Monday, September 30, 2013

+ inload: Converting and kitbashing +

+inload: Converting and kitbashing+

+ Kitbashing – taking standard parts from different kits and combining them to make a new miniature.

A kitbashed Death Skull ork
+This lucky ork has a rokkit launcha from the most recent recut of the Boyz sprue, as are the legs and arms. The torso is from the Warhammer Orc sprue, which has a bigger torso for the unit leader – perfect for an ork big enough to bully the mob into giving him the big boomy heavy weapon. 







+ Conversion – modifying the parts yourself, or constructing new parts.
This ork is kitbashed, but has also has some simple conversion work done.
+ This Death Skull required slightly more modelling skill than a basic kitbash, as the torso (from the savage orc kit) needed separating from the legs in order to attach it to some standard space ork legs. This let me keep the cool bone breastplate, which is very fitting for the Death Skull clan.

The newer Fantasy ranges use the muscles of the shoulder and back to hide the join between arm and torso, while the ork range has more old-fashioned flat panels. A little knifework and filling let me combine a left arm taken from the biker sprue with a savage orc arm.

+ This mini diorama, of an ork picking his mate's pocket while he's distracted by a thieving runt, required a bit more conversion work – although the overall effect is (hopefully) subtle. I haven't used many striking bits here, as I want the focus to be on the interaction between the models.

+ The runt is standard, except for a little trimming to have him turning back to grimace at the ork whose ammo box he's stealing. The middle ork has had some green stuff work on his face to increase his angry look, some trimming to get his arms in an appropriate 'mid-distracted grab' pose, and his fingers separated and wrist turned.

Oi, yer zogger – get back 'ere!

+ The pickpocket, meanwhile, required a bit of filling on his arm to get it outstretched, and uses a hand from the old night goblin sprue. I've also done some work to give him a sneaky expression, with his tongue poking out as he concentrates, but I'm afraid I don't have a very good shot of that!

+ This shows the critical part of the conversion/vignette, with the fingers just reaching the open pouch. Without this vital little bit, the pose wouldn't make any sense. You can also see how the legs are leaning towards the pouch, to get the sense of direction across. I've turned his wrist so that his pistol is not in a ready position. All these little bits are intended to add believability to the pose.

+ These orks are part of a mob I've made for a mate of mine – a lot of the bits were kindly donated by my friend Alex. Hopefully I'll be able to get some painted photos soon.


Friday, September 27, 2013

+ inload: Roots +

+inload: Roots+


+ For many of those reading this blog (well, the dozen or so that know about Death of a Rubricist!), a large part of the appeal of the miniature hobby is the background that underpins the gaming. The Warhammer 40,000 universe is particularly developed, having built up over twenty-five years to encompass pretty much any theme for which you could wish, from Lovecraftian horrors beyond space and time to the Kafkasesque absurdity of filing millennia-old petitions for people – even populations – long dead.

+ These only scratch the surface of the sheer amount of material that has been generated to populate and deepen the shared world. Providing the driving force behind this are the commercial pressures of the various games produced in the setting. For every Imerial Guard regiment produced in plastic, metal or resin – and Imperial Guard enthusiasts have been very well-served over the years on that front – there are hundreds, perhaps thousands, mentioned in passing.

+ The sheer scale of the universe puts insurmountable pressure on the ability of a company to produce everything, and this has meant that some things have long been put to one side, such as Rough Riders.

+ The Imperial Guard have changed a lot since Rogue Trader, where Rough Riders were introduced. While the basic premise of 'regular human soldiers fighting against terrifying foes' has remained constant, the range became increasingly focussed upon real-world armies, with the sidelining of the more esoteric elements like ogryns, ratling snipers and beastmen.

+ It's fairly undeniable that a big part of the appeal of the army is its relatability – brave humans are easily recognisable and admirable in a way that biological horrors and alien species are not. I'd also hazard a guess that many Imperial Guard collectors are interested in the real world military, either academically or as a member of the armed forces. Its very understandable to want to use that information to personalise your army and combine interests – something I think is admirable and well worth people's time.

