Category Archives: Necromunda

The Cult of Ruin – Part 6

Next up, something I can only describe as a rabble of Chaos cultists. As I’ve mentioned before work has been particularly crazy recently and, despite actually managing to finish some models last week, painting time has been thin on the ground. Thus when I did manage to claw back some painting time I went for a few “easy wins” and tackled some of the part-painted chaos cultists that have been waiting on the edge of the desk for some time.

First up there’s this savage beastman. I built him a number of years ago (indeed a quick look back into the archives of this blog tells me it was 2015) but he’s spent most of the intervening time with nothing more than a few basecoats to his name. Time to put in the (fairly minimal when it came down to it) extra effort to get him finished and ready to rage through the Underhive in full colour!

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Whilst I was working on him I found my attention drawn to the traitor guardsmen from the Blackstone Fortress box. Now as I’ve previous noted my aim with Blackstone Fortress is to paint up those models that I can’t easily proxy from elsewhere in my collection and then work on the rest – that way we can actually play it with a full set of painted models sooner rather than later. Traitor guard are something which isn’t in short supply so my plan was to shove them to the back and crack on with things like Negavolt Cultists and Ur-Ghuls in the meantime. A good plan sure enough, but not one which survived first contact with the painting desk! After all, it’s all very well to have these organised and sensible aspirations but how could I allow models as cool as these to sit unpainted for long?

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In turn working on these gave me the impetus to go for a few more “easy wins”. All of the above models may well find their way into my long-gestated Chaos Cult gang for Necromunda. When I originally planned this gang last year the idea was that it would be quick and easy to put together, just a case of gathering models I’d already painted and going for it. However I quickly became dissatisfied with this idea. The models I had to hand had mostly been painted several years ago and the quality of the painting really didn’t hold up next to the newer stuff. Thus I picked out several cultists that I wanted to use in the gang and decided to make a start by giving them a quick repaint – and of course having made this plan then proceeded to do absolutely nothing about it.

However with other chaos models on the painting desk and feeling the temptation to do something quick and easy with what little painting time I could scrape together I finally got around giving these three the love and attention they deserve.

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Now I just need to find the time to get this month’s Skaven photographed and write some words about them. Perhaps if I give up sleep…

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Ortruum 8-8

Don’t worry, I’ve not leaned over the edge and fallen off the world, or anything equally dramatic. It’s simply that this is the time of year when work is at its busiest and I end up spending most of my time outdoors with not a paintbrush or a miniature in sight. Which of course tends to reduce my output of painted models rather dramatically!

Of course I still have all kinds of hobby plans I’m wanting to pursue, but – after a rather productive April – it’s a safe bet that things will probably slow down a little over the next few weeks. Even when I do snatch some hobby time it’s not automatically the case that my creative energies – always a wilful beast at the best of times – will go in the direction I want them too. Thus once again the Eschers were left to languish whilst I found myself distracted by Ortruum 8-8, the bizarre psi-hound dispatched from Lord Helmawr’s secretive psykanarium to seek out those the lord of Necromunda deems undesirable.

It’s a weird beast this one, and not to everyone’s taste, although personally I love the fact that they were willing to create something so strange, ugly and utterly unlike anything else – either in the range or elsewhere. Plus, it was a fine opportunity to paint lots of unhealthy looking skin!

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The little hands it uses (presumably) to feed and care for itself – in as much as it can – always struck me as particularly creepy and so, rather than paint them as mechanical (as on the studio model) I decided to go for living flesh instead. To me it emphasises the clinical, industrial cruelty of the 41st Millennium – why manufacture mechanical hands when literally everyone is walking around with two already attached. Plus, in comparison to the bloated bulk of the rest of the model they look oddly small and delicate (although, the more I look at him, the more I realise that as a pudgy, baby-like figure, barely cognisant of the enormous power it wields, which struggles to understand even basic concepts, has something ridiculous on the top of its head and is controlled by shadowy puppet-masters, it’s no surprise it has small hands as well…)

It’s worth noting as well that this is a big creature, it’s swollen, suspensor-borne flesh easily outsizing even the most muscular of Underhive locals.

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As mentioned above progress is likely to remain somewhat erratic for a while yet but hopefully that just means the creative fires will burn all the hotter when I do find the time to indulge them!


