First things first: let me get my excuses out of the way. This blog has been quiet lately and its probably going to stay that way for the next little while. I’ve not managed to comment on other people’s blogs very much either, although I have been reading them when I got the chance. My wife and I moved house at the start of December (well, I did the moving – she directed) and almost as soon as the last box was carried through the door our daughter was born (mum and baby doing very well thanks). She’s wriggly, healthy, tiring, wonderful and can shout for Scotland.
Needless to say building and painting miniatures just isn’t something I’ve been doing and won’t be for a while either I suspect. However I do have a bunch of models that I painted back in November (which seems like a long, long time ago now) and never got around to posting so prepare to feast your eyes.
Anyway, to no-one’s surprise I’ve gone and joined a cult. Well they all said it would happen one day… In this case it’s the chaos cult that lurks in the twisting halls of the Blackstone Fortress. I actually painted these a while ago but I’m just getting around to posting them now.
Leading the mob of insane faithful we have this cultist firebrand, ready with his flamethrower to give civilisation a helping hand if it doesn’t collapse quickly enough by itself!
I got so carried away painting the cultists from the Blackstone Fortress set that I even painted a couple of new ones from the recently released kit.
Much like the new Ork boys I really like these models but it’s a damn shame they’re not easier to kitbash, or at least come with a couple of alternative builds.
Anyway, with these done I now have a mighty mob ready to harass adventurers and treasure-seekers in the Blackstone Fortress, cause trouble in the Necromundan underhive or catch some bullets for their chaos marine overlords.
Plus, with the addition of the adventurers I painted a while ago, this means the entire Escalation expansion set for Blackstone Fortress is complete.
This will undoubtedly be my last post of the year, although I’ll try to put together a round up, but not a bad place to end things all things considered. Who knows, next year I might even get Blackstone Fortress finished entirely.
33 Comments | tags: Blackstone Fortress, Chaos, Chaos Cultist, Escalation | posted in Blackstone Fortress, Chaos Space Marines
Hands up everyone who thought we’d see another Zoat in our lifetimes? Anybody? Anybody at all? Yes, GW may have been willing to plunder their past over recent years, bringing back everything from Genestealer Cults to ambulls, even Squats, but I never seriously thought we’d see a Zoat again. And yet, here one is, ready to join the crew of adventurers in the depths of the Blackstone Fortress.
Wonders will never cease eh! It’s been a few years now since it was released and I still can’t quite believe it!
31 Comments | tags: Blackstone Fortress, Warhammer 40k, Zoat | posted in Blackstone Fortress
Earlier this month, after much fanfare, Games Workshop released the latest in their series of Warhammer Quest games; the ominously entitled Cursed City. Now I enjoy a co-operative game and the thought of smashing our way through shambling zombies of an evening seems like a fine thing to do round our house so naturally I picked it up and you can expect to see a few walking corpses and their heroic adversaries showing up here in due course. However this is also the month of the “Paint the Crap You Already Own” challenge being run by Ann’s Immaterium.
I’ve already painted some models for this challenge but I particularly wanted to paint something for Blackstone Fortress – Cursed City’s predecessor amongst the ranks of the Warhammer Quest games. I have an ambition to own a fully painted set of Blackstone Fortress (and all it’s expansions – or at least all the ones with original miniatures in them, I’m not too worried about completionism here). Excited though I am about Cursed City – and I intend to ride that wave of enthusiasm wherever it takes me – I don’t want to get completely distracted and leave Blackstone Fortress incomplete, especially as we’d quite like to delve back into it’s shifting corridors and finish the quest sooner or later. Time, then, to paint some of the “crap I already own” – specifically Dahyak Grekh, the Kroot tracker from the original Blackstone Fortress boxset.
Although I enjoy a detail heavy miniature I did find old Dahyak here oddly intimidating so I used the challenge as a spur to make sure I actually painted him, rather than bottling it and popping him at the back of the desk for “another day”. With him now done I’m one step closer to completing the original Blackstone Fortress set.
29 Comments | tags: Blackstone Fortress, Kroot, Warhammer 40k | posted in Blackstone Fortress
Last night was another evening of frantic painting and, as a result, here’s another model finished for this year’s Fembruary challenge. I must admit I’m really enjoying just powering through all these unfinished miniatures, I wouldn’t – and couldn’t – want to paint at this rate all the time but it’s fun to just crack my knuckles, break out the brushes, put on some music and make a heroic headlong charge at the painting backlog.
Anyway, today’s model is Aradia Madellan, the sanctioned psyker from the Blackstone Fortress Escalation expansion (not to be confused with the unsanctioned psykers from the original game – those are very bad lads indeed and not in any way to be confused with a valiant servant of the Imperium like this lady).
