Sunday, February 28, 2010

The End-Boss, Nightbringer!

This blog recently shot past 50 followers, so to start off, a heartfelt thanks to all of you for reading my rambling posts and ogling my models. I hope you've found my works as inspiring as I have all of yours, and look forward to providing much more to come. As a reward, here's  a boss monster encounter for you:

I always found the Nightbringer model rather plain and underwhelming, and the Deciever model more so (which is why I have yet to purchase one), so when I found this fellow for a scant $12.00 on eBay, I snapped him up and set to work making him something to fear. He struck me as being the sort of fellow you'd encounter at the end of the game, all powerful attacks and high HP/MP totals, and a tall ghost with a simple scythe didn't quite cut it. 

The Dark Angels' iconography is full of all this lovely imagery of the Angel of  Death as well, so I thought to make him  this alien monster that combined that with Necron elements. I replaced the dinky little scythe with some bent metal bits to suggest the form without being one, and deepened/lengthened the shroud with green stuff. The halo and single golden wing owe themselves to Sephiroth from Final Fantasy 7 (proceed to groan and slap your forehead if you must, but I thought he was a great villain...), whose final form at the end of the game was itself full of fantastic angelic imagery. Tau bits with their pseudo-egyptian designs are incredibly similar to the Necron look (you can tell how deep the well of inspiration runs in GW by that, I guess) and so work for Necron models quite well.

I also gave him a pair of  living metal "wings", with the idea that they weren't attached, but sort of floated around with him in an unearthly way. Those rather large bits are from an old Bayblon 5 ship model I picked up as part of an airship project that never materialized (more on that later). Though the model looks rather top heavy, it's actually quite well balanced. One tends to forget that this thing is basically one big metal stick, and properly anchored is  a very solid model. I used, as I do a lot these days, a nice thick bit of coat hanger, deeply drilled into the base; the same gauge I used for the floating "wing". I didn't want him to be too bright and gaudy, and so stuck with black highlighted with Dark Angels green to further tie him into their imagery. 

So there you have it, the Angel of Death, one of the first C'tan reawakened. Just in time, in fact,  to see the rise of my new Void Dragon Tyracrons. A friend of mine and I were discussing the Tyranid fluff, and how they're being drawn to Earth by the Astronomican. What a rude surprise for them when they draw near and the Void Dragon pops out, hungry for living energy after his long, long imprisonment. He'll probably eat his way back through the swarm like fire following a fuse.

Now, as I'm waiting for some monstrous creature and Necron bits to come in, I thought I'd burn through some more plastic card and build some tanks:

That's two Hydras and a Chimera command vehicle, waiting for detail bits. The Hydras are modular but the Chimera is not (I suppose he could be...) and the Chim needs to be built up a little more so as to include the fire ports for the passengers. I seem to be out of stowage bags and duffels, so I'm not sure what I'm going to do beyond storage boxes; some comm relays and a lot of riveting probably. Barring any superheavies (don't really ever play any Apocalypse battles, to be honest) these should flesh out my Imperial Guard motor pool for some time.

Monday, February 22, 2010

First Out Of The Factory...

Yep, there they are; the Doom of Malan'tai and his buddy, Tyracron Warrior 01.  The first two models in the Army of the Void Dragon. Yes, I'm aware that DoM's base is a bit bigger, but he's also a special character, after all. Strangely enough, like Deathleaper, he isn't a synapse creature, and so doesn't merit the ubiquitous White Hat of Independent Thinking. Oh well, he'll still be snacking on Eldar with the rest of them before long.

Yet again, hindsight is 20/20, and if I'd bothered to think about it, I could've gone the extra mile and found some way to cast the Alien Queen's body in clear resin (preferably in two parts) so I could stick a little light inside there. Don't get me wrong, I love the light effects in DoM's chest and aerial vents but seeing him light up would've been super-cool. Failing that, it would also have been good to have a mold of an out-of-production part. Of course, that part has also been in my bits box for years, too. I had considered putting green  bits on the ends of the bright lances, but that might've made them too long and brittle.

