Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Magnus the Red complete

While looking around for something (anything) to do rather than finish up the very last little tiny bit to do on the 2000 point army I'm taking to the Tempus Fugitives event in March, my eye fell upon the Primarch of the Thousand Sons, Magnus the Red. He, too, was partially painted, so it wasn't a big deal to get him finished up, and snap a couple pics of him alongside the recently-completed Sekhmet:

Magnus is described in the various novels as being a giant, even among his fellow Primarchs, and the model certainly doesn't skimp on the size. I ended up having to mount him on a 60mm base, and he's almost 75mm to the tip of his axe! He makes even the massive Sekhmet Terminators look tiny.

I tired to give him a ruddy, reddish skin tone, which turned out all right. Originally I'd painted him up with white robes and red runic script, but they just looked terrible so I did a little repaint and swapped the colors for red robes and white scripts which ended up looking a little better. I also went with a nice big wolf pelt cloak to tweak the nose of our local Space Wolf player. All in all, it's not my favorite Primarch model that's out there, but it's what was available. He won't be part of the army I'm taking to England, but nevertheless it's good to get him done and out of the way!

The rules that I'm using for him are from the Age of the Emperor expansion pack available from the Tempus Fugitives site here:

The Primarch Magnus the Red, the Crimson King
10 4  6 6 6 6 4 10 1+/4++

Upgraded Unit Type: Heavy Infantry

• Primarch Armour (The armour provides a 1+ armour save [remembering that a roll of a 1 is always a failure], the Relentless special rule and a 4+ Invulnerable save.)
• The Red Staff (Master crafted force weapon)
• Psychic Hood

Ever Onwards! Magnus can never capture or contest an objective. For him the road to victory rolls ever onwards.

Titanic Might: Such is the power of the Primarch Magnus that he may re-roll all failed rolls to wound with close combat and shooting attacks.

Loss of Control: Should Magnus be slain, a psychic shockwave pulses from the fallen Primarch and his body is magically transported away from the battlefield. The effect on his army is devastating. All Psykers on the battlefield (friend and foe) suffer Perils of the Warp. Beware: The flesh-change affects the Thousand Sons as normal.

Special Rules
• Fearless
• Independent Character
• Eternal Warrior
• Relentless
• Master Psyker (C:SM pg 86)
• Gift of Prescience (C:SM pg 86).
• Surprise Attack (C:SM pg 85)

Psyker Mastery Level X: Knows all Thousand Sons and Librarian psychic powers. Automatically passes all psychic test and cannot be affected by devices that affect psychic powers.

Channel for the Warp: Magnus may cast up to four powers each turn. Each power may be used only once per turn, and only a single power may be used in the assault phase. Such is Magnus' capability that he can use more than one psychic shooting attack per turn; all of which must be directed to the same target.

Cyclops: Because Magnus has a single eye, his lack of depth perception means that even with his post-human abilities he has a Ballistic Skill of 4 and may not re-roll to hit with any shooting attacks.

So he's a beast on the table top, but is a massive liability to the army should he be slain. As it should be, I suppose!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Land Raider Spartan Build

As I've managed to get virtually the whole 2000 point army painted for the Tempus Fugitives event in March, I thought I'd treat myself to some build time. Recently I came across a fellow on eBay who was selling off a cardstock/foamcore version of a Land Raider Spartan. I thought it looked like it might be pretty neat if I could detail it up a bit.

It showed up in the mail on Friday, and I got stuck in. I started off with chopping up a bunch of half-moon plastic rod to give the tracks that little extra to make them look like the original GW model's style. The Land Raider Spartan in the rule set that I'm using was armed differently than the way the fellow had it modeled, but the seller was nice enough to build one for me without any side or roof weapons so I could arm it as I chose. I needed to mount a Predator's single lascannon sponson on each side, so using a pin vice and an x-acto blade I carefully cut out the shape I needed and trimmed out the foamcore. The sponsons fit right in and I added the other side doors.

While rooting around in the various vehicle bits boxes, I came across an original Rhino's front light bar, so I cleaned up the front of the tank and trimmed the bar down to the correct size before gluing it in place. On the rear, I dug up some exhausts and a grill to give it a bit more character.

Once that was done, I fit it with a dozer blade, and added some power cables similar to the GW kit. The Termpus Fugitives list version of the Spartan is fitted with two Heavy Bolters on the battle deck, so a trimmed down version from a current-era Land Raider seemed to fit the bill. I was originally planning on using the pintle mounted Heavy Bolters from the Fortress of Redemption kit, but alas the Closet of Doom didn't see fit to give them up. Naturally, I'll find them as soon as this tank is painted!

