Category Archives: Necrons

Tomb It May Concern – Part 2

A few weeks ago I showed some pictures of the Necrons that I’d been working on and talked a bit about some of the colour schemes I’ve been thinking of using for my collection of maniacal mechanical aliens. To be honest I’m no closer to reaching a conclusion but that’s ok, I have no deadlines for this project, plenty else to keep me entertained and most of the models I plan to include have yet to reach me, being part of my as yet unmade “made to order” Indomitus set. That said I’ve not been entirely idle and as a result I’ve accumulated enough finished material to make another update worthwhile. 

First of all we have the “black and white” colour scheme that I showed previously. Amongst the suggestions and feedback I received Alex from Leadballoony suggested toning down the vivid green on the model’s gun, pointing out that it was rather overwhelming – especially on such a monochrome model. I was inclined to agree, so here’s the updated version, hopefully a little less garish. 

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And by way of comparison, here’s how he used to look. It’s not a huge change but hopefully it’s sufficient.

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I’ve always liked the idea of Necrons as space-zombies, tarnished, rusted and on the verge of mechanical failure, rather than the sleek legions of automatons they might once have been before millions of years in their crypts took their toll. This is an aesthetic which this current wave of releases looks to be embracing more than any have previously. The first model I painted attempted to capture this and although I remain pleased with the results I struggled to make it look good on multiple models. 

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Looking at artwork for inspiration however I kept coming back to the idea that the other schemes I’ve tried have been too clean, and failed to adequately capture the sense of mechanical decay I was looking for. For many years this has been my go-to image when thinking about Necrons and I didn’t want to stray too far from it now I’ve finally started to paint some of my own (all the art shown here is copyright of Games Workshop by the way, and was looted from a mysterious tomb without permission). 

Necron Warrior

Likewise this image taken from the cover of the new codex again emphasises this aspect – these may be technological gods, elevated by science to levels far beyond the wildest dreams of the other races of the galaxy, but they stand at the point of collapse.

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Their systems are failing, their minds corroded into madness and the grand achievements of rationality and engineering upon which they built their empire can only struggle against the superstition and insanity which holds the galaxy in its sway. 

Necron Art

Back when I first started on this project I’d tried out an alternative colour scheme that, like the very first one, tried to explore this side of the robots. In the end I decided not to pursue it but the model was still sitting there, part painted, and I decided it was worth following the experiment to its conclusion after all. 

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I incorporated some elements of the “black and white” model but otherwise went for a very traditional metallic Necron, albeit one caked in muck, grime and corrosion. Honestly I really like it, and it certainly fits the bill of being nice and straightforward to paint. Is this the scheme I’m going to settle on? I think it’s too early to tell, I’ve come close to declaring for one scheme or another several times but as I say, at the moment there’s no rush. Here’s the full line up of current contenders. 

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As part of exploring this subject I decided to try painting a Deathmark. These were for a long time my favourite Necron models, only pushed off the top spot by the range of amazing miniatures which have appeared recently. As specialist assassins their colour scheme needn’t match exactly with the rest of the army anyway so I felt free to mess around a bit and explore a few ideas.

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If I decide to go with either of the schemes I’ve focused on above for the rest of the army – which is by far the most likely outcome at the moment – this model will fit in just fine. 

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Anyway, that’s where I’m up to with the Necrons – I’m still having fun exploring these models and playing with ideas and I hope none of you are screaming at your computer screens for me to just pick a scheme and get on with it. Check back in a month or so and I’ll have decided to paint them all pink or something… 


Tomb It May Concern – Part 1

“...the darkness that came for the Orpheus sector cared nothing for the power and pride of Man. For in the great emptiness beyond the frontier of known space, ancient and wicked minds were stirring; minds driven insane with the tortures of eternity“.

– Imperial Armour 12; The Fall of Orpheus

Back in August I posted a picture of a Necron warrior and told the world that I’d found a colour scheme I was happy with. Guess what all -I lied! At the time I thought it looked great, and honestly I still do, but the rot has set in nonetheless. Here’s a quick reminder of how he looks.

