Marauder MM16 Dwarf Slayers – Group Shot!

Marauder Miniatures MM16 Dwarf Slayers, Oldhammer

Following up on the group shots I’ve been doing of some of my models recently, here’s one of the Marauder Miniatures Dwarf Slayers that I’ve painted. I think they come up nicely as a group, actually, despite the goofiness that some of them have. I’ll do another group shot of the Citadel Giant Slayers sometime down the line – after I’ve finished all of them, so don’t hold your breath for it right now…

Here’s the full range on release, which I am missing three models from. Of course, there’s also a variation on one of these guys, plus a scattered few from other Marauder Ranges, and then an expanded but separate range of MM Troll Slayers. While I’d really like to get the missing three (and every other Citadel and Marauder Slayer model that I don’t own), I’m not going to kill myself over it, instead I’ll keep an eye out on eBay for them at reasonable prices. Wish me luck!

The most striking thing to me from these two side-by-side pictures is that my models come up pretty nicely against the “official” ones here. Not too shabby. 🙂

Free!

I rarely reblog anything, but Graeme Davis is a very cool guy, and so I’m happy to spread the word on this post. If you’re interested in Miniatures or RPG games, or design, background, etc then go sub to his blog!

Graeme Davis

free

Everybody likes something that’s free – so here are some links to free and try-before-you-buy deals on some of my books and articles.

FreebiesMy Freebies page has a lot of free downloads and links to old articles of mine that are still available on other sites. People seem especially fond of my AD&D articles from the 1980s.

Blood and Honor cover

Amazon is offering a free audiobook of my D&D novel Blood and Honor from 2006 as part of the trial offer for their Audible service. I beat out 1,000 other entrants in an open call to win the contract for this book, set in the then-new Eberron fantasy-pulp-noir setting designed by my friend Keith Baker. Keith is also the designer of the hit card game Gloom and the new RPG Phoenix: Dawn Command. I am hoping to have him as a guest on the blog some time in the next few weeks, so…

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Dark Imperium, Dark Vengeance

Not really a content post today as much as a SUPPLY DROP! one. – Part 1 of my 8th Edition stuff – the Dark Imperium boxes arrived, finally. I’m expecting Part 2 (Indices, dice, ruler, etc) and Part 3 (Forge World Indices, HH Book 7, transfers, some models, etc) in the next day or two. Don’t worry – I won’t be posting about each and every new toy that I get. And yes, I will be figuring out a way to sell a few spare rulebooks locally for less than the retail price.

With 8th coming, I dug out my DV boxes a couple of weeks ago. I’d decided to finally get the Dark Angels I’d accumulated over the last few years painted. Starting with the starter box models. The Chaos models have been put aside for now, but will make up the core of a solid force of Word Bearers with a few being siphoned off to other Legions.

Instead of painting at work during my lunch break, this is what I’d been doing for the past few weeks. Mould line cleaning! I figured it might be the kind of tedious-at-home job that could be bearable at work in short bursts while listening to a podcast or something, and luckily – I was right. This how I started getting through the few extra squads I’d eBayed before getting out the DV boxes. Yes, they sat sealed for years since 6th and 7th were not friendly to returning players. I won’t go on and on, I’ve made my opinion on 7th well known by now.

Here’s part of the production line. Weighting down the 32mm bases with washers before clipping the slottas off the DV models, and then gluing them down. I’ll end up with at least a Battle Company for starters – probably two. I’ll get to the Ravenwing and Deathwing components later. In the meantime, I’ve been going through the rebasing process for my existing DAs, moving them from 25s to 32s, and needing to build a bunch of extras to bulk out my old squads from 7 and 8 marines to 10s.

I’ll have some actual painted and finished models from the DA army soon. While I’m working on those, I can start figuring out how to distribute the Primaris marines amongst my Astartes armies. I won’t be doing a “Primaris Army”, but splitting them amongst my other forces instead.

Citadel Dwarf Troll Slayer Command (1998)

Citadel Dwarf Slayer Command, 1998

Taking a bit of a respite today from the 40k-centric series of posts that have dominated the blog for the past few weeks, we’ve got a fantasy post again, dealing with some more classic models.

Ahh… the 1990’s. Those were the heady days. When Games Workshop decided to split up the three figures in their command blisters so that they could sell you the unit champion separately. Making their first catalogue appearance in 1998, quite a few years after the majority of the range were out, are the first of Citadel’s Slayer Command pairs. Interestingly, they’re labelled “Troll Slayer Command” rather than “Giant Slayer” (which these particular figures fit far more closely). Either way, I was well gone from WHFB by that point in time, due to the Herohammer that it had become.