One of the techniques I ported over from another project was the use of painting glows on the area surrounding an area, the product of some controlled "messy drybrushing" while painting the rib vents and back sections. DoM has to look extra-unearthly, after all, considering he drank an entire Eldar Craftworld dry. How he did that by himself while not being a synapse creature is beyond me. I guess he just lurked and drank until the place was empty....

I thought of painting the glowy sections using a "reverse highlighting" technique, but the recessed areas in the chest were a bit too deep, and would've been in shadow no matter what I did. The Tomb Spyder head looks fantastic, but for the mass-produced Zoancrons, I'll use Destroyer hover-skirts and the more spindly Necron Warrior bodies. Given that Tyranids are typically hexapods (that's "six-legged" for those of you in Rio Linda) I probably should've given him four more Wraith arms, if I could've found them in the first place. Also, since DoM, like Deathleaper, isn't a synapse creature, he doesn't get the White Hat of Independant Thinking. The synapse-only white cranium will also help me pick out synapse creatures on the battlefield visually, since I've never used the 'Nid codex before. Don't tell my adversaries! Shhhh!

I'm generally happy with the way the Tyracron warrior came out. He's cheap, parts-wise, and easy to mass-produce without a ton of conversion work. I plan on making six to nine of them, total, with different weapons loadouts to keep things visually interesting. The gauss coils on his weapon got the same glowy treatment as used on DoM. I'm kind of glad I didn't use the 'Nid legs now; a three-wound model should be burlier than a regular one. Also, as I've said before, they offer the potential of more dynamic poses.

The bronze-gold on his carapace came out brighter than it actually is, and also, much yellower; I used Dwarf Bronze to give it a reddish tint. Seeing as how he's a more elite creature, his color scheme is more along the lines of an Immortal, rather than the boring metal of a simple Termacron (or Necron warrior, if you prefer). I toyed with the idea of making both the Tyracron and DoM vastly different, but then they would have stood out too much from the existing models I'm using to fill out the horde. Now, a teaser image of the forthcoming Deathleaper:

That's right, I found more Alien Queen bits. It seems nothing I built with her remains lasted very long (come to think of it, I bought that model way back in the Battletech years). Deathleaper will be getting some parts from those Cryx warjacks too; namely those wicked-looking scything talon things. The mass-production model Lictors will be more Tyranid Warrior in terms of parts, but I might recut the legs to be more sprightly and sexy like Deathleaper's. Maybe I'll start calling the character models pseudo-C'tan, since they're individuals with their own names and weird abilties. Hmmm.....

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Cloning Tanks Part 2: Artillery

Back from the dentist with a numb jaw today, so that means more tanks. You'll remember these fellows from a post or two ago:
Today we're concerned with the little fellow on the left, the Griffon mortar tank. Nothing wrong with him; Griffon's a fine little tank for the points cost. However we need something to really pound those orks and other monsters into the turf, and his little mortar doesn't quite say "stay out of my deployment zone.  This time taking outlines and measurements for replication was a bit more difficult, as he came from eBay already assembled. I resisted the urge to pull him apart like a wrathful god, and just went with it. Hours of measuring, cutting, glueing, and painting gave us this:
They were made in the same frenzy of building that brought the cloned LR tanks about, and so share some of the same aesthetic; boxy hulls, big, heavy-duty treads, and more stowage and other tanky bits out of the steadily-emptier bits box. In retrospect, the Chimera chassis is so widely used in the Imperial Guard forces I should've built eight or ten of them, but this level of scratchbuilding really takes it out of you. However, I did have the presence of mind to build in one feature the LR clones lacked:
These suckers are modular. The gun assembly slides right out of the tractor section, which grips it tightly without needing to resort to magnets. Now I can make Hydra turrets, Manticore missile racks, even more Chimera hulls if I need them.
I lacked the bits to build a bunch of intricate artillery workings, not to mention crewmen to man the guns, so I just used old paint pots for the breech workings and called it a day. They're hidden by the hull sections anyway, and not so ugly and half-assed looking that they hurt the eye. Honestly I made sure to pack on enough detail on the hull, so even though the guns themselves are rather underwhelming, the model as a whole looks pretty darn good. In fact when they were done, I was genuinely surprised at how well they came out.
In future I'll just look for an inexpensive Chimera hull bit so as to trace them more accurately, but I may just default to the sizing of these to keep things uniform looking. I do like the burlier, more aggressive feel they have over the standard Chim.  I'll definitely keep to the more modular "universal tractor" idea, just to give me room for more interesting builds. Lord knows there are enough Chimera-chassis tanks in the Guard codex. 

