Dark Angels: 1 Section, 4th Squad (Tactical), 2nd Octavius Crusade Company.

Dark Angels Space Marine Tactical Squad

After a bit of a delay (lots of Diablo III recently!) I’ve finally completed the Dark Angels Veteran Sergeant figure, thus completing 1 Section, and therefore 4th Squad. As you can see, I’ve opted for dark green robes with a deep red inner. I never liked it when GW changed that element of their DA scheme from dark green robes to bone coloured ones – so I’m simply ignoring it and painting them my way, but in more of a black-green with a desaturated highlight to help distinguish them visually from the armour.

Dark Angels Space Marine Tactical Squad

He is one hell of a fiddly figure. While the robes are simple enough, he’s just dripping with extra details, sculpted rather finely as well. This is a figure I picked up a few years ago, rather than having purchased at release. His base tab seems to say “GW01” but 2001 seems a bit old for this model, and he’s not in any of the catalogues I can find over at Stuff of Legends until 2010 – though there’s only abiout thee useful catalogues there covering figures in the Noughties. Maybe the sculptor had a dyslexic moment, or perhaps it was sculpted for some time before being released. I don’t recognise the sculptor, either – perhaps Diaz? That’s something you could do with hand-sculpted metal figures, and as much as I enjoy the new digitally-sculpted plastics, it’s a nice little thing to be able to look at a model and recognise who the sculptor was. Something still very possible with smaller companies, of course. EDIT: Thanks to Alex informing me via the comments, the figure is Dark Angels Veteran Sergeant 1, and was released in 2004. That’s a decent amount of time from the date on the Tab to release, but as we know, it happens.

Dark Angels Space Marine Tactical Squad

His offsider here with the plasma gun is a metal torso married to a pair of plastic 3rd edition legs. The torso of course came from the Space Marine Bike Squadron, which appealed to me as a cool looking “plasma gun at rest” – as opposed to the limited MKVII armour options at the time this guy was built (there was not yet a plastic plasma gun in the modern style.) …you kids today, you have it so easy. Everything in plastic. Back in my day we had to walk to school uphill, in the snow, barefoot, backwards

Dark Angels Space Marine Tactical Squad

Ahem.

Two of these three are simply plastic 3rd edition marines (with a few pouches added), while their squadmate is the metal MKVIII model with plastic arms. He’s here essentially because of the Sergeant in MKVIII armour that I used in the other squad. It only took 20+ years for us to get the DeathWatch models in proper, multipart MKVIII armour, but I’m sure a few of those could be built and incorporated easily into regular marine squads. Hm….

Dark Angels Space Marine Tactical Squad

And here’s the back of them.

Dark Angels Space Marine Tactical Squad

And here’s the entire squad, finally complete with both sections fully manned now that I’ve finished their new Sergeant.

Dark Angels Librarian Gadreel, 2nd Octavius Crusade Company.

Dark Angels Librarian, Rogue Trader, Warhammer 40k

Today’s model is another Dark Angel. One that is – once again – a long, long time in the making. The model itself is one of the original Space Marine Librarians from 1990-1 – right around the time of the “Death Eagle Marine” variants, and like those figures, sculpted by Mark Copplestone. This particular fellow is imaginatively titled “Librarian with 2-handed Force Sword”. As you can see, he’s had a late-Rogue-Trader-era/2e Metal Jump Pack strapped (pinned!) to his back, allowing him to get stuck right into his foes.

Dark Angels Librarian, Rogue Trader, Warhammer 40k

Again mirroring the Death Eagle Marines, his helmet is a proto-MKVII helm underneath the psychic hood.

Dark Angels Librarian, Rogue Trader, Warhammer 40k

The trim comes from an old Epic transfer sheet, though he took a shelf dive at some stage and so one corner had to be repaired with paint. In the original small, DA force that I built in the past his job was (obviously) to join the Assault Squad and give them a more hefty punch in close combat. The transfers on his jump pack symbolise his twin allegiances to both the Dark Angels Chapter as well as the Inner Circle/Deathwing.

Dark Angels Librarian, Rogue Trader, Warhammer 40k

After sitting about 3/4 complete for a good decade or so, he’s now finally complete and likely to purge the Emperor’s enemies while hunting the Fallen.

