Amid The Ruins – Part 1

When the Warcry boxset was released last summer it came with a large collection of terrain, enough to put together the ruined city streets in which the game is set. Despite the fact that I still have a lot of Underhive terrain needing to be painted as well I’d like to tackle this soon so that we can try out some games. Terrain isn’t something I’ve painted that much of however, especially outside of the 41st Millennium where I can lean on my love of rusted metal, so I decided to practice by finishing off a couple of half-painted buildings from the Azyrite Ruins set first.

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I challenged myself to get them done in short order and not get too bogged down in the detail of something which is, after all, primarily intended as a canvas upon which the real action will take place, whilst still producing something that I was happy with. Overall I’m pleased with how they turned out – I certainly learned a lot from them, so whenever I do get around to tackling the mean streets of Carngrad (which still won’t be right away unfortunately) I should be ready to go.


Jesters Do Oft Prove Prophets

An old favourite amongst my collection of miniatures is this ghastly jester, who scurried along as part of my Vampire Counts army long, long before the ghouls of Sylvania became the twisted knights of the Flesh-eater Courts. I first painted him about a decade ago, and then repainted him in 2017 when I set about tidying up and modernising my Vampire Counts army.

However it struck me that he would fit in well with the noble, heroic champions of chivalry *cough* that are the modern Flesh-eater Courts and, as I have a scheme afoot to put together a little Warcry warband of ghoulish horrors, I thought it was high time he enjoyed a reinvention.

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Surely when the good people of the Realms see him approaching, accompanied by the other knights, nobles and men-at-arms of the court, they’ll know that salvation from evil is at hand!


Blackstone Fortress: Traitor Guard – Part 1

Having painted up most of the baddies from the Blackstone Fortress, and enough of the heroes for a crew of adventurers, my attention has turned to the traitor guardsmen who make up a large part of the Chaos forces in the game. Until now we’ve been reliant on raiding my existing collection of traitor guard to represent these turncoats but the models from the Blackstone Fortress set really are impressive and I’ve been looking forward to getting to work on them properly. Each squad contains seven guardsmen and, with three already painted and shown previously, I decided to start by tackling four more to round out the first group.

First up, two guardsmen armed with the ubiquitous lasgun.

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Of course, when you really need to show that you mean business, and the dark gods are watching but need some light to see by, you can’t go wrong with a flamer.

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Lastly we have the squad’s champion, this sergeant who has embraced his new creed with dark fervour.

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And there we have it, a whole squad ready for action and another step closer to getting the original Blackstone Fortress boxset completed.

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Working on these I’m struck, once again, by the degree to which they outshine the old loyalist Cadians. Looking at them, and the gorgeous new Sisters of Battle range, we can only hope that some new regiments will be emerging to fight in the Emperor’s name in the near-ish future. Of course, I’m also still hoping for a full lost-and-the-damned/traitor guard range at some stage too.


Blackstone Fortress: Gotfred de Montbard

It’s mid November, the nights are increasing cold and dark and the days aren’t much better. We’re reaching the time of year when staying indoors and playing Blackstone Fortress is very appealing. Time to get a wiggle on with painting the rest of the box then. Breaking myself in gently (on the grounds that batch painting traitor guardsmen isn’t that much of a break from batch painting orks) I decided to tackle one of the new heroes, the crusader Gotfred de Montbard.

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He’s quite a strange looking character, clearly a knight but seen through the lens of the 41st Millennium, and that very oddness was one of the main things that attracted me to him. I’ll admit that I was also drawn to him in part because I thought he’d be fairly straightforward to paint, after all he’s mostly just armour and cloak right? Well, it turns out he’s not quite as simple as that, there’s enough to him to keep him interesting but not so much that I ran out of time and energy to make a start on those traitor guardsmen. Before I get back to working on them however here he is next to his new friends and colleagues who’ll be joining him in exploring the dark corridors of the fortress.

