One of the first to join Kell in rebellion Zo-Kalar is now perhaps the oldest, and most ambitious, of his senior lieutenants still surviving. Having wisely avoided the petty internal rebellions of the early days that saw many of Kell’s rivals interred in Helbrute sarcophagi Zo-Kalar has managed to remain close to his master, serving both as an advisor and a trusted field-commander. Yet Zo-Kalar has not simply exchanged servitude to the Imperium for the chains of another. He seeks a loftier goal than mere conquest; immortality and Princedom in the Immaterium, and he will shirk neither danger nor shame to achieve it.
Another nice thing to come out of #DreadTober, beyond seeing all the inspiring work others are producing and working on a Helbrute of my own, is the push it’s given me to finish off outstanding projects – including one that’s been cluttering the painting desk for far too long.
I bought the Dark Vengeance set as soon as it came out and set about the Cultists and Helbrute with gusto. The Dark Angels contingent were intended to join my Space Marines chapter, or perhaps form the basis of a small group of allied Dark Angels, but so far both projects seem to be on indefinite hiatus. I never really got started on the Chaos Lord or Chosen either and whilst the latter are still lying in an unassembled heap somewhere I’m proud to be able to show off the former at last.
I know he’s ‘just’ the Dark Vengeance Chaos Lord, without any conversion to speak of, but have you looked at this model lately? Like much of the starter set it blew my mind when it was first released. Three years on and I hardly look at it twice. It wasn’t until I decided, pretty much on a whim, to get on and assemble it, that I realised all over again just how damn good it is. Just look at the sheer level of detail in this model; the screaming faces in the armour, the mouth on the helm, the spine in the backpack, that sword!
Of course, I have also been working on my #DreadTober pledge; this Helbrute. As you can see the metalwork and armour is now mostly filled in. Still, with less than a week to go now I’m not entirely filled with dread (boom boom) but there’s still a lot to be done if he’s to be finished in time. Here goes!
The second post I ever made on this blog, way back in November 2013, concerned the two squads of cultists I was working on at the time. It’s slightly worrying to me then that it’s only now that I’ve finally got both squads finished. Never mind, at least I did it, and met my personal goal of making each unique from the others as well. They’re split over two squads; one armed for close combat – the Cult of Nug, and on for ranged combat – the Cult of Yeb. Here’s Yeb himself.
It’s been suggested to me that, with his Commissar’s coat that might be just what he is; a Commissar turned traitor. At first I thought this was a great idea but the more I considered it the less I was convinced. A Commissar must be utterly ruthless and unquestioning, a man without doubt or fear who’s resolve has only been strengthened by a lengthy training program and, undoubtedly, invasive indoctrination and brain-washing regimes. Such a man would not – indeed could not – simply turn to Chaos on a whim. Furthermore, if he did fall, the result would be a far more callous and terrible warrior than the mere leader of some rag-tag cultists.
Much more likely then that Yeb found his coat on the body of a dead Commissar, perhaps one who had stood, still firing heroically, as Kell and his terminators closed in. However this little train of thought did get me thinking about how interesting it would be to make a fully developed traitor Commissar, perhaps for the nascent traitor-guard army I keep considering. It would be interesting to look at how such a man could fall, and what would be created if he did. Watch this space!
Anyway, here’s the rest of the squad.
As I painted this next guy I started to realise that, with his deeply pitted eye-sockets, he was almost certainly blind. To me this puts a disturbing, and definitely Chaotic, twist on the model. I wonder what infraction led Imperial authorities to order this man’s eyes put out – or if he was born blind and shunned by the suspicious people with which he shared his hive? Either way the Dark Gods must have heard his whispered entreaties an granted him some alternative (I’m thinking infra-red – imagine him spotting approaching enemies by their body heat and gunning them down as they attempt to approach his holdout under cover of night or a dust storm. Ironically his sighted companions would be left firing blindly in the same direction – this is the sort of paradox that Tzeentch finds especially pleasing). Perhaps the process of transformation was so painful that he’s gagged himself to prevent him from, in desperation, asking the Gods for anything else.
And here’s a group-shot. Continuing the theme the next post should be the Dark Apostle that led them all down the twisted path into Chaos in the first place.