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To begin with I was keen to try out the style on some other units, to make sure it could be applied broadly across the army. I grabbed some scarabs and painted them up too and the results, to my eye, looked pretty good.

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However when I tried to replicate this success on my warriors I started to struggle. Somehow, although it worked well on individual models, I just couldn’t see it working out on entire deathless legions. Time to try out some alternatives. For one thing I really like the look of the Szarekhan Dynasty, these being the troops sworn directly to the Silent Kind himself, and the colour scheme in which all the new Necrons that Games Workshop is releasing currently are being showcased. It might seem a bit unimaginative to stick so closely to the studio scheme but I really rather like it, and given its current popularity there are plenty of tutorials available. I grabbed the painting tutorial in the latest issue of White Dwarf, followed it religiously, and ended up with something that looks like this.

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However, whilst I was waiting for a pot of runelord brass to arrive (vital really as it’s the basecoat colour for pretty much the entirety of the Szarekhan model) I decided to try experimenting with another scheme, one I’d been kicking around since the beginning of the project but which I’d not properly tried out after I fell briefly in love with the tarnished brass colour scheme. Inspired by those classic black and white Vampire Counts armies, whose appearance in old issues of White Dwarf clearly had a formative impact on my young mind, I started to consider the idea of painting my Necrons in the same, starkly monochrome style. The more I thought about it the more I was captivated by the idea of a lightless tomb world, Imperial exploritors making planetfall, the torches of the scouts playing over ruins of extreme age, and the final pic-captures, taken moments before the signal was lost revealing something like this…

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Honestly I think this is the scheme I’m going to commit to, the more I look at it the more I like it, and I can easily see myself turning out a full army looking like this. I can also imagine it working well on some of the other units I’m thinking of adding, several of which I’m struggling to imagine in the other styles. That said I’m always open to feedback, so if you have a convincing case to make for one of the other colour schemes put it forward in the comments box, I’m all ears (and if it’s really convincing, please, please say it now, don’t wait until I’m 5000 points in!). For ease of reference here’s all three side by side.

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Ultimately I like the Szarekhan model well enough but it lacks the personal connection of being uniquely mine. The original style works well on a single figure but I’m struggling to imagine painting a whole army that way. The black-and-white style speaks to me, and should look good both on individual miniatures, and across a whole army.

In order to test this theory a little further I decided to try painting some more scarabs, this time in the black and white style of my new dynasty. Let’s take a look.

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Honestly I’m pretty damn pleased with them (and yes, I’m sure I said something like that last time as well) and I’m itching to paint a few more. Before that though, I’ve got a few other things to raise from the grave…


The First To Awaken

I’ve been trying my hand at painting the first of my Necrons and I think I’ve hit on a scheme I’m happy with. I wanted something that looked aged and damaged, as the millennia spent sleeping in their tombs took their toll, but wanted to avoid the usual rusty look that I’ve already applied widely to Chaos (especially Nurgle), Orks and Skaven.

The basing is pretty simple) – I just wanted something to get him finished and in my view a model isn’t done until the base is done. Otherwise I think I’m settled on this scheme so when time allows I’ll have a go at painting up a few more.


Mean-Minded Metal Man

Just a quick tangent into something silly today. I was looking round for something mechanical to paint, preferably something which ties into one of my current projects, for Azazel’s Mechanovember challenge. Instead of picking something out of the half-finished pile however I spotted this Chaos Android – or if you prefer a proto-Necron – sitting in a box of models given to me by a friend a couple of years ago. He’s survived unpainted perfectly well for decades (the model not the friend) and he might well have continued to do so, but it struck me that he’d be quick and straightforwards and sure enough I bashed through painting him in the course of an evening, using only the odd spare moments whilst I waited for other things to dry (there’s only so much batch-painting of orks a man can stomach after all!).

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I won’t deny he’s a weird and ugly looking model, and the passage of years has not been kind to him, but there’s a certain nostalgia at play as well – I’m certainly glad he’s not going to have to endure another decade without paint!