Avatars of War Dwarf Dragon Seeker Berserker Iron Fist (Felix Paniagua) (Jewel of July ’19)

Avatars of War Borg Ironfist, Dwarf Dragon Seeker Berserker, Felix Paniagua, AOWEX01, Troll Slayer, Giant Slayer, Dragon Slayer, Daemon Slayer

So my completed models for this year’s Jewel of July come to a close with this model from Avatars of War. Their Dwarf Berserker range are clearly a series of Not-Slayers, though unlike some stalwart GW defenders, I don’t take umbrage with other companies and artists taking inspiration from models and concepts that have clearly taken inspiraton from many and other sources themselves. AoW have a pretty impressive of pretty amazing quality sculpts from a range of forces, with a clear line of inspiration from a certain fantasy “Old World”, and their new released do continue in that vein – though the crossover with a new Age of S..culpts is still close enough that it would allow their use in most forces of newer games set in a series of Mortal Realms. I got this particular Dwarf Berserker quite some time ago, and it appears from the internets that he was withdrawn and used as a limited edition model, and sadly, no longer appears to be available. A real shame, as he’s a real nice one…

Avatars of War Borg Ironfist, Dwarf Dragon Seeker Berserker, Felix Paniagua, AOWEX01, Troll Slayer, Giant Slayer, Dragon Slayer, Daemon Slayer

I’ve actually got a fair few of their models across several of their ranges, though this might be the first one I’ve actually gotten around to painting – such is my sad backlog. I see this model as saving (one of) the best for last, though. Frankly, it was a reward to myself for finishing so many of the other, difficult paints.

One annoying thing about warpaint and tattoos on models is there are times when you really feel that you’vre properly nailed the highlighting and shading on a model’s musculature.. and then you’re going to cover it all up with their “ink”. This model is an example of that. The left shoulder and arm looked pretty spiffy, so I can only hope that the knotwork dragon was worth it. (Tilt your head to the right and let me know if you can actually see the thing?)

Avatars of War Borg Ironfist, Dwarf Dragon Seeker Berserker, Felix Paniagua, AOWEX01, Troll Slayer, Giant Slayer, Dragon Slayer, Daemon Slayer, Warmonger Miniatures Goblin Warlord, Kev Adams

A Traditional Rivalry, about to play out in a messy manner…

There are still a few more metal “Dwarf Slayers/Berserkers” on my desk. One is an odd one. A metal prototype for a plastic model, perhaps? A beloved character, and a rather quality single model from Mantic. After that, all the remaining Slayers are my other AoW metals, my AoW plastics, a few models from Reaper (if I can find ’em). Maybe something from Russian Alternative (I need to check!) and then it’s Fyreslayer time!

Dwarf Slayers, Troll Slayer, Giant Slayer, Dragon Slayer, Daemon Slayer, Avatars of War Borg Ironfist, Dwarf Dragon Seeker Berserker, Felix Paniagua, AOWEX01, Giant Slayer Standard, Musician

My little “Jewel of July” batch of completed Dwarf Slayers. Oh yeah, this should go without saying, but despite me saying nice words about AoW, this post isn’t sponsored or contra’d or anything’d by Felix or AoW in any way. Models all bought by me (too many fuckin’ years ago) with my own pocket money, etc. 😉

Citadel Dwarf Daemon Slayer II (Aly Morrison, 1993) (Jewel of July ’19)

Citadel Dwarf Daemon Slayer, Aly Morrison, 1993

The penultimate post for both this batch of Dwarven Slayers and my July models (Round-Ups aside). We today have the Dwarf Daemon Slayer, again from 1994, coinciding with the Warhammer Armies: Dwarfs release of 1994 for 4th edition WHFB. I’ve also painted this model before three years ago, but with a second one, what was I to do but put some time between them and get around to painting the second? I mean, if they were plastic, or even a lot less “closed”, I’d have probably tried to convert this second one, but hey, simply painting it will have to do!

Citadel Dwarf Daemon Slayer, Aly Morrison, 1993

Once again this model has sat on the desk for quite a long time. I mean, it’s been there since it’s twin was sat there alongside. And as I just checked to find. that was three years ago. Now off to join his painted brethren he goes…

Citadel Dwarf Dragon Slayer (Aly Morrison, 1993) (Jewel of July ’19)

Citadel WHFB Dragon Slayer, Aly Morrison, 1993

The next one of my little batch of Dwarven Slayers completed for the Jewel of July challenge. This one is a Dragon Slayer, no doubt from the Warhammer Armies: Dwarfs release of 1994 for 4th edition WHFB, when the “Troll Slayer” units from 3rd editon were vastly expanded with the addition of Giant Slayers, as well as Dragon and Daemon Slayer Heroes.

