Archive for lost and the damned

Dark Vengeance – Gauging the possibilities…

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, Custodes, paintjob, Traitor Guard, WIP, World Eaters with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 5, 2012 by krautscientist

By now, many people have spent their first few days with the brand new Dark Vengeance box. The internet is abuzz with the discussions concerning the models and possible projects. There have been some very informative and helpful reviews, the usual, somewhat hamfisted propaganda on the part of GW and, of course, a magnitude of the seemingly inevitable “unboxings”. Some hobbyists (*cough*) have even begun showcasing their first painted or converted models.

After having spent a very enjoyable weekend sifting through the contents of the box (and painting the first batch of models) I would like to use this post to talk about some of my plans for all those lovely little plastic men. I already outlined some of the ideas in my first post on the subject, but in the light of my first hand on experiences with the box, some of those plans have changed, some may have been abandoned altogether, while still others only formed after seeing the models first hand. So let’s talk about the bigger picture, shall we?

First of all, let me say that my plan is to basically use up all that this box has to offer: Some of the models will be integrated into my different army projects, some may end up decorating my bases as corpses or broken statues. Still others will be cut into many different pieces and wait for better days at the bottom of my bitzbox. But all of it will be put to good use in one way or another. That much I promise you.

So let’s cut to the chase: Here’s a rather large post with my updated thoughts and plans for the different contents of the Dark Vengeance box, illustrated by lots of pretty pictures:

 

Chaos

It shouldn’t surprise you that the chaos models are very likely to find a new home in my World Eaters and/or Traitor Guard forces. In fact, I think that the chaos models alone are pretty much worth the purchase of the box. But what do I have in mind for those beauties?

Cultists

I already showed you the first three cultists I painted, and I decided that they needed some friends. So I set out to paint the next three. Instead of painting the same designs over again, I chose three different cultist — the duplicates will have to come later…

Again, my objective was to have these fit in with my other Traitor Guard models, so I stuck to the established colour scheme. I like to imagine that I was a tiny bit more succesful in painting these guys to fit my traitors this time:


I really love the gasmask on this guy! I even thought about a “Psycho Mantis” conversion while painting him. I also like the crude weapons some of these guys are wielding – like they had to improvise weapons from their regular tools or bits of machinery.

This next guy may have a different head and different weapons, but apart from that, he is actually identical to the guy above – albeit “flipped horizontally”. The only difference aside from the head and weapons is the added knife on the guy with the gas mask — I don’t think it’s too noticeable, though. After all, these are starter miniatures!



I tried adding some crude chaos heraldry on his scarf. A recurring element in my Traitor Guard. I went even further with this on this next guy:





Again, I love the mask. Reminds me of Kroenen in the first Hellboy film 😉

And here’s all three of them together:


Seeing these side by side makes it even more obvious that the cultists on the left and right are basically the same design, but again: Let’s not forget that these are starter miniatures. I already mentioned that I am actually pretty happy with the look GW chose for the cultists!

And here’s all of my painted cultists so far:


These are pretty quick to paint, so it probably won’t be too long before I’ll have ten or even twenty of them finished. I’ll mainly be these for 40k, so all of them will be painted in the colours of my Traitor Guard. That said, they’ll make useful cameos in games of INQ28 (or even Necromunda).
I will be doing a number of smaller adjustments to some of the “duplicates” (weapon swaps and the like) for some more variety. I’ll also add an icon or two, following my belief that every chaos squad needs an icon. Apart from that, though, I’ll be using these pretty much out of the box.

Chaos Lord and Chosen

Hmmm, these guys are a tougher nut to crack: My gut instinct tells me to just leave them for later. Granted, some of them could be easily inducted into my World Eaters, but maybe I’ll just hang on to them for a later project: a small Chaos Killteam for Special Operations Killzone, or some “counts as”-Characters for my Traitor Guard (I recently saw a World Eater used as Colonel Straken — what a cool idea!). The guy with the twin Lightning claws may be an exception, since I am simply too much in love with the sculpt, but apart from that, I guess these guys will keep for a while.

