A Child for the Warrior King, pt.6 — and a small interlude

My hobby work has not been all that exciting recently: The combination of a decided lack of feedback here on the blog and a prolongued downtime over at The Bolter & Chainsword has worked as a bit of a dampener to my hobby motivation. But I have a new update to share with you all, dealing with my second converted Armiger once again. And as a special treat, I’ll also sneak in a small bonus-review somewhere along the way, so keep your eyes peeled 😉

But first things first: My second Renegade Armiger was already mostly finished in my previous post, but it still needed that final bit of attention, especially when it came to finishing the chaotic decoration: The most important part was to add spikes and skull trophies to the top carapace. At the same time, I also grafted some small teeth, carefully shaved off the little vanes that come with the CSM Raptors, to the pauldrons and leg armour, for that certain chaotic je ne sais quoi.

So here’s the result:


Those added elements really do a pretty great job of pulling all of the parts of the model together from a visual standpoint, plus they also serve as a parallel to my other Armiger Warglaive.

So the model is basically ready for paint now. Take a look:


Oh, and after adding the final layer of detailing, I also straightened out the cockpit and pilot, making a few final tweaks and additons here and there. So here’s the completed build for the Huntress inside her cockpit:


As you can see, the way the Huntress controls the machine actually matches the setup I used for the first Armiger. This time around, however, I actually made sure to make the alignment of the machine’s head match that of the pilot (it’s only a small thing, but since I used the standard Armiger head this time around, at least beneath the extra bitz, it was easy enough to keep the head poseable):


I am actually really happy with the conversion, plus I think the two Armiger really work rather well together. Several people on the forum pointed out how the machines seemes like two pack mates, ready to bring an opposing Knight (or even Titan?!) down, and how the new Armiger actually seemed a touch more feral than the first model. Since that’s the impression I was really going for, I am rather happy to have achieved that dynamic with the two models:

Incidentally, I also made a small tweak to the Hound, adding some Blood Warrior decorations to his pauldrons. See if you can spot them in the picture above 😉

 

Bonus review: Canis Rex

So, while we are on the subject of (Imperial) Knights, allow me to sneak in some thoughts on one of GW’s fairly recent releases thtat I have wanted to share for a while: I am talking about Canis Rex here:

The release of Canis Rex was interesting for a number of reasons: It marks the third revision of the Imperial Knight kit in almost as many years, for one: Each subsequent release has added new parts and options, and this latest kit is no exception, providing us with all the weapon options released so far, along with a new weapon, the las-impulsor, that can be used to assemble the model as a Knight-Preceptor. So far, so good. At the same time, Canis Rex is also a veritable named character, so the model comes with original parts to turn a generic Knight into Canis Rex with its unique heraldry. Last but not least, there’s also the fact that the kit provides us with the bitz for a fully designed cockpit – something that the GW-Knights have lacked so far – and for the pilot, Sir Hekhtur the Chainbreaker.

Now my love for the Imperial Knight per se is well documented, and I still consider the model a landmark release and one of GW’s finest modern kits. All the original kit’s strenghts remain, obviously, and we actually get some new toys to play around with. So let us take a closer look:

Let’s start with the new weapon: Where most of the Knight weapons we have seen so far have a rather more brutal, archaic look, this new gun hews closer to a more experimental, “Martian Deathray” look, which is nice. On a related note, looking at the silhouette of the weapon, I cannot help but realise how you could probably kitbash a similar weapon using the side panels from a 40k life pod (from either the 40k objectives kit or the new Kill Team: Rogue Trader boxed set), if you need the weapon but don’t want to buy the new kit.
Whether or not you like the las-impulsor, though: The kit also seems to contain every other Knight weapon released so far, so the world is really your oyster here.

When it comes to Canis Rex’s unique armour plates (and heraldic elements), those bitz are nice, if a bit vanilla: The facemask strikes me as ever so slightly too generically medieval, but that’s purely a matter of personal choice. On the other hand, the combination of a wolf/dog head and a chain on the tilt plate and banner make me wonder whether those bitz might be useful in a 30k World Eaters/War Hounds project…

What I really like about the inclusion of those bitz is how GW actually embraces the idea of having those Knights be true individuals — something that has always played a big role in the background, but it’s still nice to actually see that philosophy now realised in model form. If anything, coming up with your own background, heraldry and backstory for your noble is something to be encouraged.