The Ladykillers – Part 12

I had great plans to get the Escher gang rounded up this month, and once again those plans look set to miss their target. Ah well, I have been busy with other things so I guess I’ll let myself off! Nonetheless I feel like I’ve been working, very slowly, on the Eschers for quite a while so I’d like to try and get the last few members of the core gang wrapped up ASAP.

On that note here we have the gang’s brute, the giant genetically modified monster known as a Khimerix. These monsters, described as “flesh-fused chimerae” and “gene-spliced hybrids” are created by the gene-wrights of House Escher as attack beasts, status symbols, gladiatorium combatants and, above all else, proof of their ability as queens of the genetic and flesh-sculpting arts.

As no official model has appeared as yet I decided to use the Tiger of Dirz model from the Confrontation range (that’s Confrontation – the game made by French miniature’s company Rackham, not Confrontation – the name for the original version of Necromunda, although there is a pleasing symmetry at play nonetheless!). The Tiger of Dirz was itself a flesh-crafted attack beast, created by the genetic manipulators of the Alchemists of Dirz so the creature seemed like a natural fit. All I had to do was give her a suitably Escheresque paint job and she was ready to join the gang.

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As brutes go she’s perhaps not quite as big as she could be, although she still towers over the gang’s collection of phyrr cats…

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…and looks suitably imposing next to the gangers themselves…

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However an ambot still makes her look a little small…

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…and she’s actually no bigger than the sumpkroc.

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Thus, as and when an official model for the Khimerix is produced I’d expect it to be somewhat larger than this (given that she’s brute whereas the croc is merely an exotic pet), but for now she more than fits the bill.

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Working on this has reminded me (as if I needed reminding!) of how much I loved the Rackham range. I used to drool over their miniatures each month but, given that I was a poor student and they were terribly expensive, never got around to buying any until the company hit the rocks and foundered into bankruptcy in the 2008 recession. Suddenly the market was flooded with cheap miniatures from the range which I greedily snapped up (the silver lining to every cloud and all that). Maybe it’s time I got around to getting them painted…


Muties – Part 1

There’s a mutant for every occasion. Need a horde of luckless bullet catchers driven ahead of your advancing chaos legion? Call in the mutants. What about some low-level troublemakers for your Inquisitor to deal with? How about civilians/wildlife/scenery/lurkers-in-the-dark to trouble your Necromunda gangs? If you want to live in the seedy underbelly of 40k then mutants are indispensable. Even more so than everyone else in the Imperium they were born to lose. The 41st Millennium’s ultimate underclass they play the part of the victimised serf with a natural grudge just as well as they do the spiteful villain. Plus, the range of modelling and creative opportunities they represent are just too much fun to pass up!

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This is a project I’ve been working on for a ludicrously long time, some of these models have been sitting around half-painted for at least five or six years, so I reckoned it was about time I actually bashed on and got something finished. All of the current batch are based on the Lord of the Rings goblins, which make for excellent mutants in and of themselves. Indeed some, like this chap, I’ve painted up entirely “as is”, without needing to do any converting at all.

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Others, like this one, are a bit more radical. Although the goblin models themselves aren’t multipart kits they really forgive cutting them and sticking on bits from other kits, and on such lumpen, ugly-looking characters even the crudest greenstuff can cover a multitude of sins.

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This one was the first to be finished, several years ago now, but the slow progress of the project as a whole meant I decided to go back and give him a bit of a repaint by the time the rest of the clan were nearing completion.

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There’s something about this one that even gives me the creeps!

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This chap is one of my favourites, a task-master who really does have eyes in the back of his head!

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As intimated by the “Part 1” in the title I’ve got quite a few more of these still to finish so I’m aiming to bash on with them alongside other projects. Despite the fact that in some ways I feel that I should be concentrating on one thing at a time and getting a few things finished these have been waiting for attention for so long it’s getting embarrassing so I’m keen to get them done once and for all. Hopefully it won’t be another five years before we see “Part 2”!

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The Ladykillers – Part 11

After a slow start I’m pleased to discover that the Escher gang is coming together nicely. I’m now reaching the point where there’s almost a glut of gangers, although there are still a few weapon options I think it would be fun to throw into the mix, so my next move will be to add the gang leader and another champion before moving on to one of the other houses. First though here are two more of the rank and file gangers, both of which have been sitting around half-painted for long enough to become embarrassing.

When I built Kherrisa I wanted to give her a chainsword but back then the Forge World weapon upgrades were no more than a distant dream. Of course, clever though I thought I was in finding a suitable alternative, it’s still taken until now to get her painted.