Hellbrute

Definitely the star of the show for me, I am pretty psyched to start working on this bad boy. As a matter of fact, I already managed to paint what’s probably my favourite part of the model:



This was actually pretty hard to take a decent photo of, and that should tell you something about the size: So much fine detail, and very easy to obscure… I didn’t do a job worthy of the ‘Eavy Metal team, but I am still rather pleased with myself.

I also really love the anguished and tortured face peering from out of the Hellbrute’s bulk, so I had to start with it. Apart from that, I am currently dryfitting the parts and looking long and hard at the stuff in my bitzbox to decide which changes to make to the original model.

I’m a little torn, since I really love the Hellbrute as it is, and I don’t want to do conversions on this guys just for conversions’ sake. Yet I feel compelled to make some minor changes… Let me talk you through some of my early ideas — any feedback on this would be much appreciated!

First of all, this idea came up while I was messing around with some stuff from my bitzbox:




I actually have very little inclination to use the Minotaur head, but I still wanted to show you this mockup, because I think if somebody wanted to change the look of their Hellbrute or didn’t like the existing head, this could be an avenue worth exploring…

This one’s based on a similar idea. I just couldn’t help it…






I’ll have to be honest with you: I just love adding Juggernaut heads to Dreadnoughts!
I also think that this could really work. Hmmm, I’ll have to think about it…

Let’s talk about a couple of other changes I am considering:



I am actually pretty sure that I’ll be adding an Ogre Kingdoms gut plate to the model’s fist, as an approximation of the World Eaters’ legion badge. The part is a pretty nice fit and covers the more generic “Eye of Horus” symbol beneath. I also really liked the effect of the legion badge on my first Dread.

Then there’s the Multimelta:


I quite like the fact that they gave the model a Multimelta, seeing how this is one of the last weapons missing from my little Dreadnought Menagerie. But I am not completely sold on those stubby barrels. I could replace them with daemon heads from the chaos vehicle sprue (like TemplarCrusade01 did to great effect in this interesting video) or replace them with a Lasgun’s longer barrels…I’m not sure. Any thoughts?

And finally, those horn-tentacle things may have to go:


I appreciate what they were trying to do with this, but as it stands, they only serve to obscure the model’s silhouette. I haven’t decided on this, though. I’ll need to consider it for a while…

Even after playing around with a couple of different options, I couldn’t forget that Juggernaut head. If I were to attach it at a more interesting angle. like so…



…and add a neck made from cables and a spine, I think it would look really cool. Then again, I love the Hellbrute’s original face and wouldn’t want to permanently obscure it by a conversion… This really is a problem! Maybe I can do the Juggernaut head as an optional, removable addition to the model? Let me know what you think!

Let’s not forget the other side of the spectrum, though! So, what to do with the Sons of the Lion…?

 

Dark Angels:

Whenever I hit a roadblock during my musings on possible uses of the chaos models, I relax by working on some of the Dark Angel models. Some, if not most of these will be really useful for my Custodes army!

Characters

The Company Master will definitely be transformed into a Custodes officer! It should be easy enough: Just add a different head (for example, one from the High Elf White Lions kit), a couple of bitz and get rid of some of the DA symbols, and you’re there.

I’ll probably save the Librarian for later: He won’t do much good in a Custodes force, seeing how psykers were pretty much outlawed by the Edict of Nikaea. He might make a great base for an Inquisitor, though…Hmm, I’ll have to think about this.

And then there’s the limited edition Interrogator Chaplain. I am somehow feeling a little tempted to convert him into a Word Bearers Dark Apostle…but it’s definitely not a priority at the moment.

Ravenwing Bikes

These will probably end up as Custodes jetbikes sooner or later. I’ll be using this excellent tutorial by Ron Saikowski (of From The Warp fame), although the conversion will probably end up being a bit more complicated compared to normal Space Marine bikes, since the wheels of the bikes from the starter box are part of the bike’s main body. Still, nothing that a bit of judicious cutting cannot solve…

Tactical Marines

To tell you the truth, these are a bit of a problem: The sergeant will become a Custodes with some minor conversion work. As will the guy with the Plasma cannon (only sans the Plasma cannon, since they didn’t yet exist at the time of the Heresy, I believe). His arms are completely separate, and he is sporting a rather interesting, older helmet design, so he will become a member of a power armoured Custodes squad (I’ll be showcasing some models from the squad soon).