+ However, in concentrating on the more realistic side, the Imperial Guard has lost some of the feeling of sheer horror and absurdity of the setting. Men are shovelled up and sent to far-off planets to die under alien suns for wars that signify nothing. In this context, the sheer variety of guard regiments, from starched Napoleonic-theme troops to flesh-eating criminals really helps to capture this idea. By the stroke of a distant scribe's pen, highly-trained special forces are sent to man a muddy trench in grinding static warfare; painted savages are deployed to man artillery batteries; desert-dwellers are deployed to capture an ocean world... all madness; all perfectly in theme.

+ Rough Riders, which I think were probably developed in true early GW style of reusing bits, are basically Guardsmen on horses. Modern cavalry warfare is largely dormant, if not dead (though I believe mounted warfare is still used in some militaries), and many Guard players dismiss the idea of using the troops as absurd. 


+ I think that's a shame. Not every battle is a gunfight against laser-wielding troops. The Imperial Guard are just as likely – perhaps more so – to face armies that they outclass technologically, and cavalry have historically been very important. Even if you are from a high-tech world, having horses, camels or the equivalent who are able to forage and remain operational without industrial infrastructure is valuable when invading a feral world, for example. 

+ Leaving realism and trying to justify them on a logical level behind – after all, I've just argued that that's missing the point! – Rough Riders have great imagery. Horse warfare might be largely defunct, but it has a huge cultural weight behind it in Europe and beyond. Mounted men bring connotations of danger, of excitement, nobility, aristocracy. They represent speed and rapidity – all elements that are fantastic to explore in miniature form.

+ Painting-wise, Rough Riders offer a great opportunity to look at horses. They're beautiful animals that have many different appearances. These offer some exciting opportunities to painters.

+ In pulp terms, Rough Riders bring to mind actions like the charge of the Light Brigade, of cowboys, mongols and conflicts from antiquity to the American civil war; of Conan and knights in shining armour. All of these are great and common inspiration for our hobby – and as I mentioned earlier, I think it's great to combine interests and add little nods here and there to spark conversations and discussion.

+ The Rough Riders shown here are from my Lamb's World 117th regiment. They're based on Games Workshop Wood Elf horses with Empire pistolier legs (metal ones from the good old days of bits orders). The rest of the models are Forgeworld Elysians, with various bits sprinkled from the plastic Imperial Guard ranges. I deliberately wanted to steer clear of any very distinctive image, and create troopers that combined imagery of modern warfare with the romantic aspects of historical cavalry warfare. To me, the Imperial Guard are the Good Guys, in a way that my Ultramarines (for example) are not. Space Marines are distilled war; with no possibility for existence beyond battle, and as such are peculiarly outside of ethics. In contrast, the Imperial Guard are men and women like us, with all the potential for heroism and villainy, cowardice and courage, that we have.+


All that stands between humanity and the dark is the courage – or insanity – of another human being.


+++

+inload addendum: Astartes+

+ Speaking of Ultramarines, I got cracking on building more last night. Here's the work-in-progress:


Number 1
+ Number 1: Pleased with this chap – the pose is not super-dynamic, but sufficiently open to interpretation to provide interest. Is he reaching for a door handle, or tenatively signalling for his squad to hold?


Number 2
+ Number 2: Hmm, least successful so far. The smaller Mk IV shoulder pads rob him of some presence, and the shield confuses the angle of movement. I'm tempted to strip these shoulder pads and go to the usual Mk II ones I had printed. He will likely receive a combat blade or similar weapon in his right hand – or have his arms replaced entirely with arms aiming his boltgun.



Number 3
Another angle on number 3, showing the
discarded magazine in the background.
+Number 3: Definite potential here. The reloading/reaching for a new magazine pose is working fairly well. He needs a pouch (obviously!) and I'll probably tilt the head differently – he's staring off into space at the moment, which robs the piece of immediacy.

