Thursday, July 26, 2012

Adeptus Mechanicus - Loyalist and Traitor Arch Magos in progress

The order from Blight Wheel miniatures showed up late last week and I dove in with a frenzy of building and kit-bashing. Unfortunately I neglected to take any pictures until after I'd already primered them, and black-spraypainted models don't make for good pics. I was finally able to steal a little time to lay down some of the base colors over the last couple days and snap a few pics yesterday afternoon.

First up is Magos Strandax, who will act as the Magos Prime for Explorator Force Psi Phi. Strandax is mentioned briefly in the 2nd edition rulebook as a researcher into lost STC designs, and is a very old member of the Mechanicus - having replaced much of his original organics with cybernetics.

The torso, spider-body and one of the servo-arms are from the kit from Blight Wheel, while the axe is one of the Kromlech bits I'd picked up yoinks ago. His arms are from an eldar biker, and the servo-harness is made from a whole mess of bits including part of a space marine plasma cannon backpack, some old-school plasma pistols, guitar wire and a conversion beamer made from an old "Space Rangers" model. All in all I'm pleased with how it's coming along, suffice it to say it's pinned six ways from Sunday but I'm still very concerned that pieces might break off of it...

Next up is the model that will be representing Urtzi Malevolus. In the Tempus Fugitives rule set I'm using, Malevolus may be included in an otherwise Loyalist force and allows for the inclusion of a handful of Dark Mechanicus units (along with some penalties).

This model was not as extensively re-modelled - it matches up with the artwork quite well as-is, but I added a few mechadendrites like the art shows. He definitely ended up looking a bit more brutal/heretical... Still a ways to go on both of them of course, but they're coming along nicely!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Pre Heresy Emperor's Children - Land Raider test model in process

Hobby ADHD? Whatever do you mean?

It's been murderously hot up in the hobby loft of late so I haven't done a whole lot of painting worth taking pictures of. Prior to the whole shake-up causing me to offload the World Eaters, I was slowly gathering parts for the next Heresy-Era army, the Emperor's Children. One of the things I had planned to use in that army is a Mk IIb Land Raider I've had sitting on the shelf for years and years.

Originally it was going to be a transport for a Adeptus Custodes army, but that really never got off the ground. As such, I was stuck with a tank liberally festooned with Aquilas and Eagles, which is against the fluff for the majority of the legions, as only the Custodes and the Emperor's Children were allowed to wear them throughout most of the Heresy. So with the Custodes out the window, the tank instead got a few lashings of purple and gold!

Of course, with my desire to paint marines on the wane at the moment, this will likely go back on the shelf for a while, but I figured I'd share the pics in process in the meantime! I did work a little on the two Tech-Priest models I'd purchased from Blight Wheel miniatures, and will get some pics in process of those up soon...

Monday, July 23, 2012

Adeptus Mechanicus - Knight Errant painted, and BlightWheel order arrives!

It is (more or less) done! The Knight Errant "Ignis Rex" is now ready for the tabletop! The heavy lifting was all done last update, all that remained was the shading and highlighting, and the various decorative bits.

I went with a scheme reminiscent of the previous Knight Paladin, though in blue rather than green (allowing for the green to be used for the power cables/power fist). The main colors being red and gold will help tie it in with the rest of the Ad-Mech army nicely as well.

In retrospect, I wish I had thought to model a footprint where the left foot is coming off the ground. Never fails that some bit of inspiration will strike long after it being too late to incorporate. Curses!

I used some rather old water-slide transfers that I've had lurking around rather than try and paint a rearing griffon with my sausage fingers. Overall the white transfer over the blue worked well, but the carrier film had yellowed somewhat on the transfer I used on the white power fist. I tried to paint over the worst of it to help blend it in, but there's still a bit around the edges. It's not as noticeable in real life as the picture makes it seem though. I do want to go back in and clean up the name on the scroll, it's a little sloppy. Overall however, I'm well pleased with how the Knight Errant turned out!

