Archive for possessed

In the Shadow of Great Wings, pt. 1

Posted in 30k, Chaos, Conversions, Custodes, WIP with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 18, 2017 by krautscientist

Hey everyone, sorry for the lack of updates, but I’ve been crazy busy these last couple of weeks! That being said, I do have something new to share with you today, a new conversion of an established character that I hope you will appreciate — some of you may already be suspecting who it is we are talking about, based on the title of this post, but anyway: Here goes:

When I shared my 30k Khârn conversion with you recently, several fellow hobbyists here and on the forums suggested I should actually also create a model for Argel Tal of the Word Bearers, Crimson Lord of the Gal Vorbak and ostensibly Khârn’s BFF during the events of Aaron Demsbki-Bowden’s “Betrayer”.

Now for those of you not following the Horus Heresy novels, Argel Tal and his brethren are arguably the first-ever Chaos Space Marines: Sent by Lorgar into the Eye of Terror itself, they become possessed by Daemons of the warp and, from that point onwards, are able to transform into hideous yet powerful semi-daemonic creatures during combat — pretty much proto-Possessed Chaos Space Marines, if you will. Their story is told in ADB’s novel “The First Heretic”, and the Gal Vorbak have also been immortalised by receiving their own dedicated Forgeworld models that match the descriptions appearing in the novel rather closely:

Argel Tal makes a return in “Betrayer”, serving as one of the novel’s main characters. And, like I said, he bonds rather closely with the World Eaters’ 8th Captain, creating what may be the Horus Heresy’s grimdark version of a buddy-cop scenario 😉

So creating an Argel Tal model to accompany my version of Khârn seems like a pretty cool idea, right? Even so, I was pretty reluctant.

Argel Tal just seemed very hard to get right, especially given his part-daemonic nature: When I did some research on Argel Tal conversions, most models I discovered were either based on Forgeworld’s Gal Vorbak models shown above (the guy in the front row seems like a dead-ringer for Argel Tal as he is described in “The First Heretic”) or on a mixture of plastic Possessed and Raptor bits. But neither approach really quite clicked for me: On the one hand, I didn’t really want to have to buy a set of Gal Vorbak models, cheap bastard that I am 😉 And the Gal Vorbak models are also a fair bit taller than standard Astartes, while I wanted the two models to work together, which would be easier with models of a similar size.

The combination of Possessed and Raptor parts, on the other hand, seemed promising, but the main pitfall I saw was to end up with a model that just looked like any old CSM Raptor, when Argel Tal is such a cool character and deserves a conversion with a certain originality and presence.

So I was just about content with leaving the character well alone, but then my buddy DexterKong joined the chorus of those clamouring for an Argel Tal conversion — and I could never really turn down a conversion challenge from Dexter, so over the course of an afternoon, a couple of ideas actually coagulated into a model (which we’ll be taking a look at in a minute).

For inspiration, I mostly worked from the description of Argel Tal given in “Betrayer”: With his daemonic possession having been underway for quite a while by the events of the novel, Argel Tal’s “combat form” seems to have developed into a slightly more stable version. He has also gained a pair of wings, which feature rather prominently in the scenes he appears in. And he is wielding a pair of Custodian weapons: a sword and a freaking Guardian Spear. I was pretty sure this last part would pose quite a challenge, especially given the plastic Custodes’ increased size and bulk.

I also used two pieces of artwork that came really close to how I imagined Argel Tal. One is this fantastic piece of art courtesy of slaine69:

Argel Tal by slaine69

This illustration does a rather fantastic job of showing Argel Tal in all his daemonic glory, while also including enough visual cues that point towards his Astartes roots, such as the corrupted Mk. IV armour and helmet.

The other piece of art I felt drawn to was the possessed Chaos Space Marine from the cover of GW’s Black Legion supplement:

Granted, the armour is definitely the wrong colour. But this guy is really close to how I imagine Argel Tal, plus this general look also seemed to be attainable by using the right set of bitz.

So with these pointers in mind, I created the following:

So, a couple of conversion notes on the model:

  • I tried to choose armour parts for Argel Tal that seemed suitably chaotic and warped while also recalling the Mk. IV armour the character wears during the events of Betrayer. The Chaos Raptor kit came in handy here, allowing for armour that really matched both criteria.
  • When it came to creating the wings, the obvious solution would have been to make use of the winged backpack from the Possessed kit:

But to be perfectly honest, I really don’t like that bit: It seems so very symmetrical and cartoony. And the wings are also a fair bit too small to lift a creature of Astartes size. Fortunately enough, I found a set of leftover Vargheist wings in my bitzbox, and they were carefully grafted to the organic looking backpack of Dark Vengeance’s Kranon model. I am really rather happy with the result!

  • The head was probably the one instance where I actually consciously deviated from canon: In the books, Argel Tal’s daemonic form is described as wearing a warped version of an Mk. IV helmet, with the faceplate actually cracked into a daemonic maw. And right enough, the Raptor/Warp Talon kit actually features several helmets that clearly look like corrupted Mk. IV helmets. But whenever I tried adding one of them to the model, it ended up looking like just another standard Raptor. I then wanted to add Kranon’s horns to the helmet to make it look less vanilla. And gut instinct made me carefully dig out Kranon’s entire head from its original torso and add it to the conversion. And I really think it works rather nicely: It’s not an Mk. IV helmet, certainly, but it does have the daemonic maw. It’s also not a head you see all that often, so it does make the character look more original and “special”, in a way.
  • And finally, the weapons: Having the character wield both a sword and a Guardian Spear would have looked ridiculous enough before the new plastic Custodes were released, but given the size and bulk of the new models (and their weapons), it basically seemed unfeasible. So I decided to arm Argel Tal with a Guardian Spear, as it seemed like the more iconic weapon of the two. I did replace the original haft with a Chaos Knight’s spear, however, to bring out the spear-like qualities of the weapon a bit more.

