Toy soliders

I recently purchased a getting started set of millatrum temputus as I always wanted to paint up some of these shock troops. 

But I also wanted to add to my skitarii troops so I needed a theme/reason for why these scions would be allied to my ad mech force. I had seen a few people who have swapped the heads for vanguard heads and that look really effective.  I hit upon the idea of ‘indentured scions’

Background 

The forgeworld of Gantz, home to legio preasagius,  the true messengers,  is a wealthy world. Strongly aligned to Mars,  following the red planets support in rebuilding the titan legion. As well as the ruling techpreists the planet is home to a large and wealthy merchant class. While not members of the priesthood,  they are still loyal to the arch magos.  Part of this loyalty is to provide a number of troops per merchant family.  These troops come in 2 forms, the family chattels (worker) (allowing me to add astra militarum troops in the future)  and the 2nd born sons (scions) To serve the magos in this way is a great honour and in return, the family get access to better contracts. The 1st born inherit the family title. 

As the sons of rich families,  they get acess to better weapons,  armour and training.  Some of these scions are rewarded with bionics, a mark of honor on a forge world.  Leading them is a techpreist known as the master of men (count as a commissar, converted from a techpreist enginseer).

They are deployedare deployed to support the skittarii in battle, but take on a more independent role. They often provide theit own transport, filling a gap the skitarii lines with fast advancing troops. 

Conversions

To convert these scions I needed to make them less stormtroopers and more skitarii.  The head swap was easy, but I wanted more. 

I have converted the back packs to add the top of the skitarii backpacks.  This added the aerials but also removed the blanket rolls. I also added the gieger counters from the skitarii back packs. A useful tool when deploying with vanguard! 

For the sgt and the melta guns I removed the bottom of the back pack aswell. I didn’t need the power pack of the hellguns and this gave me space for the rad cleansers from the skitarii.  I also added spare mech arms to these troops to signify importance. 

As these are not imperial troops, I have removed the aqulia from the guns as well. 

Painting 

For the painting I have a dilemma.  As they are not ad mech, should they wear the red of Mars?  This gives the option painting  proper allies, different from the main army. As the are from Gantz,I can keep a lot of the colours,  especially the gold, but allows me to introduce new colours. 

In game 

I plan to use these as objective grabbers. The taurox will be armed to kill troops, with the taurox assault cannon and the volley guns. The troops have 2 melta guns for anti armour if needed. The ideas is to race across the board, something the skitarii struggle with, to take objectives. They will decamp from the transport and then camp on an objective  for as long as they live. This is giving the skitarii time to foot slog in support. They cost around 300pts and I will be using the millatrum temputus codex,  treating them as allies.

But wait, you used a whole box of skitarii just for back packs?  

With imminent release of the skitarii forgeworld kits I have saved the rest of the skitarii box set ready for these. Both the new sets have their own back pack, so using them for the scions is not a problem. 

Reaver blog 4-getting ahead.

With the main body done only 3 tasks remain.  Head, crew and weapons. The head and 4 ‘human’ crew were done together.
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The head is in 2 parts. Top armour and the rest. The rest is in several parts assambled using super glue very little weight sits on this part so normal glue is fine.  I pinned the the neck joint for extra strength.

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To keep the top armour in place I used 4 magnets. It only needed some help to stay in place, so it was easy to use small magnets. They are 3mm x2 mm  disk neodymium magnets.
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The top armour was painted the same as the rest of the armour,  but I had found a nice image of true messengers titans with bisected head colour so I went blue and white for the head. The symmetrical pattern is a standard design on imperial titans so it’s a nod to the old classic design.

The head itself is single blocky part with 1 panel glued on. To this are 4 pipes and the crew. They 3 crew were treated as individual  models for painting. The rest of the head was easy to paint.

The ‘eyes’ (multiple lense clusters’) are awesome parts. I really enjoyed painting these. In the kit is a perspex sheet to make the covers.  I have never seen a reaver that has used these and I did not break a tradition.
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Once painted the crew were glued in and then I jb welded the neck in place.

The head adds so much to the model, the extra time spent paining it added to over all look.

