Friday, September 28, 2018

Heresy Era Word Bearers - Assault Squad Built!

Just a quick hit today on the Heresy front, before setting them aside for a while and diving in to my Dreadtober project. I wanted to add an assault squad to the Word Bearers force, but with the recent price rise the big resin assault squad just got crazy expensive. I figured that as I had a plethora of Mk.IV plastics, I could likely put together something a little more frugally. After trawling through eBay and Pop Goes The Monkey's offerings on Shapeways for appropriate bits, I more or less succeeded!

Though the legs on the plastic Mk.IVs are fairly static (not a lot of running poses), with the assault marine arms they still look pretty dynamic. I really dig the PGtM jump packs as well, though they're a little blown out in the pics. Quite looking forward to getting some paint on 'em, but that's going to have to wait, for now it's time to paint GIANT STOMPY MACHINES!

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Dreadtober 2018!

It's almost that time of year again, when monstrous mechanical machines make much mayhem! That's right, it's time for...

I'll be helping out the inestimable Todd Sherman from Sincain40k in helping collate all the entries for this year's celebration of all things stompy! Head on over to and sign up - We'll be collection folks pictures and showing off all the awesome stuff you folks come up with over the month of October. It's not limited to just Dreadnoughts, of course - any big stompy machine is welcome! In point of fact, I don't personally have any Dreads in any of my current projects, so will instead be working on a group of Armigers that have been languishing on the painting desk for months. I always like these kinds of events as a goad to get some long-overdue project into (and subsequently off of) the painting queue!

It's the most Dread-full time of the year! Looking forward to seeing what everyone comes up with!

Monday, September 24, 2018

Heresy Era Word Bearers - Argel Tal bits accumulation begins!

After re-reading The First Heretic and Betrayer for the 4th and 5th times, respectively, it was more or less a foregone conclusion that I'm going to have to build an Argel Tal model for my burgeoning Word Bearers force. ...Especially since there are no rules for him and barely any way of representing him on the tabletop, so the whole project totally wouldn't be a huge waste of time, money and effort. Nope, not at all!

I'm attempting to coerce a friend of mine into doing some World Eaters and come up with a "battle brothers on Armatura" themed team force for Adepticon/NOVA next year, though I might break down and do some World Eaters myself next anyway. Love this piece of art, if anyone knows the original artist please let me know, my web searches have been inconclusive. Whomever it was, they did a fantastic job!

My plan is to make and Argel Tal model where his daemonic aspect is at the fore (and really, why would you not?) so figured this Gal Vorbak model would work well as the basis for the conversion. I may update the head if I can find a viable replacement, but if not I do think it works pretty well as-is.

For the left arm, I'm planning on utilizing the arm on the far right of this picture, one of my favorite bits off the Possessed sprue. Generally used as a stand-in powerfist for normal-sized troopers, it ought to make a decently-scaled 'regular hand' for Argel Tal. Some of the remaining bits may find themselves scattered throughout the rest of the force...

Great pains are taken to note Argel Tal's wings, which as the former Captain of the 7th Assault Company is only fitting. I didn't want to go super massive with them with something like Daemon Prince or Hive Tyrant wings, but they needed to be imposing. Made a roll of the dice and ordered up some Vargheist wings, which appear to be a good medium-sized wing set. We'll see once I have them in-hand, I suppose!

Of course weapons are a consideration as well - Argel Tal is described as carrying a pair of Custodes guardian weapons, a spear and sword which he swaps between in combat depending on the circumstances. Scaling being a consideration, I went with some Allarus Terminator arms figuring they'd be slightly beefier than their power-armored counterparts, and suitable for the bulk of the Gal Vorbak model he'll be based on.

Finally, I was a little stymied by what to use for his sword, as I really didn't like the look of the slightly stubby Sentinel Blades from the Custodian Guard kit, but eventually stumbled upon the swords from the Vertus Praetors kit, a good size and sheathed as well, so I can have him wielding the spear and have the sword sheathed across his back as described in the book. On the up side, there's multiple spears and swords, so I may be able to build a version of Argel Tal in his 'regular' form as well and have some continuity on the look!

Of course, all the bits are coming in from the four corners of the globe so it may be some time before my fevered scheme comes to fruition, but I'm really looking forward to getting stuck in!

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Heresy Era Word Bearers - Ashen Circle Painted!

I was having a good time painting up the Ashen Circe, and pressed on to the finish line with 'em over the last day and a half!

From a pose perspective they're a little odd - I definitely understand what the sculptors were going for with the models leaping/touching down, but from certain angles they tend to look like they're pirouetting. With a single toe or heel touch point on each model, they were all given nice long pins up into the legs and deep into the bases to hopefully keep them in place.

Can't be one of my projects without getting my signature blue on 'em somewhere. Hah! Still, blue and red are good contrasting colors.

