Category Archives: Necromunda

The Irondogs – Part 10

With what’s starting to look like a full blown xenos invasion on our hands it’s time for the muscular men of Ironhouse to get their collective act together and prepare to defend their turf. To do that I’ve called in another recruit to bring a bit more bulk to the gang (although I admit it’s mostly because I like building and painting Goliaths – plus, I needed a little bit of a break from painting genestealer cultists after bashing through most of the rank and file over the weekend). I also went back to a couple of previously shown gang members and made a few tweaks and improvements.

First up we have Max. Left behind as part of the skeleton crew guarding Ironhouse when many of his gang-brothers went to the Feast of Khorg Max has stewed in resentment, a sentiment undiminished by news of the disaster that took place there and the slaughter of most who attended. In truth however his animosity towards Korak dates back much further, to the days when Max was a mere juve who dreamed of glory. When Korak declared he would tame the great sumpcroc which dwelt in the drains beneath Ironhouse Max pushed his way to the front and demanded a chance to join in the hunt. Although Korak was ultimately successful, capturing the beast and saddling her with what is – to Max at least – the quite ludicrous name of “Snuggles” Max himself was dragged from the stinking waters after having his hand bitten off. To this day Max feels a phantom itch crawling through the crude blade which replaced his hand every time he sees Korak lounging on his throne, the great reptile curled languidly at his feet.

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This model has had a real battering over the year or so since it was released and fell into my possession. I’ve tried to base several conversions on it and each time it ended up back on the metaphorical drawing board looking slightly more abused than the last. I’ve done my best to cover over the worst of the damage but it is perhaps best if he is not subjected to too much close observation. This undoubtedly fed into his back story, building up the idea that life hasn’t always treated him quite the way he would have liked and as a result he’s rather bitter about things. The fact that he is actually better off as a result only adds insult to injury!

Whilst I was about it I decided to right a wrong that have been bothering me since I first showed gang boss Korak, and fix the damage to the end of his gun that resulted from me making a pig’s ear of drilling out the barrels. Despite fellow blogger The Imperfect Modeller’s very fine suggestion that the damage was probably the result of a failure to maintain the weapon properly in the Underhive I still couldn’t unseen what I knew to be a mistake so in the end I broke out a dab of greenstuff and patched it up.

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I also realised that I’d left lovable sidekick Ugly Gabe in a bit of a fix by forgetting to equip him with any close-combat weapons. So long as he stays away from any up-close and personal fighting he’ll be fine but the moment he fails an ammo roll or get’s charged he’ll be down to fighting with his fists alone. As the thought of a Goliath that avoids a proper fight is unbearably silly, and quite unbefitting a macho man like Gabe, I took the opportunity to arm with a combat knife as well as his trusty krumper.

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There are also a couple more Goliaths waiting almost finished on the painting desk and I did wonder about finishing them off as well, but I decided to keep my focus on the genestealer cultists for now and ignore the temptation to get too sidetracked. However, assuming I get the xenos finished soon, I’ll try to get  them done at some stage over the next few weeks as well.

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The Cult of the Abyssal Gaze – Part 3

In the dark depths of the Underhive the xenos invaders gather their strength…

Over the weekend I managed to find some time to crack on with my genestealer cultists gang. With three more neophytes done my goal of getting the gang ready for action by Christmas is starting to look more achievable. To be honest there’s not a whole lot more to say about these beyond reiterating what so many other hobbyists have said previously; that these are amongst the finest models Games Workshop have produced and tie-in brilliantly with the Necromunda setting. Anyway, without further ado allow me to introduce Neophyte Zhu…

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… plus their clanmate Neophyte Xixos…

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…and lastly the sinister Neophyte Castus…

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Next up, a neophyte with a grenade launcher to bring some added punch to the gang, plus the early generation monster with a rock saw which I showed a WIP of previously, then I’ll need to crack on with the cult’s magos and his familiar.


The Cult of the Abyssal Gaze – Part 2

“And if thou gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will also gaze into thee”.

