Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Gods in the Underhive (Slaanesh)

Of the four greater Chaos Powers, Slaanesh is unique in not getting even a single suggestion for how to incorporate her worship into the fluff or modelling of a corrupted House gang. I would guess that if they had, it would probably involve Eschers modeled and/or painted to look like they're wearing even less than usual. Let's see if we can't come up with something more interesting than that.

- Goliath: I see a few possibilities here. As with the Eschers, the amount of exposed skin on display could easily suggest something sexual. But I feel like it would be more interesting to explore something like a gang focused on self-perfection to an unreasonable degree, a la the Emperor's Children or the Flawless Host. The amount of stimms they have to use also leaves an opening for falling into the use of less functional drugs as well.

- Van Saar are possibly the most compelling to me here. Imagine a gang suffering nerve damage, all their senses failing them, becoming more and more desperate to be able to feel anything, anything at all, at any cost. Easy pickings for the Dark Prince!

- A Cawdor Word-Keeper could easily fall to the temptation of the inhuman charisma the followers of Slaanesh are noted for. With such oratory and personal magnetism, just imagine how well he could spread the good word of the Redemption. And surely one so righteous would be able to resist the corruption that comes with that power...

- Orlocks, being kinda generic in many ways, don't present a whole lot of specific handles here. The similarly generic sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll combo does feel like it fits pretty well, tho, and could make for a fun project.

- For the Delaque, I think once again their connection with the Silent Ones might be a cool angle. Perhaps one of them becomes fascinated with the different range of sensory inputs that humans have, and pushes those it's connected with to explore them to the utmost. 

- Escher: Again, I think chems are a fun way to go here. This is one of the few that suggests a specific gang build to me, not only focusing on the use of stimms themselves, but also taking chem darts all over the place and getting their enemies all fucked up on Obscura and Kalma. 

- Corpse-Grinder Cults could easily be Slaaneshi as well. In this case, it would perhaps be less about "meat make strong", and more about the sensual allure of eating something with actual flavour. As with Nurgle, there's also some scope here for cool modeling projects with themed masks.

As a side note, I'm only planning one more of these. This is an area where Khorne really suffers from the problem of all war gods in wargames, where turning to him generally involves just doing exactly the same thing that literally everyone else in the game is doing anyway (i.e. violence), just more so, and he becomes basically the generic default option. The standard CGC are already more interesting than anything else I can think of for a House gang.

Anyway, until next time, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Gods in the Underhive (Nurgle)

I'm supposed to stay awake for a few more hours after falling and concussing myself due to fever-induced vertigo, so it feels like a good time to write about Nurgle.

The Book of Ruin offers a few suggestions about narratives for Chaos-corrupted House gangs, but it feels to me like they went for the low-hanging fruit. In the case of Nurgle, their suggestion was regarding Cawdor, since they basically spend their lives picking thru filth heaps anyway. But consider:

- A Goliath gang who have shifted their definition of strength from what they can overcome to what they can endure. Every time they take pride in shrugging off some damage or pain, Nurgle's hold on their souls tightens just a little further. There's probably also some potential to draw from the line in Hammer to Fall, "Build your muscles as your body decays", but that just popped into my head, so I haven't thought further along that line yet. 

-  A Van Saar gang, their immune systems shredded by the radiation from their faulty tech, discover that, somehow, the diseases they are left wide open to no longer affect them, even tho they have clearly not been cured by any means.

- Orlocks are kinda Cawdor-lite in this specific regard. Not a whole lot I can think of that's really cool here, just that they probably cracked open something while mining that they really should have left alone.

- House Delaque was created by a plague of dream sickness, which puts them pretty squarely in Nurgle's wheelhouse from the word go. But even beyond that, there are some interesting possibilities. The things they do for the Silent Ones frequently take them to the deep, dark places of Necromunda, where all manner of foulness lurks. Further, the Silent Ones might well be careless about something that was harmless to the original Delaque species, but is highly infectious for humans.

- House Escher bring to mind a subtler taint, reminiscent of the Dan Abnett short story Pestilence. Spreading Nurgle's plagues thru tainted chem deliveries, perhaps even focusing on medical supplies for extra irony.