In other news, the majority of you have spoken, and the Tyracron will keep his Tau legs. I won't, as someone suggested, change the name to TyraNecroTauCronAnids, as the Tyracrons are supposed to be Void Dragon Necrons, anyway. I've been sketching up some monstrous creature ideas, and it looks like the Carnicron might get a set of EVA-style jaws...

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Universe Wants Mechanical Tyranids...

..... and this picture proves it.  More cool-ass pics of this metal bug and the story on IO9 . In case you were curious, it's for sale at 4,500 pounds sterling. The people who make it are here and sell all manner of crazy-ass junk-sculpture robots. 

I think that proves that there are people out there as crazy as we are, and that you can make substantial amounts of money from our particular brand of crazy. 

Happy Tuesday, people. 

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Cloning Tanks Part 1: The Leman Russ

It's been said elsewhere (and rightly so) that 40k is a "pay for play" hobby. Those models ain't cheap, and by making it possible to field squadrons of tanks and whole broods of monstrous creatures, GW is doing all they can to make sure you want to buy more and more of them. Cheap bastard that I am, I decided to stick it to the Brits with a cloning scheme. 
Here are the two originals. The Leman Russ I was lucky enough to find on-sprue on eBay for around $25. The Griffon came assembled for half that  (and required stripping and repainting), but I only wanted it for the shape and dimensions of the Chimera chassis, so he'd do for that. I decided to make two more of each, and went about tracing the major parts on sheet styrene, which is readily available online or from your local hobby store at comparatively rock-bottom prices. We're 3-4 sheets for $3.50. Add in another $5 or so for the I-beam sticks I used to make treads, and another $5 or so for the L-beams used to join the pieces at a right angle. We're still cheaper than a GW kit. They took about 2 days, total, to cut, assemble, and paint, but the results were these:
Since these were cobbled together well before this blog, I have no how-to pictures, sorry. I need more Chimeras for my IG, not to mention Rhino/Preds for my Marines, so in the future I'll document the process there. To sum it up, it was a lot tracing outlines, cutting, gluing, and waiting. Given the chimney bits I was going to use to make cannon barrels, I cut the turrets big. Lots of parts from leftover GW sprues (Immolator, Russ, Valkryies, Manufactorum and 1/35 tanks) but those monsters are 90% plastic card and yankee ingenuity:
Using those I-beams as treads adds a bit of height to the model, not to mention solidity to the tread sections, which are, as with the Russ kit, assembled individually before the body is built up between them. They're came out a bit wider than the LR, too, but that was due to my own measuring error. By the time I had the central hull sections cut and attached, it was too late. Oh well.
Those with sharp eyes will not that those are Sentinel multi-lasers, which will do in a pinch as lascannons since they're nearly identical. Embellish with a leftover smoke discharger here and an Aquila here and there and you have a burly tank, ready to blast away at those orks. The turrets are fixed in place ( I discovered the joy of magnets later in the year), as are the sponsons, which were a pain in the ass to cut and assemble. I think I prefer the Russian KV-style box turrets to modern slope-sided ones, for the classical industrial look. Also, they made it easy to paint my half-cog Mechanicus insignia on the side. Inside the cog on the left side is the Company number (forming symmetry with the half-skull), while the number in red on the side of the tank is the tank number/squadron number.