The other guys are a pretty hopeless case, though: I doubt any amount of cutting would make them look like anything but Dark Angels tac Marines. So into my bitzbox they go. Maybe I’ll use them as statues in a terrain project. Maybe I’ll start a DA army one day. Maybe I’ll think of something in time. We’ll see…

Deathwing Terminators

To tell you the truth, I am already hard at work cutting these up. They may not look like it, but the Deathwatch Terminators make for pretty convincing Custodes Terminators in Pre-Heresy Cataphract Terminator armour. You don’t believe me? Here’s proof:

First up, an early test model for my Custodes Terminators I built using a Black Reach Terminator:


I had already abandoned the hope of actually doing a whole squad of these, since I did not want to buy a whole box of Terminators for what was ultimately more of a “why the hell not?” project. But then, the Deathwing Terminators provided me with more than enough willing subjects to build some more Custodes in tactical Dreadnought armour. Behold:


This is an assembled Deathwatch Terminator from the starter box. So I took this guy and began to transform him. Quite a bit of cutting was needed for this, since I wanted to keep the Terminators powerfist — the rivets are just screaming Pre-Heresy to me. So I needed to get rid of the shoulderpad. I cut off the entire arm, replacing the upper part with a regular Terminator arm. The other arm and torso front were put away for future projects, and I used all kinds of stuff from my bitzbox to turn this guy into a Pre-Heresy Terminator. Take a look:

Same model, ladies and gentlemen 😉

While I realise that the armour may not be a hundred percent consistent with the official artwork, I still think that enough of the visual cues are there to make this guy read as a Custodes in Cataphract armour.


I think the paintjob will do the rest 😉


As you can see above, I also built the beginnings of a Guardian Spear: The weapon was spliced together from the blade of a Nemesis force halberd, the shaft of a thunderhammer and a part of a Chaos Knight lance. I may yet add a Boltgun to transform the weapon into an actual Guardian Spear.


This first success motivated to try again. So while my second batch of cultists was drying, I took another Deathwing Termie…


…and got to work again. By the way, say about GW’s decision to make the Marines in the box DA’s what you want, the poses on those Termies are excellent!

Again, my objective was to transform this guy into a Legio Custodes Terminator. Here’s the result of that plan:


The conversion was pretty easy too! I cut off the left arm (with the chainfist), which can still be used on another conversion and removed the Terminator’s head (that was a part of the torso). I replaced the arms with parts from my bitzbox and built the foundation of another Guardian Spear. Then I added some bitz. Done!


You’ll notice that my Custodes Terminators don’t look exactly alike. The reason for that is that I am using different base models and have to make do with what’s in my bitzbox. Then again, I think it fits that those warriors should wear individualised armour: Each of them is a mighty champion of the Imperium, so I think it’s quite alright if their armour deviates from the standard design here and there.


In closing, let me just say that I am pleasantly surprised how relatively easy those Deathwing Terminators can be converted into something quite different! As long as you’re not afraid of making some bold cuts… And definitely don’t try this at home if your bitzbox isn’t well equipped! You’ll need all kinds of stuff to make these guys look the part!

And there you have it: You’ve seen all that I’ve done with my Dark Vengeance models so far! If you’ve got any questions, criticism or words of encouragement, drop me a line in the comments section!

As always, thanks for looking and stay tuned for more!

Gang of four

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, paintjob, Traitor Guard with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 10, 2012 by krautscientist

My recently discovered love for converting and painting Traitor Ogryns would not let me rest until the fourth member of the squad was completed, so this post will be about him.

After the last Ogryn (you know, the one with the tongue…) had been such a joy to build, I found myseld really psyched for the next model. Unfortunately, it was a bit harder to come up with yet another Ogryn without the whole thing ending up boring. The reason for this was that there is unfortunately very little diversity in the plastic Ogres: While there are lots and lots of cool bits, the kit just offers two bodies, and the positioning of the arms is very restricted.