+ Where possible, I'm trying to add distinctiveness and interest through minor variations from the basic set of armour. It's a delicate balance between making the model interesting and keeping it looking uniform. Number 1 has a Praetor pattern helm, an Umbra(?) boltgun and a different powerpack, but is otherwise standard. Note that number 2 sticks out the most due to the absence of the big Mk II shoulderpads, a very distinctive part of my vision of marines. Aside from this change, he is the most standard, which shows what an effect changing iconic/focal points can have. In contrast, number 3 has non-standard legs, non-standard torso, but still looks more like the basic marine pattern of this army.+

Thursday, September 26, 2013

+ inload: Return of Thrugg Bullneck, once and future git +

+inload: Return of Thrugg Bullneck, once and future git+


+ Like many, I was introduced to tabletop wargaming through Games Workshop. I started out by playing my older brother with the third edition of Warhammer Fantasy Battle (WFB3), though my skeleton hordes weren't much cop against his greenskins as we decided not to bother with the psychology rules! I later bought Rogue Trader as 'my' game.

+ Those familiar with the rulebook will remember the Battle for the Farm, a sample scenario detailing Pedro Cantor's [sic] Crimson Fists being attacked by an ork patrol led by Thrugg Bullneck, who was returning to a farmstead to pick up some booty he'd buried earlier in the conflict. 

+ Space Marines have remained relatively similar to the Rogue Trader imagery through the years, though they have diversified from the lunatic criminals mentioned in the earliest material to encompass pretty much every cultural trope you can name. The Crimson Fists Chapter became sidelined a little in second edition Warhammer 40,000, but the background they later received was a nod to the story in this scenario. Pedro himself popped up many years later as a special character – his name changed to Kantor, presumably to avoid taxes on the Fortress Monastery rebuild. 


Image courtesy of Collecting Citadel Miniatures wiki.
Used without permission.
+ Over the same period, the orks changed much more starkly, moving from a sort of pseudo World War II Germans/biker aesthetic into the more wacky tribal clans, and finally to berserker gene-engineered mushroom soldiers. As an aside, the different ork aesthetics are interesting to look into, and the Rogue Trader orks had a peculiar blend of being both more silly and more gritty and realistic than the later versions. 

+ Regardless, Thrugg didn't survive the transition and has never been mentioned again in the game background, to my knowledge. Unlike Pedro, who was represented by a plastic marine, Thrugg did have an official model, which you can see to the right.


+ During my search for a painted picture that shows off the sculpt better, I came across Goblin Lee's Miniatures Blog*. Lee has an amazing army made up of Rogue Trader era orks, all painted up beautifully in a muted WWII-esque scheme. His army will be a great point of reference for my own orks, where I want to combine the various ork aethetics. I'm hoping Lee will allow me to post a picture of his Thrugg here as a comparison to mine, but do go and have a look at the army through the link at the bottom of this post, as it's awesome.


As I write, Lee's kindly given permission, so here's his spiffy rendition of Thrugg (left).


















+ Anyway, to cut a long story short, I decided I'd like to see if I could update the old model into a new version. When approaching something like this, I like to identify the basic characteristics of the original model, so that he is (hopefully!) easily identifiable at a glance, and then look more closely at the details, so that closer examination confirms the initial recognition. 

+ In this case, the original model is relatively anonymous. He doesn't have a bionic arm or paricularly weird wargear, so the bits I felt were most important to making him identifiable were the unusual pose and his distinctive close combat weapon. In addition, like most miniatures, the head is the focal point, so I needed to make a distinctive head that had reference points to the original model.



+ Using that as a starting point, I found a helmet with small spikes around the crown plus cheekguards, and replaced the head inside with a metal ork nob who has a similar grumpy grimace. The arms were a fun challenge to get into the correct pose, and ended up using eight bits from various kits. 

+ The choppa is a bit off the Warhammer Boarboy sprue, I think. It certainly started life much bigger, but since Rogue Trader weapons were more reasonably-sized than today, I wanted to get it down a bit in size. I toyed with the idea of a smaller knife or a chainsword blade, but plumped for this as capturing the rippy feel of the original with the more modern ork aesthetic.