After that I popped off the paper hatch that came with it and replaced it with a current-era Rhino hatch, and added a couple banner poles and called it a day. I'm pretty pleased with how it's turned out thus far, and I think it'll be a nice addition to the Thousand Sons as the transport for one of the 20-man Legion Tactical Squads.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Whirlwind Complete!

Not a whole lot of painting time of late, but I did manage to polish off the Whirlwind "Haathor's Breath" last night, and snapped a couple pictures of it over lunch today. Of course, as is always the case it's only after I've sealed it and am looking at the pictures in the blog post that I realize I missed painting some stuff (in particular the power cables leading to the launcher box). Gah! Guess it's not 100% complete!

Pretty straightforward conversion, using a mix of Chapterhouse kits (for the front plate), Tom McBride's kits (the replacement sides) and a bit of plasticard and a pair of 40mm bases (to make the old-school Whirlwind launcher). I wanted to give it a bit of motion, so I added a launching rocket from the current Whirlwind kit, attached via a bit of steel wire and some greenstuff to make the flames. All in all I'm pretty pleased with it!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - A whole mess of infantry painted!

Nearing completion with the 2000 point army I'm planning on taking to the Tempus Fugitives event in March. Managed to finish painting all the infantry!

First up is the model I'll be using for Chief Librarian Azhek Ahriman. In the TF codex, early on in the Heresy Ahriman is represented by a less-obviously-chaos-influenced statline, and I built a new model to represent him at the onset of the Great Crusade. Armed with a Force Staff and Plasma Pistol, and wearing Artificer Armor, I also modeled him with a floating book and a blue cape to reinforce his status as a psyker. Had to add in a sneaky nod to the Thousand Sons' eventual fall to Chaos with the symbol of Tzeentch on one of the pages of the book... Heh.

Next is the second unit of Terminators for the army (though I'll only be taking the one pictured above to the event). These will represent the Sekhmet, bodyguards to Ahriman. While the other squad (Squad Ankhet) is armed with a prodigious amount of wargear and weaponry, I went with a much more basic wargear load out with the Sekhmet (combi-bolters and power weapons) to keep the points more reasonable.

After that were the remaining 9 Tactical marines and Sergeant Hesyre. In the codex, Hesyre grants the unit to which he is attached specialist ammunition, giving the squad an Inferno Bolts analogue which I felt was appropriate for the Sons of Magnus. He also comes with a rule called "Vulnerable to the Change" which means that if he suffers a perils of the warp check, his unit is far more susceptible to the Flesh Change. In order to represent this, I modeled him with a power fist from the Possessed sprue, and had him looking at the warping fist as if he's thinking "Oh, crap."

Finally are the three objective markers I've built for the army, representing a trio of marines who have succumbed (or are in the process of succumbing) to the Flesh Change. Seemed appropriate! At this point all that remains is the final detail work on the Predator and Whirlwind, followed by the tough decision - do I attempt to create some transfers for the shoulder pads on all the marines, or do I buckle down and free-hand all the insignia? Either one presents its own set of unique challenges, though at the moment I'm leaning towards just painting them, though I'll admit I'm a bit apprehensive about painting 30+ little nova bursts...

Monday, January 16, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Painting in progress for the last of the 2000 point army

With the Tempus Fugitives Age of the Emperor event rapidly approaching, I pulled out all the models that remained to be painted and set to work over the weekend. With my buddy Dave cranking out his Blood Angels, I couldn't let him get done before me (especially after giving him so much grief over the last few years about not painting)!

Pretty good forward motion so far - 10 Tac Marines, 5 Terminators, Ahriman and three objective markers are all up to the same state now. There's really not all that much left to be done, the metal on the weapons and the various shading and detail on the power/force weapons, some skin tones and various other bits of detailing. Getting close now!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Falchion superheavy "Eye of Magnus" complete!

Greetings all! Had a bit of time over the last couple evenings to finish off the detailing on the Falchion-class superheavy "Eye of Magnus" and shot some pics of it over my lunch break while I had some good light.

Went in and did the final highlights on the bone-colored hatches, finished up all the lenses and glowy bits and added in the "XV" markings that I'm adding to all the vehicles to tie them together.

Also cleaned up the various places where I spattered paint here and there, though I realize that I'll still need to go back and clean up the lines on the roman numerals. They're a bit wavy yet. Now if the weather would warm up a bit, I can get it sealed!

While I was about it I pulled out all the miniatures that I'll be taking with me to England for the Tempus Fugitives Age of the Emperor event in early March. All the heavy lifting is done at this point, just need to finish up the detail work on the Whirlwind, and paint up about 20 more infantry. I have a free weekend coming up in a couple days, so all things being equal I'm hoping to have them all done in plenty of time!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Falchion painting nearly complete...