So it took me a while to build the last squad member, but in the end I prevailed. Here’s what I came up with:



Once again, the head was quite difficult to get right: I used a helmeted Ogryn head and added some augmetic goggles. But that alone made the Ogryn look like some really flustered fat guy with glasses, so I added an Ork armour plate to give him a closed helmet once again.


I tried to combine various visual elements from the other squad members without duplicating them outright. So the Ogryn got the helmet and goggles and some armoured arms from the Ironguts kit while also sporting the armour plates and a strange tank grafted to his back. He ended up looking like a “missing” link between the first two models I built which is just what I had intended.


I really wanted to use the huge club from the Ironguts kit, since it looks like a truly improvised weapon. It took some time to get the pose right, but in the end, everything worked out rather nicely. I also added some bags to the model’s waist to make the area look less plain.

By this time, the recipe for the paintjob had been well established, so all I had to do was to follow it. This also allowed me to finish this guy in a little over two hours which is quite a feat for me. Here he is:






The Ogryn’a giant club was painted as if it was made from stone studded with rusty metal. I wanted to give it a really used look, which I think worked pretty well.

Looking back on it now, the gut plate looks a little too busy. Mabe I should have gone with something simpler there. I also managed to overlook a very noticeable moldline along the right hand. Sigh.

Apart from that, though, I quite like the result. And the best thing is that I now have a fourth member for my merry barbershop quartet. Take a look (click for a bigger picture):


These guys really look like they mean business, right?

I will probably add yet another Ogryn to bring the number of models in the squad up to five, but that will have to wait for a bit. Although I am already finding myself thinking of the next conversion in line…

Until then, as always, thanks for looking and stay tuned for more!

A patient revisited

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, paintjob, Traitor Guard with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 4, 2012 by krautscientist

Back when I got back into the hobby in late 2010, my dear cousin Andy was in a bit of a fix: He really liked the Dark Eldar, but a new Codex had recently been released, along with spectacular new models. “How is that bad?”, I hear you asking. Well, along with the nice new rules and models came lots and lots of bandwagon players, enjoying the new “flavour of the month army”, and that wasn’t for Andy, who, generally speaking, enjoys making his hobby life harder for himself than it strictly needs to be. So he set aside his Dark Eldar and turned his attention to the only army list even less supported by GW than the old DE had been: The Lost and the Damned.

Soon Andy had begun collecting a small combined force of Deathguard Marines, traitors and mutants. He also bought a box of Ogres to serve as big mutants, and as with all things Nurgle, they would have to be converted to look suitably gross and disease-ridden. That’s where I came in. I had cooked up a couple of ideas for Plague Ogryns in the back of my head, and so I asked Andy if I could convert them for him. He agreed, netting me the opportunity of trying my hand at Greenstuff for the first time ever.

A short while later, my first Plague Ogryn was finished. Here it is:



Be gentle, people, it’s my first GS work 😉

As you can see, I tried to make this guy look a bit like a large Plague Bearer, giving him a single eye and horn. I also took a rather primitive stab at modelling entrails, as per SvartMetall’s fantastic tutorial. And before anyone brings this up: Yes, I am quite aware that a creature lacking virtually all of its abdominal muscles would have a pretty hard time moving at all, least of all walking upright. Chill out, Biology majors! We’re strictly talking Rule of Cool here. And the Ogre already had that gaping hole in his belly, so what was I to do?

Anyway, I was reasonably pleased with my first GS work and built two more Plague Ogryns, implementing most of the ideas I had wanted to try. And so cousin Andy ended up with a suitably Nurge-y set of models. All’s well that ends well, right?

Alas, it was not to be: Andy found out the LNTD army list didn’t do much for him, and so after the bandwagon players had moved on (to the Grey Knights, IIRC), he rejoined the ranks of the sinister and depraved Space Elves, amongst which he may still be found to this day. Meanwhile, the Plague Ogryns I had so lovingly crafted, went to his cupboard of shame, there to moulder in obscurity until the end of days — what a fitting fate for the servants of Nurgle!