With her done I’m not only one step closer to completing the all the models for the game (although I’ve still got a fair way to go on that front) but I’ve also, very fittingly for Fembruary, completed all the female explorers. In fact we could now, and why wouldn’t we, take an all female team in search of xenotech in the weird, shifting corridors of the Blackstone Fortress.
Not only that but I’ve also painted all five characters from the Escalation expansion, so that’s another milestone achieved. At some point I should really get around to painting all of the characters from the original game as well…
Is there more painting planned for this evening? Damn right there is!
31 Comments | tags: Aradia Madellan, Astra Militarum, Blackstone Fortress, Imperial Guard, Psyker, Warhammer 40k | posted in Blackstone Fortress
Despite being a painter of Games Workshop miniatures for many a long year, and despite the fact that they’re one of the most iconic of the 41st Millennium’s inhabitants, I’ve never actually painted a single Eldar. Time to balance the books, at least a little, in favour of the pointy-eared ones.
Today’s subject is none other than Amallyn Shadowguide, the Eldar ranger from the original Blackstone Fortress and the kind of arse-kicking woman who make a perfect candidate for Fembruary. Although she was one of the first Blackstone Fortress miniatures I started painting when I got the set for some reason she fell by the wayside and sat around part-painted ever since (regular readers will know that this is an all too familiar story!).
Amallyn’s backstory has her hailing from the craftworld of Beil-Tan but I’ve never really found their colour scheme that appealing – for those unfamiliar with it, it’s a very stark white and green – so I tweaked it and toned it down a little.
I do have a few more Eldar which were given to me by a mate when he was clearing out his old collection, and which are currently lurking, either in the webway or in a box under the bed, waiting to spring out as soon as this Mon-Keigh makes some time to work on them.
20 Comments | tags: Amallyn Shadowguide, Blackstone Fortress, Eldar, Warhammer 40k | posted in Blackstone Fortress
Working on the servitor X-101 got me thinking about the sons of Holy Mars once again, and the fact that I haven’t painted anything for the glorious birthworld of the Mechanicum since back in April. Despite how much I know inside I love tech-priests and their ilk I still seem to have a bit of a mental block when it comes to actually painting them. Still, whilst I’ve got Blackstone Fortress on the brain I can always kill two (servo-)birds with one (radioactive!) stone and paint Daedalosus, the wandering tech-adept who can be taken as part of the band of adventurers venturing into the fortress.
I know I’ve slowed down a bit on getting Blackstone Fortress painted since I completed the original boxset, although this last week has done a little bit towards setting that right. We’ve got out of the habit of playing it since we discovered Warcry – although I paint plenty of other things that never see a gaming table so I don’t really see why that should make any difference. Still I would like to get the finger out and get everything else painted for it (especially once the wintery weather puts me off from being outdoors more than I strictly need to!). I’m still in two minds about buying the final expansion, Ascension. On the one hand the new Guardian Drones look amazing, we’ve enjoyed the game and it makes sense to complete the collection and finish the adventure. On the other hand the price feels a little bit like they’re taking the piss – safe in the knowledge that lots of people have been hooked by previous expansions Games Workshop are charging a bit more than I, without the box open in front of me to take a proper look at its contents, feels it really deserves. I may yet save up for it but it’s not the only thing GW are trying to tempt me into buying right now. I’ll think about it…
11 Comments | tags: Ad Mech, Adeptus Mechanicus, Blackstone Fortress, Daedalosus, Tech-priest, Warhammer 40k | posted in Adeptus Mechanicus, Blackstone Fortress
A few days ago I asked my partner what I ought to paint next to add to our irregular games of Blackstone Fortress, a game we’re likely to break out more often now the winter nights are drawing in and Covid-induced lockdown is once again wrapping its loving arms around the nation. The answer, emphatically, was the rogue trader Nayam Shai Murad, so here we have her – ready to join the slowly growing collection of heroes we can choose for our games.
I’ve got a bit of a buzz for painting Blackstone Fortress at the moment so I’ve put the servitor X-101 onto the desk, he looks fairly straightforward so I’ll try to get him finished up shortly.
18 Comments | tags: Blackstone Fortress | posted in Blackstone Fortress
Usually at this time of year I’m outside so long as there’s light in the sky (and often more than that) but with plague running rampant the world over, staying in and painting miniatures is the only meaningful thing I can do to fight back, so I’ve joined the ranks of those raising a middle finger to Grandfather Nurgle and locked myself indoors. With the world in lockdown I’ve been looking for things to keep me occupied and my eye fell once again on Blackstone Fortress. A while back I painted the renegade ogryn so I decided that my next target should be the traitor commissar, as between the two of them they open up the opportunity for us to tackle the Traitor Command expansion.