Fragment of text attributed to the pre-Imperial Terran Friedrich Nietzsche, believed to be predicting  the coming of the Tyranids

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As you may have gathered from the previous post a xenos invasion of the Underhive is underway. We’re getting into the darkest part of the winter, time to stay indoors in the warm, paint miniatures and perhaps even play some games. My partner has been talking about wanting to try out Genestealer cultists in Necromunda and so, in a fine case of biting off more than you can chew, I’ve decided to try and get a starting gang ready before Christmas. You are welcome to cheer me on or mock me when I fail, whichever floats your boat.

Dipping a toe into the waters with a couple of test models, here’s the first recruit, Neophyte Gaius…

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…accompanied by one of the wonderfully belligerent looking aberrant models, a monstrosity which goes by the name Abomination Omega.

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Having tallied up what looks like a suitable starting list, I’ve still got seven more cultists to paint over the next couple of weeks, not an insurmountable challenge but expect to see a fair number of insidious aliens around here for the next little while.


The Irondogs – Part 9

Some models are just so cool they jump straight to the front of the painting queue. As soon as I heard that my Goliath gang could have a pet crocodile accompany them through the Underhive I wanted one and the model, when it arrived, didn’t disappoint. There is something about a sumpcroc which is wonderfully in keeping with the concept and aesthetic of the Goliaths. You just can’t get more bullishly aggressive, more arrogantly macho, more imposingly belligerent, than walking down the street with a crocodile lumbering along at your heels. Plus I’m sure she counts towards Azazel’s latest monthly challenge! Meet Korak’s loyal pet, and the unofficial mascot of the Irondogs gang, “Snuggles” the sumpcroc.

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She really is a big beast, even in comparison to the rest of the gang. Next to a humble guardsman, who’s probably only moments away from being eaten, she’s positively gigantic!

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Of course, she’s not the only monster lurking in the Underhive… Watch this space!


The Irondogs – Part 8

A lone Goliath walks into Ironhouse and calls for the sanctuary of his House-brothers. Calling himself Kutter he tells a tale of his gang’s extermination in the badlands beyond the hive after they crossed paths with a colony of ash-crust miners. Although some of his claims, such as that the miners were sheltering weird three-armed mutants and that some of his gang-mates fell under a hypnotic spell and allowed themselves to be lead away into the ruins as docile as servo-grox, sound far-fetched the Irondogs know they can ill afford to turn away any help willingly offered. The strange warrior is soon inducted into their ranks and Korak turns his brooding gaze to the wastes beyond his walls and the threats that lurk therein.

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I wasn’t entirely sure about Kutter at first, and he’s been through various iterations before reaching this point, but I have to say I’m rather pleased with him now. He’s ended up with a slightly different profile to the rest of the gang, hence my decision to make him an outsider, but I think he still works. As usual however I’m open to any feedback you have.


The Irondogs – Part 7

Everything’s better with a friend right – and what better friend for a Goliath boss to have than one who values brotherhood and loyalty and isn’t just gunning for your job? Ugly Gabe is the heart and soul of the Irondog’s gang, the cool head that keeps the rash and the violent from biting off more than they can chew in one go. He hauled his boss Korak from under the rubble at the Feast of Khorg, convinced “Bloodbath” Bosrak out of the fighting pits and back onto the streets and helps the juves find their courage when the going gets tough.

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There’s still plenty more Goliaths to paint but getting Gabe finished means the central triumvirate of characters are all ready for action. I’d like to get a few more of the lads finished up soon so my partner and I can get some more games in, but I’m also needing to work on some adversaries for them so expect things to be Underhive dominated around here for the next little while.


The Irondogs – Part 6

Today we’re going to take a look at two of the key elements of the Necromunda set-up I’ve been working on; my Goliath gang boss Korak Kingbreaker and his old stomping ground, the territory of Ironhouse. Be warned, I ramble on a lot!

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Let’s talk about Korak first. Developing the  personalities and backgrounds of our gangers and charting their exploits on the tabletop is right at the heart of everything Necromunda fans love about the setting. I’m a huge fan of the orks but with 70 boys in my army I can’t pretend that any of them stand out to me as individuals. Pick out a random skeleton warrior and ask its owner who it was before it died and your likely to get a very long-suffering look at best. Inquire about the backstory of an Orlock juve on the other hand and prepare yourself for a lengthy explanation of how they came to join the gang, their goals and aspirations and the adventures they have taken part in so far.