Until I recently visited cousin Andy and got it into my head to paint up one of those guys for the sheer heck of it. Fortunately for me, Andy let me have my way once again, and so I got to work. I got the model in the state you saw above, with only a quick drybrush of green laid down as a basic skin colour. Working from there, I painted him up in one afternoon. Here he is, in all his pestilential glory:






As you can see, I kept the green skin, but added a couple of additional hues to the mix. I also tried to paint the metal parts of the model to look rusty and worn. And finally, this model marked not only my first attempts at GS work, but also my first use of the legendary Tamiya Clear Red: I used it to paint the Ogryn’s belly wound in a suitably wet and gory manner, then stippled it onto the various sores and boils I had modelled onto the skin as well to make them look like they were weeping some kind of bloody ichor. My overall goal was to have the model look as disgusting as I could possibly make it. I’ll let you decide whether I succeeded.


It is true that Nurgle models are always great fun to convert and paint! In addition, painting this model also proved to be a great test run for my own big mutants/Ogryn berserkers (who are also be based on WFB Ogres, but are looking pretty different, as you’ll see shortly). So thanks to cousin Andy for giving me this opportunity!

And, as always, thanks to you for looking! Stay tuned for more!

A traitor can never be forgiven…

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, Traitor Guard with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on June 1, 2012 by krautscientist

“A Heretic may see the truth and seek redemption. He may be forgiven his past and will be absolved in death. A Traitor can never be forgiven. A Traitor will never find peace in this world or the next. There is nothing as wretched or as hated in all the world as a Traitor.”

Cardinal Khrysdam, Instructum Absolutio

Right, now that we know how old Khrysdam feels about the matter, we should maybe take a closer look. Let us speak of traitors, shall we?

One thing I realised only after getting back into the hobby in 2010 is how awesome the idea of “The Lost and the Damned” actually was. Granted, when Codex Eye of Terror was released, the whole idea of an army made up of traitors and mutants was probably mostly GW’s attempt at getting people to buy a half baked mutant kit, hastily thrown together from Zombie, Catachan and Ork boy sprues. But then, the Blood Pact happened. And Forgeworld released their gorgeous Renegade Militia. And so when I got back into cutting up little toy soldiers, it wasn’t long before I thought about building at least a small Traitor Guard/LNTD force.

Now the easiest way of going about this would doubtlessly have been to just buy some Cadians, the FW Renegade milita conversion kit and be done with it. But while I love the FW kit and think it’s among the greatest stuff they have ever released, that would have seemed like a bit of a cop-out to me. So, with the ambition of converting those models myself but with no good idea in sight, I put the project on the backburner for a while…

…until a visit to the FLGS saw me buying a box of Cadians and old Chaos Marauders on impulse. And when I got home, I started kitbashing them into my version of Traitor Guard soldiers. Not a very original recipe, admittedly. But then, it was down to me and my bitzbox — just the way I like it.

I took inspiration from a couple of sources, although my main points of reference were the Vraksian Renegade Militia and Dave Taylor’s fantastic Blood Pact models. I was even tempted to start a Blood Pact force myself for a while, but then decided on a more “undivided” look in order to be more flexible. I wanted the models to be usable with the old LNTD list, but also with the current IG book as well as FW’s Vraksian Renegade Militia rules. So I started off by building a Platoon Command Squad for my traitors. Here it is:

From left to right, we have a medic, company standard bearer, commander, veteran with special weapon and a traitor with voxcaster. I also built a psyker, while I was at it.

The models are fairly simple kitbashes, using parts from the Cadian shock troopers, the WFB Chaos Marauders, Marauder Horsemen, WFB Warriors of Chaos and WFB Empire flagellants. I wanted my traitors to have an unkempt, feral look to them, but to be at least partly identifiable as former Imperial Guard (or at least PDF). Take note that there is very little fluff in place at this point. Basically the only thing I have decided as of yet is that these guys will be known as “Urash’s Marauders”.

Let’s take a look at the different models in the command squad:



Company Standard Bearer:

This guy was strongly influenced by the standard bearer from Dave Taylor’s Blood Pact. He uses mostly Cadian parts with a couple of armour plates and bits to give him the suitable Chaos look. His head is possibly the greatest head from the Empire flagellant kit. His standard was originally a WFB Ogre standard.