- Corpse-Grinder Cults: What, you think Khorne is the only one who benefits from a Hive being filled with piles of rotting flesh? The focus here becomes less cannibalism, and more just about gratuitously leaving rotting meat all over the place for decay to take its course. Altho not leaving the cannibalism angle out entirely; perhaps only consuming the dead once they have sufficiently "ripened". The angle for Escher works here, too, spreading the diseases thru the food supply rather than chems. Also some cool potential modelling opportunities using Blightking parts, and perhaps an insectoid aspect to the masks rather than the standard hornéd beast look. 

Well, hopefully none of y'all catch anything like this shit I've got, and until next time, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Monday, November 28, 2022

Modern Art in the 41st Millennium

This piece, which has been variously reported as being titled "My Triumph", "Don't Worry, I've Got it Entirely Under Control", and "Agh! Run! Run!", Was first exhibited in 879.M41 in Necromunda's Hive Secundus.
The piece is by Magos Biologis Hermiatus and an unknown Corporaptor hominis assistant, and is considered an example of both installation art and performance art. It is a mixed media work, comprised predominantly of misappropriated Archeotech, xenobiological samples, and hubris.

Altho difficult to confirm, it is believed that the piece, or at least what remains of it, is still on display in what's left of Hive Secundus.


There we go! Only took me four years to get around to doing the second one. I have to admit, I was extremely nervous when I started taking the clippers to the clear plastic part, but it ended up working out pretty much perfectly. The various differences between the two also mean that the fact that I ran out of the old purple ink that I used inside the tank on the first one and had to substitute Army Painter Purple Tone didn't matter as much as I was worried about, either.

Until next time, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Sunday, November 20, 2022

Princesses of the Dawn (Part 1)

Due to various health issues (not least, getting covid twice in the past year and a half), I haven't really been able to do much tabletop gaming in quite some time. But I recently reconnected with an old gaming buddy thru Twitter, and he's going to be able to roll up here some time in the new year and I have enough space, energy, and terrain for us to get a few Necromunda games in, so I've started working on a gang to use in a 2 person mini campaign.
I have a bunch of old metal Escher models sitting around that I've used as Chaos Cultists for years, so I'm rebasing them, repainting them in a more coherent scheme, and doing a few conversions to bring them more up to date with what are non-terrible options in House of Blades. In the case of my Leader here, she doesn't actually have an option for the maul this model was originally armed with, and mauls are pretty terrible in Newcromunda anyway. The Shock Whip is much cooler. 
(I've gotta be honest: I've kinda had a crush on this sculpt since I first saw the Escher model range like 25 years ago. Still think she's absolutely gorgeous, and wish I could manage a better paint job to do the model justice, but essential tremor and exhaustion put some hard limits on my capacity for detail work. The maul is technically illegal here, but unlike the first model, it's much harder to remove, and contributes more to the badass vibe, so I'm just going to ignore it rules-wise and have her just armed with the pistol.)
One of the conversions that's not strictly necessary, but I find it really hard to justify paying 15 credits for an Autogun when I can get a Lasgun for 5.
Hard to go wrong with a Plasma Gun, and this is another sculpt I've always been a huge fan of.
I decided to keep this one cheap, but she looks badass enough that I kinda feel like I should have given her a Plasma Pistol and made her a Matriarch or Death Maiden instead of just a Ganger. Hopefully I'll get lucky and be able to promote her at some point. Gonna try to get a better pic of her fur cape at some point, too. Really happy with how that came out.

I primed a bunch more bases today, got two more gangers who are almost done except for still being on 90s Goblin Green, and then I'll pick out another half-dozen or so to fill out the roster and give me some options for expansion. Until next time, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Monday, November 7, 2022

Marta the Second

My skill set doesn't often lend itself to fan art, but on rare occasions, I'll find something I can work with to get close enough. I was idly browsing thru bitz stores on eBay a while back when I realized that Voidmaster Nitsch had a cool uniform that could work as the basis for Marta Dyas from Gideon the Ninth. I really want to do a model of Gideon herself at some point, but I don't have a good base model in mind.
It's not perfect, by any means. There was too much gun-related gear that was going to be too hard to clear off (cleaning up her left arm after removing the shotgun was enough of a pain), so I guess those are like canisters and a pouch of necromancy materials that she's carrying around for Captain Deuteros or something.
I really do love the detail on the Rogue Trader models, even if it is an absolute pain in the neck to paint. I can see a bunch of spots that want touch up, but I just can't deal with it any time soon.
Can't really see much from this angle, but I still liked it as an action shot. The impression I got from the book was actually that the Cohort uniforms were mostly white with red trim, but when I did the actual Elucidian Starstruders, I did white for the uniforms there, so I wanted to change it up this time. 
I'm not usually a fan of this base, but it seemed way too on brand for the Nine Houses not to go with it here. The Second isn't as "all bones all the time" as the Ninth, but they all do that shit to some extent. 

