Revisiting Prospero

So, I have been a little distracted from painting of late, but I am easing back into it. With no hint of story-based Battleplans from the new Age of Sigmar (a quick reversal may happen if the next book for the game does indeed contain story-based Battleplans), I have decided to focus efforts on the Prospero campaign from the Horus Heresy.

Now, Forge World have decided to stop producing the paint I was using for the Thousand Sons, which is an issue I will cover in a post in the near future but, as things stood, I decided to put together a couple of ‘spare’ units I had for the Space Wolves.

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A Contemptor Dreadnought and a squad of Cataphractii Terminators.

My original plan had been to do both of these as Thousand Sons, but I already have some legion-specific Contemptors for them, and I had originally thought these were Tartaros Terminators. Which they obviously weren’t.

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I now have the painting of Heresy-era Space Woofs down to a fine system, and can now rapidly get through these (which bodes well for large forces). This Contemptor now joins the previous Multi-Melta-armed one, and I will likely add a third to make up a Talon of ‘basic’ Contemptors, leaving the prettier Space Wolf specific versions for Venerable Dreadnoughts. It will be a nice way of spotting the real veterans on the battlefield.

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The addition of a second Terminator squad works well for the Space Woofs, as I can now fill their Caestus Assault Ram with armoured goodness. Still got my eye on a squad of Varagyr Terminators though.

As I said, I will be covering what i am doing for the Thousand Sons in a post fairly soon, but the upshot of it is that I need to put together another couple of Tactical Squads, so I picked up another Burning of Prospero set. As soon as they are done, I will reveal the Grand Plan…

In the meantime though, I played my first set of games of Star Wars Imperial Assault, and liked it enough to be suitably inspired to paint up some more units. At the moment, i am putting the finishing touches to some more Stormtroopers, along with Rebel Troopers and Saboteurs.

You should see the results a little later this week!

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Legio Custodes

Well, it has been a while since I posted here – not since December, I think!

In a nutshell, I managed to get very badly distracted by Elite: Dangerous, and if you want to catch up on those adventures, you can take a quick trip to Cosmic Flipper Tours.

However, while the speed is nowhere near my usual supersonic self, I have managed to put paint to brush and get the odd little batch of miniatures out over the past couple of weeks, and first out of the gate were additions to the Legio Custodes force:

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I had been toying with the idea of doing an Adeptus Custodes army with the release of the new Codex, but I decided against it for now – just sticking the the Heresy-era Custodes is likely to take a fair bit of my painting time. Another squad or two would go down well, plus I have already acquired some Dreadnoughts and (Heresy-era) jetbikes that should join the painting queue at some point (it is a very long queue, as I still have all the models I was intending to get done over the Christmas break…).

First up with this little lot was a new squad – not optimised at all, as I bought it already built on eBay – as you really need at least two squads for the 7th edition rules. Painting-wise, they are a mirror of the first squad, and both were painted using the Burning of Prospero guide (an essential purchase for any Heresy-era project, I would say).

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For the first squad, I had hived off the squad leader as a Shield-Captain hero but, with new models now available, I figured that was quite lazy. So, instead, I painted up this chap, Tribune Ixion Hale, one of the Warhammer World exclusive models.

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I have left the best until last, of course, the first bit of heavy metal for the Legio – the Caladius Grav-Tank, complete with Accelerator Cannon.

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I added a couple of transfers from the Forge World sheet, but did not want to go overboard on them as this vehicle has clean lines. Despite a bit more gun metal work, the Caladius did not really take much longer than the squad to get painted up – most of it was drying time.

More models are already on the painting table, and I am going to try to do at least a little every week so, fingers crossed, posts here will become a regular thing once more!

Spartan & Leviathan

My attack on the resin mountain (no one should have a resin mountain…) continues, this time with the addition of two heavy units for the Heresy-Era Space Woofs – the Leviathan Dreadnought and the Mighty Spartan.

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I picked up the Leviathan earlier this year, but the Spartan has been lying around for more than three years, so tackling it was well overdue!

Painting-wise, both of these are an absolute doddle (any Heresy-era Space Woof vehicle will be, just adapting the instructions from the Prospero Painting Guide). Putting them together…

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The Leviathan was okay, even though I had managed to misplace the instructions. The legs are always a slight challenge on both this and resin Contemptors as you need at least three hands if you are trying to go for a specific pose. Just go slowly and let everything dry properly before moving onto the next bit, and you will be fine.

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The Spartan veered towards bitch territory during construction. Putting on the tracks was ‘okay’, though I hear Forge World now have a newer version where the tracks are more integrated into the side pieces, but the centre hull was challenging. The use of (many) rubber bands helped immensely getting this beast together and, while it is still not perfect, the Spartan certainly looks the part!

On my painting table now are a bunch of rats I have been meaning to get round to for nearly a couple of years, and I am hoping to finish off the Kharadron Overlords and do some more Thousand Sons before the Christmas break – already a few days behind schedule, so I don’t know if that is actually possible, but that is the plan!

Table-Legal Space Wolves

It took me a fair while (most of a year) and there were a fair few tribulations involved, but I finally finished off two squads of Grey Slayers for the Heresy-era Space Woofs, which means they are table legal using a Combined Arms Detachment.

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Painting these guys is easy (if you want quick to paint Heresy-era Marines, stick with MkIV power armour rather than the ribbed MkIII), and I have got the technique down pat now. Building them… well, that was more of a chore.

The issue is that GW do not do close combat weapons for their MkIV Space Marines (aside from the odd Power Fist and Sword for sergeants), which means you need to go to Forge World. Which is fine (though always a little expensive), but Forge World do not do a separate close combat weapons upgrade pack like they do with heavy weapons. So, you need to buy the actual Assault Marines. But I did not want to build twenty resin marines, I wanted to use the plastic MkIV guys…

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Anyway, long (and costly) story short, those are the Assault Marine arms you are seeing on plastic MkIV bodies.

