Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Legion Project WIP - Work, But Not So Much Progress

Tactical marines from the 12th Legion - the World Eaters

This "Work In Progress" post on my 40k Space Marine Legion project is mostly work, and not so much progress.  I am trying to get all of the models assembled and primed before I start painting them, but this has created a multi-week absence from painting anything, which makes me nuts. As a result I am doing a bit of both - building and priming a bunch of figures, and then test-painting one or two along the way for a break.

Sons of Horus tactical support marines wearing Mark IV power armour  carrying plasma guns

I have assembled the main chunk of the legion marines - 30 Sons of Horus, 27 World Eaters and 10 Emperor's Children.  I still have to assemble a couple of assault squads, some more heavy weapon gunners and some command figures yet to build and prime.  There is only one vehicle at this point - a Land Raider - but that is going to wait until most of the infantry are finished.  The Forge World vehicles for the Legion collection are, of course, amazing, but costly, so that "part" of the Horus Heresy is going to have to wait.

World Eater heavy support marines in Mark III armour carrying multi-meltas
Besides the initial intra-legion fighting on Istvaan III will be fun to play on the table as a mostly infantry affair.  For those who may not be familiar with the story, Horus' first step in his plan to take down the Imperium was to purge his own Legions of those who it was felt would not back his rebellion.  These "unreliables" from the four legions - the Death Guard, his own Sons of Horus, the World Eaters and the Emperor's Children - were all ordered into the "first wave" of the assault against the rebellious planet of Istvaan III. 

Sons of Horus heavy support marines rocking some heavy bolters
Horus let the first wave assault play out, then cut off communication from the first wave and bombarded Istvaan III with the chilling "life eater" virus.  The population was wiped out in minutes, the surface of the planet all but obliterated in an ensuing fire-storm, but many of the Marines of the first wave, warned by some stalwart loyalists, survived!  And boy, they were pissed off - betrayed by their own! So among the charred ruins of Istvaan III, a second wave descended to the planet's surface, intent on scouring the surviving loyalists of the first wave, finishing up-close what the orbital bombardment had started. The Horus Heresy was under way!

World Eaters Centurion (company commander) in fancy Mark IV armour
I imagine Horus, knowing what he had planned, did not place a lot of vehicles in amongst the first wave of troops - he would want to save those for his later operations. Horus' mop-up operations would likely use tanks and vehicles, but the loyalists were hunkered down in ruined urban areas to hold out, hoping to extract vengeance in a last stand.  For the rebels, there was only one way to get at the hold-outs, and Land Raiders and Rhinos would not necessarily help. So I imagine our first few Horus Heresy games will be mostly infantry vs. infantry, fighting amongst an urban setting so wrecked it makes Toxo IV look like an Amazon Forest nature preserve...and I can't wait!

Test models again - the chap with the crested helmet it the sergeant.  In the Legion army list, tactical squads can be as large as 20 marines!

I have finished five test models so far from the World Eaters Legion. I liked to think I am "used to" painting white (see here for an example) but I have been struggling with it on the Space Marines - power armour is of course very different from 18th/19th century Austrian uniforms. Duh - of course, right? In addition to the Testors Incident with the first model, overall I find the white so far looking a bit "chunky" or "chalky", a product of the thick pigment and (too)quick-drying GW paints on the marine armour.

Another view of the test models - you can see the decals on the shoulder plates a bit from this angle

So I am trying to thin down the paints with some kind of medium/paint extender. This sort of artsy stuff - the stuff most of you out there do routinely, I know - slows down the painting process a lot compared to what I am used to.  I lack the patience, and frankly the skill, to make use of these techniques in a way I feel is consistent and easily repeatable. On the other hand, the only way to learn is to try it out, right?

Comparison photo - I made an effort to thin out the paint layers on the figure on the left; still a lot to practice needed

I experimented a bit on a figure last night. It improved a little...hopefully practice will improve things, particularly the speed!  I believe moving over to Vallejo paints will improve things as well. We'll see!

I know Byron is working on some test models as well (in addition to a couple of final entries to the Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge - I've seen the previews - they will be awesome - congrats and be sure to check out Analogue Hobbies for the final entries!) so watch this space for some spooky Death Guard...

And this project, like a good heresy, is starting to spread amongst other members of the group...I won't give anything away for now, but lets just say I think Horus would approve! Horus for hope (inside joke)! Keep your planning up, gentlemen...we will announce the action at the appropriate time...


DaveV said...

Loving the look of your test figures.

RE: extender: use of that, plus maybe a wet palette, helps extend drying time and allows neat layering of paint. I hear you, there's no magic to learning these skills, just sweat equity.

I remember when all my games of 40K were "Horus Heresy", back in 1988 when the only figs available were marines. I am committed to my current queue (Sedition Wars factions, WWII Finns, and an Eldar Wraithknight), but it is cool to see people get into the Heresy era for modeling and gaming.

Curt said...

These look awesome Greg! I particularly like the transverse crest on the squad leader.

That Centurion model looks beautiful - looking forward to see what you do with him.

Dallas said...

Great stuff dude! My newly acquired RTB01 plastics are stubbornly resisting stripping, but I think oven cleaner is making an impression! Looking forward to assembling and painting those in a Heresy scheme!