Citadel WHFB Dragon Giant Slayer, Aly Morrison, 1993

Like the others, this one spent quite awhile part-painted, with a little done here and there over the last couple of years before my recent push to get it done and off my damn desk! That’s one more down and one less in the way before I can get to the plastic Slayers.

Citadel WHFB Dwarven Troll Slayers (mid-2000’s?)

Citadel Troll Slayers

While working on the Giant Slayers a few months ago, I ended up with quite a few metal slayers on my desk. With many models, especially those that I don’t plan to paint in large batches of cloned models like skeletons or bunches of plastic rank & file. These guys – the Troll slayers were the second batch to be finished. I’ve got another half-dozen partly-done/barely started slayers on the bench to work through, so I’m sure they’ll get back into the queue. Probably after I finish the dozen Vikings I’m working on – I’ll have the first few of those to show off shortly.

Citadel Troll Slayers

These guys were a lot of fun to paint, but they also managed to cockblock me for a good month or more. Probably closer to two months. The issue was working out the tattoos. Yeah, I know. The thing is that I really wanted them to look “legit”, so it took me ages to come up with designs that I was happy with. The runes in the back tattoo read in Dwarvish, while the ᛟ (Othal) rune on the shoulder is a rune that denotes “Odin”.

Citadel Troll Slayers

It actually seems quite difficult to find Troll Slayers – as opposed to Giant/Daemon/Dragon Slayers – which strikes me as a bit odd. I didn’t note the dates on the tabs of these guys before I started them. I just assumed that they were from the same era as the pile of Giant Slayers (’93-4) but looking through the catalogues on SoL it seems that GW used the Marauder sculpts for a solid decade or more. I only spotted these guys in tiny pictures inside the awful US “catalogues” from the mid-2000’s stuffed into painted units.

Citadel Troll Slayers, Giant Slayers, Daemon Slayer, Warhammer Quest Slayer

My growing gang of Dwarven Slayers

These guys will eventually make up a full unit, but I’m doing these guys very much piecemeal – so it’ll be a while before there’s a full unit of these guys done.

Citadel WHFB Dwarven Giant Slayers (1993-4)

Citadel Giant Slayers 1993-1994

The first two of the new batch of Slayers.

While wandering around the house the other week while on the phone with my sister, I spotted a few Dwarven Slayer figures on a bookshelf, primed black as I’d gotten them from eBay and left them there a year or more ago. I had one of those “Huh, maybe I’ll paint these.” thoughts as I picked them up and looked at them, moving them to the painting desk. I hadn’t painted for a while, and just couldn’t stomach working on the Zombies that I showed last update. Looking at them, I figured that they’re mostly beards and flesh and axes, so not too hard – and most importantly, were something quite different to both the Undead and Gondor that I’ve been painting since January or February when I started the current painting challenge.

I got the first guy done – the one on the left with a single axe and open palm, and to be honest, I really enjoyed painting him so I pushed on and finished his mate. I then realised I hadn’t done done any warpaint/tattoos. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to do them, since I was pretty happy with the figures as-is, but in the end decided to go with it – and so decided to do a bit of a melange of Celtic/Maori/Polynesian/90’s-style “tribal”. Mostly because “Braveheart”*-style woad is too easy/boring for models like these.

Citadel Giant Slayers 1993-1994

The first two Giant Slayers, reversed.

After painting the tattoos in with dark blue, I glazed over them with the paint base coat – a very old Dwarf Flesh (hex-style pots with white lids) to give that “tattoos under the skin” look. The bright orangey red is a little more muted than these photos indicate, but they’re still very bright. I considered adding some stubble at the shaved points of their heads, but went instead with a clean look under the tattooed skin. Besides, people who shave their heads regularly end up with normal-looking skin in that space anyway.

Citadel Giant Slayers 1993-1994

The second pair of Giant Slayers.

These models date from the 4th-5th edition period of WHFB. So after I’d stopped playing. They’re actually “Giant Slayers” – so from that point in time when GW decided to split them off from regular old Troll Slayers, and did so by giving them bigger hair, as opposed to “simple” old giant mohawks. Hence the 4-lane mohawks these guys have. To be quite honest, I never really liked these models. I wasn’t a big fan of the Marauder ones that pre-dated them either – really only being a fan of specific models in the range (like this guy) and of course, the original sometimes-norse dwarf berserkers from WHFB and before – sadly, I only have the one. As it happens, and just as with Denethor (who I finished after these guys) – after painting them, I’m now quite fond of them.