So far, the additions to the kit are nice but not exactly massively exciting.This all changes with the third big addition to the kit, however, and easily the biggest draw of the model, if you ask me: The inclusion of both a fully detailed cockpit and a pilot:


Seeing how the nobles piloting the Knights were already being played up as important and powerful individuals in the background, I actually find it baffling that it has taken GW so long to represent them in model form. If anything, I feel Imperial Knights should have been themed around their pilots from the get-go. But anyway, now we finally get our pilot model, and both in a walking and a sitting form, which is nice:


I like how the model’s armour/pilot suit neatly straddles the line between baroque(medieval and functional — it arguably works better with the general 40k aesthetics than Forgeworld’s almost too sleek and futuristic looking Knight pilot. At the same time, it’s also nice how some design elements (see the arrows on the armour plates, for instance) are shared between the Knight and its pilot.

Now while the pilot is supposed to be Sir Hekhtur the Chainbreaker, it’s easy to see how a simple headswap would be enough to turn him into an original (male) knight pilot. Creating a female noble from those bitz would still be possible, albeit with a bit more conversion work — and maybe the inclusion of some of the slightly narrower Genestealer Hybrid body parts.

When it comes to the actual cockpit, I really love how GW’s sculptors have managed to squeeze lots and lots of detail into a pretty tight area (believe me, I know): The design looks great and channels visual cues from both Forgeworld’s Knights and various Titans:

If I have one criticism, it’s that I think the controls are almost a bit too modern and “Space Marine-y” and should maybe have looked a bit more archaic – like the kind of tech you see in Forgeworld’s Titan cockpits – but the design still works very well, and the option to build it so it can even be looked at with the top carapace closed and the hatch open is an awesome little touch:

 

For me, and other hobbyists as weird as me, coming up with a way of building the interior of a Knight has been one of the most interesting parts of working with the model. So seeing an “official”, readymade version now is a slightly bittersweet moment: On the one hand, it’s great that GW has finally stepped up and provided us with the building blocks for a Knight interior. At the same time, however, this also takes away some of the adventure, for lack of a better word, and challenge of scratchbuilding and kitbashing an area like this — oh well, at least we still have the Armiger interiors to think about 😉

On a related note, and if you’ll excuse a bit of boasting, I have to say that I am really rather happy with the way I managed to come up with something pretty similar to GW’s “official” look for the pilot and cockpit years ago, back when I built my own Knight:



So for those who do not own any Imperial Knights yet, you guys are in luck: You are now able to pick up the definitive version of an already fantastic kit and end up with lots and lots of beautiful options to play around with. If, like me, you were among the early adopters of the Imperial Knight, you might be forgiven for feeling a bit left out (and for being expected to buy yet another 100+ Euros kit). The third revision of the kit in as many years. Because much as I like this newest revision to the kit (and much as I liked the previous revision), I cannot help asking myself whether those weapon options and cockpit bitz could have been part of the model from the beginning — the pilot and cockpit, in particular, seem like parts of the sculpt that must have been considered from the beginning…

 

Call of Chaos 2018:

Before I wind up this post, let me quickly address the current Call of Chaos event over at The Bolter & Chainsword: With the forum back up and running, fortunately enough, I think I’ll just have a go at joining in the event again this year. Here are the models I think I’ll be pledging as my Call of Chaos vow:


Including the second Armiger is a bit of a no-brainer, obviously, as I really want to have the happy family finished before the year is out 😉 In addition, I want to get some paint on two Nurglite characters that have been sitting on my desk for ages:

First up, a Nurglite Lord on bike that was built over a year ago (originally for another forum painting event last year):

Still pretty happy with this guy — you certainly wouldn’t think he started out as a Ravenwing biker from Dark Vengeance, would you? 😉

And there’s this conversion of Maxime Pastourel’s Lord of Contagion model from the Dark Imperium boxed set:

his guy should be fun to paint, with all the gribbly areas of distressed skin and gooey intestines 😉

 

So anyway, that’s it for today’s update. It goes without saying that I would love to hear any feedback you might have! And, as always, thanks for looking and stay tuned for more! 🙂

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28 Responses to “A Child for the Warrior King, pt.6 — and a small interlude”

  1. I’ve gotta say, as cool as the new Knight is, I like your cockpit and pilot better. I’m building my own now and weighing what conversion work I’m going to do and what I don’t think I can pull off, and the cockpit just isn’t going to make the cut for me.