On Friday the order I'd made from Blight Wheel miniatures arrived and I set to cleaning them up, so I snapped a couple pictures of the pieces before I started assembly. Overall I'm rather pleased - very crisp casts, and they definitely capture the Ad-Mech feel rather well. My plan is to do one loyalist and one traitor Magos - the one on the left will become my loyalist magos, and will be getting a Servo-Harness, and be toting a Conversion Beamer and Omnissian Axe. The model on the right is going to be used as Urtzi Malevolus, the Despoiler of Mars - the picture below is from the Visions of Heresy book, and it's a pretty darn close match!

Now if it would only stop being 100 degrees every darn day. Paints drying up and my wet palate needs to be topped off every couple hours while working up in the hobby loft. Oof!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Imperial Guard - Leman Russ Vanquisher painted

Continuing the work on the Mordian 7th Regiment this week with one of my favorite tanks available to the Imperial Guard, the Leman Russ Vanquisher. This was another model that I'd half-finished a while ago but ended up sitting on a shelf while I worked on other projects, so it was a simple matter to polish it off!

Continuing with the black with red accents scheme, I was pretty pleased with the look of the turret. The yellow and green on the lascannon and the black and yellow hazard stripes give the tank a bit of spot color, as it's otherwise rather dark.

I added some purity seals, some minor stowage and some scrolls to the tank to give it a little flair, and painted in the jagged knife emblem along with a blood drop. Now that it's sealed I'm thinking I'm going to add one of the "Mordian" transfers from the imperial vehicles sheet to the armor plate on one side of the turret, and paint a scroll onto the other for the tank name (not sure what the name will be as yet). Not much left to paint for the guard now!

In other news, a bunch of my current eBay auctions are ending this evening...

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Adeptus Mechanicus - Knight Errant painting in progress

A bit more forward motion on the Knight Errant over the last few days - been blocking in the main colors. I decided on a similar paint scheme to the Knight Paladin I did several years back, swapping the green for blue instead but otherwise keeping much the same pattern of quartered panels.

At the moment all the colors still need to be shaded and highlighted, and there's a lot of detail work yet to add. I'm planning on using some white rampant griffon transfers on the upper left quadrant of the shoulder and shin plates, and a larger blue griffon and some scroll-work on the back of the power fist.

Overall I'm quite pleased with how it's coming along - I'm always surprised how quickly large models like this paint up. Definitely looking forward to finishing it off, it'll be a nice centerpiece for the upcoming Ad-Mech army I'm working on behind the scenes!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Imperial Guard - Heavy Weapon Teams and Sentinels painted

Still banging on with the Dark Future weekly painting challenge, which has been keeping me motivated to put brush to miniature! This past week I've been chipping away at the Guard once again, with two trios of heavy weapon teams (my entry for this weeks' contest) and a pair of Sentinels.

The first trio are armed with vehicle-busting Lascannons, and are usually tucked away inside some building overlooking the battlefield. Coupled with the various orders available to them such as "Bring it down!" and "Fire on my target!" they can be rather nasty!

The second trio are the Missile Launcher teams that will more often than not be attached to the three infantry squads of 1st platoon. I'm a big fan of their ability to fire Frag or Krak missiles depending on the situation, and I'm looking forward to finding out how the Flakk missiles will work into the army lists.

While I was rooting around in the box of Cadian bits looking for arms for use on the Hypaspists for the upcoming Ad-Mech army, I ran across a pair of Sentinel sprues and knocked them together. The original Mordian 7th army included a pair of Sentinels armed with Assault Cannons, and I'm rather bummed that's no longer an option. Instead I went with Plasma Cannons, as for the most part the Guard don't get many opportunities to take them. Of course, I'm sure they'll melt down into steaming pools of metal on turn one every game!

In keeping with the black with red trim theme, the sentinels really ended up looking rather ominous. I couldn't come up with a knife design that I was happy with for their army badge, so I went with a jagged tooth pattern instead - reminiscent of an upper and lower jaw to tie the two models together thematically. I'm quite happy with the sense of motion the new kits allow, the legs are very posable!