It is done now, I like the results, and I am not going to think too much further on that subject.

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Knowing that, as Troops choices, these guys are going to get fielded a lot (in just about every battle), I kept them fairly cheap in terms of options – they are also the youngest Space Woofs,so I figured they would not be trusted with the really cool stuff. So, the Huscarls both get a Frost Claw (and one grabbed a Plasma Pistol from the Armoury), one Grey Slayer in each squad purloined a Power Sword, and one had a ‘special weapon – a Power Fist in one squad and another Plasma Pistol in the other.

Keeps everything low cost but still allows them to (in theory) deal with pretty much anything they meet on the battlefield.

Both squads desperately need a Rhino though…

So, what is next on the painting table?

Well, the two starting Shadespire warbands are almost done (will be finished later this week), and Death Guard Bloat-Drones and Crawlers have already moved into position to be done next – hoping to get those done over the weekend.

For the Heresy, I have some Thousand Sons characters and a flyer (which I am hoping will turn out fairly awesome) getting their base colours sorted but I will be returning to the Death Guard first to finish off their characters, Terminators and one more Plague Marine squad before I start looking at other projects…

Space Wolves Xiphon & Support Squad

The Space Woofs took delivery of two new units this weekend – a little Tactical Support Squad and a big, honking Xiphon Interceptor…

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My Space Woof Heresy-era army is doing quite well with support squads, ever since I discovered that their main Tactical Squads actually are support squads (Space Woofs use Grey Slayers as their core, which I will be working on soon).

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On the whole, I have avoided filling up both the Space Woofs and Thousand Sons with a multitude of AP2 and 3 weaponry, to make the forthcoming battles more interesting – not much fun when you are removing whole units at a time, and we want to see squads moving up the battlefield as they weather a hail of firepower.

However, to move onto what I think you will all be more interested in… the Xiphon Pattern Interceptor…

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This model was not a complete pain to put together by any means, and the central split between the two halves of the fuselage is well concealed by the cockpit, engines and sensor pods.

Painting-wise, it was as dead simple as they Caestus (all Space Woof vehicles will follow this pattern), with a base of Dawnstone and Khorne Red, Agrax seeped into all the cracks (not as time-consuming as you might fear), followed by a tidy-up of splashes and then following all edges with Adminstratum Grey or Mephiston Red. Polish off with metals, make use of the Forge World transfer sheet and you are done!

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For the forthcoming Prospero campaign, I am planning some Death From the Skies battles to feature the initial wave of attacks on Tizca from the sea, which involved a lot of aerial battles. The Space Woofs will have this Xiphon to protect them but will mostly have various troop-carrying craft, such as the Caestus. The Thousand Sons will have a strong air defence, receiving two Xiphons for starters.

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Now, after finishing these Space Woof models, I was going to dive into Thanquol, Horticulous, and a Void Shield Generator (the first-run resin model, quite a sod to put together), but I got distracted by the new Eight Lamentations novel from Age of Sigmar which features (among many other things) Kharadron Overlords. So, I found myself grabbing my Arkanaut Companies this weekend and base-coating them.

Finishing them this week might be a tall order but, once done, I will be diving back into 40k with the aforementioned Void Shield Generator, and some more Thousand Sons models – their first Xiphon, plus a clutch of characters.

Of course, I’ll be getting hold of Mortarion and another unit of Plague Marines this week, so we will see how long that plan survives contact with the enemy…

Space Wolves Mk III Tactical

The Heresy forces roll slowly on, and they are now building into decent forces – not enough for a big battle, but I can see they are beginning to get there!

This week… a Mk III Tactical Squad for the Space Woofs.

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This makes two Tactical Squads done and dusted for the Space Woofs, matching the Thousand Sons. Normally, this would mean I now have enough to fill out the basic force organisation for the army but, with Space Woofs, it does not quite work out that way. In the Heresy Era, Tactical Squads are support options for the Wolves, meaning that while they take a Troops slot, they cannot be used for compulsory Troops slots – instead, the Space Woofs have Grey Slayers squads, and two of these will be the next major addition I do for the army.

Might slip in a little Xiphon as well…

Space Wolf Recon Squad and Geigor Fellhand

Two small but effective units for the Heresy-era Space Woofs today – Geigor Fellhand from the Prospero box set and a Forge World Recon Squad…

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When I started doing the Horus Heresy armies, I figured that (after the two box sets) I would be spending a fair bit of time messing around with resin models, which did not thrill me a great deal. I am quite happy working with resin for larger vehicles and terrain, but for entire squads with lots of fiddly pieces? Not a brilliant time.

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However, the Recon guys were okay – though they are just a five man squad, and I have two ten-man squads of Grey Slayers coming up, so perhaps I ought to reserve full judgement until then…

These guys are dead easy to paint, with no gold lining other than around the exposed shoulder pads, and dark cloaks covering a lot of the model. In the Space Woofs colour scheme, they end up looking suitably drab, which is just what you want from a Recon Squad!

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For Geigor Fellhand, I pretty much followed the Prospero Painting Guide, and he turned out better than I had thought he would, particularly around the face. I thought his armour might end up a bit messy, due to the very thin gold lining but, again, better than I had expected!

I had hoped to also get a whole bunch of Primaris Marines done and dusted, but they will follow a little later this week, and next up will be a Space Woof Tactical Squad in MkIII armour (which will also mark the completion of all the Heresy plastics from the two box sets). However, this coming weekend is being set aside for the Nurgle daemons from the forthcoming Blightwar box set…