Not sure what I'm going to flit to next, but when I do, I'll be back to share it here, whatever it ends up being. Until then, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Monday, October 31, 2022

Things that Go Bump in the Underhive

In addition to the Dreadtober stuff, I've done a handful of random creepy/spooky models this month. Figured Halloween was a good time to share them here.
This first one was done also for the 35 Years of 40K thing. It's my take on a Grabber-Slasher, a little-known Tyranid beastie that basically only appeared in Advanced Space Crusade. There was a model for it, that was later reclassified as a Squig and moved to the Ork range, but it was frankly kinda crap, so I started over from the statline and description of how they operated in ASC, which gave me the impression of a Gaunt-type Lictor counterpart. A few GSC bits and a spare Hormagaunt body later, and I had this guy here ready to leap out of the shadows to grab and slash away!
This mutant was inspired by a pic I saw on twitter of a Tiefling with horns growing from her eyes. I got the Escher expansion kit for the Wyld Runners and Phelynx, but I don't really care for the Death Maidens, so I had some parts lying around waiting for some horns from a Chaos Spawn to turn her into something possibly even more horrible. 
Then we've got this zombie Slenderman motherfucker. I got a bit overexcited and hasty while building him, so there are some pretty sketchy joins, but they're mostly concealed by the camera angle. I'm still happy that I got him to come out as close to the image in my head as I did.
Last, but not least, we've got this snaky backbent monstrosity. Again inspired by something from Twitter, this time a video of a girl bending over backwards and scuttling around a store like this, scaring the hell out of other shoppers. From left to right, the snakes are a Ridley's Cave Racer, a Green Mamba, a Cottonmouth, and a Redbelly snake. On our world, only the middle two are venomous, but I wouldn't rely on that if I ran into this in a dark hallway. 

It needs another angle more than the others do to really show what's going on here. The random tentacles off the waist are because of reading some D&D sourcebook about Aberrations, where for some reason, two tentacles growing from the hips was one of the most common mutations resulting from dealing with Aberrations, regardless of what sort.

Anyway, have a spooky evening, and until next time, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Sunday, October 30, 2022

It Dreads Nought, for All Dread It

Last, but absolutely not least, we have this monstrosity, an updated take on the Mk IX Dominator class Chaos Dreadnought from Space Crusade's Mission: Dreadnought expansion.
I really wasn't sure how well it was going to come together for quite a while, but now that it's done, I'm incredibly happy with the result, especially the eyes.
Wasn't entirely sure how I wanted to do the plasma coils. I had a few ideas, but ended up just going with the classic blue. Really grooving on the biomechanical aspect here, similarly to my Maulerfiends. Unsurprising, really, since it uses so many Fiend parts.
Not much to see back here, but I figured I'd include the angle for completeness's sake. Also, speaking of the parts, I'm kind of curious if anyone can name all seven models I used bits from.
Not sure what all the spent brass on the base is from, but it's too small to be from that thing. I like the Conversion Beamer as one of the secondary guns as another old school nod. I do wish I could find my static grass, tho. I've always liked how it goes with this base.
And just to round things out, here's a shot of all three of them together. I look forward to seeing how everyone else's projects end up. Until next time, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Wednesday, October 19, 2022

The True Mechanicum and the Problem of Khorne

Setting up the photography for the other project I mentioned is taking longer than I expected, and this thing is almost done, so I figured I'd post it. Still needs some touch up, and then Nuln Oil Gloss over just about everything. 
While deciding how to paint my True Mechanicum Robots, I ran into a bit of a problem. The obvious approach is to just do a darker version of the standard Adeptus Mechanicus look of red and brass. The problem is that, while red and brass and Imperial says AdMech, red and brass and rebelling against the Imperium says Khorne, and I didn't really want them to be super Chaos tainted, focusing more on Silica Animus, Xenos tech, and forbidden stuff like Phosphex. I figure they've ended up with some Chaos effects, because it's really hard to avoid that in 40K, but I don't want it to be the main thing here. Hopefully the red and steel with a few brass details manages to thread the needle there. 

