Saturday, 2 March 2019

Old Stuff Day

Time for a spot of necromancy in the form of  'Old Stuff Day'.

"A chance to dig up those old posts, dust them off, and maybe put on a new coat of paint for the masses." as Warhammer39999 puts it.

First off, I discovered this gem some time ago over on 'The Lead Plague':

This 5 year old post concerns the delicate and almost reverential unboxing of an ancient Rogue Trader era Chaos Dreadnought.  It rapidly descends into a kind of surreal madness and never fails to make me smile.  Undoubtedly one of the best blog posts I have ever read (although my blog digestion is a bit random), I always wanted an excuse to share it.  I strongly urge you to read it now if you haven't already.

As for my own back catalogue, I always felt that my 'Tergivon Poop' post from 2013 was sadly neglected and decided to unearth it again.  I think it has been read by several hundred web crawler servitors over the years and that's about it.

Tervigons were my first real foray into converting 40k miniatures and now that I think about it, this is probably the reason why I am still in the hobby.  In retrospect, I must commend Games Workshop's insane decision to release the rules for this beast back in 5th edition, but not the model.  After chopping up my first Mawloc and creating 'Tilly the Tervigon' (pictured on the left in the original blog post) I was well and truly hooked and went on an unprecedented 40k spending spree of such magnitude that I nearly asked my bank to defer the mortgage payment for that month.  Surely they couldn't have foreseen this unexpected outcome?  Or maybe it was just as planned.  Poor old Tilly has long since been dismembered and cannibalised for other projects.  I was never really happy with her and immediately built a second version in an attempt to improve my converting skills.  I'm happy to say that 'Gertie the Tervigon' is alive and well although she hasn't seen the tabletop for about 3 years now.

In honour of her resurrection I decided to put a fresh coat of mucus on the emerging baby Termagant.  Unfortunately, I had just come home from the pub when I began this endeavour.

Playing with UHU glue whilst drunk is quite a lot of fun but I think I may have overdone it a little.  Not to worry, Gertie will always be beautiful to me and owns a special place in my heart.

Sunday, 24 February 2019


Well, it looks like Slaanesh crashed the party and decided zhe liked the look of of our pointy eared friends more than the Necrons.  The model reminds me of Drukhari more than anything else now.  I probably shouldn't have swapped in the Splinter pistol but it just seemed like a natural choice at the time.  I spent ages turning the right handed Archon grip into a left handed Witch Elf grip and changing it back would have been difficult and potentially disastrous. I think she would prefer a sleek pistol to a blocky Stubcarbine anyway.

Initially I painted the legs black but they looked so much like stockings and suspenders that I dubbed the model 'Lady Marmalade'.   Further experiments with silvering of the metal reduced the high-camp, burlesque effect somewhat and I changed her name to 'Ungoliant'.  She's not quite the primordial incarnation of darkness depicted in Tolkien lore but I want her to be "Beautiful and terrible as the night" rather than "Mocha chocolata ya-ya (ooh, yeah)" (As an aside, why that skinny bitch Christina gets top billing is beyond me.  I prefer the heart-stopping curves of Pink and Lil' Kim)

Someone on Facebook commented that the model needed ''less Necronic techno-magic bullshit' which annoyed me at first but I could see that he had a point and more Chaos imagery was needed.  So I re-carved the etched circles on the wraith plates into chaos stars.  This looked horrible and I tried burning them in with a hot pin.  It was impossible for me to get clean lines so I cheated by painting them all rusty.  I'm definitely improving with Typhus Corrosion and Ryza Rust which is a relief.  I added a bit of Agrax and Fire Dragon Blight for more contrast.

The skin was hardest part because I'm a messy painter by nature and don't airbrush as a rule.  I also didn't paint it in sub assemblies (apart from the base) and some of the crevices were maddening to reach.

Constant re-touching makes the paint go blotchy and textured which is the opposite of the smooth effect I was going for.  But I managed to blend Mordian Blue, Thunderhawk blue, Fenrisian Grey and Ulthuan Grey into something approximating Drow flesh in the end.

Space Marine shown for scale (and because he needs love too)

As for what the model is...  I have no idea.  If I ever get round to building that Dark Mechanicum army I'd probably run it as some sort of character.  Maybe a Datasmith.  She's way too small to be anything beefy and too costly (in real money and time) to spam as battle servitors.  I've been thinking that I would like to turn some Kastelan Robots into Mars Attacks! robots and they'd need a datasmith (I think).  Maybe I should come out of the closet and start a Deldar army.

Maybe, as Asslessman points out, I should just model and paint for fun sometimes.  Or maybe Yvraine angered the goddess Lolth, who ordered the Dark Mechanicum to turn her into a Mecha-Drider as a punishment.  How about that for non-canonical heresy?

Wednesday, 6 February 2019

Vile Heresy

It's Waitangi day here in NZ which is a public holiday.  I decided to celebrate the birth of a nation by spending the day in the garage, working on my conversion.  A true patriot! (albeit a naturalized NZ citizen and a filthy immigrant really).  I processed all the feedback from my previous post and made some fairly drastic changes and additions.