However, I also wanted to feature the sword in some shape or form, seeing how the way Argel Tal came by it seemed so significant to me. So I decided on a slightly more subtle way of including the sword — by actually making it a part of Argel Tal’s base:

That sword sticking out from the fallen Astartes at Argel Tal’s feet? That may or may not be his sword: I imagine Argel Tal as a highly dynamic fighter, zipping across the battlefield like a whirlwind of destruction, so maybe this is him coming back to pick up his sword after fighting elsewhere? Moreover, if both Khârn and Argel Tal are placed next to each other, they seem to be interacting rather nicely as a mini-diorama of sorts:

And a small narrative suggests itself: Maybe Argel Tal was occupied elsewhere on the battlefield, saw an Ultramarine sneaking up on Khârn, threw his sword and is now swooping down to take it back — and assist his BFF while he’s at it?

Anyway, all things considered, and given my earlier reservations about tackling this particular character in the first place, I am pretty happy with the finished conversion — of course now I’ll have to do a “human” version as well, to show Argel Tal when he’s off the battlefield (or when the gloves have not yet come off…).

Bonus model:

All the time spent messing around with Guardian Spears really gave me a desire for building my first new plastic Custodian. And after going through “The First Heretic” again for conversion cues, memories of Aquillon were still pretty fresh on my mind, so…

Anyway, so much for today’s update. I would love to hear any feedback you might have! And, as always, thanks for looking and stay tuned for more!

Something old, something new

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, paintjob, WIP, World Eaters with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on August 21, 2013 by krautscientist

Work on my World Eaters continues, as I am feeling rather inspired at the moment, and I know myself well enough to make the most of that particular spell of inspiration while it lasts 😉

So let me show you yet more servants of the Blood God, among them long standing members of the 4th assault company as well as some more recent editions.


We’ll start with what you might call a long running project of mine: The very last squad of models I built before abandoning the hobby for a while during the mid-2000s was a squad of kitbashed possessed Chaos Space Marines. Back then, there where no stock models to represent Possessed, so I made my own, using a box of berzerkers, some parts from the old chaos mutations sprue and some Ork bitz. And, as a matter of fact, not only where the resulting models some of the first models I painted after getting back into the hobby, but they were also the absolute first models to appear on this blog, right after I started it.

I use them as The Lost Brethren, those members of the 4th assault company too far gone and too mutated to be used as anything more than a Kamikaze unit.

Anyway, almost three years ago, the one new model I built for the squad was an icon bearer – both to bring the squad up to eight members and because every squad in my army always gets an icon bearer model, regardless of the rules and any possible uses in the game. Anyway, after several years, I finally got around to painting the icon bearer:

The Lost Brethren (9)
The Lost Brethren (10)
This guy probably isn’t much to write home about, since he was built in late 2010, when my bitzbox was still far smaller than it is today. He shares his squadmates’ muscular arms (I actually used an Orc spear arm for the icon). Still, after almost a decade, not only did the squad finally receive its icon bearer, it also finally numbers eight members. Yay!

Having finished this model makes me rather happy, because I can now consider this particular squad finished — and after such a long time to boot!

Come to think of it, I think it’s actually time to replace to earlier, fuzzy earlier photos of the squad with some new images. Take a look:

The Lost Brethren (1)
The Lost Brethren (2)
The Lost Brethren (3)
The Lost Brethren (5)
The Lost Brethren (6)
The Lost Brethren (7)
And, of course, the unit’s champ, Huntmaster Kharduun (actually the model that brought me back to my World Eaters, and the first conversion I did in ages, back in 2010):

Kharduun the Hunter (4)

Granted, these are older paintjobs and maybe not 100% representative of my painting standard today, but I still like the models and think they look pretty good together as a squad:

The Lost Brethren (11)
The Lost Brethren (13)
The one thing left to do is to touch up the bases at some point. Oh well, I guess I’ll eventually get around to it sometime during the next ten years…


I also managed to pick up an older Chaos Lord in Terminator armour from fellow hobbyist Carnak:

Metal Terminator Lord (3)
Metal Terminator Lord (1)
Metal Terminator Lord (2)

The model was originally released alongside the Cities of Death supplement and the Medusa V summer campaign, if I recall correctly. As a matter of fact, it was even used to represent Abaddon’s right hand man, Chaos Sorcerer Ygethmor the Deceiver, during a WD battle report — a rather dubious (and downright lazy) choice, if you ask me: This guy is no sorcerer, he’s a warrior! A true veteran of the Long War!

In fact, that’s precisely the reason why this is one of my favourite GW chaos models ever! I love how massive and imposing the model looks and how it manages to exude an air of quiet menace. My favourite parts of the model have to be the tabard (an element I would like to see used far more often on Chaos Terminators) and the dangling skull trophies, making this guy an excellent servant of Khorne as well!

Another great thing about the model is that it comes with several weapon options, featuring one long range weapon and CC option for each hand:

Metal Terminator Lord (4)
From left to right: a power sword, a weapon probably supposed to be a Kai Bolter (from the 3.5 edition book’s wargear section), a power claw and a combi-melta. All of the options look great, although I suppose I’ll go with the combination of sword and claw you can see above — from a visual standpoint, it’s just the coolest option by far, in my opinion!

The model’s only shortcoming is that it seems just a little short when compared to the (more recent) plastic Terminators. But the problem is nowhere as egregious as with Abaddon the Despoiler, and this guy still clearly reads as a Terminator, even if seen next to some of the newer models.

