Adeptus Mechanicus, Warhammer 40 000

Tech-priestess Domina Felicia Tayber

If there is one piece in the army that deserves full attention, it is the leader. On the battlefields where the Adeptus Mechanicus deploys, it is the Tech-Priest Dominus who becomes first in command. And as such, I wanted to give mine a unique touch.

The standard model, available at Games Workshop.

Though I very much like the appearance of GW:s model, the lack of units in general among AdMech points everyone in the general direction of this single HQ (well, this one and Belisarius Cawl). The head is swappable, and it is a bit repose-able; but besides that there is little room for kit bashing. So I started looking around for other possible models.

One thing that’s really missing back at Games Workshop is female models. Just going down that branch is a quite simple way to give a sweet touch to my forces… And after a bit of searching, I stumbled upon RagingHeroes, having a quite extensive range of interesting models suitable for my project.

Necropriestess Nepharya caught my attention, striking a divinesque pose, clad in iron tentacles and tools, concealed in robes and mask. Perfect for me!

TEch priestess assemble
First steps after unpacking. This model was a challenge to assemble!

First of all, if you´re used to GW:s plastic, then you´re in for a bit of pain. Since I was in no mood to mess this up, I went through all steps thoroughly before assembling. Proper washing, removing all the moldlines, etc. Even though I’m used to the good ol’ days of assembling fragile parts, this was among the harder ones; I would place it next to this classic. In my younger days I would’ve been fine with half the effort, but nowadays I prefer to assemble my models once without having to worry to much about fragility. I reinforced every tentacle and claw with some extra mold, before fixating with really strong glue…

Before we move on, lets give the video below a minute of your time:

Boob-armour annoys the Jibbers out of me. And my biggest concern with Nepharya (and the Raging Heroes-franchise overall) was right there at the focal point of her. There was work to be done here.

Tech-priestess WIP 3
Lets arrange for some decency here – It’s cold on Mars!

So first of I went for a complete mastectomy. I flattened her chest using a fine clipper before smoothing the area with a fine file.

TEchpriestess WIP 2

I took an AdMech sigil from my bits-box and added tubes in the same manner found on the Skitarii Rangers/Vanguard. This gives her a more robust appearance and makes her tie in more with the army in general. Since I try to go for wysiwyg (what you see is what you get), I removed her right scythe and replaced with a plasma caliver (stand in for the volkite blaster), removed on of her mechanical arms and replaced with a servo-skull, a computer from the infiltrator box, and a repurposed flechette blaster to stand in for a macrostubber. Though technically not the correct weapons for a Dominus (or in this case, Domina), they come in appropriate scale and shouldn’t give anyone a hard time guessing. I doubt I will enter any official tournaments anyway.

Techpriestess WIP 4
The base before applying paint.

Once again, I didn’t really take the time to properly document my progress. The picture above jumps straight to the finished model and on to the base. It took me quite some time before deciding how to execute it. I ended up stacking up on skulls and industrial debris. The skulls add to the dynamic of the tentacles, reducing the distance between the model and the base as it feels like she crawls through the death and debris below. It also gave a much needed stability to her tentacles, as well as more weight to the bottom, reducing wobbly model-syndrome.

Finally, one secret ingredient was added, granting her extra fortune on the field – the sand is ash from Eyjafjallajökull, a volcano infamous for her eruption back in 2010.

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And the finished piece! This took perhaps two weeks of evening-sessions, including preparation and drying. I was quite generous with gold, making sure she becomes the centre of attention on the field.

And her name? Among the female Magos lore wise, the name Felicia Tayber came up. Not much is said of her appearance, besides donning mechaendrites attached to her spine and having large part of her skull augmented. Perfect match for me! Felicia it is.

Natural terrain, Terrainbuilding

Mountains of Mars, part II

Hello polystyrene my old friend.

Wouldn’t take long before I came back for this versatile material. Creating with polystyrene is quite messy. It’s also a bit unforgiving, as exposing its characteristic structure easily breaks the immersion.

The foundation is set
The basic foundation has been set.