    • Cheers, Dexter! I really recommend adding a cockpit (readymade or scratchbuilt) to your own Knight, though — it just adds a whole new level to the project and makes for a wonderful feeling of accomplishment (and some swearing during the conversion process).

  2. Pandoras Bitz Box Says:

    Those Armigers look great, I was before I read it that they have a really good skulking look about them, like they are hunting/stalking something. I havent been very active for maybe 6 weeks or so so its cool to see them done and both together (I do appreciate the addition of the detail to your first’s shoulders). Very cool, I’m excited to see them both painted up and standing next to the knight.

    I knew there were rules for Hektor and Canis but I didnt know they had released new parts in the kit! thats very cool to hear, and I do like the cockpit innards, even if they do look a little too advanced, they are certainly a decent starting point for conversion for anyone who appreciates that detail. Im currently working on my own Knight cockpit… or circumventing it anyway, with an AoS Reaver thrust out of the hatch, i’m hoping to hide most of the gaps with cabling attached to him. I have to say I really appreciate that you have done these and documented them so well, They are a constant source of insparation and I probably wouldn’t have taken my project on had I not seen your own effort.

    Thanks for the detailed write up and review of the new knight kit, at the moment I have 2 knights and 2 armigers, but I was thinking about getting a Dominus too and another couple of armigers. This will make me consider getting a new basic kit too.

    I’d wish you luck on the Vow, but we both know you dont need it ; ), looking forward to the results.

    • Thanks a lot, mate! I have been – silently, I must admit – following your Knight taking shape over at the B&C, and I think your approach to using that Reaver as a pilot works beautifully (maybe I’d lose the topknot, personally speaking, but anyway). I love when people come up with a new twist on the whole cockpit and pilot situation, and yours is ver cool indeed!

      • Pandoras Bitz Box Says:

        Thank you very much! I’m really glad you have been peeping over my shoulder in that case, it’s nice just to know it cought your attention. What do you like about the topknot? I could easily clip it off, I hadn’t really thought about it, all I’ve done with it is turn in 90 degrees so it’s trailing behind him.

        I’m really chuffed you like to cockpit idea, it was born mostly of necessity rather than by design, but it’s fun to see where these things take you. I really appreciate you input so if you do feel you have some advice or ideas to share, please let me know in the thread! Nothing worse than hearing a good idea too late, I’ve been very grateful of Duskraiders Input.

        Looking forward to see what you start working on after these guys. I’m enjoying the Deathwatch and you Inq 28 stuff l, but as I haven’t followed your stuff for THAT long relatively speaking I feel like this is all the tip of the iceberg.

  3. Swampysan Says:

    Keep up the great work!!!

    The armigers look fantastic, I love the way you manage to take so many elements from different kits and somehow create something unique and perfectly fitting to your army’s aesthetic. (I’ve shamelessly stolen your use of the castelan robot as a basis for hellbrutes 🙂 one day I may even post up a pic of the result).

    I always look forward to your next post, it keeps my own hobby froth bubbling!

  4. Mat Huxley Says:

    Sorry you’ve not been getting much feedback. I have to say, I’m usually more a fan of blobby old bits of lead but your skill and imagination is a large part of why I’ve now got a bits box full of plastic and resin space marine parts. Not done anything with them yet, but it’s the thought that counts. I’d say your one of the most interesting, inspiring hobbyists out there

  5. I painted my share of Death Guard in the past, but never thought to put one on a bike (I always considered them as pedestrians 🙂 ) that guy looks epic though! All in all, as usual, can’t wait to see your work progress, even when it’s just small updates, keep up the great work!

    • Cheers, raff! Yeah, I think you’re right about the DG being pedestrians — at any rate, a biker lord no longer even appears in their Codex as an option. Mine was built before that, however, so screw the rules, eh? 😉

  6. Oberonkhan Says:

    While this is my first comment, I always browse through this site at least once a day! Your work is so inspiring to me and I always look forward for the day I click on this and there’s a new post.