As a matter of fact, I’ve been wanting to add this model to my force for quite some time, and being able to pick it up for a song was quite a nice coincidence. I guess that this guy will remain largely unconverted, too — I just like the stock model that much!


And finally…oh, wait, we’re just receiving an important transmission: It seems like one of our enterprising pict-drones has made it to the bowels of the 4th assault company’s great forge. Here’s the final image it managed to transmit before being destroyed:

Wargrinder_Teaser (1)
Now what on earth could this be. Any ideas? 😉

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

My Descent into Chaos, pt. II: A Cult Following…

Posted in Chaos, Conversions, Fluff, old stuff, paintjob, Pointless ramblings with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 26, 2013 by krautscientist

Well, we are not done yet with the nostalgia trip, in case you were wondering! After covering my very first chaos army in my last post, today I would like to talk about yet another chaos project from the halcyon days of my youth that should nicely complement the old models I already showed you. So, once again in honour of Slaves to Darkness’ 25th anniversary, here we go:

My chaos army was already quite a ways into its development when GW started publishing the early rules for Mordheim in WD, starting in (German) WD 31. Necromunda had been released about six months earlier, and so adding a more skirmish based variety of WFB to GW’s catalogue seemed like the next logical step. I’m usually not a big fan of the “everything used to be better”-kind of debates, but having an actual ruleset for a game in development published in WD was definitely one of the really great things about those times!

Anyway, the Mordheim rules did not only bring a skirmish system set in the WFB universe, but also one of the most interesting – and, if you ask me, most underused – settings yet developed by GW: The damned city of Mordheim, a medieval nightmare where demented warbands of treasure hunters, daemon worshippers (and worse) fight over the ruins of a once bustling city, trying to amass more and more warpstone in the process. Visually, it was really a Bosch painting come alive, if you will. How could I not have been thrilled by it all?

One of the next issues of WD brought lists and rules for a selection of different warbands, featuring lots and lots of conversions from GW’s own team (since there were no “official” models yet. And, of course, I was immediately hooked! So I set out to build a cult of the Possessed, chaos worshippers brought into the open during Mordheim’s fall.

I wanted my warband to represent a cult of Khorne, trawling the city streets for worthy sacrifices to the blood god. Granted, I did not really think this through all that well: Followers of Khorne are definitely not fans of skulking around in robes and performing hidden rituals to undermine society. They are too on the nose for that. But even back then, Khorne was my favourite, and so Khorne it was 😉

The first thing I needed were some suitable models to represent my cultists, and with much of today’s useful plastic boxes nowhere in sight, I had to fall back on some of GW’s metal models from the time. Fortunately enough, I found what I was looking for in German WD 32, in the form of Paul Muller’s metal chaos cultists:

While these are very different in concept from the more recent Dark Vengeance cultists – the former look much more like members of an organised cult of fanatics, while the latter seem like disgruntled workers and adepts driven to heresy – I still love these models very much: In fact, they are really underappreciated classics for me, and it’s a shame that they only seem to have been on offer for a pretty short window of opportunity.

Anyway, my FLGS carried some of them at least, so I got one blister (with three models — those were the days! 😉 ) and used them for my cult magister and his closest servants:

My first chaos army (34)

Of course, looking back today, I could kick myself for cutting off all those beautiful autopistols, since these guys would be great for 40k or INQ28. Back then, though, I had only just begun to find my feet as a converter, so transforming 40k models into characters for a WFB spinoff game seemed like a wild and edgy thing to do 😉

First up, the cult magister, Albrecht von Nuln:

My first chaos army (35)
As befits a follower of Khorne, his sidearm was replaced with a huge axe (from an Orc acessory sprue, if I recall correctly). My bitzbox was much smaller in those days, and I pretty much had to make ends meet.

This was also the first test model I painted, so he set the standard for the rest of the warband: Sickly, greenish skin (Oh Rotting Flesh, how I loved thee…), dark red robes spattered with the blood of the cult’s victims, plus different shades of metal, bronze and bone.

Next up, Brother Grimoriah, one of his henchmen, again with an Orc axe:

My first chaos army (36)

Looking back now, I shudder at how crudely the weapon was attached to the model’s hand, but those were different times — at least for me. As you can see, I also added some chaotic tattoes to the cultist’s skin: Certainly nothing to write home about, but I was mightily proud about that particular detail back then! I also added nicks and scratches to the models’ weapons, seeing how these guys were really into fighting and killing, so I wanted their weapons to have a worn, much-used look.

And finally, probably my favourite model of the bunch, Brother Maleachi

My first chaos army (37)
I really love this guy’s composition! An old WoC plastic shield was added to his left arm, and to tell you the truth, I still rather like the way I painted the blood-stained shield:

My first chaos army (38)
You really immediately get what this guy is about 😉


In addition to the cult brethren, I also built two bowmen, based on Chaos Archers from Battle Masters. Alas, only one those remains; the other one was demolished when I needed the head for something different. Anyway, here’s Initiate Vaxillus:

My first chaos army (39)
A very easy conversion, to tell you the truth: The head of a plastic warrior of chaos was added, and the right arm was replaced with that of a Gorkamorka Orc. The right hand originally gripped a wicked looking dagger (actually the tip of a chaos knight’s lance), but that particular detail was lost somewhere along the way. I also added an Orc shield to the model’s back:

My first chaos army (40)
This model may not look like much nowadays, but back then, I considered this a fairly involved conversion. Silly me 😉


Anyway, I also built two Possessed, Ezeekiel and Duriel. Both of them are once again based on Battle Masters Chaos Archers, with varying degrees of mutation added on top. Take a look:

My first chaos army (45)
My first chaos army (46)
The first guy simply received a pair of reeeally old Tyranid Warrior arms, sponsored by my buddy Phil. I wanted him to look like the additional pair of arms were erupting from his torso and served as his main weapon.