Citadel Giant Slayers 1993-1994

Rear view of the second two.

Despite all this, I picked these up a couple of years ago to paint one day for my Dwarven KoW army. Which I guess I’ve now started in some form – at least for a small, legal “ally” sized force. I’ve got some ideas for these guys once they become a unit, but I’ll talk about that later. I picked up a ton of plastics from a mate in Tasmania last year for this army, so they’ll finally be getting some love after I get more of these orange-haired guys done. Probably.

Citadel Giant Slayers 1993-1994, Dragon Slayer

My “modern” slayers so far, all together.

This pic perfectly demonstrates what happens when figures from a similar range are painted in different batches. Beard-shade variance!

Aside from that, they’re painted in a style evocative of the White Dwarf magazines from the period of when they were released, rather than especially realistically. Bright orangey-reddish hair and beards, clean, stripey trousers, dark blue tattoos. Let’s face it, these models are far from realistic in their proportions or gear. I’ve always appreciated the Perry’s style of dwarves, which these and pretty much all GW and GW-alike dwarves followed in – but the proportions are horribly deformed compared to anything realistic. I figure I’m happy to just embrace it!

Besides, it’s not like GW has moved on from the 90’s Dwarf Ethos, either. If anything they’ve just gone further over the top

*Yeah, I know Braveheart is an absolute mess of historical anachronism – but everyone knows what Mel Gibson looks like with half a blue face, so it’s an effective visual reference point.

Citadel Warhammer Quest Slayer/Dwarf Dragon Slayer (1998)

Citadel Warhammer Quest Troll Slayer Dwarf Dragon Slayer (1998) Aly Morrison

Not exactly Oldhammer this time, but still a few years old. I picked up this guy in a partially painted state off my mate Matt F, who I haven’t seen in an age now.

So anyway, it’s probably taken me 15 years to get around to finishing him off. I’ve certainly been staring at him on my shelves since I moved into this house, and we’re moving up on three years of that now. I’d recently moved him up the queue and been actively wanting/trying to make myself complete him for a couple of months, and this past weekend I finally forced myself to do it. It turns out that this extended timeline very nicely coincided with my playing about with a different technique to my tried and tested method for doing gold/brass to, so maybe it all worked out for the best.

Citadel Warhammer Quest Troll Slayer Dwarf Dragon Slayer (1998) Aly Morrison

Quite a lovely figure, I have to say. Sculpted by Colin Dixon and originally released as the Warhammer Quest Troll Slayer, it was re-released as a companion piece to the mid-1990’s metal slayers that were done by Aly Morrison. While some of those are nice enough models, this one is clearly the best of the entire range, so when it was moved to the WHFB range it was also renamed (or promoted) to Dragon Slayer, as befits such a fine model.

I took these photos while the PVA was still wet on the grass tufts, hence the “white blob” look, which has now disappeared. Sorry ’bout that!

Citadel Warhammer Quest Troll Slayer Dwarf Dragon Slayer (1998) Aly Morrison

This photo is actually pretty unflattering towards the sculpt, but I decided to show it anyway. It really does show off the crazily disproportionate dimensions in GW-style dwarven sculpts as that rather hirsute head and clearly belongs on a far, far larger body. Still, as we so often say at my job – “It is what it is.” And this figure is a pretty great one from most angles.

He’s a bit bright, both with his pants and also his hair. But then, he’s a Warhammer model, so I’m fine with it. The shading on the white stripes on his old-timey Warhammer pants is a bit washed out by the lighting, but at least the blue showed up. He could also look fantastic with a dark, grimy and stained look, but I’ve gone for the bright and clean style here which while far less realistic is just as valid an aesthetic for miniature painting. It’s like Goblin Green-skinned goblins!

Citadel Warhammer Quest Troll Slayer Dwarf Dragon Slayer (1998) Aly Morrison

I considered adding Slayer Tattoos, or Woad Warpaint, but it’s just such a wonderful model as-is that I decided that I prefer to keep him “clean”. I’ve now got plenty more Slayers to paint, after all – many who will come with much more appropriate amounts of skin to add ink to.

In gaming terms he’s perfect for a PC or NPC in WFRP and on the tabletop as a Slayer Hero. He’ll find some form of use in KoW eventually, very much as a Dwarven Berserker(slayer) hero. Until then, he can just sit in a display case and pretty the place up.

I’ve got some more very old Dwarves painted up here that I’ve completed over the past few years. I’ll have to get them photographed soon and up on display here as well.