I got all of my metal slayers secondhand via eBay relatively recently, as I had pretty much stopped buying fantasy models by then, so that wasn’t a huge hassle for me personally, but even then it didn’t endear the company to me. Despite the number of Slayers that I’ve got and have been painting, I had a bit of a block when it came to the command groups (yes, there’s another one still WIP on my painting desk). That block was the standard bearer. While the horn-blower looks rather goofy, the standard bearer conversely looks quite good, but with a rather oddly-shaped standard that frankly demanded a flag, or something. Problem was the standard top shape isn’t exactly conducive to hanging a good banner, what with the troll head up there. (And is it supposed to be an actual troll head, or a metal casting, or… ?)Citadel Dwarf Slayer Command, 1998

So these figures had been sitting on my desk annoying me, and silently taunting me to get them finished since I started painting my slayers over a year ago. But that bloody standard! Eventually, I was doing a google image search and saw …someone’s kitbash of a similar figure. They’d glued some of the extra standard bearer junk found on the various plastic Dwarf kit sprues to the thing. And it looked bloody good!

So I dug out my box of Dwarf Sprues that I purchased from Damo/Nerdfest last year and had a look through, and found the book-and-shield shown above, as well as a winged shield with crossed axe device. With an insignificant amount of carving, both were now mounted on my two standards, and this one made it to completion. The other one will be along presently. After I complete it…

Legion of the Damned #2: Second Edition

Today we’ll look at a trio of the often-maligned 2nd edition, MK7 “Aquila” Power Armoured models, painted as Legion of the Damned.

2nd Edition 40k Legion of the Damned, Death Company

The first model on the left is the 2nd Edition starter box Space Marine trooper. A simple, push-fit model made of the same three parts (bolter, backpack, everything else) that even the most recent of his kind, the marines from Dark Vengeance 6th/7th edition are. These guys are looked down on today mostly because of the rather static pose and the complete lack of variation in their pose. Yes, all 14 of the basic troopers were identikit models, the specialists were the same model again with a flamer instead of a bolter, leaving the two sergeants and two missile launchers for “variety”. Truth be told, I quite like the Missile Launcher guy, and think that model stands up quite well even today. The trooper is pretty workmanlike, and I feel can most effectively be used as a single model mixed into squads of other marines that have a lot of MK6 in them. Like this Minotaurs squad that hosts two troopers and a Missile Launcher from the 2nd Edition box.

Anyway. One guy in my LotD. I gave him fingerbone gloves before they were cool, shaved the skull off his forehead (little skulls were hard to get back then!) and went with an all-bones, no flames motif on his armour. I think the freehand skull I painted on his shoulder looks cooler than the sculpted one on his battle-brother, though!

2nd Edition 40k Legion of the Damned, Death Company

The next one of our little friends, in the middle is one of the first multi-part plastic marines since the venerable RTB01 box. Space Marines: Warriors of the Imperium was released in ’93-94 and was the direct precursor to the 3rd edition MK7 multiparts, and therefore, to all modern Space Marine infantry kits and even the Forge World HH infantry kits. Basically, six models made of one repeated torso, two leg sculpts – again repeated, and a couple of the 2nd edition metal marines’ Backpacks-and-bolters-and-shoulders, and arm sprues. Pretty bloody simple, but well enough for making some troopers. I only got one of those boxes from memory and never even painted them all, but one of them is here. I replaced the left shoulderpad with a “proper” Legion of the Damned one after that boxed set was released during 2e (pried the old one off his arm) – so the scroll and skull are sculpted, but the “kill” is freehanded onto the scroll.

This guy in the middle has much more extensive bonework on him than many of the others, I’m still very fond of the long spinal pattern that runs the length of his left leg.
2nd Edition 40k Legion of the Damned, Death Company

The final model of this second triptych of the Damned was originally a 2nd Edition Death Company marine. Released in late ’92 or early ’93, I never got around to painting or using any of them as Blood Angels. Instead a couple of them, with their death iconography got drafted into the Legion. Some blood drops carved away and others repainted as bone charms. In the second picture you can see that the skull on his right shoulder is a little different. A nod there to the Legion’s past, and specifically the one that appeals to me the most. The right shoulder on two of these guys is an attempt at a flaming tactical arrow, again a nod to their past. The break-up of the upper triangle’s shape may have been too much and rendered them a little too subtle, which is why I bother to point it out here.

A big part of updating my old Legion of the Damned has been rebasing them onto 32mm bases. Their previous 25mm bases were in my usual “brown dirt and static flock” style, and so I wanted to go a bit more extreme with these ones. A bit of slate, two types of GW “cracked earth” paints, drybrushed and washed and some tufts. I also went to town with skulls on almost all of their bases. I usually try to avoid the overuse of skulls everywhere, as I typically find it rather silly and more than a little camp in that GW way.

In the case of Legion of the Damned though, I felt it appropriate. Perhaps their sheer presence on a battlefield somehow adorns it with the skulls of the truly damned, their past opponents, or those who have died before on those same battlefields. Do the skulls appear when the Legion arrives, only to disappear when they suddenly depart? Well, these skulls do.