The slab-sided turret design is awfully susceptible to anti-armor rounds in real life. You want the slope to deflect incoming projectiles, and a low profile to be hard to target, so in that sense the standard LR turret is more preferred, even if its hull design still isn't. These tanks are an anti-armor unit's dream come true.... 
What really makes it for a tank, I've found, is hanging stowage bits off the turret and armor plates. It gives you that nice extra level of detail and breaks up the silhouette of the model, making it interesting to turn around in your hands. These also represent my first attempts at fake-rivetting by way of a leather punch against the plastic plates; I ended up punching more holes than raised rivets, due to thickness and rigidity of the card. Later on, when plating armor on a dreadnaught, I did it the hard way and actually glued on tiny punched-out rivets. Talk about labor-intensive. All of those hull markings took a bit of time, too, but again, look great. 
This is what happens when you have no archetype to work from for dimensions. This Monolith, my first-ever scratchbuilt tank, absolutely DWARFS the standard model. Personally, I think the massive size fits more with the fluff text, but it's the devil to pack and transport. The lesson here, folks, is to use a template instead of just pulling something out of thin air, like I did. Still primarily plastic card, and thus still cheaper than the kit, though. 

Next time, I'll show you what I did with the Griffon. (although from the previous all-army photo, you can pretty much guess)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Air Support!

The Valkryie/Vendetta is one of those rare birds that's both a beautiful kit and an extreme joy to use on the battlefield. Of all the Forge World designs to mass-produce, GW certainly hit it out of the park on this one, although at $50+ it's sort of cost-prohibitive. (thank God for eBay)
I won't bore you with pictures of the stock kit, since you've already seen a million of those by now. What I will flash up here is the Vendetta conversion: (as always, click to enlarge)
There are magnetized hardpoints on the wings and wingtips, as well as on the body for the landing gear. I mounted searchlights on the wingtips over the old landing gear wells, which are, of course, still magnetized.

I don't like the idea of an aircraft putting all its weight on wingtip gear, and the four landing gear that FW designed the Valkyrie with just don't make sense to me. (especially that thing under the nose) If this thing lands in mud, that nose-pad is going to get stuck, fast, so we did away with that. I kept the tiny zep gear intact in the back, lengthening it a bit, and moved the wing gear under the body, so it's a bit more solid, now. The Lascannon mounts are made from good ole' heavy weapons team lascannons, mounted together with bits of sprue:

With a lascannon mounted in the fuselage on either side of the nose, we're ready to shoot down those nasty Wave Serpents with their force fields and lance weapons. Of course, if we need another Valkyrie, it turns into one:
But the magnets skew things, dammit. Really I only use those wingtip mounts when he gets mounted on his flying base (realistically, they'd retract up into the body, of course). I also detailed the inside, but left out the gunners. My Guard are a Skitarii regiment, so we auto-target those heavy bolters from inside. I keep forgetting to put mechanized servitor torsos in before I glue the roof on, though, but who's going to look inside anyway?
If I was going to enter one of these in some kind of competition, I'd go back and use some surgical tools to add some kind of servitor to the pintle mounting inside. Looking at Cool Mini or Not and sites like that, I doubt these would even place. Of course, if I were making a model specifically for a competition, I'd have gone that extra mile from the word "go", complete with dry-transfer aircraft decals instead of my hand-painted scrawl. Of course, I would have also weathered it with stippling instead of directional brushing, as well as the chipped-metal effect to the leading edges. A real Mechanicus craft would had an armored cockpit with cameras instead glass, too, I suppose. 
I was originally going to magnetize the base as well, but I wanted the grip to be extra-solid, so I decided to go with pins instead. These are thick paper clips cut with tin-snips, and it grips the model quite well. I don't know how they intended to mount it otherwise, because that translucent stalk-part doesn't clip well into the plastic mount for the helo. Both of my bases are like this, and I've never had a problem with the model slipping off or tipping over. For some reason, I've yet to detail the bases with materials. Maybe it's because the helos travel too fast, so the ground beneath them is constantly changing anyway? 
You will probably never see a Super Valkyrie like this carrying missile pods and anti-armor lascannons, unless someone makes an Apocalypse sheet for one. Both of Forge World's helos are woefully underarmed. Modern helicopters like the AH-64 Apache and heavier Mi-24 Hind carry two pylons per wing in addition to a nose/turret cannon (the Apache gun tracks with the gunner's helmet, too. Way cool!). That's sixteen anti-armor Hellfires or four multi-rocket pods, in addition to the wingtip struts, which can mount one anti-aircraft Sidewinder. I guess I'm spoiled by mechanical designers like Masamune Shirow, who think their tanks and things out a little more. 40k is supposed to be a dark future of slow technological decline, but come on. 
Here's a teaser-image for future posts. Damn you, Dave Taylor. Your army in that White Dwarf article made me fall in love with the Mechanicus, and gave birth to this Guard army. I really should mount those heavy weapons teams on proper bases, but no one I've play has cared. From that distance 50+ infantry doesn't look like a lot, but then this edition of 40k is better for vehicles than foot hordes anyway. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tyracron Update....