The colour scheme for these models took me quite a while to figure out. I knew from the start that I didn’t want to make them look too comic-book-evil by using lots of red and black. Instead I went for pale skin, a dark grey uniform (unchanged from their loyalist days) and a couple of red and bronze accents to show their new allegiance.

I am not very good at freehands, so I was elated that Dave Taylor did a very nice tutorial on how to paint a stylised chaos icon. I used it to paint the standard. I liked the result well enough, so I decided that I would use the motif all over the army to tie them together visually.




Company Commander “Lord Urash”

I wanted this guy to look pretty imposing, so I used a daemonic looking sword from the Chaos Marauders and a Terminator’s power fist on him. The latter one also shows how Urash’s marauders tend to steal everything they can use off the bodies of their fallen enemies. I also added small horns to him to show how the powers of Chaos have already started to corrupt him physically. To imply that his sword may be of daemonic origin, I added an OSL effect to the runes on the blade.



Traitor with Plasmagun

I like this guy a lot! I think is has to be the helmet. Or the pose. Anyway, his Plasmagun was spliced together from a regular Bolter and a Khorne Berzerker Plasma pistol. While I am fairly reluctant to actually use Plasma weapons on the table due to their tendency to blow up in your own face, I always relish the occasion to add a little visual “pop” to a model by painting a small OSL effect on its Plasma weapon.


Traitor with Voxcaster

With the rest of the models looking fairly primitive and feral, I thought it would make sense for the guy with the Voxcaster to carry some kind of war drum. That way, he would use his Voxcaster not only to relay orders, but also to drive the Marauders forwards with the beats of his drum.

While the sculpt of the Chaos Marauders is a bit on the old side, the kit is still worth it simply because of the amount of stuff you get: There are lots and lots of weapon options, and multiple sets of the bitz used for the command squad. With just one box of Chaos Marauders, I was able to not only built a lot of traitors, but also use the additional bitz to give icons to the different squads. And I still had quite a lot of leftovers for my World Eaters too!




Traitor Medic

I really went to town on this guy! I thought about how the forces of Chaos might influence a medic, and I decided to build a character with a suitably demented look. In my imagination, he may be fairly good at patching up the wounded, but his fascination with the human body has also led tim to start collecting body parts he considers to be “interesting specimens” from the dead and the dying. That’s why I gave him a couple of grisly trophies as well as a stained butcher’s apron. I also added a gagged head from the flagellant kit — maybe he is as dangerous to his own as to the enemy, so the Marauders have decided to gag him, lest they get bitten.




Traitor Veteran/Bodyguard

I wanted this guy to look like a true barbarian. In the half baked idea I have of my traitors’ fluff, they were originally a regiment of the Imperial Guard that was reinforced with a lot of recruits from a primitive world in order to compensate heavy losses. Then, the traditions and beliefs of the new recruits began to slowly overwhelm the other soldiers’ loyalty. So I wanted to have some models that almost looked like Cadians, while others would show their primitive origins more clearly. And this guy definitely fits the latter category. Not much else to say, except that I am quite fond of him for some reason.




Psyker

What self-respecting force of traitors would be complete without a psyker? The model itself is a standard Empire flagellant, although I attached a couple of chains that are floating, held aloft by his psychic powers. To enforce the supernatural look even further, I added some jagged rocks to his base. They look like they just erupted out of the ground due to some witchery. They were carved from leftover sprue, by the way.

Originally, I wanted to give him glowing eyes, but unfortunately many of the flagellant heads have no eyes (or at least no eyeballs) to begin with. So I went for blood running down his cheeks instead – the power of the Warp probably caused his eyes to burst in their sockets…

And with that, my command squad was complete! I also built two squads of traitors and bought a set of four Ogre Kingdoms Ironguts to convert some traitorous Ogryns. I may also add some kind of vehicle to my Traitor Guard at some point, although I am not sure if I want to expand them into a force of their own. Until now, they have seen action as allies to my World Eaters during our campaign. But if the new Chaos Codex actually has an option for cultists and/or traitors, these guys could indeed prove to be very useful!

Anyway, I’ll show you the rest of my traitors some other time. Until then, why not let me know what you think of my command squad?

In any case, as always, thanks for looking and stay tuned for more!