Dark Angels Librarian, Rogue Trader, Warhammer 40k, Assault Squad

I mentioned earlier the plan of running him alongside the Assault Squad, so I snapped a shot of them together. They’ll be coming to the table soon!

Dark Angels: 2 Section, 4th Squad (Tactical), 2nd Octavius Crusade Company.

Recently over a couple of posts I shared the 3rd Squad (Tactical) of what I am calling the 2nd Octavius Crusade Company – which is my Dark Angels army that I am rebuilding for the latest edition of Warhammer 40k. Today I’m sharing 2 Section of the 4th Squad (Tactical). The (Veteran) Sergeant of 1 Section is still a WIP on my desk – once completed, I’ll also post up 1 Section and the whole-squad pic.

The Corporal of this squad was originally a regular Sergeant. Back at the time I first started building these models, one would pay extra for a Veteran Sergeant who had an extra attack and was able to take additional wargear. In the current rules, Marine Squads just come with what would once have been called a Vet Sgt as standard, so I’m re-designating my non-Vet Sgt to a Corporal who will act as a section leader, and have also built a pair of Corporals for 3rd (already seen) and 7th (coming soon) Squads. When built, I gave him an Auspex scanner, which was purely decorative for awhile, then had rules, and now is back to being decorative. Shrug. I did bother to give it some detail, though.

The heavy weapon of 2 Section is a Missile Launcher, once again it comes from the 1993 Warhammer 40k 2nd Edition starter box set.

The other troopers in this section are all 2nd Edition Marines armed with 3rd edition Bolters and 3rd edition …arms. Two of the three were painted in my recent push to get this squad up to 10 men.

Finally, the section image. I’ve spent all day working on the sergeant to complete the other section and therefore the entire squad. One of the most fiddly figures I’ve painted in a long time, but I’ll complain about him more when I’m showing it – hopefully in a week or so since it’ll be dependant on the weather being nice enough for another coat of spray varnish and then having time to cure – and then the basing, and then the photography…

 

Dark Angels: 7th Squad (Assault), 2nd Octavius Crusade Company.

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad.

Assault Squad Terath is the third of my Dark Angel squads that I built back during 3rd edition Warhammer 40k. Originally 8-men strong, I’ve recently painted an additional pair of models to bring them to full strength for 8th edition.

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad Sergeant, 3rd Edition Death Company

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad Sergeant, 3rd Edition Death Company

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad Sergeant, 3rd Edition Death Company

The Sergeant is originally from the second range of Blood Angels Death Company figures, specifically #5  – These were created via Mike McVey’s sculpting of additional details over the top of Jes Goodwin’s plastic marines, recast into metals. I chose him as he was clearly an assault-style marine, was different to the one (or two) “standard” Assault Sergeants of the day, had some bling and was easily armed with whatever I wanted due to separate arms. I gave him a Power Fist and Bolt Pistol/Combat Shield Combi, which I decorated with the Company badge.

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad, 40k Second Edition, Plasma Pistol

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad, 40k Second Edition, Plasma Pistol

The “special” weapons of those squad are a pair of Plasma Pistols. My next Assault Squad (for whichever Astartes force) may well have a bit more variety in it in terms of Flamers and Eviscerators, but like most all of my “resurrected” squads, these guys remain armed with what they were armed with originally.

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad

The Squad Corporal is one of the two models I built and painted recently. In game terms he’s identical to the troopers in the rest of the unit. In the event that I (or anyone else playing them) decides to split the 10-man Squad into 5-man Combat Squads, he’ll be the one to lead them. No functional difference of course, but the model follows the lore – which is how I like to do things. He’s built from a mix of plastic Marine Vanguard and Assault parts with a metal DA shoulder pad and a Templar “knight” style head.

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad, 40k Second Edition

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad, 40k Third Edition

The troopers are made up of two trios of figures. First there’s the 2nd Ed Assault Marines with 3rd Ed arms and weaponry, and then there’s the 3rd Ed Assault Marines, using Tactical (standing) legs in order to fit in better with the 2nd Edition models. (And to free up some running legs for the “charging forward” element of 3rd Squad!) The central figure with the 3rd ed helm is the second of the 2nd edition metal Sergeants released, with a headswap to a plastic marine. He would have been the squad Corporal, except I preferred to incorporate the metal shoulder pad as well as the pad with the nameplate, and both in black – and I didn’t want to mess with this figure beyond rebasing him as he was completed back in the day and I’ve always been quite happy with him. The second of the figures painted to bring this squad up to 10 men is one of the 2nd Edition metals above. If it’s not obvious which model it is of the three, then I’ve done my job of making the new guys fit in with the old.