The second Possessed was a far more involved conversion, using the same base model and yet more old Tyranid bitz (among them a leftover head from an old metal Hive Tyrant):

My first chaos army (42)
My first chaos army (41)
My first chaos army (43)
My first chaos army (44)
I wanted the model to look like the daemonic possession had really started to manifest in earnest, the warped, daemonic part of the body almost erupting out of the poor Possessed’s torso. Modelling putty was used to build up the transition between regular body and twisted, daemonic flesh.

And finally, both of them together:

My first chaos army (47)
Granted, the models may be a trainwrecks by today’s standards, but back then, they seemed so sinister and twisted to me, since I had never attempted anything like this before.


So here are all of the cult members together:

My first chaos army (33)
Where my WoC army basically consisted of me trying to approximate the official GW studio pieces as closely as I could, this warband shows I was getting more ambitious and adventurous. So since these guys may actually have aged less gracefully than my regular chaos army, they nevertheless mark an important, maybe even crucial, step in my personal hobby “career”: I was actually trying to explore what chaos meant to me, beyond any tabletop rules and army lists.

As for the rest of my Mordheim-related activities, I also had an Empire Witchhunter warband, based on a Necromunda Redemptionist gang, for these guys to face off against — although I’ll be damned if I know where I put most of the models…

Both warbands didn’t actually see that much action: I only remember a single test game – against my dad, if I remember correctly – using the preliminary Mordheim rules from WD. But that’s beside the point: The Mordheim stuff published in WD got my creative juices flowing in a new and exciting ways, and was partly responsible for me becoming the avid kitbasher and fluffbunny I am today.

One last conundrum for you to figure out: If this game was set in a town, why on earth did I base these guys using green flock? Because that’s the way it was done back then, that’s why 😉


And with that, our little trip down memory lane is concluded. I hope it’s been enjoyable for you to witness the humble beginnings of my descent into chaos. Rest assured that the next models I’ll post on this blog will be more …recent ones.

Oh, and happy birthday, Chaos! It has been brilliant so far!

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

Chaos Fantasy

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, Pointless ramblings with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 30, 2013 by krautscientist

Since taking a look at the new DA release and all the potential for conversions turned out to be a lot of fun, it stands to reason I have to do the same with the new WFB Warriors of Chaos release, seeing how these twisted guys are even closer to my heart than a couple of loyalist dogs: What’s more, Warriors of Chaos were my first love in WFB and actually the first tabletop army I ever managed to complete, so while it’s very unlikely that I will ever return to WFB, I still have a huge soft spot in my heart for these guys!

Chaos players really have much cause for celebration at the moment, with a new book for the Chaos Space Marines released last October, a huge WoC update right now and books for Daemons in 40k and WFB already in the works, supposedly. And even though some of the models may be a little hit-or-miss so far, I feel that’s quite easily forgivable given the sheer amount of stuff released for chaos players. So let’s take a look at the latest slew of releases, as I gather some spur of the moment ideas on what could possibly be done with the new kits…

As per my usual routine, I’ll probably mostly talk about how these kits can be used in 40k in one way or another. I hope you won’t mind…

So let’s start with the characters:


Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Throgg, King of Trolls

Let’s begin with this huuuge Finecast model. I love this guy, period. He’s everything that a troll king should be, in my opinion. I love the face, I love the pose, I even like the (slightly ridiculous) cape. What really makes this model stand out, though, are the small details: The magical crown lodged on one of his tusks. The way the model has a pretty coherent shape overall but is still wracked with mutation (take a look at that teeth gnashing maws on Throgg’s belly and leg). Without a doubt, this is a worthy centrepiece for any army. There may be no conceivable way of using him in 40k (at least not without lots of harebrained explanations and/or extensive conversions that would probably destroy what’s so great about the model), and I will also very likely never buy this guy. But I still think it’s a marvelous model! Great job!


Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Vilitch the Curseling

Actually my second favourite model in this release — I wonder what’s wrong with me 😉 But let’s take a closer look:
While some people prefer the more “conventional” look Vilitch has in the older artwork, I really love just how alien he looks: The armour on the bigger brother immediately reads as Tzeentchian, while the actual Vilitch looks nightmarish and twisted enough (he is also eyeless…brrrr): I think it’s a cool idea to have Vilitch fused to his brother’s body in a haphazard and asymmetrical (this is Tzeentch, remember?) fashion, instead of merely being carried piggyback. My only gripe is that the smaller brother’s staff should have been quite a bit shorter (it just looks extremely impractical as is), so I would probably shorten it to just above the “bandaged” part of the grip. All in all, this model shows a more stylised look that I am normally not exceptionally fond of – we’ll get to that in a minute – but for some reason, it works here.

Again, I am really not sure this guy has any use for 40k, but if I actually still played WFB, this would be a must-buy for me.


New WoC models (3)

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Plastic Chaos Lord

Well, this guy deserves kudos for the mere fact that he’s plastic — I love plastic characters! Apart from that, the model’s quite alright. I don’t mind the static pose too much, since we are talking about a mighty warlord here, and he should exude quiet menace. The head seems a little iffy, although that should be easily solvable with a simple head change. The lance is cool enough, but seems like too much of a good thing: I really can’t see this guy fighting with a broadsword and a lance at the same time. Personally speaking, I’d just leave it off or replace it with something else.

All in all, this guy is pretty cool, nothing more and nothing less. His main importance will possibly lie in serving as a base for myriads of conversions in both WFB and 40k, and it should be fairly easy to transform him into a follower of a specific chaos god (or a CSM, for that matter). I really expect this guy to be the model that everyone will love to convert. As a matter of fact, I could even see him used as a base for INQ28 conversions!  So even though I am not totally floored by the model, I am pretty likely to pick up one of these, just for the heck of it.


Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Chaos Chariot/Gorebeast Chariot

This kit comes with options to build either the Chaos Chariot you see above and the Gorebeast Chariot that is being pulled by a single …well, Gorebeast actually:

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

A new chariot kit has been overdue for WoC, obviously. Let’s see how this one stacks up:
On the one hand, I like the supposed flexibility of the kit and the fact that it’s plastic (I LOVE plastic, in case you didn’t know 😉 ). According to WD, the kit also comes with lots of head and weapon options and additional bitz, so that’s a plus as well.

On the other hand, there’s something going on with the design of this kit that I am not really all that fond of. Let me show you what I mean. by taking a closer look at one of the chariot crew:

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Well, this guy is definitely screaming Chaos alright: He’s huge and imposing. He’s heavily armoured. He’s also quite spiky. But the bold lines and pointy bitz make him look almost too comic-book-like for my taste. GW’s Chaos is usually baroque and lavish, with a side of spiky and feral. Yet this guy is almost too stylised for his own good. Don’t get me wrong, the model is cool, taken on its own. Yet when placed next to some of the older models (or even some of the not-so-old models from the first wave of the release), he looks almost cartoony by comparison. A trace of the same element is also present in the Vilitch model. Yet where Vilitch manages to transform this otherness into an actual part of what’s cool about the character, the crew member above just slightly looks like the animé version of Chaos for some reason. Does this make any sense?
Maybe I am putting too much thought into this…


Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop


When the first, fuzzy images for this release were “leaked” onto the net, I was really thrilled for these! I hoped they would give us yet another alternative for constructing mutated followers of chaos. Yet where the 40k Possessed kit is very cool but also very “creppy crawly” visually, I had hoped for these to be slightly more subtle in execution.

Well, silly me, because if anything, the Forsaken are even more over the top than their 40k brethren. As a matter of fact, they seem like a shout out to the old mutation sprue released by GW during the early 2000s for use in both WFB and 40k. Then again, while some of those mutations may look slightly silly, there’s also a couple of really nice and disturbing ideas in this kit, along with mutations that clearly recall specific chaos gods.

I also really feel that the …thing emerging from this guy’s mouth…

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

…could be used to build a fantastic Daemonhost for INQ28.

So what to do? I can easily see these as a viable alternative to further spice up your mutation-wracked forces in both WFB and 40k. The kit should come with lots and lots of interesting bits, and by the look of it it should be fairly compatible with most other (chaos) kits. Whether that’s worth 40,00 Euros a pop is up to you, of course. Personally, I would have hoped for something a little less hammy and more understated (and thus even more disturbing). But that’s just my personal taste, of course.


Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Dragon Ogres

I have to be honest with you: The very concept of “Dragon Ogres” always seemed a little iffy to me. They seemed to be a part of the setting for no other reason than somebody thinking “Dude, wouldn’t it be awesome to have Ogres with DRAGON BODIES??? Let’s totally do that!” somewhere along the way. Still, this kit has been a long time coming, and it is really, really nice, if you ask me: The Dragon Ogres are huge and imposing (fortunately eschewing the slightly silly charm of the Ogre Kingdoms models). The design is great, and I can see these being a joy to paint as well, with the slightly larger scale lending itself rather well to all kinds of tricks and effects.

From a 40k perspective, I cannot resist thinking about using one of these as a base for a Khornate Daemon Prince. Just look at this guy:

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Wouldn’t he just be perfect for the role with some small additions and changes? Oh well, one can always dream…


Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Slaughterbrute / Mutalith Vortex Beast

One huge beast per army seems to be par for the course now, so this was only to be expected. In this case, it’s a combi-kit that allows you to build either the Slaughterbrute or the …other thing –no way I am typing that out again 😉 The Slaughterbrute (shown above) is sure to make the mouths of chaos player the world over water, and rightly so. It’s a nice and chaotic design, and if you ask me, this is pretty much what the Scyla Anfingrimm mini should have looked like in the first place.

Anyway, a couple of more detailed impressions, if I may:

First of all, the multi-eyed (and multi-tongued, ewww) head looks decidedly non-GW, if you know what I mean. I am not sure whether that’s a good thing. In any case, the kit obviously comes with an alternate head that is freaking awesome (and looks very Khornate to boot). Take a look:

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

I also love how there seems to be some kind of harness/chaos artifact thing rammed into the beast’s back — maybe as some kind of binding or incantation? What I really hate are the smaller arms emerging from the model’s uhh…nipples? Anyway, while they certainly make the beast look more chaotic, they also mess with the very strong silhouette and the points where they emerge look really silly and lazily designed, which is a shame on an otherwise great model.

This big guy could easily be used as a “counts as” Defiler or Greater Daemon in games of 40k (until we are finally getting the rumored new plastic GDs, that is). I am also looking forward to seeing the crazy conversions some of the more inspired hobbyists come up with — I, for one, would love to see the likes of GuitaRasmus or Biohazard have a field day with this kit! The only reason that I am not totally blown away is the fact that the logistics of building and painting such a huge model don’t appeal to me all that much. But again, that is just a matter of personal preference.

Now let’s look at that other …thing as well:

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Wow, just…wow! It actually takes quite a while to a) make sense of this thing and b) realise that this beast is based on the exact same body also used for the Slaughterbrute. I have repeatedly stated that I am not a huge fan of the “mutated beyond any reason” look. That said, this model perfectly embodies chaos, and that is an achievement all of its own. It also goes without saying that followers of Tzeentch and/or Slaanesh will probably cry with joy at this particular model. So while I’ll gladly pass, I still acknowledge that this is a pretty extraordinary piece. It should also be usable in 40k, similar to the possible uses for the Slaughterbrute I outlined above.