Next up on deck for the guard is the Leman Russ Vanquisher and the command squad's Chimera, and I'm in the middle of painting the Knight Errant as well. Pics to follow soon!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Adeptus Mechanicus - Knight Errant built

My plans for the hobby have been altered fairly dramatically of late, with the World Eaters army project coming to a premature halt. Nevertheless, my enthusiasm for the hobby continues unabated! After doing a mess of Thousand Sons and more recently a mess of World Eaters, I have to admit I'm a bit ambivalent about painting any more marines in the near term. The fact that I'm forced to pillage my hobby fund account to help offset the IRS bill means that I'm not buying much in the near future either. So, into the depths of the Closet of Doom for project fodder I went and my eye fell on a couple boxes marked "Ad-Mech Bits"...

The continually amazing Ulfhedin and company over at the Tempus Fugitives forums have been hard at work updating the various codexes they've done for the Age of the Emperor events. Most recent of which has been a massive update to the Cult Mechanicus codex, which I've rather enjoyed reading and has gotten me fired up to work on the cogboys for a while!

At the moment I'm still pawing through the bits boxes sorting out what's going to be used on what models/vehicles, but one bag in particular stood out. Several years back I'd worked on a pair of Knight Paladins from two different sculptors. The one done by BigDaddy (now of Blight Wheel Miniatures) was by far my favorite, and at the time I'd also purchased a Knight Errant from him. However it has just sat in a box in the Closet of Doom for the past two and a half years. But no longer!

The Knight Errant is designed as a close-range mauler with its power fist and Thermic Cannon. In the context of the Tempus Fugitives rule set, it's treated as a Walker with 4 hull points and armor of 14/13/12 (with a few various special rules) and runs about 265 points as shown here. In previous incarnations it was treated as a Superheavy, but at this point it's more of a large vehicle. It's far less resilient than it was in the previous TF codex, but far more reasonable for normal play.

The kit was a joy to assemble, with multiple hinges and joints which allow for some dynamic posing. I tried to give it a real sense of motion as it strides across the battlefield, and I'm really looking forward to painting it! I'm bummed that I didn't pick up a few more of these when they were available, but unfortunately due to rampant re-casting and people trying to profit off his hard work, BigDaddy discontinued production of these years ago. Nevertheless, his sculpting talents are being put to excellent use over at Blight Wheel Miniatures, and while the range is limited, it's definitely worth looking through their store!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Imperial Guard - Manticore painted

Ah artillery, one of my favorite things about the Imperial Guard. One of the most potent is the Manticore - once relegated to the Epic line, it (and the Deathstrike) got a plastic kit a little while back. I'd picked one up and half painted it before haring off to work on something shiny and it's sat forlorn on a shelf since then.

But no longer! Finally took the time to finish it off - after dusting it off, of course! The background fluff for the Mordian 7th suggests their colors are predominantly black with red trim (echoing their company motto "In the dark, blood will flow"), so I've gone that route on their vehicles as well. Unlike many Mordian regiments, the 7th was drawn exclusively from the Night Rippers hive gang and many gang emblems worked their way into the company heraldry. Most common of which is the jagged knife as shown here, and sometimes takes the form of a simple geometric black-over-red shark tooth pattern as well.

The Manticore is certainly fearsome on paper, though I'll admit it's been somewhat less than amazing on the tabletop for me thus far. Granted I've only fielded it a handful of times, so more experience with it is needed. Now that it's painted it'll be far more likely to be added to an army list, as well!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Blatant Advertising - eBay auctions

Well it's been an... interesting week, and a significant unexpected expense has got me scrambling to come up with some extra funds. Unfortunately, what this mean is a number of miniatures and whatnot are having to go up on the auction block much earlier than planned. Not what I'd hoped to be doing with them, but needs must when the IRS devil drives I suppose...

Link to current auctions

Mostly World Eaters at the moment, plus the Iron Hands bikers, the Warhound Titan and a replica Bolt Pistol. There will likely be more going up over the next couple weeks while I dredge through the Closet of Doom for other odds and bobs that I can bear to part with...


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

It came from the Closet of Doom - Ambull and Damsel in Distress

I've been doing some much needed clean-up of the hobby loft recently, organizing the hundreds of miscellaneous models covering nearly every horizontal surface into their respective armies. Well, into loosely affiliated piles is probably a bit more accurate. Naturally, there are quite a few models that defy categorization that ended up in a "miscellaneous" pile. A pair of them caught my eye and I couldn't help but spend an hour or so painting them up. Beauty, and the Beast!