Dark Angels Space Marine Assault Squad, 40k Third Edition

Hunting the Fallen…

 

Dark Angels: 2 Section, 3rd Squad (Tactical), 2nd Octavius Crusade Company.

Here we have the newly-raised second 2 Section of 3rd Squad. Having previously been a seven-man squad, it necessitated the addition of three more models to being the unit up to legal 8th Edition. The first of these is the Corporal. I know that officially Corporals aren’t a thing in 40k, but then, Lieutenants were missing for 20-odd years before magically reappearing a month or so ago! The Corporals in my marine forces are the guys who run the other combat squads – usually the fire support bit. I’m giving the Dark Angels Corporals a metal should pad with a simple, embossed chapter badge, and black pauldrons.

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k

This corporal is one of the three new builds for this squad – MkIV legs and helm, MkVIII torso, MkVII arms, a DA Backpack and a Tigrus pattern bolt gun. I wanted to give him a look of being a bit special with the archaic armour and weapon, yet tie him to his Sergeant via the MkVIII torso with its distinctive gorget.

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k

The Heavy Bolter trooper is one of my originals from this unit and one of the older models available in this form factor, the metal-plastic hybrids. So his arms and backpack are (heavy) metal on 3rd edition plastic legs and torso. Having washers underneath the bases of models like this is very necessary for their stability. He has the shouty “sergeant” head from the 3rd edition sprue as I felt it looked cinematically appropriate for a nutter advancing while firing a hip-carried heavy machinegun

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k 2nd Edition

These three marines include the other pair of models added to the squad. The central model is one of the originals. The two flanking him here are 2nd edition Tactical marines. Since the rest of the squad is old-school and minimally-blinged, what better models to use in it than 2e Tactical marines. I have given them more modern arms and bolters – because frankly outside of a specific use, the chunky arms and bolters from those days just don’t work for me these days and those older base models look just fine with them.

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k 2nd Edition

Here we have 2 Section of 3rd Squad. Prepared to hunker down and give their brethren supporting fire so they can advance, or join them in the forward advance as needed.

Finally, the entire squad with both sections combined. Rebased, reinforced and ready for battle in Warhammer 40k 8th Edition. To find action on the table very soon if all goes to plan…

Dark Angels: 1 Section, 3rd Squad (Tactical), 2nd Octavius Crusade Company.

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k 2nd Edition

Once again, Warhammer 40k 8th Edition takes the responsibility for inspiring me to dig these models out and resurrect them into a coherent force. Replacing about thirty kilograms of books, contradictory rules and scattered digital files with a Tabula Rasa has given me the opportunity to step back into an IP I’ve been engaged with since I was a young teen – when Rogue Trader was released and I stumbled onto a demo game being played at Games ’87 (Later Conquest) on a gigantic crashed spaceship put together by a bloke named Andrew B (and co.)

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k 2nd Edition

Stripping all of that convoluted mess back to a core rules of 12 pages, with the extra details to be added in via unit entries has annoyed many people who had been playing for years, as their very expensive book collections have been rendered null (excepting for the paint sections, photography and background) and while I understand their annoyance, 40k had grown to a bloated incomprehensible mess that was anything but friendly to new or departed players. The clean slate of rules gives us a very nice (re)entry point to the game, and hopefully GW can keep the meta and power spiral (known as Codex Creep) under control over time.

This force was originally inspired during 3rd edition, by Ed B of Powerfist fame (infamy?) when I was at his place one day and he showed me his Dark Angels. I thought they looked bloody nice – and not too difficult to paint. This was during the time when things weren’t yet especially blinged out. I did repurpose a Legion of the Damned backpack for him, inspired by Chapter Master Azrael’s own pack. You’ll note the models in this box are basically just regular space marines, with the exception of the Sergeant. The bright yellow fuel canister on the Melta is a bit of a 2nd edition throwback as well…

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k 2nd Edition

I also had a whole bunch of metal marine shoulderpads. I thought the Deathwing pad looked rather spiffy, though where to use them? The solution was to consider Veteran Sergeants (which were an upgrade option at the time) to be “Deathwing Initiates”. The background speaks of circles within circles amongst the Dark Angels, so I felt that the promotion to Veteran Sergeant justified that extra little bit of fluff – and bling. Hence the bone-coloured pauldrons and red Deathwing Chapter badge. Bone-coloured power sword? Why not!

