The Imperial Space Marine
It’s been a frantic few weeks where I’ve been out quite a bit and also been frantically preparing for a game I had with my brother last Sunday. This post is sadly going to have to suffice for the next fortnight too as I’m going to Berlin with work next week.
Thirty Years of Space Marines Event
This weekend saw Games Workshop run an event celebrating Thirty Years of Space Marines. A limited edition miniature (the Imperial Space Marine) was created along with a hard-back book (Index Astartes Apocrypha) with lots of classic artwork and nostalgia showing how the 1986 marine ended up in its current incarnation. A set of Space Marine specific Psychic Power Cards was also released alongside some Codex supplements.
My brother and I went to the local Swindon store and were lucky enough to pick up a marine each and I also picked up one of the new books. I say lucky because Swindon only had a very limited stock of the miniature and books which sold out entirely before lunchtime – which included miniatures initially put aside for Sunday. The website also sold out of miniatures before the end of the day, so anybody who went to purchase one on Sunday will have been disappointed
I’m a big fan of Games Workshop but think it’s really bad that they had been promoting the Thirty Years of Space Marines event as being the whole weekend and ran out of stock. Considering the plastic sprues are produced in Nottingham, I cannot see when it sold out why an option for “sprue only” couldn’t have been added and a PDF of the rules e-mailed out, the cost for an additional production run would have easily been covered even if they reduced the price of the miniature.
Overall the Thirty Years of Space Marines event was pretty good, but slightly marred by the stock issue.
I seem to have hit a bit of a ‘bloggers block’ recently, so have decided to write about the couple of Space Wolves Dreadnoughts that I’m currently kit bashing. I think this must be the forth attempt to write this post over the past couple of weeks as my earlier attempts were just creating posts that were as dull as dishwater!
Following the games of 40k I’ve had over the past month or so, I realised that I need to refine my Space Wolves army. It needs more in the way of firepower and speed in order to make it more competitive against opponents such as Tau or Eldar. So I’ve been putting together a pair of Land Speeders and pair of Dreadnoughts and will be working on more Long Fangs too. The Land Speeders aren’t particularly exciting – I’ve magnetised the various weapons and picked up a set of the Forge World Legion Pintle Weapons set, as I prefer the look and they’ll allow me to magnetise the whole gunner.
The last week has been exceptionally busy in the “real world”, so this and a little lack of enthusiasm on my part has meant that the amount of hobby achieved has sadly been fairly low. I have managed to finish the Thunder Hammer on my Wulfen wielding that and Storm Shield. I chose a blue steel colour to contrast against the rest of the grey-metallics by adding a small amount of Drakenhof Nightshade into the Nuln Oil wash. This give the illusion that it’s made from a fairly dense steel.
Last week I received the Forgeworld order that I placed before my trip up to Warhammer World, this consisted of a load of bits for my Mechanicum army – another 6 Thallax (two with Plasma Fussil), a Darkfire Castellax and a Triaros. Over the weekend I started to tidy up the Triaros and must admit that I’m fairly impressed with it. It is a monstrous lump of resin without a doubt, but on the whole it came without too much in the way of flash and mold slips. The tracks are probably the worst, however most of the flash is located on the underside so doesn’t need a “perfect” clean up job (i.e. resculpt) as it’ll be hidden most of the time. I’m planning on magnetising the side weapons and will likely glue and pin the main hull together for extra support.
Well Forgeworld are teasing us again with their latest blog post! It would appear that the long awaited Heresy Space Wolves upgrade pack is very soon to be released to the public. If past teasers are anything to go by then we can expect a release the end of this week.
Interestingly the old Space Wolves Terminator upgrade pack is also being brought back to production! I always had a soft spot for these and hats off to Forgeworld for doing this.
If you’re a Space Wolves player you’ll likely have come across the Space Wolves Blog over on blogspot. It’s an excellent resource for all things related to the army both in terms of modelling and gaming articles and has a pretty active group of commenter’s both on the blog and over on their Facebook page.
In order to provide a bit of income for running the blog the guys over there created a Space Wolves Players Hand Book last year for the tiny donation of £5 (about $8 USD). Since Curse of the Wulfen came out they’ve been working on an update and released this last week, as I’m finally getting into more gaming I decided to treat myself to it and received the PDF yesterday.
I’m pleased to say that my unit of Wulfen stormed across the battlefield this weekend and caused havoc. I’ll go into more detail of how they perform and a bit of a review on Warzone Fenris towards the end of this post 🙂
Despite my best efforts I didn’t manage to finish painting the unit of Wulfen, around 9pm on Saturday I decided not to rush the last bit, so still have the brass edging, fur, bone/trinkets and bases to complete. I am however really happy with how far I’ve managed to get in just a couple of weeks of painting – much further than I’ve got in the past. I won’t pretend that I couldn’t have done them to a higher standard, but these are for gaming and not a painting competition so I’ve concentrated in a neat paint job, using techniques I’ve used in the past and it’s really paid off.