Oh, one thing: That chaos portal thing one the beast’s back looks really cool:

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

Image appears courtesy of Games Workshop

I also love the paintjob on this part and sincerely hope it can be duplicated by mere mortals (like me).
As a final remark on this kit, it somehow feels like this is a dream come true for those who follow Khorne, Tzeentch and Slaanesh, yet Nurgle followers seem to get the short end of the stick. Then again, Nurgle players should be used to the necessary conversions by now… 😉


All in all, some smaller nitpicks notwithstanding, I think that this is a rather strong release for chaos players. While the price tags are once again unlikely to elicit responses of joy (and rightly so), chaos players for both 40k and WFB now have a huge menu of (plastic) kits to tug into. And if you don’t like any part of the release, well, there’s nobody stopping you from coming up with something better: Converting stuff is what being a chaos player is all about, anyway 😉

So what do you think of this new release? Any ideas? Do you need to vent your anger? Let me know in the comments section!

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

Andy’s Antics: Chaos rising…

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, paintjob with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 21, 2012 by krautscientist

I usually use this blog to brag about things I have built and painted myself, but today I want to take the opportunity to show you the work of somebody else:

I believe I have already mentioned my dear cousin Andy from time to time: Not only is he the owner of the biggest collection of bitz I know (which has proven to be quite the advantage for some of my more involved kitbashes), but also quite an accomplished converter, as I already demonstrated some time ago. His Dark Eldar army is full of great and unconventional conversions, and I imagine it will be a sight to behold one day, provided he ever manages to paint it 😉

But while he may be a backstabbing, pointy-eared  torture-freak at heart, Andy couldn’t help but feel a certain fascination with the new Codex: Chaos Space Marines. So all of a sudden, some CSM models cropped up on his desktop. And now he’s seriously looking at assembling a small chaos army. Today’s post will be about the first results of that plan.

It has to be said that building a chaos army will probably be rendered quite a bit easier for him due to the fact that he had already started collecting a small LNTD force at one point. While a full army never quite materialised, he’ll be able to use most of those models in his second attempt. He also told me he wanted to try to build this army mostly from leftover bitz, with very few new purchases involved. And since I know that Andy is usually at his best when he’s kitbashing leftovers, I am happily along for the ride 😉

Anyway, let’s take a look at what he has got so far. Most of these models are still PIP, but I think you’ll still be getting a pretty good idea of where this is going:

First up, one of the test models for his new paintjob: A Plague Marine of Nurgle.

Andy devised a very simple recipe for the basic armour colour: Overbrush a black undercoat with GW Gretchin Green, then drybrush that with GW Dheneb Stone. The resulting colour looks slightly green and instantly reads as Death Guard, if you ask me. The armour trim was blocked out in rusty metal, and some additional rust was painted into the deeper recesses, using thinned down GW Vermin Brown.

Then there’s Andy’s idea for using slightly converted WFB Knights of Chaos as CSM Bikes:

While some of the detail could still profit from a bit of additional attention, I think you’ll agree that the overall colour scheme is pretty effective already. And the very medieval look of the horses is a rather nice fit for a Nurglite army, if you ask me.

One of the first models Andy built for the new army was the Terminator below. I love this guy for the fact that he was built using nothing but leftover bitz. Take a look:

Andy used an AOBR Terminator as a base, adding all kinds of chaos and Ogre Kingdoms bitz on top. I also really like the subtle but powerful pose, one of Andy’s areas of expertise: You really get the feeling that this guy, with his crude weapons, is all kinds of bad news…

Cousin Andy is currently converting some Possessed from a heap of leftover bitz I donated to his cause. He also took a discarded Possessed model of mine and upped the “body horror factor” a couple of notches by making him eyeless:

Knowing his usual conversion work, I imagine the finished squad will end up looking rather disturbing — in a good way!

And finally, a preview of Andy’s next “Counts as” bike, after the basic colour has been laid down:

All in all, I feel cousin Andy is off to a promising start! Although I cannot help but feel like all of this will become much less enjoyable once I find myself on the wrong side of his Death Guard’s Bolters…

Anyway, building more followers of Nurgle should give him ample opportunity for spectacular and distusting conversions galore! And I suppose that the Plague Ogryns I originally converted and (in one case) painted for Andy’s LNTD army will eventually find their way into this army as well. Here’s a quick reminder for you:

I, for one, am pretty interested in seeing where this is going!  More on this as it develops.

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

The Forsaken

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, Fluff, paintjob, World Eaters with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 14, 2012 by krautscientist

Since the first WIP shots of my converted Chaos Spawn drew some rather positive comments, today I would like to show you the next steps in the model’s (d)evolution.

So where did we leave off last time? Like I previously told you, the Vargheist/Crypt Horror kit has looked very interesting to me for quite some time now. I only lacked a true idea of what to convert from it. But then, the new codex re-established Chaos Spawn as a viable unit choice once again — just what I had been waiting for!

While I think the Chaos Spawn kit has quite a lot of potential, all the over the top mutations didn’t really gel with my army background. So I went for something different. As you may know, my army’s fluff states that the remnants of the World Eaters’ 4th assault company are trying hard to keep the madness that has taken the rest of the legion at bay (which is, of course, a losing battle). Towards that end, those legionaries showing signs of severe physical or mental corruption are singled out by the commanding officers and form the conpany’s vanguard. Called “the Lost Brethren”, these lost souls get one final chance to die in a blaze of glory at the forefront of the battle, before their corruption can overwhelm them (and become a danger for the rest of the company). They have to die, so that the company may endure. But what about those battle brothers who survive, even through all the corruption and slaughter? What would such a creature end up looking like?