The "beauty" is a model I got from Ramshackle Games along with my order of motorbikes used for my Rough Riders. A bit of a rough sculpt, but perfect for an objective marker for the... less savory armies out there. I think I need to go in and touch up the face a bit - this particular model is somewhat lacking definition in the sculpt, so I'll need to do some false highlighting to give it a bit more zest. This model is one of the oldest in the series Curtis has done, and his newer sculpts are really well done. I heartily recommend Ramshackle games - he's always adding not only new models, but also has an extensive "bits and bobs" section chock full of cool conversion potential!

The beast is an old, out of print Ambull - a critter from the Rogue Trader days, that burrows around underground and is a general nuisance creature. Well, a nuisance that stands about 9 feet tall, weighs a quarter ton and has claws capable of digging through solid rock! A colony of Ambulls showed up in one of Sandy Mitchell's Ciaphas Cain novels more recently, which definitely got a smile out of me. I'm tempted to add this to my guard army as a "regimental pet" - perhaps as a proxy Nork Deddog... "Who's a good boy?"

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Imperial Guard - Re-engaging with the army

With the World Eaters coming to a close, I find myself at a bit of a crossroads. The long-term intent has been to paint up a Heresy era army for each of the "Big Four" traitor legions - the Thousand Sons, the World Eaters, the Emperor's Children, and the Death Guard. However, I'm finding myself rapidly tiring of painting space marines and I've decided that since the next Tempus Fugitives event (for which the Heresy era armies are designed) isn't for another ten months, I have plenty of time to work on something else for a while. The weekly painter's challenge going on over at Dark Future Games has got me looking through all the shelves of half-to-unpainted models and the guard jumped out at me. ...Literally, one of their boxes fell of the shelf and I had to catch it before it started an avalanche in the Closet of Doom!

I pulled out all the models that have been built for the Mordian 7th Regiment, D Company to see what there was to work with. It has been well over a year since I've even looked at the models, and I was somewhat surprised at how little there actually was left to paint. Just a medium-sized infantry platoon and a couple tanks!

First things first - as I'd mentioned in a prior post, the Beastmen had gotten their base colors blocked in earlier in the week, so I finished them off. These would be my entry for this weeks Kill Point challenge over at DFG, and I'm quite looking forward to fielding them soon!

While I was at it I began re-basing some of the models from the previous rendition of the Mordian 7th, in order to get them to match up with the current theme. Thargadd's Thumpers, the Ogryn squad got the treatment first. The Ratlings and Psyker battle squad are up next - plenty of abhumans and such in the 7th, no wonder they are looked at askance by many other Imperial commanders!

Still lost in the depths of the Closet of Doom are a number of un-assembled Chimeras in boxes as well as a Rapier Laser Destroyer. The army feels a little light on tanks, which is something I'll need to rectify. Another couple Leman Russ battle tanks and perhaps a new Macharius as a centerpiece for the army aren't completely out of the question...

The advent of 6th edition has seriously rekindled my enthusiasm for the game, and since the Guard have always been my first love, I think it's high time I started working on them again!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Terrain - Mysterious Forests, Quad Autocannons, and more!

With the advent of 6th edition, there are tons of new terrain types and rules which really piqued my interest and got me foraging through the Closet of Doom to see what I could unearth and add to my painted terrain collection. My local gaming group gives me grief about the fact that the vast majority of my terrain is urban themed, so it was high time to work on a couple stands of trees!

The Aegis defense lines and bastions each come with the option to buy a quad autocannon emplacement, and as I had several built and primered it was a simple thing to give 'em a quick drybrush and wash to get them table ready. As they're usable by more or less any faction, I decided to leave them very simple and generic so they'd fit in with whomever happened to be firing them at the time.

Lastly I knocked together a couple pieces that could be used as generic objective markers, or as scatter terrain with specific rules. From left to right, an ammo dump, a comms relay and an Imperial shrine. Each of them are useful in their own way, and add a little visual pop to the battlefields!

Working on little terrain projects like this provide a nice break between painting unit after unit of an army, and helps keep the creative juices flowing! Now back to the grind...