Tag Archives: Warhammer

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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Faith Healer

This next miniature comes from the Sisters of the Burning Rose Kickstarter from Anvil Industries. The theme of the range is essentially futuristic warrior nuns (a fine and original idea – I can’t imagine why Games Workshop haven’t tried something similar…). Smart arse remarks aside there is of course a distinct thematic cross over between these and the Sisters of Battle which GW – after abandoning them for so long that they have become almost synonymous with neglected miniatures – have announced they will be revamping and re-releasing by the end of the year. Speaking personally although I’m pleased to see them finally getting the attention they deserve I’m not particularly fired up about the Sisters of Battle – although I’m hopeful that they will be accompanied by plenty of gothic accoutrements which can be put to use in creating weird and wonderful Inq28 conversions. Likewise the Sisters of the Burning Rose themselves weren’t the thing that grabbed my attention, rather it was all the crazy characters that appeared alongside them.

In this case we have a nun with a more “real-world” aesthetic than many of the other models in either range of Sisters. She’s clearly some kind of healer and I can envision her either following my Imperial Guard around to patch up wounded soldiers or running some kind of chapel/surgery in the Underhive. That said she strikes me as being more like a “Doc” (as in Visiting the Doc in the post-battle phase of Necromunda) than a Rogue Doc (a gang’s hanger-on who seems to me less like a fully qualified healer and more like an alcoholic with a large collection of knives and a can-do attitude). She’d also tie in well with all kinds of Inq28 ideas, from joining a warband to being a handy NPC.

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Speaking of religion I’ve got another model with a keen interest in the teachings of the God-Emperor, specifically those which relate to immolating anyone  who might be deviating from His vision for humanity – I’ll try to get her finished and uploaded by the end of the week.


Cursed In Eternity – Part 3

Time for painting has been thin on the ground lately but over the last few days I have at least managed to squeeze in a bit of kitbashing and assembling models. Back when I reviewed the latest Chaos Space Marine releases I theorised that both the Master of Executions and the Dark Apostle would be greatly improved by a few judicious tweaks and adjustments. Time to put my money (or my foot) where my mouth was.

First off let’s take a look at the Master of Executions. For anyone who needs a reminder here’s the official studio model in all his gristly glory.

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My hypothesis was that this model would be a lot more inspiring, for me at least, if he was wearing an imposing Khornate helm, as opposed to either of the standard heads included in the kit. Did it work? Well I’m happy with it, although of course you’re welcome to draw your own conclusions…

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The only other major change I made was snipping away the helm of the Primaris marine impaled on the top of his backpack – it was making that part of the model rather busy and its impact was lost behind the Khornate crest. I’ll find a use for it somewhere else though – you can always use more spiked loyalists in a Chaos army!

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The Dark Apostle was a little more complex, whilst the Master of Executions just needed a little added visual interest this one had some elements I thought were genuinely bad, which – combined with a general overabundance of details – made for a model in dire need of improvement. Again, let’s remind ourselves of how the studio model looks.

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…And that was the last time he was allowed in the library…

Given my often-expressed dislike of sculpted flame that was the first thing that had to go, followed by a lot of careful scraping and cleaning to hide the resultant damage. Some slight greenstuff touch-ups will undoubtedly follow before he’s completely ready for paint. The flames on the backpack also went although I kept the hideous drool emerging from the book. I also swapped out the head for something more reminiscent of a Space Marine chaplain – of which the Dark Apostles are very much the dark reflection. I’ve always thought the reaver heads would work nicely on Chaos models but so far I’ve only been using them for loyalists so this should be a fine chance to do something a little more grim and twisted with this particular component when it comes time for painting.

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Again any thoughts or suggestions are more than welcome, I feel he still needs a little extra before he’s ready to paint.

Whilst I was about it I also took the chance to explore more of what can be done with the new Chaos Marine kit, including making the champion for my first new squad.

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In turn this led to knocking together a few new plague marines. My love of Nurgle has drifted a bit lately but I felt pulled back to the plague god’s side whilst I worked on these so who knows, sooner or later I’ll give the Grandfather’s Legion the love they deserve.

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There’s certainly a lot of fun to be had by mixing parts from the plague marines and chaos marines kits together, something I’ll definitely explore more as I go on.

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Rather pleased with the choice of head on this one – anyone want to hazard a guess as to where it’s from? It’s not too obscure but I’ve not seen anyone else use it yet and I’m smugly proud of the fact (indeed the same goes for the head on the Plague Champion above).

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Anyway, that’s all for now but the weekend is almost upon us – who knows, I might even find an hour or two for painting!


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!


