Friday, 20 July 2018

"Grot Guard" (the first 500 points)

I have been woefully behind in posting my progress pictures for my latest project, a small force of  Astra Militarum "counts as" goblins, but I am here to report the project is well under way at almost one third completed after less than four months since the first test model. With the bulk of the miniatures being basic super fast to paint grots (representing conscripts) it was easy to spend a little more time on the conversions while speed painting the rest of the force.

The "big idea" for this army arose when the new goblin Blood Bowl team was released in 2017, as I thought them a perfect candidate for converting into Cadian soldiers using parts from my bits box. Combined with the Looted Wagons which had not seen any love in five years or more, it seemed the perfect way to create a unique army quickly and inexpensively given I already had an Ork colour scheme I knew and loved already.

I took the rather garish Temple Guard Blue from my Orks and replaced it with Lothern blue, a reasonable match should I use units across the two armies (Heavy Weapon Teams as kannons and so on...) but quite de-saturated which I felt suited the more military nature of the Astra Militarum models. Of course, most of these tanks had been previously looted and parts were missing, but I am doing my best to keep them subtly converted with the long term view of playing them using the loyalist codex and minimal "counts as" explanations necessary.

The real standout models so far have been my Lord Commissar (see this post for more photos) and my first conversion of a Tempestus Scion using some Arkanaut Company models from the Age of Sigmar range. I like the model so much I am saving any further conversions as a reward for rebuilding and painting three Leman Russ tanks from my bits box (which in itself is a reward for getting to the 500 point mark as once they are completed I will be at 1000 points and a second HQ choice from a playable army). I like to tell myself it has been a great use of the delayed gratification tactic to get this far, but honestly all the units have been fun to build and paint!

The whole force is still crammed into my bookshelf away from tiny hands while I renovate an old carry case, and I almost want to set up a display case, but the real reward will be getting them out for a game and hopefully tripling the amount of points by the time Armies on Parade rolls around in another three months.

The real joy of this whole project has been finally painting up some of these goofy models, emptying my bits box of some of the larger unloved pieces, all while putting some of my wacky conversion ideas and new models on the tabletop! This is definitely an army I will be gaming with and adding to for many many years...

Saturday, 12 May 2018

Converted Grot Guard Commissar

This is the leader of a new project I've started since returning from a holiday with my family, as I realised I have so little hobby time at the moment I don't want to waste it on grinding through painting models I'm not excited by. He is the leader of my new Astra Militarum (Grot Guard) force, and I will be using the Blood Bowl goblins as the basis for my Cadian Grots, along with a host of looted tanks which have been gathering dust in the bits box. It's been an exciting month of looking forward to converting and painting nearly every day, especially as I will be carrying over my Ork paint scheme which I love so much already.

Sunday, 11 February 2018

Completed: Kustom Mega Kannon

I am really struggling to paint the Lootas for this army (so many small details!) so I finished one of my Mek Gunz instead, just in time for another game day. I picked up five of these cheaply over the course of a few years and look forward to finishing another one soon, it was a lot of fun to paint.

Monday, 11 December 2017

Battlewagon/Taurox Conversion

Following on from my post covering the Orks I have been painting this year, I wanted to share some more photos of the Battlewagon I converted using a Taurox kit. This has always been on my "to do" list since the Taurox kit was released as I had never liked the look of the wagon and thought this would be a perfect combination.

Not an easy kit to combine, the sloping rear of the Taurox did not extend easily so I ended up using a great deal of filler to combine the two kits. I also found the grill needed extending once the roller was attached, and the plating on the front needed bulking up to match my image of a hulking battlewagon.

This was my first time using milliput, and I love it. The initial two part mix responds well to watering down and still sets quite hard once cured, allowing it to be filed and shaped with a knife. Green stuff tends to be too soft for making armour plating so I was very happy to find a good subsitute.

The model seemed to take an age to paint, and I stopped part way through because of the overwhelming amount of blue leading to boredom, though with a couple of late nights and lot of edge highlighting I was finally able to call it finished in time for a local painting competition (always a good goal to get something finished). No prizes this year, but a model I am very excited to bring to the tabletop and a great centerpiece for an army which prides itself for looting and modifying things! I've already started on some more grots in this colour scheme, and have had many people online and in person say how much they like the blue which is quite vibrant and "Saturday morning cartoon" style as one person mentioned. Definitely keen to paint more!

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Orks 2017

There's been plenty going on this year on the hobby front despite the arrival of twins in March. I've only had a chance to play 8th Edition 40k two or three times but have thoroughly enjoyed every game. I had sworn to myself that I would only play with painted models in the new edition, and this was the catalyst for a painting spree with my oldest army, this time in a fresh colour scheme.

Of course a new paint scheme means a "new" army colour and this time I chose Deathskulls (the clan of Orks responsible for stealing and modifying things), which also gave me a chance to finally start my Taurox/Battlewagon conversion which has been sitting in bits for many years. This is the current "centerpiece" for the army and as such I was looking forward to painting it the most.

The model I was least looking forward to painting was the Shock Attack Gun, pictured above. I had worked on the skin tone and then armour tone painting the troops, but had no idea how to approach a tabletop level glow effect. Fortunately I had about five different yellows including a fluorescent colour to experiment with, and I think it turned out appropriately garish!

The last model on the painting list was the leader, and I was equally uninspired by painting him due to the large amount of flat blue areas which required jazzing up, and the glowing force field. Thankfully I had experimented by adding a few brown rust streaks to the large blue panels on the battlewagon and they worked just as well on the smaller model to break up the large areas. Let's hope he performs well in game with a fresh coat of paint!

The "boys"  were key to my painting success, as I batch painted them quite quickly and was happy enough with them to paint the rest of the army. Orks are generally fielded in large numbers so i wanted to be sure I was satisfied with their look before continuing with the rest of the army. The photos aren't the best but I don't have time this year to set up a proper lightbox, it would mean less time painting!

I was inspired by a lot of "tale of warlords" painting and collecting articles in White Dwarf and online, I'm really happy with this small starter force, and I look forward to painting more next year. Add in my existing collection and I now have a modest 1500 points of Orks painted which i am very pleased with. Bring on the next few games! Thanks for dropping by.