 

Legion of the Damned #1: Rogue Trader-Era

I thought I’d share some more of my older paintjobs today and over the next while – only now “updated” in the past few weeks with new 32mm bases. Specifically, three of my old Rogue Trader Space Marine models painted as Legion of the Damned. As can be seen, these models are from the days before everything was covered in sculpted details, and ironically, before 90% of those details were skulls. Hence, all of the flames and skulls on this trip are entirely freehand. Oh, and I know that their flames “should” be yellow at the base and red at the ends, but on my models it depicts paint on armour, not actual flames (as sometimes retconned in Black Library). I don’t care what was written in an eBook or short story in 2015 or 2016, my guys have a direct lineage to White Dwarf 99.

Legion of the Damned, Rogue Trader, Oldhammer

The first model, on our left has 1987 on his tab, as well as “Medic”. It’s based off of “Brother Harris” from WD 99 in March ’88. The range in this particular advert are listed as having been sculpted by Michael and Alan Perry. Amusingly, Brother Harris in this particular advert is painted as a Legionnaire of the Damned, but I declined to do so myself as he had his helmet off. This model obviously predates the Medics that came later, as it completely lacks any medic gear or even an embossed caduceus on his pauldron, though interestingly there was a designated medic model (via sculpt, as opposed to the ones defined by paint that everyone just copied) from the very early RT01 Imperial Space Marines batch of sculpts.

Legion of the Damned, Rogue Trader, Oldhammer

The central model of this trio is one of the initial range of Space Marine Chaplains, circa 1988/89. Three of the initial six Chaplains had what we know as the Crozius Arcanum, though the other three did not. One having a Bolter and (crazily thin) Power Sword, one with a Bolt Pistol and Chainsword, and this fellow, with what I presume was/is an early combi-weapon. Note the “gatling”-style barrels behind the “regular” bolter detail. His armament, early skull-helm and especially his nifty shoulderpads got this guy drafted into my Legion of the Damned, where he has served as the squad’s sergeant for many years.

Legion of the Damned, Rogue Trader, Oldhammer

Finally, the model on our right. He is listed as Brother A Skull in the advertisement for the RT01 range of Marines from White Dwarf 98 in September ’87, back when they still gave models interesting names. He’s also called “Brother Dixon” in the February 1988 RT01 Flyer, obviously names after Colin. I chose him to be a LotD figure because of his unique, skull-like helmet. Years after painting these guys, I came across the sculpted LotD backpacks from the Second Edition squad box, and so pried off several of the original backpacks that some of my LotD had, replacing them with the skull-sculpted versions.

Aside from the backpacks, Brother A Skull and the Chaplain’s old-school helms, and obviously the Chaplain’s sculpted shoulders, the rest of the skull, flame and bone detail on these guys is all freehand. Even today I’m particularly proud of the pauldron-skulls and the skull-helm that you can see here. And yes, I know that the colours in actual flame work the other way, but here it’s based on contrast and rule of cool. Some of the more recent writers and artists have taken things like the flame iconography way too literally.

Jokaero Weaponsmith!

Citadel Jokaero Weaponsmith

For anyone not around at the time or otherwise not aware, the Warhammer 40,000 of Rogue Trader days was fucking nuts. One of the many, many weird ideas of the time were the Jokaero. Essentially super-smart space Orangutans who were the creators of the much-sought-after “digital weapons” available to some heroes of various types. Or Jokaero Digital Weapons, as they were then known. The “digital” this was in reference to wasn’t zeroes and ones, but our digits – fingers. Basically, we were talking ring-lasers.

Finger-Bang, Rogue Trader style…

Citadel Jokaero Weaponsmith

While the Games Workshop of the last couple of years has done a good job of recognising and bringing back old, neglected parts of the lore, like Deathwatch, Genestealer Cults, Tzaangor and so forth, the Jokaero were brought back(?), well, into the game with an actual model back in 2011 with the 5th edition Grey Knights Codex. I know they’d gotten a mention with the earlier Necrons Codex, making it 15 years before being mentioned again after RT, and 24 years before getting their first model. Will 8th Edition give us a second Jokaero model? Only time will tell, but I can’t see them investing in plastic tooling for something like this unless it’s included on a sprue alongside a plastic Inquisitor or some such.

Citadel Jokaero Weaponsmith

I gave him pinkish flesh for his hands and feet, mostly because I forgot to check out reference photos of either actual Orangutangs or GW’s model before painting that part of the figure. Ah well, still looks good! I pretty much copied the official GW scheme for the electronics. I went over the white/grey of the accessories with a pearlescent paint, giving it a nice, subtle, shimmery effect that can be seen in hand and not at all in photographs.Citadel Jokaero Weaponsmith

Something pretty cool is that the upcoming indices for 40k 8th edition are going to feature rules for all of their currently-produced/available models, which includes this guy. This means there’s a decent chance that this model will actually hit my table at some stage in the near future. Who’d’a thunk it?