The first traitor guard model, perhaps even the first Blackstone fortress model, that I didn’t really like at first glance was the traitor commissar. His head looked a bit too large and that combined with his bolt pistol (always distinctly chunky on a human scale model) and power fist (again almost by definition outsized in comparison with the model wearing it) and his proportions start to look like they’re all over the place. For those readers unfamiliar with the stock model here’s a quick look at the studio version.
A very careful head swap later however, involving a very fiddly cut across the miniatures neck, and I was considerably happier. Rather than fight the odd proportions I tried to play up to them, creating the impression of a creature warped by chaos. Perhaps he’s no longer truly human, or perhaps he never was to begin with, looting the commissar’s coat he wears from a battlefield or casting off the glamour he wore to infiltrate the highest echelons of imperial command, and leading his regiment on a capering daemon dance into damnation. Alternatively perhaps he was simply lured into the embrace of the dark gods by the same strengths and weaknesses that corrupt all people. Commissars may be fiercely loyal, with absolute dedication to the Imperium stamped into the meat of their brains from a young age, but they are not entirely incorruptible. Even Primarchs fell.
Finding myself with more time than usual on my hands I took the opportunity to dig out his big buddy to accompany him.
And here we have him, leading his troops into battle against the lackeys of the Corpse-Emperor.
In the 41st Millennium there are few baseline humans as “mighty” as a commissar so naturally I’ll be counting him towards the March Might and Magic challenge being run by Ann’s Immaterium. What’s more, whilst the lockdown continues we might even find the time to get some games in and see him unleashed against the unfortunate explorers delving into the depths of the Fortress. Speaking of games I’m more keen than even to try out Warcry (especially after seeing the Scions of the Flame revealed at the weekend – those do look rather nice!) so I’ll be focusing on getting the Iron Golems wrapped up ASAP.
24 Comments | posted in Blackstone Fortress, Traitor Guard
The march of the Blackstone Fortress traitor guard reaches its long awaited conclusion as the last of the baddies from the core box are finished. Last week I finished the first four of them, now the final three come tramping in to join them. Blackstone Fortress has been a project which has dominated 2019 for me so I was hoping to get them to this stage before the New Year. I’ve still got various models from the expansions and a number of alternative heroes to paint, but if we want to play a game we’ve now got everything we need without having to fall back on unpainted models or proxies. In the meantime however here’s the final two renegade soldiers…
… and here’s their former sergeant, who now fancies himself as a (minor) champion of the Dark Gods!
Here’s the whole second squad, ready to spring out of the shadows if any explorers wander their way.
And, by way of a reminder, here’s the first squad which I completed last month.
Something I really like about these models is the ramshackle, mismatched look of them. Clearly, at one point in the past, they all wore a uniform, but as their decent into madness and treachery has proceeded they’ve found themselves scavenging more and more, patching up any gaps with whatever they can loot from the battlefield and hammering spikes to themselves in echo of their Chaos Marine masters. However, although each model in the squad is very much an individual the set contains two identical sets, without much in the way of wiggle-room to personalise them. However I really wanted to avoid ending up with both squads looking essentially the same so as far as possible I’ve tried to tweak each member of the second squad so that I ended up with one set built as per the instructions (because they are wonderful models after all) and one set converted. This wasn’t always possible, for some the paintjob alone had to do the work of differentiating them, but by tweaking enough of them I was able to create two fairly disparate looking bands of renegades. Here’s a set of comparison photos showing each pair, with the original – built out of the box as it were – on the right and the second version on the left.
Finally, here’s both squads, ready for action and starting to look like the beginning of a proper traitor guard army. At some stage I’d like to go back to my old traitor guard collection, do some tweaking and tidying up were required, and roll the whole lot into a horde of mortal scum to accompany my traitor marines.
In the meantime however I’ve now painted all the baddies from the original Blackstone Fortress (plus the Ogryn from Traitor Command) so I’ll allow myself a quick pat on the back!
In the New Year I’ll aim to crack on with the rest of the explorers, and of course with the various additional monsters, renegades, cultists and so-on which lurk in the corridors of the fortress. For now however I’m happy to call this a major milestone completed.
10 Comments | tags: Blackstone Fortress, Chaos, Chaos Space Marines, Traitor Guard, Warhammer 40k | posted in Blackstone Fortress, Traitor Guard