So I went for a bit more expensive polystyrene; not having to deal with the crumbles of the standard package-type was quite the relief. Above is the result of a few hours of carving in the couch for a few evenings.  I started of with a wire cutter for the basic shape, moved on to a standard carving-knife and finished off with a carpet-knife. It ended up three levels high, using sticks and PVA to fixate.

cliff 2 WIP
Next stage – Putty and rocks

As I’m still playing around and getting comfortable with creating terrain, I went for the middle ground in terms of dedication to this project. I used putty and and rocks to cover gaps between the layers and trying to reduce the fact there is obviously three distinct layers (four with the last part placed on top).

First cliffs done
Bellan progress pictures 101: Draw the ring. Then the rest of the owl.

After making sure the putty is fully dried – slab on the paint. I bought generous quantities of paint when I worked on the game-board so i could add it to my terrain.
The result is OK. The layers are still obvious, which is a good thing to note for future cliffs. I’m satisfied with the carving, though I will work more to create more transitioning between layers.

cliffo 2 wip

Didn’t take long before I moved on to a second one.

/Bellan

Natural terrain, Terrainbuilding, Warhammer 40 000

Mountains of Mars – Settling on the foundation

Like most people, I tend to grow bored of performing the same tasks over and over again. The wonderful thing that makes me appreciate playing conflict games with miniatures is the great variety in creation. So after a few weeks of evening-sessions painting different shades of red and metal, I turned my focus to another aspect; the surrounding landscape in which my army would operate and engage other armies of the vast 40K-Universe.

The most sacred of environments for my industrial, knowledge craving empire of twisted cyborg mutants, Adeptus Mechanicus, is the planet Mars. Creating a Martian board felt quite natural, not only as sacred soil for my faction, but also as a quite unique environment. Many battle boards either tend to stick with the grim gothic environments of the Imperium or green grass covered flats serving multiple purposes. Many players prefer the comfort of a gaming-mat, which is very easy to store, transport and takes little time to prepare. Though they come with one of the bigger risks which I want to avoid at all costs – Breaking the immersion. Sporting different pieces of different qualities tend to do this, so mats where…of my table.

By sheer coincidence I happened to celebrate my 30th lap on our pale blue dot around the sun by this time. For this achievement I received a gift from my wonderful girlfriend, which has become the foundation for my Martian enclave – A Citadel Realm of battle gameboard.

99229999065_RoBGamingBoardNEW02
The basic unpainted board, as showed on Games Workshop website.

This felt like a great start to me! As I’m all but an expert on creating a sectional board, and with a board requiring 6×4 feet I would have to stick with sections in order to store it in between games.

The board adds depth to the field, without the complexity of Sector Imperialis, and so didn’t create much restrictions for my own visions of my future board.

section1WIP
The basic colouring of this section complete! Five more to go.

Once again I didn’t take much pictures of my progress, as I had no plans for creating a blog. It’s hard getting a grip on planet Mars à la 40k. It became terraformed and lush, only to become arid and poisonous once more. This, in combination with being extremely industrialized made me go for a dark and sickly palette of red.

bbWIP
All sections clad in their basic coat.

Mars is a quite dead planet. Though some tectonic activity probably takes place, the landscape bears few scars and cracks. Instead, guzzling winds is the artist of the Martian surface. And so I consciously gave the surfaces the appearance of writhing dune waves.

IDL TIFF file
Mera Hills. Courtesy of Mars Rover “Spirit”.

Another thing I noted when browsing through pictures of Mars. Rocks. Rocks everywhere. Giving my board this kind of surface would probably induce a bad case of wobbly model-syndrome. So I made a compromise, trying to add rocky features in moderation.

bb2WIP
Upper right section almost complete. The two mid-sections display some of the addition of rocks made to my gameboard.

I added mostly to existing cracks and crevices. As seen in the picture above, I went more freely on the two flat sections. Always looking to be that special snowflake, these additions to the board was a must.

bbWIP3
Most part of the highlighting is now done.

I still have a few things to attend to on my board. I will update on my progress for this board in future posts.

/Bellan

Adeptus Mechanicus, Warhammer 40 000

Sicarian Ruststalkers – The obsession takes form

It was time for a more simple and straight-forward batch of models – The Sicarian Ruststalkers.

Though they consist of human bodies, they felt more or less like robots in terms of painting. Basically claws, metallic limbs and sharp stuff pointing in every possible direction coming out of a red torso. They also have heads, but on a list of bodily necessities I believe everything holding sharp stuff have priority on these.