Got a little more detail work done on the Falchion last night and was able to snap a couple pics in the daylight over lunch:

Adding in a bunch of gold trim, and finished up the glowy-green bits on the power cables and runes along the side skirts. I considered doing up all the (hundreds of) rivets in gold as well, but in the end I thought it may end up looking too busy.

Fairly pleased with how the main targeter array turned out, lots of wet blending which isn't my forte but all in all it turned out to be a fairly smooth gradient. Now it's just a matter of picking out all the little remaining details here and there and hope for a warm day to get it sealed!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Falchion painting in progress, part 1

The Falchion arrived earlier in the week, and I've been quite eager to get painting! Last night I got the main red of the hull completed and as the last step in the red involves a heavy Baal Red wash, left it overnight to dry.

I made a minor modification to the design and added a pair of magnets in the main barrel so it is removable for transport and storage. It will also help prevent breakage in the event that the barrel is knocked around during a game.

This morning I was able to start blocking in some of the other base colors. Boltgun Metal for the tracks and various detail bits, the medium grey on the legion symbols, and the first of the green for the various glowing pipes and runes.

So far so good! Still a lot of work to do of course, I'm hoping to get some more time to work on it this afternoon, if all goes according to plan!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Pictures from the front lines - Dark Eldar vs Imperial Guard

Had a good friend of mine at the house over New Years before he flew back to the other side of the planet. On the 31st we managed to get in a game between the recently painted Dark Eldar (Currently up for auction on eBay here), and a selection of Imperial Guard chosen of equivalent points value. As I wanted to get a game in with all the painted DE, the sides worked out to a nice round 2,336 points. Oddly enough, it turned out to be rather simple to hit that number exactly with the guard list without hardly any wargear fiddling. Crazy!

We didn't bother trying to do a full-on battle report, rather we were just playing it fast and loose and having a good time. Just snapped some pics as things happened, and thought I'd share 'em...

Here's the initial table set-up. It was late afternoon and we were already losing the light, so the pics aren't the best I've ever taken. We went with one of the missions out of the Battle Missions book, wherein the deployment zones were full table halves. Up close and personal from the get go!

Raiders zooming all over the table, trying to get their cargoes deployed before being hammered apart by the guard. Didn't work out that way, and they were all immobilized in the first few turns!

The unit of Ogryns held the middle of the table in the face of withering fire from the Venom and Trueborn. The Roughriders advanced through the trees in an attempt to slay the hellions.

Unable to bring it down in the shooting phase, the Ogryns leapt upon the Venom and destroyed it in Hand to Hand, smashing it to flinders with the butts of their ripper guns. The Crimson King and his retinue vainly attempted to destroy the Devil Dog, to no avail.

The Hellions, backed by the Golden Duke and his retinue of Incubi and Haemonculi made short work of the Roughriders, while on the far side the Wyches were forced to slog their way through a hedge of lasrifle fire.

When all was said and done, only one objective was held and that was in the hands of the Guard. The Dark Kin were down to the two Archons and a single Haemonculus, who withdrew from the field in utter defeat. Nevertheless, good times were had, and really isn't that what's important?

It was a good end to 2011, and I'm looking forward to more fun games in 2012!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Heresy Era Thousand Sons - Falchion build complete!

Hope everyone had a great New Years Eve! Leading off 2012 are some pics of the Falchion-class Superheavy Eye Of Magnus - I got notification from Tom McBride that he finished the build and will be sending it my way to paint this week. I'm super excited!

First up are some overall shots - He went with rounded side sponsons and turrets to give it a slightly different look from the more angular current-era chassis, and utilized several of the upgrade pieces he's made over the years to give it a heavier feel.

In place of the usual fuel drums on the rear, he made some new dynamo engines which really tie together with the Volcano cannon. The rear exhausts were swapped out with upgrade pieces he does, and the tracks were replaced with a set that more closely matches the old-school design found on the Mk. I Land Raider I have for the army.

I'm really pleased with the little details he added as well - replacing the Aquilas (not in common use during the Heresy other than by the Emperor's Children and the Adeptus Custodes) with some Egyptian styled eyes and scarabs much more suited to the Thousand Sons.

He was also kind enough to add some relief versions of the Thousand Sons old nova/starburst symbol, and what appears to be hundreds of rivets and little extra detail touches which really tie it all together. The result is an absolutely gorgeous piece of work - far and away better than anything I could have built on my own! I can't wait to get my hands on it and start the painting process...

Many of the resin upgrade pieces that went into the construction of the Falchion are currently available in his eBay store (such as the Dynamo and exhausts), if you're looking to add some customization to your own Baneblades/Shadowswords I heartily recommend giving them a look!