Part of the intent was to put some shredded/charred papers on the bases of the Ashen Circle (among other models) so I went out on the interwebs and pulled down some arcane script pages and shrunk them down to try and make something I could print out. This first pass ended up being a little large for my needs and shrinking them further made them more or less illegible smears on my printer, but they may be useful to attach to vehicles and the like as pages from the Book of Lorgar!

So far so good! ...Or should I say, so far so evil?

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Heresy Era Word Bearers - Ashen Circle painting begins!

Just a quick hit this morning, pressing on with the Word Bearers and the Ashen Circle are next up on deck!

Painting them separate from the bases and backpacks is a new thing for me, still working out what works for me. Originally I had them on paint sticks akin to what I used to do with Napoleonics, but they proved too unwieldy at this scale. So the long pins were repurposed as handles, and I'm using a foam block to hold them upright as I work through the group. Got the reds and pewters down, on to all the fiddly detail work!

Friday, September 14, 2018

Heresy Era Word Bearers - Zardu Layak and the Gal Vorbak painted!

Was down with a massive ear infection a week and a half ago which meant there was a surprising amount of hobbying being done (mostly due to the insomnia from the pain). The newest Heresy project rears its ugly head, in the form of...

The Word Bearers! Over the years I've done the most loyal of loyalists, and several misunderstood traitor legions, but figured it was time to do the full-on moustache-twirling-evil guys!

While I will undoubtedly get around to painting Erebus and Kor Phaeron, my initial intent was to have a force led by Zardu Layak and his Blade Slaves, as I was really taken by the models. More or less followed the 'standard' paint scheme for them, with Zardu wearing the old greys, while his possessed bodyguards wear the crimson and silver livery of the late-heresy legion.


The models that really got me into the project in the first place also marched across the painting desk over the last week - The Gal Vorbak are just extremely creepy models, and are really what the possessed marines ought to look like! I'm tempted to do a second five and try some conversions and kitbashing (so it's not just two of each guy). Great fun to paint!

The intention is to do a force that was present on Calth, and as such I knew I wanted to do some faux-marble bases as befitting of the Ultramar worlds. Turns out Secret Weapon does a near-perfect set of bases for just such a theme! I added a little talus to them to rough 'em up a little (they're 'pristine' out of the package) and spent a fair bit of time trying out various techniques until I settled on one that I liked and could reproduce reasonably consistently.

Of course, can't have a new project on the trot without a new painting chart, now can we? Working on the Ashen Circle next, pics to follow soon!

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Pictures from an Exhibition - NOVA 2018 day three!

On to the picture dump for day three - Buckle up, the Heresy Train has no brakes!

The unfolding campaign on Friday had the Loyalists and Traitors battling it out on the surface of the planet, as well as undertaking smaller recon and skirmishing forces into the undersprawl of the planet. The Calibanites naturally chose to skulk in the shadows, and the Zone Mortalis began!

Game one saw the Dark Angels facing off against the Solar Auxilia captained by a good buddy Josh Bruder. He is an excellent opponent and his armies are not only staggeringly effective, they're also gorgeous! The Calibanites didn't have enough bullets to stop the tidal wave of humans, and it was only due to a massive detonation overhead that they managed to sneak away in the confusion.

In a tremendous example of tying the games together narratively, Whenever a superheavy vehicle detonated on the Excruciatus tables, a catastrophic event took place on the ZM tables. In this case, a save vs. strength or die for every model on the table. While the posthuman warriors lost a few brethren to the falls, the collapse absolutely devastated the Solar Auxila, allowing for the Calibanites to escape.

I didn't get many pics of the Excruciatus games (as they were running concurrently with the ZM games), but there was some serious devastation going on!

Game two had the filthy Calibanite traitors face off against their Terran brethren, on an absolutely beautiful FW Zone Mortalis board. Due to a misunderstanding of the mission however, my opponent and I were rolling on the catastrophic damage table every turn, and couldn't stop rolling 11's and 12's. As such both our armies were essentially destroyed before we even made contact. After the fact we realized our mistake, but it was such a funny game with both sides fleeing for their lives that we decided to keep the result in play. After all, it couldn't possibly have been all a ploy and the two Dark Angels forces were actually in cahoots, could it? It absolutely could!

Game two featured another Dark Angels vs. Dark Angels battle. Turns out the loyalists found out about my traitor Calibanites and threw down the gauntlet! Another bloodbath ensued, with the loyalists eking out a close victory. The Lost Lions retreated in ignominy going 0-3 for the day, but all three games were an absolute blast (in two games, quite literally)!

After the games, I swung by the Crystal Palette display cabinets and goggled at the talent on display! Sadly my camera didn't take great pictures through the glass cases and these are only a bare sampling of the artistry on display. Inspiring stuff!

Rounded out the evening with a nice dinner with Dave Taylor and some of his friends, and then met up with some hobby giants for martinis. Some may say too many martinis were had that evening, based on the look of some of the folks the following morning. For me, the third martini was probably a mistake. The fourth and fifth were fine, it was the third one that was a problem... Hah!

Next up, the final day of the event and a little wrap-up!