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Once done it was on to the mighty techpreist.  This is a great model this is almost totally hidden. But I did it anyway! Build wise, the techpreist is really fiddly. The arms are very fine with a small joint. The are so thin they bend while being painted. He was painted in the colours of my skitarii force from forgeworld world Gantz, home of my titan legion. My aim is to build a small force of admec to support the titan and for an up coming campaign. 
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Next up the weapons. 

Since you been gone…

ok, it’s been a while since my last blog, but I have been busy. Real life has been do that thing where it gets in the way, but it’s also presented an opportunity.  Work on our home has continued and we are now 6 weeks in to a 6 week build, so basically half way!  We think it will take another 8 till we can move home. This has reduced my gaming and painting, but I still got some work done. 

Painting

My last blog was on the additional 2 captains and these are finished. Next up was the completed land raider command tank. I still need to finish off the driver, but wanted a change. I have finished my 6th company champion and returned to painting veterans. I have made a start on my vanguard on foot. 2 are done with a 3 rd started. I am loving the poses, and the are coming on well. They were built befor the new codex, so have limited weaponry. 
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Continue reading

Command and control 

I do like a good project. With the new codex, I am trying to avoid buying loads of new stuff, instead adding models I have always fancied painting. I still have a good chunk of troops to paint, but the odd new model won’t hurt. 

Using this approach I have decided to add two new captains. One from 1st company, the other, the Lord high executioner, captain of the 8th. Both have models available, but for various reasons, are ideal. So, it’s project time and I am converting up both. 

Captain Agman of the 1st company

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I have Terminator captain already and he is a great conversion, done a few years ago. Armed with a stormsheild and a Greek style spear (count as a lighting claw). I used loads of scibor bits and he looks rock hard, but in game he’s expensive and doesn’t match the look of my current force. 

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Time for a new captain me thinks. I like the captain model in the strike force ultra box set. He would make an awesome 1st company captain, but he is selling for silly money on eBay (£35) and I am not spending silly money on any model! So the hunt was on for a new model to convert. The current range is really good and the current plastics have great movement. I was drawn to the captain in the deathstorm box set. While a blood angle, there was not a huge amount of blood angles iconography. So I needed to change a few bits to make him a bit more regal. Weapon wise, I wanted a gladius for 2 reasons. 1-cost. I wanted a cheaper model, so power weapon and Storm bolter (130pts) 2-I don’t like striking last! In A squad of 5 terms with powerfists/chainfist the extra attacks from a thunder hammer aren’t game changers. The Head was a easy choice. The 1st company leads the veterans., so old and experienced were to of the list. The new ultramarine upgrades pack the perfect head with a bearded face and a laural. I added a ultramarines icon on the leg and the odd purity seal, topped him off with an iron halo from the terminator kit for the classic term captain look and he’s done. Cheap and cheerful will plenty of character. Total cost was £9.25 for the captain, inc postage, and the rest from the bits box. 
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Painting I wanted an über regal look. So reds and golds were important. The new legion decal kit, bought for another project, helped as well. I just need to sort the base out. Still playing with ideas for this one. 

Lord high executioner.

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GW do a great model for the 8th company commander. I have a a few issues with it, but it’s a nice model. Firstly, it’s finecast. Not the biggest fan of the god awful product. I hate the idea of getting multiple crappy versions till I get a usable model. Secondly, I think it’s a it grim for my army. My ultramarines are ‘glorious’ not ‘grimDark’

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I had legs of the of plastic librarian left over and planned to add the torso from the old plastic commander  with a vanguard jump pack. However, then GW teased the new ultramarines upgrade sprue. The torso of that kit was awesome so plans changed. 

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I used head that looks like a company champion form the upgrade kit, a shoulder pad and the torso. The arms are just leftovers as are the weapons. The sword and shield combo looked ok so I stuck with that. I know the power axe is ap2, but as said earlier, I hate the I1 rule! I wanted to jumppack to stand out and bought the blood Angels guard jump pack. Leaving the wings on this time, I gave him an angelic look. 

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Painting wise, I really wanted to limit the colours. With blue, white and gold being most prominent, with any accents in grey (company livery) this led to a mooted colour scheme that looks quite ‘glorious’  the base was a fun idea. I trimmed the edges off the librarian base and stuck it to a 32 mm bars, green stuff to smooth the join and cove as per normal. This added height and make his stance easy to sort. 