The abdomen needed the most work and was built mainly out of a Bloodletter torso glued back to back with a Deathmark torso.

I can't remember what the gun on the end of her bottom is.  Something Necron Destroyery I think.  I also don't know what gun she is holding in her hand.  I just liked the look of it.

Playing Warhammer 40k Mechanicus made me realise that there are those adepts of Mars who would eagerly embrace Necron technology.  There might have been some among the ranks of the Tech Priests, nascent heretics, who considered the bio-transference of the Necrontyr as the apotheosis of mortal flesh.

But of course Ad-Mech are not Necrontyr and dabbling in forbidden arts has always attracted the denizens of The Warp. The perversions of Chaos would inevitably seep in, corrupting their ideals of pure intelligence unhampered by emotion.  What rough beast, its hour come round at last, skitters towards Bethlehem to be born?

I needed a suitably apocalyptic base to go with it.  I had a decent spare in the form of the Roboute Guilliman model. This was chopped down to size so that it would fit on a large infantry base.  It is perhaps too small but I have no idea what this model is supposed to be in 40k terms.  Some sort of Sicaraian Infiltrator?  A corrupted Cryptek?  A daemonic Datasmith?  I don't know and I refuse to be constrained by a codex.  It is what it is.

The base was full of holes so I started delving for parts in the bits box.  Skulls seemed to be the appropriate flora.  Yes, yeeess! My base depicts a broken Imperial eagle and a dead CSM.  All it needed was dead Elfs!  Some no-good, Mary-Sue, cheating, sanctimonious Elves! So I started rummaging and I looked and I looked but I couldn't find any dead (and inanimate) Eldar at all.  Goddamnit Games Workshop why do you never see a fucking Elf Skull?!  You do bird skulls and Genestealer skulls.  You do frickin skulls for races of aliens that don't even have any rules and are barely mentioned in the lore at all!  This is a travesty!! I guess they look too similar to human skulls and the pointy ears are only made of gristle.

Then it hit me.  High cheekbones, pointy ears, sinuous body...

I have depicted Elves as the frickin master race.

+++does not compute+++

+++unholy malfunction+++

+++segmentation fault+++

+++core dumped+++

Sunday, 27 January 2019

All your base

Interesting times ahead.  My newfound status as an ageing, single male coupled with a career change back to contracting which didn't pay me for two months appeared to have killed all creative impulses.  I am definitely out of my comfort zone.  Thank The Lord for video games.

All your base are belong to us
My first base was eaten by Tyranids

I belatedly discovered Subnautica, which swallowed me whole for the entire holiday period.  I more or less forgot to eat, sleep and wash (it is possible to survive on banana smoothies). If I could have swapped my computer chair for a commode, I would have done so.  Fortunately, the kids spent xmas with their mother.

A Reaper has his way with my trusty Seamoth

I spent most of my time building ridiculously impractical sea bases and playing chicken with leviathans.  But that was just scratching the surface and I had to go deeper.  If anyone tells you that Subnautica is an underwater survival game, they're wrong.  That's like saying The Hobbit is a crime caper or a heist story.  Its much more than that.  Its a journey.  Or maybe it was just an interesting diversion which helped me through an unsettling period in my life.  Either way, I clocked over a hundred and fifty hours, so you can't argue about value for money.

Oh dear God, he's seen me!  Wait! Is that a coffee machine?

Sadly, real life started to get in the way of my underwater adventures.  This was a good thing really and the return to reality reminded me that I was going to build a Dark Mechanicum army.  I wanted to buy Anacharis Scoria but he might be a bit out of my price range now.  So, instead I wasted even more money by trying to cobble together a Witch Aelf, a Wraith and four Sicarian Ruststalkers.  On the plus side, I didn't have to buy any new kits.

On fire, under attack and taking on water.  But its the Lava Leeches on the windscreen that really scare me.

I was always fascinated by the Daughters of Khaine but never actually wanted to play them as the Daughters of Khaine.  I built one as a Drow Rogue for a D&D game ages ago.  I also tinkered with the idea of using one as a Tiefling but it never came to fruition.  Finally I used one for a head swap on my Cursebreakers.

But I didn't really want to build an army.  Seeing them all lined up on the box art was a bit of a put off.  They reminded me of something out of a beauty pageant.  The swimwear section of Miss World 1968 Barbarella edition.  Whilst the paint jobs are good, it reinforced the doll-like qualities for me.  An uncomfortable feeling.  There is a very fine line between playing toy soldiers and actually playing with Barbie dolls it seems.

