Rat Race – April

Ladies and gentlerats, it’s time once again to take a look at the progress of my Skaven collection this month. My plan is to get the army finished off (in as much as these things ever are) by the end of 2019 – barring GW releasing any new Skaven to replace some of the dodgy old sculpts marring the range (which at this stage looks doubtful to say the least). With that in mind it’s time I bashed on, progress has been rather slow over the first three months of the year and I’ve got a lot of ground to cover. Thus this month I turned my attention to the Stormvermin, the second squad of these elite rodents to join the army and frankly not my favourite miniatures to work on. Some people can make them look amazing once finished, and I feel I’ve done a fair job of them so far, but they really are exasperating models to work with – it takes a lot of work just to get them looking passable.

I showed the start of this squad last month and confessed that I was struggling somewhat with them. Originally I planned to painted the whole squad with white fur, distinguishing them from my other Stormvermin squad, which have brown fur, and marking them out as the elite guard of Grey Seer Murkskitter who accompanies the army and tries, often unsuccessfully, to make the clan obey the will of the distant Council of Thirteen, as opposed to their own verminous whims and schemes. I quickly found, however, that although painting the occasional rat with white fur is quite fun, doing a whole unit of them is an exercise in frustration, so I publicly called it off and declared that I would do the rest with brown fur, background be damned, don’t try and stop me! Several readers then made compelling arguments suggesting I shouldn’t be such a baby (albeit in rather friendlier terms), offering up advice and making the generally supportive noises that hobbyists make when one of their number is facing a challenge and not enjoying it. Amongst them Azazel – of Azazel’s Bitz Box – noted that this month he’s running “Armoured April” as a challenge, so whatever colour of fur I fancied painted it was a fine time to man up (rat up?) and get to work on them.

Cutting a long story short then I decided to take a swing at getting one of them done with white fur, then a second and slowly over the month they shuffled in, one pale furred rodent after another. After each I declared “I’ll just pack it in and do the next one with brown fur” and each time I sat down to paint it I talked myself into continuing. I’m not going to pretend it was entirely a joyful experience but there we have it, the halfway point has been passed and the finish line for the squad is now well within sight.

Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (4)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (5)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (6)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (7)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (1)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (2)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (3)

Of course these duplicitous rats need a leader, someone to point them in the right direction – even if that direction is often straight back to Skavenblight with their tails between their legs.

Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (8)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (9)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (10)

With these eight rats done we have enough for a full squad, and as I’ll probably take a bit of a break from them before adding any more, this makes for a good moment for a group shot or two.

Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (1)Stormvermin ConvertOrDie Wudugast (2)

The keen eyed will notice that, ranked up this way, one of the rats in the back rank appears to be attempting a quick spot of Skaven-style career progression by stabbing his boss in the ear. That’s the ratmen for you eh! Fear not however, once I add a few more (including a banner bearer and musician) I’ll try to find a way of arranging them that makes such skulduggery a little less obvious…

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15 responses to “Rat Race – April

  • davekay

    The struggle was definitely worth it – they look great!

  • Alex

    Aw yeah, nicely done mate, I’m so pleased you stuck with it! They look amazing with white fur dude, and I know you’ll be glad you toughed it out when this unit is finished… keep on keeping on!

    • Wudugast

      You know, when all is said and done, I’m really pleased I stuck it out too. I may have been grinding my teeth at times but I learned lots of things about painting white fur – knowledge that I’ll probably never use again after this squad is done! Five more to go! 🙂

  • patmcf

    Perseverance mate that’s what it is ,well done ! .

    • Wudugast

      How’s that old saying go? If at first you do succeed, try to hide your surprise. Something like that anyway… Yeah, perseverance was key here. I don’t like to quit on a project once it’s started, no matter how difficult it becomes – although I’m trying to learn to be a bit more relaxed with things like this, it’s just a hobby after all! That said I’m glad I stuck it out this time, just need five more to round out the squad. Going to take a break and do something else first though!

  • theimperfectmodeller

    Well you may have had to go through the pain barrier to get to where you are but so far so good and they look absolutely great. Love the group shot photos, they always highlight how impressive the figures together really are.

    • Wudugast

      Aye, no pain no gain – although there were moments when “no gain” didn’t really sound that bad 😉 As I’ve said to the others though, I’m really glad I stuck it out. I do enjoy doing the group shots too, these models were designed to be seen as an army and I think they really look their best when they’re team handed.

  • Pete S/ SP

    Very nice- I like the worn but still dealy look of their weapons.

    Cheers,

    Pete.

    • Wudugast

      Thank you – that’s very much what I was hoping for, the stormvermin would have the best weapons around (short of the clan chiefs) but they’re still Skaven and the gear will still be pretty manky 🙂

  • imperialrebelork

    Well done getting it done man. Great work and I love the group

  • Azazel

    Good to see the Ratmans back on the go. You even inspired me to buy a box of Stormvermin recently. Of course, that doesn’t mean that the box will even be opened in the next year – but at least I *have* them now…

    • Wudugast

      Aye, I know that feeling all too well – it’s been the story of my Skaven for many a year. Of course, now that I’m concentrating on the Skaven more it’s the story of other models instead… Well, when you get around to painting those stormvermin have some plasters at the ready, there’s really no way to paint them without jabbing your fingers on all those spikes!

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