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Cost wise I have spent very little. The upgrade sprue was £8, with most of the parts left over. (Head and both weapons used on the 1st company captain) legs, back, weapons and arms all from the bits box and the jumppack costing £3. 

So, there you have it. 2 new captains, total cost just over £20, both unique, both fitting my current force and both fun mini projects. I hope you like them!

Till next time. 

The relocation painting challenge

We are having some work done on the house and it’s going to take around 5 weeks. It is so much work, we are having to move out. They are ripping out floors, walls and windows, so we will be without water, power or heating. We are moving into the inlaws home while they tour the south of France in a caravan. 

So while I am out of the house, my painting will be more of a challenge, but I need something to help me chill out during what is going to be a stressfully time. To this end I have decided to challenge my self to to catch up with a few projects. All need to be ultramarines as that limits the amount of paints I need. I have some units to do and a couple of new bits to add to my army. I am challenging my self to paint the following in 5 weeks. 

  1. Command tanks. (Currently around 5%)
  2. Command squad standard bearer and company champion, both on bikes (around 25% done)
  3. Attack bike (unstated)
  4. 5 vanguard on foot (under coated)
  5. 8th company captain (unstated) (stretch target! Don’t think that I’ll get to this one!)

This challenge will help me to stay focused and to take a good chunk out of my to paint pile! The codex has made me want to add to my armoured force, with stalkers, whirlwind, vindicators and predators all on my must get list. However, I really don’t want to be added any new kits until I have painted what I have! (Ok, pipe dream, but I can try) I also want to move most of the army onto 32mm bases. Not because GW say I must, but because I think they look cooler on 32mm over the 28mm. 

Well that’s my plan. Now you can all sit back and watch me fail spectacularly. Till then, see you across the battlefield. 

Big Mar and cheese. 

one of the biggest changes to marine codex was to finally elevate chapter master calgar to a Lord of war. In addition to his new position, he also gets the buff all ultramarine player have been waiting for. The gauntlets of ultramar (2 power fists with under slung two linked super bolters) have finally lost the unwieldy rule! The means he can finally live up to his true potential. 

On the charge he will now get 6, s8, ap2 attacks fighting at i5. This makes him a beast in combat, added to this, he retains eternal warrior, 2+ armour, 4++ save and the ability to just pick his warlord traits. 

I have both versions of the calgar, but he rarely gets used. To celebrate the changes, I have decided to revisit my version in articifer armour. I was never really happy with his banner and his base needed some work. I have decided to make a new, better back banner rather than fix the current one. I wanted something more personal, but also had the standing he deserves as the chapter master. Base wise, he needed a 32,m base anyway, so I decided to go for a raised up cork base to give him a bigger stance. 
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Banner
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Initially I started with a plastic back banner from the command squad. This was topped with the new standard topper from the new upgrade kit. I added a laural from the terminator kits. I then sculpted some rope to add more regal featuers, to hold this in. Place I used 2 smaller skulls. The loose ends were normally caped off with tassels, however, to reflect his endless war against the tyranid menace, I used a left over claw. With an extra purity seal, the build is done. Paint wise, I went for the star field look I have been using a lot of late. I added the white to enhance the regal look. The central decal is from the legion decal kit. This project failed. 
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I wrote the above to show the effort I put in, but it really didn’t look right, so plan be was much simpler. I stuck a topper from the sternguard kit and painted it. This worked really well and I am really pleased with the outcome. Simples really works some times.
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The base is a simple cork build. I keep it clean so as not to distract from the model. 
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I hope you like my refreshed version of the ultimate space marine. Just for comparison, here is the terminator version. Till next time, see you across the battlefield. 

Command and conquer-the new hq tanks

This is a new one for me. Hq choices that are vehicles? Sounds interesting,  but it does throw up a few new questions.

For those that don’t know, warhammer world has a special edition box set, only available at the gw store at whw.  The set is a modified land raider and rhino. The set includes all the rules and back story of the new tanks. Parts wise,  you get a full landraider and rhino kit and an extra sprue of new stuff.

