Wolves were the beasts more frequent in the Roman Empire, and they participate regularly in the ludi. These wolves are only fed with human flesh, the amphitheatre’s remains, and trained to be fast and ferocious killers.
At Level II they can Howl when obtaining a Beast Attack in the orange die, adding two more Attack Dice and, like the Hyaenas, they can make a free move after attacking. Their Dodge skill turns all of their Fumble results into Blocks in their Defense Dice, making them hard to hit. They share their stats with the rest of canids from the basic game.
Even if they are not the green team best bet (no team can have only strong points), their Howl allows them to attack and get away from their prey, so an enemy without a Long weapon must get close to attack them… and maybe that enemy has a juicier rival in contact. When combined with their Dodge skill (it allows them to ignore that last one lethal damage) these beasts usually survive more than anybody expects them to.
After trying out different stances, we agreed that the miniature should be in motion, making a lateral leap, as if dodging a strike or pestering a victim.
David: “I take it that with the Wolves I can be pickier, them being the small beasts for the greens (“my” team), but the truth is that I don’t like their faces nor their fur. Shouldn’t they have thick fur all over their bodies? Now resemble a dog.
Regarding the face, the protruding snout and those big eyes (“the better to see you with”) are the elements that look not so wolf-like to me.
But I think that we got right the stance for legs, head and tail. And it looks great from the front.”
David: “It is much better this way. Now they look great, they are worthy of the Small Shields.”
Even if the debate about the length of fur didn’t really end (it’s sometimes hard to know when to stop retouching a work you love that much), we considered the miniature finished so we could begin with the illustration. The standard was set very high, as the Hounds illustration was superb… but we had Antonio José Manzanedo, truly a master!
David: “As I told you with the Tiger, I love the strength you paint with, your concise, impressionistic lines.
The wolf in the foreground looks very good to me. The one in the background, though, should have its front right leg straight (i.e., both of its front legs on the ground); this way, its stance will not be similar to the first one. It will be standing and growling while the first wolf attacks.
Apart from that, it’s a gorgeous work.”
And this is the final illustration. They are more frightening than their not-so-great Attack Dice would tell!