Now of course it hardly needs to be said that I encourage getting to know the characters in any army, the extra depth that develops as a result is quite unparalleled. However whilst you may well write pages and pages of notes on the life history of your Chapter Master only the most dedicated of hobbyists would dream of doing something similar for every tactical marine (if that’s you by the way I salute you, you are a hero to me). Nonetheless I would argue that beyond the world of Inq28 you will never find gamers who get to know their characters as well as those of us who dwell in the Underhive.

Despite this some characters will inevitably end up being more influential than others. As the leader of my gang Korak shapes the direction that the whole crew end up taking. His story is the story of the Irondogs, stamped indelibly upon the gang, their rivals and their territories.  It all begins with the soon to be infamous atrocity know as the Feast of Khorg…

Before we get into all that however that take a look at Korak himself. That way if you’re finding all this rabbiting on terribly dull you can skip the rest, having at least seen what is hopefully a nicely imposing miniature!

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Incidentally I’m aware that I’ve made a poxy job of drilling out the barrels on his gun, best to salve my ego by not mentioning it eh? At some point it will begin to annoy me so much that I replace it, I do have a few spares of that gun kicking around.

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If you plan on surviving long in the Underhive you’re going to need plenty of willpower and determination. Korak is a survivor. He has battled the worst that the Underhive can throw at him, pulling himself up by the bootstraps and crawling over the corpses of friends and rivals alike. Naturally, as a Goliath, he’s also gifted with phenomenal strength married to a willingness to indulge in act of supreme violence at the drop of a hat. This doesn’t mean he’s stupid however. There is a pernicious rumour going around which states that the Goliaths are all a bit thick (I blame the Eschers personally). Often they find themselves conflated with the Orks, on the grounds that the two are muscular, violent and love big, loud guns. However I would go so far as to suggest that they actually have as much, if not more, in common with the Dwarves. They are a proud and stubborn people, they are skilled smiths and metal workers, they are hardy and – most of all – they are exceptionally practical. If a tool can double as a weapon then that’s one less thing to carry. Why kill with flair or flourish when the main thing is making sure your enemy is dead? When a Van Saar’s fancy gun jams on Underhive filth, or an Escher’s stiletto snaps against furnace plate a Goliath’s fists will be more than enough to keep him alive. You might not catch a Goliath reading poetry (although if called upon to do so he might beat you around the head with the hardback edition) but offer him a book on tactics or advanced furnace maintenance and – assuming he’s learnt to read, hardly a given in the Underhive – he’ll be a happy man. Korak then is an intelligent, cunning and at times almost political, character. However this doesn’t mean that he is any less ruthless when he needs to be. He may have a good friend in Ugly Gabe (more on him soon!) but the Goliaths are a recalcitrant bunch. They respect strength above all because a weak leader is a death sentence in the Underhive. It’s nothing personal, they may even like him as a man, but if he can’t demonstrate ruthless authority when he needs to then he has to go. Most of the gangers would love to be leader someday and Bosrak in particular is an unhinged maniac, his brain turned to porridge by too many combat stims. On a bad day he’d beat up his own shadow on a bulkhead wall. So long as Korak’s authority remains absolute however Bosrak serves willingly as his most fearsome enforcer and attack dog (even more frightening than Snuggles – more on her below).

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Those of you who’ve stock with me as far (well done by the way) may well be wondering who the aforementioned Khorg was, what happened at his feast and what kind of place is Ironhouse? Well I’m so glad you asked! Having found out a little about Korak let’s take a look at his old boss Khorg.

