a broken brick flooring effect from pieces cut from a foam sheet. I think it could be quite easy to cover entire bases with larger paving stones in this fashion.