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Melikka used to have a different head but I was never entirely happy with it as it strayed rather close to one I’d already used for one of the other girls, so as soon as the Forge World alternative head kit was released she suffered a quick decapitation and the installation of a new face.

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As noted above I think the gang is almost at what I would consider fighting strength (that is to say, not done – because no project is ever done and this one especially is a very long way from that, but ready to take to the tabletop as and when things quieten down enough to let us get a game in). With this in mind I’m aiming to get the last few members of the core team painted up ASAP so as usual, watch this space!


The Ladykillers – Part 10

Fans of House Escher could be forgiven for feeling somewhat neglected in the pet department. Whilst the Goliaths enjoy their monstrous crocodile and the Orlocks have an similarly titanic hound, the ladies find themselves currently lacking their cats. I’ve found suitable proxies for the equally pet deprived Cawdor and Van Saar, the former using a Vulcharc from the AoS Tzeentch range, the latter the skull crabs from Heresy Of Us.

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Alongside these creatures the gangers of House Escher keep this odd looking predator, the Phyrr Cat. The name of this beast has proven to be a source of contention – I always pronounced it as “fire” cat, and I’ve even heard people say “fur” cat, although I now understand the official pronunciation is “fear” cat. I’m not sure it really looks like a scaredy cat to me but presumably this allows us to compare the phyrr cats – and indeed we shall.

Phyrr Cat

Official models for the phyrr cats were previewed around a year ago but, with the response being almost universally negative, the decision was made to start again with new sculpts. Personally I tend to agree with this, the models shown were well below the premium standard expected of Forge World. You are of course welcome to judge for yourself. My apologies to whomever took this photograph originally as it has now circulated online so much that I have new idea to whom credit should be given. If anyone knows let me know and I’ll update things accordingly.

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In search of a suitable alternative I explored numerous ranges, soon discovering that cats are thin on the ground as miniatures. I even tried roping in this beast although she proved to be in entirely the wrong scale and even the Goliaths refused to go up against her after she took to knocking them off their shelf…

Duska

Finally I stumbled upon the Hoar Cats from Wyrd Miniatures (a creature which gives quite a different impression written down as opposed to spoken aloud). Last time I paid any attention to the range was many years ago when everything they produced was rather spindly and metal, and as a result given to bending out of shape in a stiff breeze. Thus these solidly plastic cats were a nice surprise.

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I did consider using a bright and exotic colour scheme to tie them in with the rest of the gang but on consideration decided that their small-size meant less is more and too much detail would swamp them.

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I’m pleased to have these done, partly because they add to the variety of units available to the gang and partly because in a place like Necromunda which is swarming with rats (many of which are carrying bombs) it pays to have a few cats around. Indeed the Underhive may prove to be prime habitat for them due to the distinct lack of trees for them to get stuck in.


The Oathbones – Part 1

Apart from finishing off the Khorne Slaughterpriest the other day (not the biggest of jobs as he was mostly done already) I’ve been trying to get back into the swing of painting. Usually this comes pretty easily to me but, perhaps because work is quite busy at the moment, I’ve been unusually slow to pick up a brush. Rather than make a chore of it I’ve been relaxing by kitbashing a few Cawdor gangers instead. I’m not planning to paint these straight away, I’d like to add a last few models to the Eschers first and then I’ll probably work on the Van Saar and (perhaps) Chaos gangs – on the grounds that those should be fairly quick and easy to achieve. I have however been having a lot of fun “sketching” out ideas for the gang and exploring what I’ll do when I get around to them.

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As with all of the gangs the Forgeworld head and weapon sets really add to the degree of character within a gang. They’re not the cheapest but they look excellent so I’m happy to justify treating myself to them.

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┬áThere’s a wonderful madness to the Cawdor that really taps into the insanity at the heart of the Imperium, and I wanted to play it up with the gangers I’ve been working on. This one for example believes that rather than trust his sinful, fallible, human eyes to help him aim his gun he must cover them over and thus, with all distraction removed, the Emperor will be able to act through him and guide his fire. Whether this works or not remains to be seen…

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This grim figure will probably become the gang’s ash-prophet leader although I have a few possible tweaks in mind before I call him finished.

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These aren’t the only models on the painting desk however and working on these has been a fine palate cleanser (or should that be palette cleanser?) so hopefully I’ll have something else to show you soon.