+ To blend this modern ork with the Rogue Trader feel, it was important to add some details like the torn sleeve on his left arm, and the furry shoulder pad with a small spike. Using a Rogue Trader-era shoulder pad from the old plastic Ork sprue as the basis, I added a spike shaved from his belly (it was getting in the way of his arm), then later used greenstuff to put a small pelt over his back, extending it over the shoulder pad. This shot also shows the little pouch on his belt – one from the ork nob sprue is nearly identical to the pouch on the original model, which just goes to show that some things stay the same!

+ Of course, it's not really an update if you don't change some things; and it's not really your own model unless you add your own spin on things. To this end, and to really hammer home the idea that orks are not very nice, I added loads of skulls and severed heads on his back. Together with the furry spiked pelt, this gives the model a proper John Blanche-style 'future barbarian' feel.



+ Hasslefree miniatures** make some great little models called lesser mawes. I think they work perfectly as squigs, and as everyone knows, a boy's best friend is his squig. This one is scratching behind his ear, a really characterful relaxed pose that contrasts nicely with Thrugg's more alert and aggressive stance. You can have too much GRIMDARK, and a little light-heartedness in the background like this adds to the overall impression.


+ I'd love to hear what you think about the conversion and any suggestions for the paint scheme. Does anyone know whether Thrugg had an 'official' paint scheme? Finally, has anyone else updated a favourite old character or model from back in the day?+


+++

* Link to blog:
(http://goblinlee.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/rogue-trader-orks-luggubs-drop-legion.html?showComment=1380182526912#c7089849655905043318)

** Link to shop:
http://www.hfminis.co.uk/shop?product=lesser-mawes-x4~hfsa310&category=miniatures~sci%252dfi-aliens

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

+ inload: Lorgob, Goff skarboy +

+inload: Lorgob, Goff skarboy+


+ 'Aven't 'ad dis much fun since... well, yesterday, when Odgrub got 'is new kustom foot bitten off by dat squig we stuck in 'is hut. Hur hur hur. 
Anyway, last one to scrag a beekee is a runt – WAAAGH!+

+ Orks are my Imperial guardsmen's perennial enemy. My brother played them when we were runts, and my gaming group has a number of notorious Warbosses amongst its number. However, aside from some Space Crusade games, I've never painted much of the greenskins. That's set to change, as our gaming group's campaign next year revolves around an Imperial invasion into the Scallop Stars, a grizzly den of ork space. Since I've got guardsmen and marines, I thought it'd be a fun excuse to build a little ork warband.


+ We've got lots of Bad Moons, a ded kunnin' Blood Axe warboss, and rumours of Snakebites in the group. I decided I'd go for a classic Goff warboss, but use the old tribe system from Waaagh! the Orks, 'Ere we Go and Freebooters as my inspiration, with a core clan and the potential for other clans from the tribe to supply some household lads


+ On that basis, I've rustled up a random army generator to see what I end up with, but the core of my army has to be some Skarboyz. After all, Goffs are bigger an' 'arder than uvver orks, so some orks that can put some muscle on marines are a must. Plus, it's a classic orks vs. marines fight. Win-win!

+ I've put him on a 30mm base to match my marines. I think the 25mm bases are a bit unstable for these models (based on ork nobs), and 40mm is too big; they start to look a bit lost.


+ He's a very simple model, built almost completely from stock, as I find these Brian Nelson-inspired models fantastic. The head may be from a Fantasy kit – a lot of the models for the army were sourced from second-hand bits boxes and the like. I have added a little greenstuff work to the arms, wrapping some fine tubes of greenstuff around the bicep/tricep area to represent rolled-up sleeves. These Goffs are inspired by '80s bovver boys and skinheads as much as Germanic tribes, though the overall feeling I'd like to emphasise is the black threat of the greenskin menace.

+ That's not to say there's no space for a bit of humour, but I'll be concentrating on the black humour of cruelty rather than wacky hi-jinks.

+This rear shot shows the core scheme of white and black. As usual with my palette, both extremes are muted – the white is a beige made from paints like Kommando Khaki and Dheneb Stone, while the black is muted with the addition of brown. 