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The kit is really nice, presented in a big, lavish box. You get a full landraider and rhino,  2 equipment sprues,  2 sets of new ultramarine decals (not the a4 sheet Just released, but a small a6 card) instructions /rules sheet and the upgrade sprue. The new upgrade sprue is stunning.  The level of detail is great and has some stunning new part. The captain parts in particular are great. It comes with 3 heads, 3 shoulder pads, the best plastic back pack I have seen and some great arms. The vehicle parts are just as nice and ooze details. If you like  your marines blinged up, then this us for you.

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Background
These tanks form part the command of a spacemarine force and the landraider is commanded by a captain.  The rhino, known as a primaris is the link up with fleet, hence the huge radar dish, while the landraider excelsior is a mobile hq facility. They act together to coordinate the marine task force.

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Rules.
These tanks are bought as a pair. Costing 400 points for the 2 and taking a hq slot.
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They differ from their parent vehicles in some ways, but have the same basic stats. Weapons change a bit, the inclusion of the grav cannon on the landraider being the big change.

The get a load of new rules as shown below, but the real strength is the partnership working. This really supports good  play and it’s not just dump the on the table and the will work.

The tanks offer a mixed bag of uses and genrally fill lots of roles. Both are transports (rhino 6, raider 10) but are really designed for this role.

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The Rhino is the best strategical system. Each turn you can bring on a unit from reserves or once a game bring down a massive orbital strike. (S10, ap1, 7″ blast, Ord, barrage). You can also support units with 3 ‘servo skulls’ per game. Each one gives a buff once per game. Defensively you get a twinlinked plasma gun, but remember, the orbital blast must be shot at the same target as the pg. (Unless you give it split fire from the landraider -more later on that) the rhino also gives the landraider +1 to BS making all shots hit on 2+ most being twinlinked.

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The landraider is the beast of the pack and is a real game changer. Weapons wise you get the twin lascannons and a grav cannon with the grav amp. It still keeps the spirit of the machine so you can split fire as with normal landraiders.

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You get a better save that ignores stunned and shaken results it also gives a 6++ save. Skills wise you can give 1 “unit” from the same detachment one of a list of usr.

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You can apply this rule to any unit within 12″ of the raider (18 if you buy a staff of command upgrade for 10 pts). This gives a lot of options that can be game changes and with some thought you can build lists around this. For example you can but a squad of 4 Las cannon Devs and give them skyfire and to make them an aa unit.
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You can also allow one squad to fire normally rather than snap fire, even in overwatch. I will just let you take that in. You can make units unchargeable. Grav cents in particular gain from this.
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To get some of the some of the buffs you need to stay close to the tanks, making your tactical use of the army, which is something I like.

Game use
As I described there are lots uses but it does leave me with some questions.

First off, how does the warlord work? If I take this as a my only hq are both the warlord? What about slay the warlord do you need to kill both?

Challenges are also intersting. Can you challenge a tank? It gives you few rules questions!

Lots of people are comparing these to the fw command tanks. I can see the links bit they are different. To me these are a better but more expensive option.

Modeling
These tanks are a great kits and will be fun to build. They are easy to convert up with kits available and the forgeworld tanks are a great start. The damocles is a great version of the primaris, just the plasma guns need be to built.
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The landraider is just a blinged up st raider. You would be able to use cent grav cannons to make the new weapon. The captain is easily sorted and add a small radar. Some fantasy banners would make a great rear banner. If you have spare razor back heavy bolter you could easily make this landraider in to a basic version.
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It is a shame that these are exclusive releases. They are a great kit and I love the look of them.the additional sprue is a stunning kit. The details are amazing and the kit is well designed.
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I am going to take a long time on painting these. I post updates as i go. Till then I hope you found this post of use.

See you all across the battlefield!

Project TWV-Tyrannic war vets

With the release of the new forge world kits for the ultramarine so, I am planning a project. I really like the tyrannic war vet models, but a squad of ten you end up with a lot of similar models. So I want to make up a unit of these models that is unique and varied, but also really challenges my skill.

The plan is simple, the delivery however will be complex and difficult.

