The Gundabad Orcs were the Orcs inhabiting Mount Gundabad in the north of Middle-earth. They had attacked the mountain and taken it from the Dwarves of Durin dwelling there. Beforehand, they had been servants of the Witch-king of Angmar.
After the fall of Angmar, Mount Gundabad became the capital of all Orcs of the Misty Mountains (those who fought in the Battle of the Five Armies), and the term "Gundabad Orcs" is not used to refer to them in The Hobbit.
In the Second Age, the Orcs that had survived the destruction of Angband were forced to wander the Northern Waste and find a new home. This was when they attacked Mount Gundabad, at the north end of the Misty Mountains, and took it from the Dwarves. In the Third Age, the Orcs of Angmar officially proclaimed Gundabad as their capital, which angered the Dwarves greatly.Gundabad remained an Orc stronghold until it was harrowed in TA 2799, after the War of the Dwarves and Orcs. However, small groups of orcs must have returned and fortified it anew during the events of The Hobbit, menacing Wilderland once again. It was from here that the goblins present at the Battle of the Five Armies came from in their marching numbers. Their leader, Bolg, son of Azog, was the supreme commander of the orcs from Mount Gundabad and presumably the northern Misty Mountains, and was killed by Beorn, the skin-changer. In battle, they were armed with orcish scitimars, spears, and axes.
Portrayal in adaptationsEdit
The Hobbit film trilogyEditThe Gundabad Orcs seen in Peter Jackson's The Hobbit film trilogy look different from any other orcs portrayed in film. These orcs had dark skin, fangs, claws, and a small amount of hair. They wore armor of brown and white fur coats threaded with various beast's teeth and wooden shields bearing the Eye of Sauron. They, like many orcs, used long scimitars with which they impaled and slashed their victims.
In The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Azog is from Mount Gundabad. The band of orcs led by Azog's subordinates, Yazneg and his lieutenant Fimbul, is made up from orcs of different tribes, mainly from Gundabad and Moria.
In The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Bolg is sent by his father Azog to lead forth the armies of Gundabad. There are two types of Gundabad Orcs, the armored soldiers and the Berserkers. The Berserkers have white snow-like skin and are stronger built than their fellow Gundabad Orcs. They wield huge maces and act as Bolg's main enforcers.
Legolas and Tauriel go to the fortress in Mount Gundabad to scout on Bolg. At night, Bolg commands the forces of Gundabad to march forth and legions of orcs along other foul creatures are seen leaving the pass to Angmar and following their leader to Erebor. These armies of Gundabad Orcs are later seen marching upon the battlefield near Ravenhill. However, they are quickly destroyed by Beorn and the Great Eagles led by Radagast.
- In The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth II: The Rise of the Witch-king, the armies of Gundabad are divided in two units: Gundabad Warriors, who wore shields and scimitars, and Gundabad wolf-riders, who rode huge "Dire wolves". One battalion of each was commanded by a Thrall Master of Angmar.