Okay, so I caved, clipped the Tau legs (gently, gently) and stuck the 'Nid warrior legs on there. He looks more athletic, but.... now more buggy. Hmmmmmm.....

One thing that disappoints me (beside the cricket-style pinions on the back) is that the 'Nid Warrior legs are capable of only one posture, which means that all of the poses are going to be variations of the same; left leg forward, right back, with the right shoulder forward. You can tell I'm going to have to either live with the awkwardness here or break up/repose the model. Boooo. 

The Nid legs may look better, but the Tau ones offer better possibilities. Hmmmmmm.....

(PS, yes, he is stuck into that pad by his head-horn. It was easier to turn the whole thing towards the desk lamp and shoot it sideways rather than unclamp the lamp.)

Friday, February 5, 2010

Making Megatron Proud....

As someone set the East Coast Weather Dominator to "Hoth" today, I thought I'd a do a bits box delve and work on my proof-of-concept model for the Tyracron army: the Tyracron Warrior. Seen here with his trusty Gauss Spitter, this thing took a little time to actualize, but it paid off. 
I started with the obvious, first: I cut away the tail from the crotch piece (the Necrons don't have tails) and then glued on the 'Cron warrior gun arms and Nid talons. The legs were a pain in the ass, b/c the Nid legs are too... buggy. I needed more "athletic robot" looking ones, and cut a pair of Tau battlesuit legs to fit the bill. The head was another story. A Necron head is too small, and the Nid torso, as you Nid modelers know, has that horn nub in front in lieu of a neck. A Necron head there or in the vast pit immediately behind it looked silly. Likewise, shearing away the little head of a scarab to use him to bulk out the Necron head looked equally dumb (remember Londo from Babylon 5?). Then I had that familiar impulse, and set to work. I sheared away the top of the Necron head, bored out the Scarab's head, and attacked both to the newly spare tail I had lying around. Voila! A serpentine biomechanoid-looking head. 
There are some issues with the Tau feet; I need to stick 'em on there at another angle and make sure it has the structural integrity to keep him up. I thought about giving him some kind of power spines or something like the Doom, but decided that sort of thing was for the bigger Tyracrons. 

X-Planes: The Adepta Sororitas Proclaimer

Anyone who's played the Witch Hunters army list knows it has its problems, and in many ways it's also just as good. The Sisters still remain some of the best infantry choices in the game, in my opinion. Early on, though, I couldn't win with them to save my life, and was mad that they didn't really have a great fast attack unit that played to the list's philosophy of "roll up to you and flame you in the face, then chop your arms off." Anyway, that coupled with hours of playing the PS2 video game Kinetica led to the above; a simple, sexy conversion that looks fast and mean. How does this thing fight in close combat? Simple, it stands up:

Then it rakes you with a melta gun, a heavy flamer, and those really brutal buzzsaws it uses for front wheels. It's a bike, so it moves like one, and it's a CC walker, so it fights like one. As with so many other sci-fi designs you'd have to be insane to want to drive one of these. I mean, being strapped to the BOTTOM of a moving motorcycle? Jeezus. However, the model is incredibly badass. I liked it so much I made three of them:

Parts list? Fairly easy: Penitent Engine arms, Marine bikes, Immolator gunners and turret bits. You cut away the turret bucket so she can straddle the engine, glue the torso so she's standing up, and voila. The pilot's arms took a bit of trimming and reworking, and in truth a couple of those models use 1/35 scale infantry arms, trimmed down. I was soooo pissed when GW closed their bits store. No more infinite source of Penitent Engine bits or cool-ass Eldar wings. I could go for those Micro Arts mechanicus wings, I suppose, but I'd have to have a sense of their scale. Of course, now that the Space Wolf codex has Thunderwolf cavalry, I may just have to adapt the design for the Astartes. I could replace the PE arms with Sentinel leg articulations, I suppose, but I wonder where I could find giant powerfist things to replace those buzzsaws. Hmmm...

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Vampire Counts: Skaven Pt. 2: Infantry

Continuing the saga of undead Skaven and the necromancers who love them, we have the backbone of every army: ranks and ranks of infantry:
Keep in mind the new book was not yet out when I was building this army, and at the time I was favoring skeletons as troops instead of everyone's favorite, zombies. Cheap the zoms may be, but I preferred the idea of troops that struck on a reasonable initiative number.  Mega Miniatures puts out blisters of 20-25 skeletons for around $20, among other things, and these were perfect starters for the army. Add in a single Clanrats box and you have all the bits you need for pretty much anything having to do with skaven and the dead in any combination.
Every 5th head or so in the Clanrats box is a bona fide Skaven skull, which is fantastic. I hewed at every other head with an X-Acto blade until they looked sufficiently skeletal. The Mega Minis skeletons are quite characterful,  being dressed in tattered armor and equipped with all kinds of weapons, from axes to greatswords. Though Skaven themselves are kind of stumpy (at least, the last edition's were) the more upright skeletons mesh well with the current designs.
When you combine the skeletons with Skaven parts and paint them appropriately necrotic, you get a whole new level of character. The fleshier ones could even be zombies, if you want.
Even given the poses and different stature, all of these actually rank up in a tray quite well. I didn't even do any pre-measuring and ranking. 

And the obligatory command, complete with a nice Skryre rune on the banner. The musician and banner parts are courtesy of the handy-dandy command sprue from the clanrats box, which inexplicably has the banners and gubbins of other races on it. Cheap to cast, I s'pose.

The Grave Guard are lovely minis from Privateer Press' Iron Kingdoms line. I got a pretty good deal on some from eBay, and being three to a blister, they were quite a steal at the price. Steam-powered Frankenstein's monsters seem like something a Skaven Necromancer would bolt together in his lab for heavy infantry, and power fists say "instant death to medieval soldiers" to me, so they're a reasonable stand-in for regular Grave Guard. 

For some reason, I was never quite sold on the idea of banners until I actually had to make them for fantasy armies, and then I found I rather enjoyed them. That chap with the bell might've been a monk or a beggar in life. Now he stomps into battle, forlornly ringing his bell. 

Since I play more 40k than WHF these days, I've been using more and more of these fellows as servitors in one way or another. My Adeptus Mechanicus army needs them for its artillery pieces as crew. If there's ever an official AdMech codex with servitors as an entry, I'll have enough to send a horde of them at an enemy (or failing that, a squad or three)

Next in the series: Cavalry.  (Yes, that means mounted Skaven.)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Operation Impending Doom 2

Didn't I say he'd start to build himself, eventually? I went back and put some more time into it last night, mounting a quintet of bright lances from my bits box, and drilling out the ends so as to slip Necron light bitz into them. His beady little head comes from the new Cryx plastic box, and he also has a tiny set of arms courtesy of my Wraith experiments. I also added some spines to that plastic tail, and hid some of the exposed wire hanger with extra segments. Yes, that base is a bit larger than the "slightly larger than infantry base" bases, but since this is a hero creature, I don't mind. 

Being a serpentine creature, going any farther with him might be too far, and that metal Alien Queen body already has a wealth of detail already. It'd  be a shape to go stock Necron "aged metal" with the paint scheme, too, but I don't want to go too gaudy with something like a golden head. I may have to take a break to work out the Tyracron colors. 