The other problem with True Mechanicum is getting them to look creepier than the regular AdMech stuff, which is a job of work, since those guys are already creepy as hell. 
I kept the cogs on, but did them in a single colour instead of the usual split, which I believe is intended to symbolize the duality of the Omnissiah and the Emperor, and of the Adeptus Mechanicus themselves and the Imperium as a whole. The True Mechanicum reject the Emperor and the Imperium entirely, and do their cog icons in a single colour to symbolize the singular nature of the Omnissiah. 
The inverted skull here, similarly, represents... Ok, no, I admit it: it's just like that because I didn't notice in time to fix it. Pretend I was able to come up with something suitably deep. 

Oddly, despite being where most Dreads or Robots mount their primary weapon, the Fuckoff Huge™ Flamer is tertiary, mostly there in case some infantry try to object to the Colossus pulverizing their fortifications. 
With all the Gauss Blasters on top, it reminds me of a late-90s Warlord Titan, but chonkier. It felt kinda weird painting the Gauss, because the few actual Necrons I've painted have been Thokt Dynasty, but the story I have for these is way over on the other side of the Galaxy, so I went with the more standard green. 

The Gravitic Singularity Lance on the left arm is the main weapon for its primary role, and it's actually a close combat weapon, not a gun. It's very unwieldy, but since the Colossus is a Siege robot, intended to hit large stationary things, the sheer destructive power is far more important. It creates a miniature black hole at the tip of the lance, and then thrusts it into the target, with generally catastrophic results, especially against things that have already been destabilized and weakened by the Gauss beams. 

Hopefully I'll be back soon with this thing finished, some work on the SC Dread, and/or some 40K civilians. Until then, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Sunday, October 9, 2022

Dreadtober 2022: First Into the Fray

Being, as I said, the physical incarnation of a Twitter shitpost made from US$25 worth of beat up secondhand models, I'm not investing a whole lot of time into painting Venerable Ancient Galbadrakh Tsendbaatar. The White Scars colour scheme is striking enough that it works pretty well even without doing too much, as long as you're not too messy with it. 
I wanted to get a shot of the extra fuel for the Heavy Flamer, just because that bit fit in the space available better than I could have planned. Covers up the missing hatch on the side of the Speeder perfectly. 
I also want to toss in a shout-out to Mindtaker Miniatures, since they're responsible for this in two different regards. First, years ago, I got the models that I used to make this from them. Then, much more recently, it was well digging out stuff to sell to them that I found those base models hidden in my storage shelves. And finally, they're just generally good folks, and I miss being able to hang out like when I used to roll down to Vancouver every summer. 
Oh, and before I forget, I did manage to find the parts to finish off these other two, and I got them primed this afternoon. The Hades Gatling Autocannon isn't shown here because it's already painted and magnetized, so I didn't include it when I grabbed them to take pics before priming, but they'll be good to paint in another day or two, once the spray paint finishes off-gassing. The Space Crusade inspired one does a pretty good job all by itself of encapsulating #35YearsOf40K, containing parts from 9 different kits spanning four decades and three completely different game systems. 

I've got some other stuff I've been doing that I'd like to give a more extensive writeup than I was able to on Twitter, so I'll probably have some of that next time, and then more Dreadtobering after that. Until then, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Dreadtober 2022 Start

Missed a couple of years for a variety of reasons, but I'm back for Dreadtober this year with a variety of projects.

