I love 10mm and nothing compares to it, in my humble opinion, for both detail and scale. For very little outlay, you can make an army of respectable size for a budding Emperor.
I also love the Games Workshop miniatures for Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. However, the size of 28mm and especially the price are off putting. 28mm is too big for my view to play anything other than skirmish battles of a handful of miniatures. I also really like the War of the Rings rule set by GW.
About a year ago I became aware of the Dark Alliance range of 1/72 plastic miniatures, and these are excellent proxies for Middle-earth. There are also some excellent 1/72 miniatures by Caesar in their fantasy range. These are all sculpted well enough and relatively cheap. So I thought: "What if you could use these miniatures in a War of the Rings rules context?"
Taking a punt, I bought a few of the Dark Alliance range to try this idea out. I started with the the simplest to paint first, in order to test this idea. So here are the first test subjects. The Army of the Dead.
I painted these guys using Skull White basecoat spray. When dried I then liberally painted them in Nihilakh Oxide. After they dried, I used Army Painter Light Tone to both seal and shade the miniatures. These miniatures are very flexible, and so paint flakes off if they are not sealed correctly. Thankfully the Army Painter tone range seems to do the trick in stopping such flecking. To finish, I used a drybrush of Skull White paint to the top of the model in order to provide a two tone ghostly effect.
The miniatures are small enough to double up on a single round 25mm base. So the movement tray holds more miniatures and looks more impressive with the closely packed troops on the tray. Each movement tray will have the same number of hits as the War of the Rings rules dictate, so basically hits will be the number of bases on the tray, rather than the number of miniatures on the tray.
I plan to do this double-up for the standard warriors. Heroes will be on a single base so they stand out from the pack. Skirmishers will also be on a single base, so as to reflect the open order nature common to skirmishers. Cavalry will be on single bases as well using the eight stand movement tray.