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Not too shabby I reckon – heretics beware! Of course, now I need to bash on and actually paint said heretics…


The Irondogs – Part 13

It’s all kicking off in the Underhive at the moment. This weekend saw the release of Dark Uprising, the eye-wateringly expensive but still rather lovely new Necromunda boxset. Despite the fact that it’s rather painful on the wallet I’m still excited about this, containing as it does a combination of really interesting and atmospheric-looking terrain, and two new gangs, both of which are of interest to me. On the one hand we have the brutal jackboot of oppression, the po-po themselves, in the form of the Palanite Enforcers. We already saw the Old Bill muscling their way onto the streets a couple of months ago and at the time it was announced that a second, more heavily armed and armoured variant, the Palanite Subjugators would be coming soon.  Like many people I assumed we’d be looking at a Forgeworld upgrade kit so seeing a plastic kit for this is fantastic, especially as I’m gearing up to start my own collection of the fuzz to unleash on the local miscreants, bams, neds, ne’er-do-well and other assorted scum of the Underhive. If you need me I’ll be watching detective dramas for “research purposes” and practicing my lingo. Attracted by the smell of bacon we have the other gang in the box – the Corpse Grinder Cultists, who are exactly as friendly and loveable as their name would suggest. These are important not just because angry cannibals are something one can never have enough of but also because it’s the first time we’ve seen something truly new in Necromunda for a very long time. We’ve seen lots of things on the sidelines of course, developing and enriching the world in which the game is set, but now we’re actually seeing a whole new gang, something the developers have been hinting at for a while and which is alleged to be the first of many. Of course it would be great to see Redemptionists, Ratskins, Pitslaves and all the rest of the old gangs making a return at some stage but personally I’m thrilled to see a breath of fresh air entering the Underhive and reminding us that reliving the ’90s is all well and good but this is a creative goldmine and we’ve only just scratched the surface.

Down in my own little corner of the planet’s surface, the industrial fortress of Ironhouse, the gang warfare is set to hot up considerably.  Since I last worked on my Goliath gang at the tail end of last year Genestealer Cultists have come sneaking in from the tunnels that lead into the ash-wastes, House Escher have established a presence in the ill-defended areas of the territory and a Chaos cult has begun spreading their influence, whipping up rebellion amongst the helot population. Lately agents of House Van Saar have come rappelling down from the hive above, carving out an outpost from which they can conduct secretive missions of their own and tramping over the hard-won territories of the locals without seeming to give them a second thought. Now there are rumblings of a Cawdor crusade taking to the streets, and of course I’m expecting Corpse Grinder Cultists and Palanite Enforcers to arrive in strength soon. The Irondogs of House Goliath were already stretched thin trying to hold onto their turf – and if you want to read the story of how it all began then I recommend you take a look here – and things have only become worse since then. If Korak and his boys want to keep their old territory it’s time for them to do a little recruiting of their own.

Anyway, enough chat – let’s take a look at the new boys. First up we have Grolg, who I like to think of as a real “Goliath’s Goliath” – that is to say an angry and imposing muscleman with a suitably un-subtle two-handed hammer.

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Next up there’s Dansk, wielding a brutish chainsword (although it looks more like a chainsaw than the kind of thing other gangs employ).

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Lastly there’s Butch, with an improvised maul and a bolt pistol which in itself looks heavier than most clubs.

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And of course here they are all together.

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It’s been about a year since the last time we had a groupshot of the whole gang and although they haven’t added that many new members since then with these latest three joining up I thought it was high time we had another.

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With these finished I’m aiming to focus on Blackstone Fortress for the next little while (and Orks of course, I’m not forgetting that I still have ten of those to paint!) but with the new Necromunda releases soon to be winging their way to me I’m feeling the call of the Underhive again (although when am I not?) so I’m sure we’ll  be looking at more of the inhabitants of Ironhouse before we know it.


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!


Touch Me I’m Sick – Part 1

I hadn’t really intended to tackle the plague marines for my Death Guard for a while yet but this model has received a bit of attention, on and off, over the last few months, until a couple of days ago when I decided to just crack on and get it finished.

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As a devoted follower of Nurgle in the 41st Millennium I’ve got quite a few plague marines models which I’ll tackle sooner or later, many of which – like this one – have been kitbashed with the blightkings. Before I get to them however I’d like to finish painting the hoard of poxwalkers currently occupying a corner of the painting desk. There’s only ten to go now so I’ll aim to knock through them in short order and then turn my attention to the plague marines properly. At least, that’s the plan, and you know what they say about the best laid plans…