Using parts from the Vargheist kit, some WFB Minotaur arms and a couple of additional bitz, I tried to find out.

You already know this picture: This is where I ended up after some fooling around with the parts and some yellow tac. While the Minotaur arms initially seemed rather malproportioned in contrast with the lean Vargheist body, I couldn’t help but feel that this was still the right direction. After all, one of the Lost Brethren would probably devolve even further as time went by, and the qualities that made him strong in the first place would become even more pronounced. I was somehow reminded of the Vampires’ evolution in the Legacy of Kain Series (Dumah, anyone?) while building this guy, to tell you the truth…

Anyway, I liked the basic build of the model well enough, so I added some additional detail:

First of all, the joints between the Minotaur arms and Vargheist torso were built up and blended in with GS. I also added leftover chains and various skulls from different kits to the model. The back of the head was covered in cabling to show the “Butcher’s Nails” the legionnaire had been outfitted with during his days as a battle brother. Again, the cabling was blended in using more GS.

As you can see above, I also added a “Triumph Rope” to the model’s torso, enforcing the impression that this hulking monstrosity was once a honoured member of the 12th Astartes legion and had a string of triumphs to show for it.

All in all, I am very pleased with the conversion: While the proportions may be a little cartoony, I think the model really looks like a devolved Astartes.

When painting the model, I went for the same, pale skin tones I used from the rest of my World Eaters. In addition to that, the model’s shoulderpads were painted in red and bronze to further tie it in with the rest of the force. And while I am usually hesitant to paint blood on the weapons of my models, I made an exception here, since I felt that the Forsaken are very unlikely to clean their weapons between battles. The blood was painted using Tamiya Clear Red.

Here’s the finished test model:

I have to admit that I am not yet 100% happy with the paintjob: I have never used this particular skin tone on such a large scale before, so the result may need some tweaks (as well as some getting used-to). But all in all, I think the model makes for a rather convincing (and pretty original) chaos spawn. The one problem I can see with this conversion is that the other two Vargheist bodies have poses that are quite a bit less interesting and pretty static. So it remains to be seen whether the next two models will end up looking cool enough.

In any case, though, I am prepared to call this test model a success: It’s a hulking, terrifying beast, it looks like it could have (d)evolved from a regular World Eater, and it’s a pretty original take on the whole spawn concept, don’t you think?

All that remained was to think of a suitable background for this poor lost soul:

The Forsaken

There are those individuals among the 4th assault company’s Lost Brethren whose fall has taken them even further. It is the purpose of the Lost to die, so that the company may endure. Their ferocious vanguard assaults often end with all the legionaries wiped out, killed in a last blaze of glory, their last chance at an honourable death.

But there are those whose combat prowess is far too great, even burdened with mutation and insanity. Or those whose corruption is the very thing that made them more resilient. Those legionaries live through the ordeal that was meant to kill them, devolving further and further into mere beasts. They become The Forsaken.

The Forsaken are kept in the fighting pits, located in the bowels of the company’s battleships. Legionaries test their power against them on the Hot Dust, giving these feral beasts a taste of the gladiatorial lifestyle that once defined them and in turn facing the company’s daemons and their own fate, should they give in to the madness.

It is only under the most dire circumstances that the Forsaken will be allowed to participate in battle, for they cannot be controlled, and their deadliness makes them as much of a danger to their allies as to the company’s foes.


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

Planning Chaos

Posted in 40k, Chaos, Conversions, old stuff, Pointless ramblings, WIP, World Eaters with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 7, 2012 by krautscientist

The new Codex: Chaos Space Marines has been with us for a while now, and I have spent quite some time browsing through it. It’s a beautiful book, to be sure, with all of the flexibility I liked about Gav Thorpe’s oft-maligned last edition codex coupled with some of the flavour everybody enjoyed about the 3.5 book. It also adds some new and quite individual selections that players can add to their force to make it more different from loyal Marines. It also murders a few darlings (*cough* champs with power fists *cough*), but that was to be expected. Granted, I couldn’t really tell you how thinks are looking on the tournament front, but then I couldn’t care less either: From a casual gamer’s perspective, there is a lot to like about the codex.

In any case, the new book has spurred chaos players the world over back into activity. And so I would like to use this post to try and collect my thoughts on the options before me and outline some of my next plans for my World Eaters:

I. The Fast

With assault becoming a little trickier in the new edition, fast units are now an even more interesting proposition.

The first way to make your army that much faster is the use of jump infantry, and considering my well-documented soft spot for Raptors as well as the fact that they received both a reduction in points as well as a spiffy new plastic kit, this is an avenue that I consider exploring to its fullest. So expect a closer look at the new Raptor/Warp Talon kit shortly!

And while we are on the subject of jump infantry, I finally managed to paint up one of my Raptor champions some time ago. Take a look:

As you can see, this guy was built with the tried and true tactics of 5th edition firmly in mind: I gave him a power fist to add a bit of oomph to a unit of tank killers. Alas, the new focus on issuing challenges means his weapon now makes him a less than optimal choice. Fortunately, I also have another champion wielding a pair of Lightning Claws — although that one yet has to be painted…

The other available option for more speed would be to add some bikes to my army. With a hefty reduction in points cost and a couple of nasty rules, bikes seem to be one of the  winners of the recent update. I wouldn’t even have to start from zero, since I already have three bikes that I picked up as part of a huge army deal some time last year. They are already converted and ready to be painted.