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k

This trip of Tactical marines were built with the notion of being part of the Sergeant’s Combat Squad. I used 3rd ed Assault Squad legs to give them some movement, given that the Sergeant is armed for Close assault and his offsider carries a close-ranged Melta-Gun.

Dark Angels Tactical Squad, Warhammer 40k 2nd Edition

Thus we have the first Combat Squad: 1 Section. Kitted for a close support role and capable of doing some damage. Originally, these guys were built as a seven-man squad under 3rd edition rules with the role of riding around in a Razorback (which I never got finished). I shall folllow up with 2 Section shortly.

Dark Angels Space Marine Scouts – 1998 Metals

These figures are part of the fourth wave of Space Marine Scouts, released in 1998. The first were the initial two models, followed a year or two later by the second wave – an expanded range in the same style. With Advanced Space Crusade came the Scouts who dressed like a weird combination of Landsknechts and the previous designs (with clown colours to top things off). Then these guys were released, with the first Space Wolf Wolf Scouts being released shortly before, and acting in many ways as the prototype/sketch book pages for these.

If you browse the Stuff of Legends page for these figures, you’ll notice that no actual bolter-armed model exists in the line. This is why I’ve got a squad armed with shotguns. With no bolter-armed models available, these guys could be (and were) alternately armed with Bolters or Shotguns, as appropriate to the game being played. The “Sergeant” model came later. I think he was released alongside the bolter-armed model a few years later from the initial models. I believe I acquired him later on, but painted the whole gang at once anyway.

Metal Dark Angel Space Marine Scouts with Shotguns

Dark Angels Scouts – Kicking it 1998 style.

Eagle-eyed viewers might notice that these guys aren’t actually painted much like the typical Space Marine or Dark Angels Scouts. Space Marine Scouts’ of whichever chapter tend to have their armoured bits painted like their Chapter’s armour, and the soft “cloth” bits painted in a beige/off-white. All the better to scout with, obviously.

Dark Angel Scouts – Traditional Scheme

Ultramarine Scouts – Traditional Scheme

I made two choices about scouts and my 40k armies, long long ago. One is that Scouts should be dressed to scout. While it’s fine for the fully-armoured Marine brothers to charge forward in their bright, heraldic powered armour, I thought the guys with the job of doing actual reconnaissance, ambushes, infiltration, and general sneaking around should be dressed a bit more appropriately. I chose the 1991 Desert Storm 6-colour “choc chip” camouflage pattern for the Dark Angels because it was fun to paint, still pretty much in common memory, and because I didn’t want to paint them in a predominantly green camouflage. With this in mind (and reference pictures from Iraq in my folder), I painted both the “hard” armour and fatigue clothing in the camo pattern and their webbing and pouches with a nice “webbing” green. Boots were brown/black, and the weapons were given a dull green (plastic/plasteel/etc) for the furniture.

Metal Dark Angel Space Marine Scouts with Shotguns

Dark Angels Scouts – Rear and Side Views.

I used white Dark Angels transfers for the shoulders as low-visibility army identification. The white doesn’t particularly stand out on their camouflaged armour, just like real armies. The Sergeant has a slightly different transfer to make him stand out to me and other players (aside from the model’s pose), but not so much as is usual for Marine NCOs.

Metal Dark Angel Space Marine Scouts with Shotguns

Dark Angels Scouts – Army Identification

The other painting variation from the traditional theme? Several of the scouts aren’t painted with Caucasian skin tones. It comes up from time to time when people question why pretty much all Warhammer/40k models are painted as though they come from Coventry, and without getting into a whole discussion on the origins of GW, Warammer and 40k, it always bothered me a bit that there was never any growth or movement in that aspect (and still isn’t). It’s nothing to do with Political Correctness and everything to do with realism in modern armies – particularly in large armies and forces that recruit from entire worlds or a wide variety of locales.