First off, this one isn't actually a Dreadnought, it's a Colossus class siege robot. I've been digging into a lot of the older fluff lately, and for a long time, the only real distinction in 40K between Dreads and Robots was whether they had a pilot or a computer. They had tons of cross-compatible parts, and were frequently salvaged from to repair the other. I had figured this one was just going to live in my head for the foreseeable future, since I can't afford an Ironclad kit right now, but then I found one while digging out stuff to sell, so here we go!
This particular example is a True Mechanicum* variant. Unencumbered by the narrow minded restrictions of the Adeptus Mechanicus, the creator felt free to include Xenos tech, in the form of the Gauss Blaster array, and probably some aspects of the Gravitic Singularity Lance on the left arm. There's going to be some sort of fuckoff huge flamer on the right arm, in place of the single Bolter that the classic version carried for anti-infantry work, but I'm not sure where I put the bits I wanted to use for it.
Then there's this mess, inspired by the Mk IX Dominator class from Space Crusade's Mission: Dreadnought, but limited by the bits I happen to have on hand. Again, I'm frustrated by not being able to find what I want for the right arm. I've made like 5 Maulerfiends, how the hell do I not have any Hades Gatling Autocannon anywhere I can find them? Secondary armament is going to be a Missile Launcher and Conversion Beamer, but I'm not sure yet how I want to mount them. Then I need to figure out something more interesting for the front of the thing. 
Finally (for now), we've got the literal physical incarnation of a Twitter shitpost. I can't remember who, but someone was talking about how much it would suck for a White Scars hero to get stuck in a slow, plodding Dreadnought, and I spewed out some bullshit about a Techmarine bolting the top half of a Dread onto a Land Speeder. Then, again while digging out stuff to sell, I also found a couple of AoBR Dreads and this beat to shit secondhand Speeder, so I decided to actually build the curséd thing. 

This one, I at least don't have to hunt for parts for. Just needs some gaps filled in and a fresh coat of primer and I can start painting it. I decided to go with a weapons fit that will let it actually be used as Land Speeder Tornado, because that felt like it made the whole thing even more ridiculous.

I'll be back once I've made some progress. Until then, y'all have a good one, y'hear! 

*Referred to as the "Dark" Mechanicum by the hidebound fools in the decadent Adeptus Mechanicus. 

Monday, October 3, 2022

Remembrance and Honour

When I first started playing 40K, back before the turn of the century, there was a guy named Tobin Lathrop who was a fixture of the Seattle gaming scene. Absolutely great guy, and he became something of a role model for me as a gamer who really embraced the whole hobby, and didn't get hung up on not being the most skillful player or anything like that. He'd just keep showing up with his fantastic looking Imperial Fists and have fun hanging out with everyone while getting his butt kicked. As a regular at the bottom tables with a bit of a knack for painting myself, it was reassuring. 

On a few occasions, when he was downsizing his collection, he'd just give stuff away to people who he thought would appreciate it and put it to good use. At one point, he gave me a bunch of long OOP Mordians, because he knew I used them as Command Squads and officers in my metal IG army, and that I didn't have many opportunities to expand that force.

The last time I saw him (tho I didn't know that at the time), he gave me this LE101 Chaos Renegade Marine, telling me* that it was the first Chaos Marine GW ever released, because he knew that I had gotten started in 40K with Chaos Marines, and they've always been my core faction.
At this point, I was starting to really run into disability issues, and was kinda falling out of being able to make it in to events and stuff. Some time later, he got pancreatic cancer, and just under two years ago, it killed him.
I still hadn't done anything with this model, worried that I wouldn't be able to do something worthy of the emotional and historical weight it had, and that continued until GW announced the 35th anniversary of Warhammer 40,000. I decided that, worthy or not, it was time to do something with it, and figured I'd also take advantage of the motivation to do something with the Imperial Space Marine from the 30th anniversary that had just been sitting around in primer gathering dust for similar reasons.
It took me a while still to decide what colour scheme to use. Part of me wanted to paint him up as Alpha Legion, which were more specifically my start in 40K, but I eventually decided that the first Chaos Marine should really be done as a Word Bearer. 
The Imperial Space Marine was simpler, of course. I really couldn't think of anything other than to paint him up as a tribute to Tobin's Imperial Fists.
I didn't have the courage to try to freehand insignia on either of them, but other than that, I'm really happy with what I managed to accomplish with them. I know I haven't been around the 40K blogosphere for ages, but I've had a painting streak thread going on twitter for a couple of years now, and that, combined with not worrying about how things would work in the game, has led to some pretty substantial improvements in my painting, if I do say so myself, and I feel like I was indeed able to do something worthy with them.

I don't know if there is anything after we die, any form or part of us that survives the passing of the body, but if you are out there in some way, Tobin, this one is for you. Thank you for helping me get into a hobby that has brought me so much in the quarter century and more since then.

Y'all have a good one now, y'hear! 

*As far as I know, this is correct, but it's really hard to find precise and complete info on old GW releases, so I'm stating only what I know to be true. It is unquestionably one of the first, and the tab on the base actually names it a "Chaos Warrior", which suggests to me that the sculpt was done before the writers had really nailed down what they wanted to do with Chaos in 40K.