Components

To make these models I need to mix plastic and forgeworld. So here is my component list

  1. Head- mk4 preator upgrade
  2. Torso-mk4 preator upgrade
  3. Legs-sterngurd legs
  4. Arms-mixed sternguard and tactical squad
  5. Shoulder left-plain plastic basic pad (to take tyranid bits)
  6. Shoulder right-mk3 ultramarine from forgeworld
  7. Weapon-sternguard bolters
  8. Trim-Phobos bolt pistols and pouches
  9. Trophies-various tyranid bits
  10. Chains-1mm fine chain

Design

My plan is to build them mixing FW ultramarine kits with plastic sternguard kits. The arms arms are mixed from sternguard and the plastic. A couple of the tactical arms are held in great firing pose and I wanted to use these.

To really ‘tyranid’ them up I want to add some trophies. This will be a mix of tyranid parts on the bases (32mm) and personal trophies on the shoulders/guns and backpacks. I want these to be subtle and not massive parts, so things like claws, armour plates and bio upgrades will be used. The sgt will have a larger part, maybe even a head?  To attach these parts I an using a fine (1mm) chain. I am not used to using this and it will be a challenge to accomplish this and I need to be careful not end up looking like a chaos marine. I need to keep them clean and use plenty of purity seals. They will be finished off I will use the veteran assault decals from the ultramarine legion transfers.

Bases

The bases will be 32mm with a built up cork base and use the ‘nid parts to dress them. I might try to use some hormagaunt claws as the beginnings of tyranid spore towers growing out of the base.

Conclusion

So thats my next big project. I have most of the bits now, some bought, some from the bits box. I am waiting for the forgeworld parts. This project is going to a great fun to build and I need to learn some new skill. The chain work will be great fun to learn. Making the trophies will also be a challenge to keep the clean.

The big, the bad and ugly

Now every army needs a leader. From the graceful high elves to thuggish orcs. For my ogres I need a tyrant. GW do 2 great kits, one with a great weapon, one with 2 hand weapons. Expensive yes, but really nice looking models. But for my plans, neither are right. I wanted my army to be different and for it to push my modelling skills. I also wanted the cos t to be low, so it’s conversion time. 

Let’s look at what a tyrant should be. 

  1. Big. I mean really big.
  2. Armoured. 
  3. Different,
  4. Did I say big? 

2 and 3 are easy to convert. 1 and 4, not so much. The ogre kits are simplistic and limited in movement option, but are all interchangeable. So I needed a plan to pull together a model that looks bigger but is really the same size as the rest of the army. To do this I decided on 2 approaches with the hope of tricking the eye. To added height around the model and to fill the frame. 

Weapon wise, both says big better than s great weapon, so that’s easy. I thought I ad also add a few extra knives to bulk him out.

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All I needed was some armour and a way to add height. 

Height was always going to be difficult as the model has no way to increase its size. You can add leg length, but you loos the slab sided look of the ogre. I decided on added height to his base and then to add something to his back. Looking at the army book, I noticed that gorefang had a back pole, festooned with trophies. So I nicked that idea to add a back banner. I fell on the idea to use the iron gut banner as it is pretty big. 

So the parts list from ebay

  • A sprue of ogre Bulls
  • Great weapon from the iron guts
  • Mournfang helmeted head
  • Helmet horns
  • Arms for the great weapon from the mournfang kit
  • Back banner from the iron guts
  • 2 iron fist (for armour)
  • Some bits for the belt

I also added an extra head from a bellower for my next project, more on that to follow.

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Total cost for this was around £20, but this will cover 2 heroes. 

Building this was a lot harder than planned. To hold the armour on his shoulders I wanted to add some leather straps. This was easy from green stuff, but helped get my eye in with sculpting.

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The cris-cross was easy to sculpt and it gave me a way to mount the back pole. Sculpting is not my strong point, but it’s ok on simple task. 

The trouble was on the arms as the gut plate got in the way. I have extended the left arm and this got around the problem. The shoulder pads were planned to be 2 converted iron fists, how ever while looking for an ork iron jaw, I found a deffdread armour plate that was the left shoulder. These shoulder plates squared off the model, thus bulking out the frame. A few bits to waist, some left over horns for the gut plate and done! 

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Adding height to the base was another way to add to the model. Sadly, I had so much fun making this I forgot to take some pics! 

So that’s my tyrant. He is taller in apperance but is the same base model. It might not be the gw model, but it is my take on this model. It works well and ranks up ok too. 