Rat Race – April

Ladies and gentlerats, it’s time once again to take a look at the progress of my Skaven collection this month. My plan is to get the army finished off (in as much as these things ever are) by the end of 2019 – barring GW releasing any new Skaven to replace some of the dodgy old sculpts marring the range (which at this stage looks doubtful to say the least). With that in mind it’s time I bashed on, progress has been rather slow over the first three months of the year and I’ve got a lot of ground to cover. Thus this month I turned my attention to the Stormvermin, the second squad of these elite rodents to join the army and frankly not my favourite miniatures to work on. Some people can make them look amazing once finished, and I feel I’ve done a fair job of them so far, but they really are exasperating models to work with – it takes a lot of work just to get them looking passable.

I showed the start of this squad last month and confessed that I was struggling somewhat with them. Originally I planned to painted the whole squad with white fur, distinguishing them from my other Stormvermin squad, which have brown fur, and marking them out as the elite guard of Grey Seer Murkskitter who accompanies the army and tries, often unsuccessfully, to make the clan obey the will of the distant Council of Thirteen, as opposed to their own verminous whims and schemes. I quickly found, however, that although painting the occasional rat with white fur is quite fun, doing a whole unit of them is an exercise in frustration, so I publicly called it off and declared that I would do the rest with brown fur, background be damned, don’t try and stop me! Several readers then made compelling arguments suggesting I shouldn’t be such a baby (albeit in rather friendlier terms), offering up advice and making the generally supportive noises that hobbyists make when one of their number is facing a challenge and not enjoying it. Amongst them Azazel – of Azazel’s Bitz Box – noted that this month he’s running “Armoured April” as a challenge, so whatever colour of fur I fancied painted it was a fine time to man up (rat up?) and get to work on them.

Cutting a long story short then I decided to take a swing at getting one of them done with white fur, then a second and slowly over the month they shuffled in, one pale furred rodent after another. After each I declared “I’ll just pack it in and do the next one with brown fur” and each time I sat down to paint it I talked myself into continuing. I’m not going to pretend it was entirely a joyful experience but there we have it, the halfway point has been passed and the finish line for the squad is now well within sight.

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Of course these duplicitous rats need a leader, someone to point them in the right direction – even if that direction is often straight back to Skavenblight with their tails between their legs.

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With these eight rats done we have enough for a full squad, and as I’ll probably take a bit of a break from them before adding any more, this makes for a good moment for a group shot or two.

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The keen eyed will notice that, ranked up this way, one of the rats in the back rank appears to be attempting a quick spot of Skaven-style career progression by stabbing his boss in the ear. That’s the ratmen for you eh! Fear not however, once I add a few more (including a banner bearer and musician) I’ll try to find a way of arranging them that makes such skulduggery a little less obvious…


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…


Green Iz Best – Part 6

For a long time I’ve harboured an ambition to own at least one hundred ork boys. I remember seeing the datasheet for the “Green Tide” in Apocalypse years ago and it’s description of “wave upon wave” of ork boys had me captivated. At the time I couldn’t imagine ever owning so many greenskins but the idea of commanding such a mighty horde snuck into my heart and never left. Over the last decade I’ve added more boys to the army in dribs and drabs, sometimes allowing these most violent of space fungi to sit idle for years at a time, sometimes getting caught up in a full scale Waaagh! of enthusiastic energy. Recently it struck me that, although the long-dreamed of horde might not have reached full strength quite yet, triumph might not be quite as unachievably distant as I’d once thought. The boys now take up a sizeable chunk of shelf-space and, having already completed more than a hundred clanrats, completing such a mighty force no longer seemed quite so intimidating.

As it’s Army April I decided to take the opportunity to do a quick inventory the collection. Although the number of boys has been slowly growing even I was no longer sure exactly how many I’d painted so I dug them all out and arranged them into squads. First of all and, nicely straightforward, I separated out the fifteen shoota boyz.

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That done I counted out the first squad of 30 slugga boyz.

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That left me with twenty-five boyz left over, five short of another full squad. Time to do some recruiting!

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Just as important as the numbers is making sure each ork has its own personality. I’ve often suggested that I want to give each ork a unique head but really this is a crude way to describe my aspiration. Really I want each of the boys to be an individual, with its own distinct character, not just another rank filler.

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To do this I’ve been raiding all kinds of bits from other ork, orc and orruk kits, including the savage orcs and the old boar boys (sadly now discontinued – a shame as it was one of those kits I always aspired to but never quite found the time or money to get until it became too late).

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The barbaric, low-tech aesthetic of the orks means that these bits from the fantasy ranges fit in nicely here.

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And given the ork’s love of destruction it really was about time I gave one of the boys a rocket launcher, for those moments when an even bigger, louder explosion is called for!

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So there we have it, five new recruits ready to join the rest of the lads!

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Which means, of course, that the second squad of slugga boys is now complete.

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Time to find out what seventy-five rampaging orks looks like…

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Of course this does mean I’m only twenty-five boys short of that long-aspired to milestone. Could this year be the one I finally complete it? I commit to nothing, but let’s see how I get on…