Here’s a (unfortunately quite fuzzy) impression of my converted Lord on bike:

Unfortunately, those three would need quite a few additional buddies to be truly effective. And while the option of getting into combat really fast does, of course, appeal to me, I feel a little apathetic about building and painting a lot of bikes — especially now that the box containing three of them is no longer available.
All in all, unless a cheap way of picking up several bikes presents itself, I think I’ll just wait a while to see whether any new models come along. It would be a shame to get lots of old bikes now only to have the new ones released right after that…

2.) The Furious

I really want to add some Daemon Engines to my army! And since I know my own lack of discipline, I used the Eleventh Throne of Skulls Painting/Converting Contest to help my resolve: You see, having won the last contest, I get to choose the next subject. So I chose Khornate Daemon Engines to basically force myself into building and painting one in the near future.

But which one to choose? Get the Heldrake kit and try to make it work visually? Or use a fiend, which looks much cooler out of the box, but is probably quite a bit more different to convert and individualise? Decisions, decisions…

Having spent quite some time thinking about what Daemon Engine to build, I took the easy way out:

Yeah, I know: A bit of an overkill, maybe. Let’s see how these guys shape up…

3.) The Negligible

Well, from an avid converter’s perspective, the award for the least interesting unit types goes to the Obliterators and to their more CC-oriented kin, the Mutilators. With the official models still so very ugly, I was actually rather stoked for a while at the prospect of converting my own version of the Mutilators, with a look more in line with my own aesthetic preferences. But seeing as the rules are just as lacklustre as the models, I have redirected my modelling efforts in this respect towards another project (see below).

4.) The Rest

First of all, I finally caved in: I am going to build a squad of World Eaters Havocs. There’s enough precedent in the older fluff for this (Teeth of Khorne, anyone?), and I will try my best to make them look great. Just you wait 😉

Ever since GW released the Vargheist/Crypt Horror kit I have been thinking of using it as conversion fodder for my World Eaters: I really like the lean, emaciated look of the models, and I think could be made to resemble Astartes that had become raging beasts. The resulting models could be used as Chaos spawn, since, even though I like the kit, I’m not a big fan of creepy crawly mutations). Anyway, I started building the models and then messed around with a couple of Minotaur bitz I still had lying around, and this was the result:

More on this as it develops…

And I am still happily plugging away at the remaining contents of the Dark Vengeance box: For instance, I worked some more on the models I already showed you some time ago.

This guy received some impromptu head surgery as an addition to the added icon.

I also wanted to change the look of the cultist wielding the flamer, and what better to use than a head sporting a gas mask?

He looks pretty similar to the Pyro now, don’t you think? 😉

Meanwhile, the head’s original owner received a replacement courtesy of the Crypt Ghoul kit. While the head is a rather nice fit, I’ll still need to use some GS to build up a neck portion.  I also added a new CC weapon, originally from the WFB Chaos Marauders. The weapon nicely fits the “repurposed tools” look, though.

The next guy also received a new head (from the WFB Empire flagellants) and yet another CC weapon:

You know things are really going to hell in a handbasket once people start using shovels as weapons…

I really didn’t want to cut off this guy’s head, seeing how that would have created a huge, damaged area to take care of. So I just added a Marauder shoulderpad and a small bayonet to his gun and called it a day. I am pretty confident that I’ll be able to make his paintjob look different enough from that of his “twin”, though.

Yet another headswap. In this case, it took a bit of work to make sure all the small cables to the side of the model’s head remained undamaged and were properly attached to the “new” body. The leftover head and body were then used to build this guy:

I also added another amour plate and a small chain dangling from the barrel of the autogun.

And finally, the second cultist champion:

I did a rather subtle conversion on the model’s right arm, replacing the original axe (and the hand holding it in a rather infuringly awkward way) with a weapon from the WFB Marauder Horsemen.

The left forearm was replaced with that of the other cultist champ. I think this guy with his disheveled zealot look looks rather convincing wielding a shotgun! The menacing clawed gauntlet went into the bitzbox for a future project.

And here’s the whole squad, basically ready for painting:

It has to be said that these guys are rather easy to convert: You can get some real variety by just swapping out a few weapons and heads and by adding the odd bit from another kit, like I did. And that’s not even counting the option of doing far more involved conversions (you can see some pretty great ones in this thread, over at GW Fanworld). I guess once these are all painted up, I’ll do a number of side by side comparison shots of the duplicates 😉

In addition to this, I have managed to amass quite a number of unpainted models in my cupboard of shame, among them…

  • a pretty sweet Lord on Juggernaut (that may admittedly be somewhat less original, now that the WFB Skullcrushers have been released…)
  • a squad of Chosen I built some time ago. While they may lack the fantastic detail of the Dark Vengeance Chosen, they are a rather nice fit for my army fluff.
  • a pretty big number of Chaos Terminators – expect a detailed post on these rather soon…
  • a couple of unpainted Lords, in keeping with my addiction to converting Chaos Lords.

Fortunately, the new codex has made none of these units any less viable — indeed, quite the opposite in some cases. So expect me to start working on some of those long time projects as well 😉

Last but not least, let me present you with some recent additions to my collection. Thanks to my fellow World Eater Khorga cleaning out his deep bitz box, I was able to purchase these:

First up is what may be my favourite metal World Eater ever. It’s hard to believe how crisp the detail on this guy looks, especially considering the model is from 1990! That’s vintage Jes Goodwin for you! It looks much cooler than some of the more recent metal World Eaters. In fact, my only nitpick would be the slightly hunched pose. Apart from that, this guy is damn near perfect!

Then there’s this guy:

That’s right, a complete Legion of the Damned Sergeant Centurius! Now I am a little torn about this model: Should I leave it as it is and paint it in its “intended” colours, or should I make it into a skull champion and induct it into the ranks of Khorne’s Eternal Hunt?

As you can see, I have a lot on my plate right now. So expect a slew of chaotic updates! Yay! And let me know your opinion in the comments section!

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