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For those living in the lower reaches of Hive Araneus Khorg’s word was law and his influence absolute. His was the iron fist that had claimed a great swath of territory, covering hundreds of levels, dozens of domes and manufactora and thousands of kilometres of rusting corridors. Countless overseers feared him over their own house lords and countless more workers toiled in terror of the coming of his enforcers. In time his holdings spread from the toxic depths at the hive core to the ash shantys beyond the walls and up, creeping like a cancer closing its fist around a heart, towards the spires of the Hive itself. One after another, Goliath gangs bent the knee to him whilst his rivals were swept aside and so his forces grew into a true army, fiercely loyal and – to those seeking to maintain the status quo especially – desperately dangerous. Few dared challenge him openly and of those who did none survived long. High above, in the filtered air and well-lit chambers of the spires, his name was being spoken with increasing loathing. His ambitions where plain and all the Hive Lords knew that in time he would seek first to claim a place among them then to see each deposed until only he remained. Even amongst the lords of House Goliath such a thing was intolerable, for when it comes to their rivals a shared bloodline offers no safety and the thought of a pretender gang-lord taking a seat at their table was more than they were willing to suffer even to further the goals of their House. Who can say what pacts were struck among them but the men and women who rule Necromunda are like sharks that swim in black water, predators without compassion and ruthless in defence of their power.

In a grand display of strength Khorg called his army together. Many hundreds of Goliaths gathered for a festival of feasting, gladiatorial combat and feats of strength. It was a show of power intended to rival the greatest excesses of the spires, and to remind those dwelling in the lower reaches that Khorg and not Helmawr ruled here. Some even believed that Khorg intended to conclude with a declaration of war and send his troops rampaging upwards through pre-mapped tunnels and shafts to tear the head from hive governance in a single strike. If he had been so foolish he would have been sorely disappointed, the roads into the spires are well guarded, built to withstand a frontal assault and patrolled by legions of ruthless house veterans. As it is more subtle agents were in play, and the Hive Lords also wished to use the Feast as an opportunity to display their power and displeasure to all who might harbour thoughts of sedition.

Who, now, can truly say what Khorg might have planned? At the height of the Feast an explosion raged through the hall, bringing down the roof and crushing Khorg and his army beneath a tidal torrent of rubble. Of Khorg’s senior lieutenants Korak was one of the few to survive, pulled from the wreckage by his old gang-mate Ugly Gabe. With most of their gang-mates lost the two decided to return to their old territory in Ironhouse, from which to consolidate their turf and do what they could to survive the coming storm.

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By setting things in the aftermath of the Feast we find the depths of the hive in a state of turmoil. A power vacuum has suddenly opened up and an enterprising gang can seize prime turf and, if they can hold onto it, make a name for themselves. Ironhouse is one such territory, a settlement crammed with the thousands of sweating workers that are needed to maintain the ancient machines of the Halcyon Gate, packed alongside the destitute and the desperate. It is a gateway in its own right, a half-hidden back door by which illicit goods may enter the Hive, and in the days of Khorg’s reign was a Goliath stronghold ruled by Korak as Khorg’s vassal. Now Korak intends to hold it for his own, but that won’t be easy. His gang now has only a fraction of their former numbers whilst covetous enemies are muscling in on their turf. Both Orlock and Cawdor have large and influential presences in the local area and could easily decide to stamp out the Goliaths once and for all. More pressingly however a gang from House Escher calling themselves the Ladykillers are moving in whilst whispers of sedition run through the local populace like rot through a sack of corpse starch. For a long time the workers have been oppressed by the boot of House Goliath and there are those who say there shall never be a better time to be rid of them, even if calling for the strength to do so accrues a bloody debt to be paid to sinister allies from beyond the veil. Perhaps most pressing of all are the local ash-crust miners. Having armed themselves to defend against raiders now they’re seizing territory from the more established houses. Rumours that they harbour strange mutants amongst their number remain unsubstantiated however.

If Korak intend to hold off these rivals he needs support. He has put out a call to other survivors of Khorg’s army to gather beneath his banner, although as yet very few have done so. Furthermore in all of the confusion his beloved pet Snuggles has vanished into the flooded corridors beneath Ironhouse. Time to gather the boys and lure her out again.

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Inventing a detailed background for both Korak, his gang and his turf had got me really excited about this project again. I’ve already started doodling maps of the territories around Ironhouse that will soon be echoing to the sound of gunfire as the gangs set to carve out a home for themselves from the corpse of Khorg’s empire. First order of business will be painting up Ugly Gabe as he’s right at the core of the gang as well, then I’ll start on some of the other characters I’ve been inspired to create.