    • Cheers, Oberonkhan! I always appreciate people making an effort and commenting for the first time, so thanks a lot! It really helps, especially when comments generally seem to be growing fewer and fewer!

  7. Figured it was about time I posted, being a long time lurker and all. Just wanted to show encouragement and can’t even explain how excited I get whenever you post a new update! Love all your stuff! Where do you manage to get all your bits from, do you purchase them from Ebay or some equivalent? I know you get a lot of donations from friends, but that obviously isn’t an option for everybody! Anyways, love your stuff and can’t wait for the next update!

    • Thanks, Curtis! It’s never too late to start commenting! 😉

      As for your question, I do pick up bitz from one or two ebay-sellers, yes, although I try not to overdo it, as that can get pretty expensive. I also do a lot of bitz trades with fellow hobbyists, which is often crucial both for getting my hands on specific bitz as well as getting “surprise batches” that are amazing fun to dig through 😉

  8. Looking so good mate – brilliant baby-knights & I can’t wait to see the Huntress painted up and striding out with her pack mate!

  9. Well I think you should pat yourself on the back at how well your knight-pilot and cockpit hold up against the official one. As someone who bought the Knight way back when it’s yours that will be proving useful to me when I come to building my own Knight’s inner gubbins. Having an official interior now is all very well but I’m still going to have to go old-school and build mine from scratch and being able to follow your process will be a great help.

    Honestly not sure I would have thought to put a pilot in an Armiger but now I’ve seen you do it I’m inspired. Good luck with the Call of Chaos, that Lord of Contagion is looking amazing, really want to see him finished 🙂

    • Thanks, mate! If anything, the Armiger cockpit is actually easier to come up with — there’s so little space that you can basically phone it in 😉 Word of advice, though: Make your pilot as narrow as possible! 😉

  10. Hey KS, About the feedback thing and lack of replies.. I’m in two minds about even posting this feedback, but I think at this stage you know what I’m about to write here is geniune.

    I think one of the issues is that your posts are so long, they actually require an investment of time to read through properly – and one that people might not easily have at different times. Speaking for myself, I know I have to put yours “aside” until I’m both at my PC desk and also have time to sit and read solidly for 5+mins. I can’t read these posts on the way to work, or when I’m on a quick break.. you get the idea. Now, I’m one person that’s always going to come back and read them (even if it’s a week or even more late), but I fear the effort and time involved might not help for people who are browsing our pages on their phones or on the move or without much time to dedicate in one chunk.

    I know you’ve written in the past about how you prefer to have longer, more substantial posts than lots of smaller ones, but if we look at this post for example, you’ve got three very distinct “chapters”, all of which are substantial enough for their own posts (and deserving of, if you want to look at it that way). I think slightly shorter, but more frequent posts

    As for this post’s content…. as always, your Armigers make me wish I manage to get one of my own assembled, let alone converted or painted. Rex is a nice change, a little late – though I suspect it might be a sort of mea culpa on the original knight kit…s – and Kirby’s form of release. Your knight internals still look amazing – like an official kit, to be frank, and it’s not like there’s any reason that they would all look the same. I mean.. just look at everything else in 40k.

    The Call of Chaos stuff.. bah! Just more of your amazing converted models that I wish I had myself! :p

    • Hey man, your feedback is always appreciated, and you offer some excellent food for thought, especially about the length of posts — I’ll readily admit that posting shorter updates sometimes just feels too trivial to me, you know, like there has to be at least a proper amount of substance? But then, maybe a shorter post every now and then won’t hurt..

      My underlying problem at the moment is how, no matter how I approach it, both views and comments seem to be getting fewer and fewer, and I cannot really fathom why that might be — maybe the blog is just getting less interesting? Or maybe the blogging format per se is just no longer all that attractive? In any case, it can get a bit demotivating, to be honest…

      As for your Knight-related feedback: Hmm, maybe they are really trying to make up for previous releases — but then they seem to be doing it yet again with some of the Adeptus Titanicus models only coming with one weapons setup, yet clearly having been planned for exchangeable weapons. As for the Knight, it wouldn’t even be a problem if there were any way to purchase the extra weapons as a single sprue…

      • Honestly, I’ve found from looking over previous lulls that when I post more frequently, I get more views. The more I comment and interact elsewhere, I get more comments on my own blog.

