About a decade ago, I had quite a large Dark Angels army but, as with all miniatures back then, I sold them.
However, I have always liked the Dark Angels – moody guys, full of secrets, hate Space Wolves – what is not to like? So, I always hankered after doing another army. A couple of years ago, I set myself the aim of doing the entire 3rd Company. Not just the squads, but all vehicles, characters, supporting bits and pieces… the lot.
Last year, I finished the company. The trouble was, I had been bitten by the bug at that point. I had a couple of Land Raiders and started thinking ‘you know, it would not take too much to have a company of those.’ The same applied to the Deathwing, Ravenwing, and the 10th ‘Scout’ company.
A year on, and I am just three Land Raiders away from having a complete company of these heavy tanks (three squadrons of three, with one command tank). The latest addition is below – I normally prey on eBay sales for Land Raiders, refusing to spend more than £10 on each one (this is why it has taken so long to get this far), but this model I bought brand new from Forge World because, well, it is all kinds of awesome. Some might say it is ‘sick.’
What makes this puppy worth having is that a) it has twin-linked Multimeltas, making it a great tank killer and b) it retains a Land Raider’s all round armour of 14 and yet has a special rule that means Melta and Lance weapons do not get their benefits against it. As far as I can tell, that will make it nigh on invulnerable. Not so sure about the Thunderfire Cannon up front, but it looks impressive if nothing else.
So, the plan is to have a ‘heavy’ squadron with the Achilles, a Helios and a Terminus Ultra (completed), a ‘normal’ squadron of standard issue Land Raiders (need just one more), and an ‘assault’ squadron of Crusaders and Redeemers (need two more). These are all led by a Prometheus (which I used to nickname the Ork Mower, though it does bugs just as well).
I have also been working on the Deathwing. Using Bleached Bone and the Magic Goop method, these are fantastically quick to paint, and this weekend I added another squad, this one with fairly ordinary upgrades and a Heavy Flamer (the idea being that they can be used easily in Space Hulk).
This makes the fifth squad I have done – so, a quarter of the company is completely finished! Given the time it takes to paint Deathwing Squads and the fact that I am in no real hurry,l it now looks entirely possible that this will be another full company I can actually complete. Of course, there is more to the Deathwing than just Terminators. They need a Master and Chaplain, but I had done these already as part of my growing Inner Circle. So, next up will be the Dreadnoughts. I had already done one Venerable Dreadnought for the Deathwing (all Dreadnoughts in the Deathwing are Venerable), and this weekend I added this bad boy;
The Chaplain Dreadnought is a good and characterful addition to the Deathwing, as well as being something just a little bit ‘different.’
So, what next for the Deathwing? Well, I need another 75 Terminators, but I will do them in ‘blocks,’ aiming next to double their size to 50. Makes it easier to accomplish without getting down-hearted at the work. Some more Dreadnoughts, perhaps three or four more would not go amiss, and there is a lot of customisation allowed for Venerable Dreadnoughts. However, all of this, while easy, is just putting off the inevitable – unusually, the Deathwing company has its own pool of Land Raiders.
Games Workshop has never said how many Land Raiders the Dark Angels have, but check my thinking here. The latest Blood Angels Codex stated they have 40-something Land Raiders, but that the Blood Angels are notable for having a lot of them. Well, my thinking is that the Dark Angels are the oldest and not exactly the poorest chapter around, so they will have more than a handful. Their Armoury will have one complete company (working on that, as you saw), so I figure the Deathwing would also have its own company, allowing the transport of half of all the Terminators – the other half would teleport in (doesn’t seem to make sense that the Deathwing would have two companies of Land Raiders).
However, that is certainly for far off in the future.
meanwhile, I have two Attack Squadrons of the Ravenwing, and plan to get the three others. That is the easy part. After that, I need 25 Land Speeders, which are not cheap and incredibly difficult to get on eBay unbroken – it is always the front vane that gets snapped. So, I am in no hurry to finish off that company.
The 10th Company of Scouts look more doable. I was going to mirror the Deathwing and do them in five man squads but, looking at the Codex, ten man squads look a better fit. I have already done eight five man squads (40% of the company in itself!), and have just started filling in the gaps to bring them up to ten man squads. After that (having 80 men done), I figure 20 guys on bikes, a smattering of Land Speeder Storms, and then a Master and Chaplain – the latter two probably on bikes but otherwise lightly armed. Makes sense if they are leading Scouts. The issue with all this are the bikers – Games Workshop have withdrawn the three bike box set and only do them as singles now, which makes things chuffing expensive. EBay os not much help here either as Scout Bikers actually seem to be quite rare. This one may take a while.
And that was what I was planning for the Dark Angels. The trouble is, when you have a hobby like this, new ideas keep popping into your head. Such as, how about taking the Siege Vanguard army list in the second Badab War Imperial Armour book, and doing the 4th Battle Company as siege specialists? Or what about the 8th Company, one comprising nothing but Assault Squads, could be interesting. If I did those, I would have all companies from 1st to 4th, plus the 8th, plus the 10th, plus a Land Raider company. That would then beg the biggest question of all.
Can I do the entire Chapter?