I mentioned the 2nd bull on the sprue earlier. This will make my 2nd character, a butcher. I will be fat, bloated and, hopefully, really disgusting . Left hand is easy, but still stuck on his right hand is a problem. He will need a new belly, apron and some detailing.

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This is a far more sculpting than I am used to, but will mean I am well on the way towards the all plastic army. Not planning any yeti or gougers, so no problem their. Hunters and Maneaters are easy converts, sabertusk are bit harder. I have no idea yet for the firebelly that I really want to do. 

The butchers bill

i discussed recently my attempts to make an ogre tyrant and mentions the conversion I was going to try. To make a fully plastic army is my primary goal, but I also wanted to push my skills a bit.  Doing the ultramarines hasn’t pushed my sculpting skills to far.

To convert a plastic in bull into an obese butcher I needed to add to the gut, an apron and a new selection of weapons. Head wise the GW butcher model is a wierd looking thing, but I wanted a fat, but normal looking butcher. The bellower head from the bull command sprue was an easy choice. 

The paunch

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To create the belly, first i needed the gut plate to disappear. This was trimmed out and the hole filled with green. I then made a big ball of green stuff and sculpted a large paunch. I made it hang down over the belt . Whilst this will be covered with the apron. I did try to get this looking correct, especially the sides.  I needed the strech marks visible on the sides, so I wanted to make this work
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Apron part one

I decided to sculpt the apron in 2 parts. The lower section way just a square of flat green. Draped around the paunch and shaped. Once it had set I made a rope belt. My rope is easy too make. I take 2 long thin rolls of green and generally twist into a rope shape I make longer than I needed. This is wraped around the belly, I crossed it over loosely. It didn’t need to to neat as the crossover would be covered. I also made a small square ‘napkin’ this was draped over the belt. This will add detail. I added a knife on the belt at this time, to help shape the rope. I also made a thinner rope for the neck strap. This was added to neck of the model. A lot of this was guess work. The jowly face didn’t allow for much error. Agian I needed to wait while this cured
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Left arm

While the apron cured, I made a start on the left arm. It was easy decision to add a cleaver to my butcher. As the bull kit has a spare cleaver it was a simple weapon swap. I distressed it down a bit and add a hook hole at the top. 

Right arm

This was a real dilema. I didn’t want a club or sword, but none of the other right hands worked for me. I really struggled until I hit an idea. What if I didn’t have weapon? What could it use instead. My bits box for the ogre is very limited so it didn’t take too long.i found a big juicy steak and thought it would be great if he was offering up this chunk of meat to The Great Maw. I needed a hand to hold it. I found the hand with mantrap was the only ‘open’ hand. I trimmed the weapon out. And fitted the steak in the gap. A bit of green and it was done. I removed the hook and trimmed the steak a bit to fit snugly. This gave me a really fun looking hand and very characterful  arm.  Using an out streched arm he is clearly offering using a snack to the hungry god. 

Apron part two. 

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For The 2nd half of the apron I wanted it to look draped over the belt. With a thin sheet of green stuff I stuck it to the top of the 1st half. It was the pulled down and founded back up it was tapered towards the neck line and tacked on to the rope on his neck. I sculpted it into the flow of his body with the bottom of the rope belt and napkin visible at the waist line. This left me with a long bib that can be painted up to with blood pouring from his mouth. This draped look really adds to bloated look of the butcher and his waist now looks suitable obese. 

Final trim 

To finish him off I added some bits from the command sprue and mournfang kits. I wanted a few scars too to i sculpted. These with some green stuff. His pose is fairly fixed, as with most ogers, but the lack any armour, the apron and the big chunk of meat all add to the differnt feel from this character. 

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All in all I am really happy with thus guy. His girth is suitably increased, his look and weapons make him stand out and I am fairly pleased with the sculpting. I have challened my inner lee for this guy and it’s worked out ok. 

Cost wise the butcher, new, from GW is £23.00 mine hase cost me around £4. Not a bad saving. The army is now 8 ogre strong and is starting to grow in stature. It’s still along way off, but by May, this lot will all be tabletop ready. I hope to add some more then and by the end of the May I am planing to be around the 1,000pts. I can then actually get a game in. 

That’s it for the prophet of the Great Maw. On to painting some Bulls to get my technique down befor I paint this guy. I hope this is of some value. Till next time, see you across the battlefield.