Techno Beetle

I wanted something a bit more melodramatic, so I built a 'Mecha-Drider'.  Suitably dark and mechanical or so I thought.  However, it looked more 'Techno-Beetle' than Mecha-Drider.  I was pretty much done with it at this point and about to submerse myself in Subnautica again when I saw this superb piece of art by Victor Guerra

That's more like it! This picture really inspired me. Its so... androgynous.  Except for the shapely but nipple-less breasts, the creature could almost be a male.  Strangely it's the spider that is feminine for me.  The way the torso fits the thorax and has the flared lines of a woman's hips.  The choice of hairless, tapering spider.  A Black Widow?  The shape of the legs look like a sort of wire frame for an 18th Century ballroom dress.  Definitely female, but very odd and intriguing.

I attempted to capture the look and feel of the beast.  But the legs were too short and stubby.  And there weren't enough of them.  I had enough Sicarians to add an extra pair but in Victor's picture the spider appears to have ten legs.  Surely that was wrong?  A quick check on Google revealed that the front ones are actually 'pedipalps'.  Who knew?  I thought pedipalps were something they gave to old people for incontinence.  Anyway, I decided not to add a fifth pair and figured that her arms would make up the numbers and perform the same function as pedipalps.  Four pairs of legs looked even stubbier than three though.  I needed to make them look more tapered and rummaged around in my bits box for ages, to no avail.  There was nothing delicate but strong enough in there to support the body.  I needed something thin, but strong.  The answer was, of course, safety pins.

Anything with more than four legs is abhorrent.

I've still got a ways to go with this conversion but I'm slowly getting back into it.  I think.

Sunday, 25 November 2018


I've been playing a lot of Shadespire lately with my Curseflingers and joined the local league.  I had the odd game with Sepulchral Guard and Thorns of the Briar Queen but the drunken bards suit my play style best.  They can play aggressively or defensively depending on the situation and don't rely on 'score objective' cards.  They are also quite forgiving when I've had a few beers and have forgotten what turn it is.  Plus I'm playing in character.

Paddy (left) is often as drunk as me on league night

I've also been playing a lot of Mechanicus which is a stupendous game and the soundtrack is so good I downloaded it to my phone.  This is the best 40k game I've played since Space Marine and GW must be doing something right when you immediately want to start an Admech army after a play session.

Even the artbook that comes with Mechanicus is fucking awesome

Additionally,  I had my first expedition into the Blackstone Fortress yesterday with Rory and Alistair which was pretty sweet.  By the end of the second combat encounter my Space Pope was almost dead and just about managed to crawl into the Maglev using destiny dice.  UR-025 was in shut down mode and Pious had 2 grievous wounds.  Alistair was playing the chicken ninja who had a chipped fingernail and a few split ends but sensibly managed to collect most of the clues.   I'm looking forward to further expeditions.

Alistair is a bit of a Tau fanboy. Note the rather brilliant Kroot Sphere conversion in this 40k doubles game next to my Razorback

I even managed a game of Killteam which was actually a disappointment after all the hype.  Rory just ran across the board and off the other side with his Nids.  And won.  I killed a few but it was a bit underwhelming and Rory said he would rather just play a 500pt game of 40k next time.  So that was that.

ZERG RUSH! (type this into a Google search engine for a nice easter egg)

All of which means that I've not been doing much hobby-wise.  I did manage to finish the Curseflingers and I'm pretty pleased with them.  I thought Anal Stormsinger's red hair turned out well and I'm proud of the vomit dribbling over the side of Seamus the Disarmed's base.  In modeling terms, I think it breaks the 4th wall and is very Deadpool.

Sunday, 4 November 2018

Up-Chucking Monkeys

Drunken Sigmarines are ready to do battle!  To be honest I've played more games with these guys in the last 2 weeks than I have 40k in the last 2 months.  I'm just as shit at Nightvault as I am at 40k mind, but its a hell of a fun game and the beatings don't last as long.  It doesn't help that our local group plays in the pub.  Actually that does help.  It allows me to combine two of my favourite things.

I couldn't find tankards big enough to equip them with so had to get creative.  Rob Singers offered to give me a load of useful bits to help me out but I didn't turn up to our coffee date to collect them.  Sorry, Rob but I'm true to my word (in some respects) and have named them after you: Stormsinger's Curseflingers. From left to right: Eilís Morrígan, Anal Stormsinger and Seamus the Disarmed.

 Stormsinger is carrying a lidded tankard made out of Dwarf Hammerers helmets and weapons.   Eilís has a goblet made out of a hammer head and Seamus' stein is a lantern off the back of a Mortis Engine.  I had to do some excruciating green/grey stuffing in order to repose them, especially Seamus.  I think I'll only get to see how well I did when they are fully painted.

The idea is that they are a troupe of drunken bards and destroy their foes with curses so vile that they can break your will, induce catatonia or make your ears melt. The bards become intoxicated instead of inspired and if all else fails, they throw up on you.

Anyway, this is a sure sign that I am still falling to Chaos. Any self respecting devotee of the Stormcast Eternals should find this intolerable.  Is there a plausible way you can depict drunken Sigmarines in the lore? I don't know why I feel the need to pervert decent models like this but it probably reveals a deep seated corruption in my soul.