In order to keep track of my uploads, I had to give them names. So first up is Gunnar. There is an old flechette blaster on the base. Flechette blaster -> gun -> Gunnar.

There is a lot of free space on these bases, so I wanted to make use of it to give them a small bit of character. Why not use spare bits?

So this is the first unit I start adding a few personal touches on their bases. Though nothing groundbreaking, it was a start. I added a subtle gloss on their armour with the help of a red wash. Ready-made washes give off a glossy surface, while thinning down regular paints gives a matt surface.

Uncle Acid is the most notorious one. Using glossy effects, I made him an acid pool to cool down his hot feet. The acid will return later on, and I will most likely improve on these guys as well. But for now they´re decent enough to go out on the field.

The torsos made me understand the effect of edge highlighting. An easy technique to create depth by emphasizing the edges of individual parts. The metallics are painted quite simple – A base of Leadbelcher, followed by a layer of Ironbreaker, washed with nuln oil and a final touch of Runefang steel. The robes have been given a base of Mephiston red, followed by a layer of Wazdakka red, a wash of Carroburg crimson and finished with som Evil suns scarlet.

The small touches of dust their bases are worthy of a mention. It’s lava sand from the infamous Eyjafjallajökull on Iceland. Collected a jar of it as a memory from a wonderful trip there.

Full front 2
The completed unit, ready for deployment.

Topview

The blades leave much room to improve. I also felt the importance of paying attention to removing the moldlines, as they really tend to pop up. Most of their grenade-packs is in need of more layering and I will most likely return to their backpacks as well.

Was a bit worried about free-handing the signature pattern on the robes of the Princeps, but they turned out pretty well.

/Bellan

 

Adeptus Mechanicus, Warhammer 40 000

Corpuscarii Electro-Priests – Humble beginnings

Electropriest 1

So I was ready to go for Skitarii. Until late 2016, my knowledge of the lore of 40k was very shallow, and so I started to wonder what the guy at the GW-store was on about, pushing hard to make me buy not only the codex for Skitarii, but also for Cult Mechanicus. I went for a larger box to get me started, and that’s when it added up in a confusing way – There were formations combining the two forces, and the fluff more or less made this tag team  a shameless bromance. Why were there even two codices in the first place?

Electropriest2

Anyhow, time to move on to my first painting after an eight year long absence.
I had no thought of taking pictures of my progress at this stage. I read up on the fluff, figured red was the go to colour-scheme, and started of safely to get the feeling back.

Electropriest complete

 

The Corpuscarii Electro-Priests were the first ones off the sprue. Though I managed to pull of the colours, it felt a bit hard pulling of the glowy effects from their skin grafts. There isn’t much shades or layers going on here either, but at the time I was satisfied. I knew I had very much space to improve, but its hard to run before being able to walk…

This was also the first I tried out GW:s technical paint, as I went for the inhospitable crust of Mars for my bases. Turned out alright.

Thoughts in general

Welcome to the blog of Bellan

As I find it easy to come to an understanding of the mind of good ol’ grumpy longbeards, I’ve been rejecting the concept of blogging for a long time. A really long time, even though I grew up having to pull out a 10m cable every time you wanted to jack up to cyberspace at the marvellous pace of 56k.

I’ve always  liked games and interaction,  and I’ve also been very fond of creating more or less my entire life. I ended up with more sketches than actual notes in classes, though nowadays I seldom actually illustrate. As I grew older I started to become more fond of playing in 3 dimensions, and in my early teens I was introduced to Chronopia by a friend, and later on Warhammer Fantasy Battles. WHFB blew my adolescent mind out of the window, and soon I was well on my way painting a dwarven army.

Due to the lack of interest around me in combination with studies, I made a tough decision. After a few years of collecting dust, I sold my army in 2014, believing that I, perhaps, was done with miniature gaming. Turned out I was sorely wrong.

In late 2016 I went back to the hobby. Now I’ve jumped into the grim future, set in the realms of Warhammer 40 000. After the wonderful part of actually deciding what army to opt for, the weird sacral technology worshipping Adeptus Mechanicus caught my attention, and since then I’ve dedicated my hours of painting and sculpting in Omnissiahs name.

This blog will serve as a platform for my results, sharing my progress and I hope to receive inspiration and feedback from fellows like you reading this post.

Regards
Emil