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

"Eating souls? Hey, that's OUR thing!!"

I went and threw this thing together in about half an hour of frenzied modelling this morning from things I had lying around the bits box. I had been thinking about it for some time, but for some reason this AM I just had to go ahead and do it. The head is your standard-issue tomb spider body, the body an Alien Queen from the ill-fated Leading Edge miniatures Aliens line, the tail a coat hanger ringed by plasticard tube cut into segments, and the tail a tomb spider claw. The metal bits took some drilling to pin together; deep-ass wells with a large bore hand drill, again using coat hanger stubs cut with a pliers-wire cutter. Man, there is just something therapeutic about drilling holes in things. Anyway, I like the way it's shaping up, but God knows what I'm going to do for adornment bits. This thing feels close to the point of building itself, as so many models have done. 

So according to the fluff text in the Tyranid book, this super-Zoanthrope just devours an entire Eldar craftworld, souls first. This is something the Necrons were doing to the entire galaxy before the Slann went and upgraded everyone to psykers, waaaaay back before everyone went and started using stone tools in the 40k universe. This bit of background, as well as the ribcage-motif prevalent in all Tyranid designs spurred me into this Tyranid-Necron conversion thing, which is shaping up to be the Project of 2010. 

Also, I'm bloody tired of waiting for them to upgrade the Necron Codex. 

Monday, February 1, 2010

Heroes of the Imperium Part II: The Venerable Captain....

Following up on the Space Hulk squads of ..... well, weeks ago, I though I'd do a retrospective of models based on the old Terminator Captain, one of my faves from years gone by. 
First up, my first marine ever. This captain model has been stripped, re-posed, and repainted. I formed a couple of metal sprues into relief panels for his armor, but otherwise left the model untouched. I miss the old rules for captains having grenade launchers on their power gloves. Nowadays, they can't even have terminator-armored command squads.
The new terminator captain, while pleasantly metal, is almost too well-sculpted to convert. While a nice hero model, I somehow still prefer the grim, determined look of the older model. I had really intended this posting to be a showcase of conversions of the older model, so he's stuck in here for contrast. The rest of the models you'll see are all conversions of that first captain model. Two of them (that first model and the next one) came with the original sets I bought waaaay back in 1989, and the rest from eBay.
A Black Templars captain, dressed up with cape, banner, and a massive claymore in his power glove. That chainmail banner sat in my bits box for a long time before I found a use for it. The big sword is from a Grenadier ogre-sized orc.
Another view, so you can see truly how big the damn sword is. You can chop into a tank with that thing, jeezus. 
I went a little further with this Chapter Master. The head is from a SM tank crewman, and the bits are from a few ranges, not the least of which the WHF plastic Flagellants and the Dark Angels/Black Templar expansions. His right shoulder guard is a plain old lead termie arm, covered with green stuff and imprinted with an Ultramarines symbol from the drop pod sprue. The combi-plasma is an Obliterator bit on an old-school storm bolter. That bigass spear is a composite:
The blade, the hilt and the eagle are from three separate kits, all held together by pins, prayers and good intentions. I've never used this model in combat, but as I own more than fifty terminators, many of them won't. Maybe when I finally play a game of Apocalypse, some time in the unknown future.  
Belial, the master of the Deathwing. His armor color is reversed from the standard Deathwing white, but his tabard more than makes up for it and the dark treatment adds makes the model that much more moody. I thought about giving him the sword instead of the Templar captain, but I though the glaive looked better, and it allowed me to give him a plasma pistol mount on the blade, Grey Knight style.
That right shoulder pad is made of a storm shield, of all things, and the bit fits perfectly into the shoulder socket. I like the look of it, and might use it on future terminator models. That right arm is plastic as well, with a hole cut into the fist for the glaive, which is a pretty solid bit. The shield I made him is actually two WHF tower shields, held together by green stuff and that Dark Angel icon. Underneath all those bits, this is an old-school model, just like the first one you saw.