I’m pleased to say that my Wulfen should be bounding across the tabletop this weekend! Despite the week being very full on in the “real world”, it was very productive on the hobby front. Because time was starting to become a bit more tight, I didn’t get round to doing any more experimentation with the black on my Knights (my first challenge not achieved) but did get the 50-odd Plaguebearers undercoated for my brother
The weather at the weekend was particularly rubbish so I pushed myself to get them undercoated on Friday late afternoon as the weather was a little better. I ended up airbrushing the skin colours rather than using a brush as I was finding I couldn’t get a decent enough finish on them and was in danger of obscuring the detail on the face. A short amount of time and the flesh was done, which also had the side benefit of putting a bit of overspray on the fur so this should be easier to blend in when I get round to it. I then went in with a brush and pushed the shadows and bumped up the highlights a bit. Colour wise I went for more brown-red in the flesh as I wanted to give the Wulfen the impression of a more leathery skin. Colour wise I based in Skrag Brown, shading with Scale 75 Arabian Shadow mixed with Skrag Brown and then highlighted with Cadian Fleshtone. The brush work used the same shadow and highlight colours but I took the highlight a step further with Kislev Flesh, basically just pushed the colours into the recesses a bit which is enough to make it look like it’s not been airbrushed.
The last week has been a pretty busy one with only a small amount of time for any hobby work. There has been a fairly significant release for the Space Wolves and Daemons in the form of a new campaign pack – Warzone Fenris. This introduces some updated rules for both, some new Space Wolves character miniatures (the long needed Iron Priest, Ulrik the Slayer and Krom Dragongaze on general release). It also re-introduces Wulfen as a usable unit. Both Space Wolves and Daemons also have been given a huge number of formations and the Daemons also got new Warlord Traits and psychic powers in addition to a mix of some really nice scenarios.
Because I didn’t spend as much money at the Horus Heresy Weekender as I anticipated, I treated myself to the “Saga” edition of Warzone Fenris which arrived via UPS on Monday. I also purchased a box of Wulfen that arrived on Saturday (because Element Games have a better postal setup than Games Workshop).
I’ll not lie and say that I was extremely dubious about seeing Wulfen back in the game. The new miniatures are massive, coming on 40mm bases and looking very bestial rather than marine like, plus I’m not a big fan of the new “ice” look weapons that seems to have become popular. The studio paint job puts them in modern Space Wolves blue-grey armour rather than the old school grey colour, which deviates from the last incarnation where they wore an assortment of scavenged armour.
Do you know how sometimes something you’re working on just “goes right”. You barely put a brush stroke wrong and everything comes together really well. Well I’m happy to say that my Wolf Priest sits quite nicely in that category. For those who aren’t big in the whole Space Wolf ethos and background, Wolf Priests fulfil a multi-purpose role within the chapter. They are responsible for the physical training of new recruits, the spiritual training of the whole chapter (think Chaplain) and collector of fallen marines gene-seed (think Apothecary). Also, unlike the rest of the chapter their armour is painted black rather than the normal blue-grey.
This of course means that they really stand out when put on a gaming table alongside the rest of the army, so a simple “black undercoat, grey edge highlight” wasn’t really going to cut it. From a game point of view, Wolf Priests grant the unit they’re with, preferred enemy and feel no pain. This makes them quite punchy and naturally lend themselves to being put with full squads of Blood Claws, preferred enemy goes a way to balancing the poor WS3 and feel no pain helps deliver them to their location.
The first challenge I faced was sorting out a suitable miniature. Games Workshop don’t produce a plastic Wolf Priest and in fact the only ones they’ve produced are pretty static with the old “raised Crozius and plasma pistol” pose. Thankfully a decent kit bash sorted that out, picking pieces from a variety of boxes and undertaking a bit of weapon tweaking. My intention was that my Wolf Priest would accompany a pack of Sky Claws, so I sorted out an appropriate jump pack, however due to an imminent game planned for September where I wanted to assign him to a regular Blood Claw pack, I ended up magnetising his back pack so that I had the best of both worlds. This also had the benefit of making it significantly easier to access the back of the miniature to paint.
I spent quite a bit of time hunting around online for an appropriately impressive way of painting black, looking up NMM recipes, different manufacturers of black paint etc and ended up going for an airbrushed finish. All Vallejo Model Air colours: Black > Blue Grey > US Blue Grey, then reblending in with black again. This was then given an edge highlight of the US Blue Grey followed by VMA Light Grey. The whole miniature then received a black glaze, made from VMA Black and a very old pot of Vallejo glaze medium, final edge highlights with Light Grey and finally white just finished it off once the glaze had dried. And that’s it 🙂
Overall the finish is really clean and crisp and by using regular colours has meant that I’ve been able to go back in and retouch areas I’ve missed or am not happy with. The metallics still need some work and I’ve got all of the parchment, tassel, trinkets and bones to paint up.
Hi folks, yes I’ve been rubbish at putting anything on the blog. A combination of real life being far too busy and lack of enthusiasm to touch a computer have kept me away from here. Which is actually a bit of a shame as I’ve been progressing really well on the painting front. My Rune Priest is pretty much done now and just waiting for me to complete the backpack. I’m not entirely happy on the OSL from his hand that’s projecting on the base but would need to strip off the snow and do it again – which I may do at some point in the future.