        As for substance, I think you’re being too hard on yourself (or others? Depends on how you’d judge that Rex kit review if it were it’s own self-contained post put up by, say, Wudagast?) – but it depends on where your comfort level is.

        In the past I’d have never posted something like the Temple of Skulls I put up last night, but now I’m taking a more “15 mins of fame” attitude to many of my models, as the hours of work put into, say, a beastman will just be passed over if I put it up in the same post as a Dreadnought.

        I also tend to more often work in small batches of just a few models, and getting them up gives me that instant feedback to help me get onto the next small batch wheras I used to hold off until i had “enough” models to make it “worthwhile.”

        That changed when I posted this almost “throwaway” post, thinking that nobody would really respond or care:
        https://azazelx.com/2015/09/18/citadel-tl13-talisman-troll-1986/

        To my shock and horror, people really liked it. (10 likes and that many comments was at that time quite a few for my blog). I then realised that I didn’t *need* to hold off on posting models for weeks or months until I had “enough” content.

        I still don’t post single models exclusively or anything, it’s all about context (and getting what I had done at the end of the month up, even if I didn’t finish the other half of the unit).

        The other thing is that you shouldn’t feel obliged to always post. A like, while a bit “facebook”, is still an easy enough way to show someone else a bit of appreciation when you’re in a hurry or don’t really have anything to say.

        Even that I imagine is really motivating for some of the bloggers who are “smaller” than us. I see single posts pretty frequently with nice models and/or thoughtful posts, put up days before (I usually only get time to read/comment at the end half of the week) without even a single like, let alone a comment. Now, I don’t “pity like”, and still only give a like where the content warrants it (and I’ll comment as well sometimes), but I’m aware that at this point even a like can be motivating, and maybe others will click on that person’s blog from my own sidebar. Obviously, they’re also likely to check out who it was that liked their posts (I still do the same when I get a new person checking me out) – and sometimes that translates into more, regular people in the circle.

        So yeah, don’t underestimate the “like”.

        All I can suggest is giving it a go and see what happens?

        So.. don’t forget to Share, Subscribe, check my Patreon if you’re interested in directly supporting the channel – make sure to hit that notification ball and most importantly, SMASH that Like Button! and stay tuned for more great gaming content!

        😉

      • Oh, as for Rex – it’s a *GW*-style Mea Culpa. Buy the damned kit! Maybe get two, just in case!

  11. Hi KS,
    I’m definitely guilty of reading your posts but not commenting, so:

    WOW!

    Chaos Armigers for the win! Really impressed with the fix to cockpit and the turn of the head matching the Armiger’s head is a detailed touch that really adds character.

    I understand your frustration with lack of commenting, I’m considering shutting down my blog and just posting on forums.

    Hobby time for me is extremely limited now-a-days because you know LIFE so with my meticulous approach it seems like I never have anything done to post about – you, however, seem to produce excellent model after model!

    So please keep this blog going as there are many many of us who read, just too rushed elsewhere to comment!

    Cheer,
    Lamby!

    • For what its worth, depending on which forums you’re on you might have a lot fewer replies. My posts now get a good few replies, but the way they got to that point was through my own time and interaction with others. Or to put it another way, I started posting comments on a lot of other blogs and found that a few of those people really appreciated it and reciprocated.
      Some don’t, of course. And some appear to take an audience for granted without tending to go out of their own blogs to comment or even like others. Result is I don’t bother to comment on those anymore. Or in some cases even bother to like and in a couple of cases even unfollowed to get people who don’t interact with my own blog or posts off my feed. Still. I get a lot more interaction per post now than I did back on Dakka (nice people in the P&M blog section but very crowded and fast moving)

      • More excellent food for though — I totally agree about leaving feedback, though: I make a conscious effort to never just “Like” something without leaving a comment.

    • Cheers, Lamby – yeah, my feelings, exactly. At the same time, the blog allows me to post whatever I want without having to conform to the rules and cntent of one particular forum at the time, which is definitely a plus. Still, blogging really seems to be getting tougher – and more thankless – all the time, doesn’t it? 😉

      As for your feedback, I am actually super proud that a hobbyist as meticulous as you should like my cockpit conversions! 🙂

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