+ I think it's important to show that ork clothing and equipment is all kustom made; so while the core colours are there, they'll be painted differently on each ork – some blacks will be grey-based, others brown, blue or green. Similarly, the base for the whites will vary from greeny-tinged Rotting Flesh to blue Space Wolves Grey to yellowy beiges.+

+ A final shot of Lorgob. I've added lots of classic chequer effects. Hopefully the Goff vibe is coming over. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

+ inload: Brother Aper Vipsanion +

+inload: Brother Aper Vipsanion+

+ Aper Vipsanion is a native of Manes Otra, an obscure system rimwards of Macragge. Manes Otra orbits its star closely, but habitable zones exist near the Marco Culumo mountains thanks to the prodigious amount of cloud generated through hyper-evapotranspiration. As a result, the people live in mist-shrouded heathland despite the vast majority of the surface being rad-scarred wastes.

Legionary Vipsanion
+ Manotrans, as the natives are called, traditionally wear great torcs around their necks fashioned from sea-ivory that turned from peach to a blotchy pink under dangerous levels of radiation. Since Compliance in the mid-decades of the Great Crusade, these have been replaced with rad-counters, but the natives continue to regard items worn around the neck and chest as protective. Such superstitions, though officially frowned-upon, are generally tolerated as part of the cultural heritage of the planets of Ultramar. Guilliman regarded diversity – where it did not conflict with the Imperial Truth or the aims of the Imperium of Man – as beneficial; offering unique insights into specific theatres of war.+

+ Vipsanion has hinted at his heritage by decorating his chest armour with the legend 'CXC'; a numeral representing the 190th Chapter to which he belongs. Besides this forgiveable indulgence, Vipsanion has embraced the culture of the Legion like almost all Astartes, subsuming his personal desires to the good of the squad; and to the Legion as a whole. This is demonstrated not least through his name – like almost all Ultramarines, he has chosen a new name from the Core Worlds of Macragge, substituting it for his birthname Jorés Joréssen as an act of personal compliance.+

+ The mark II power generator pack is Martian standard; containing a stacked fusion core. The mark IV suit saw number of marked improvements over the Crusade armour, most notably in the 'under the hood' power generation. 

+ This pattern of power pack produced prodigious amounts of heat, which needed to be vented through three fanned heat sinks, and necessitated bulky cabling vulnerable to attack. It also produced a low hum that set the teeth on edge when brought in close proximity; though autosenses inherent to even the earliest helmets filtered this out.+

+ Vipsanion has a white helmet stripe running down the crest of his helm, a common tactical marking on campaign that marked the marine out as a standard line trooper. This was largely redundant, but it was nevertheless common amongst older Legionaries, or those who preferred to keep campaign armour markings where they did not interfere with current duties.

+ This shot also shows the chemical snows upon which the 190th were deployed during the lamentable campaigns of the Olympian Hegemony Clearances, a notorious set of actions that foreshadowed the actions of the Great Scouring. The Clearances involved a number of Chapters, though the 190th, under their Honour-Captain Sulla Proxemides, were notable for their aggressive prosecution of the Iron Warrior defenders. A number of Ultramarines of the Chapter were censured following the campaigns.+

+ Vipsanion has been deployed with an augmented auspex set to defeat rad-interference and the iron Warriors targetted baffling measures. Early in the campaign, many Ultramarines of the 121st were lost to minefields shrouded to even sophisticated narrowband auspex scans – a lamentable oversight that well illustrates the dangers the Imperial forces faced when attacking rebels loyal to Horus, who had access to standard protocol measures.

+ The augmented auspex set required heavy cabling to feed its prodigious power consumption, and the high-gain pick-ups also required modifications to the bearer's armour to override interference – these can be seen embedded on Vipsanion's forearm bracer.+

+ Having served for just over fifty years in the Legion, which included Compliance actions on thirty-eight planets, numerous xenocidal campaigns, and seven tours of duty following the Calth Atrocity, Vipsanion was killed in action during the Clearances by Iron Warrior action in the Carybid pass of Sorrow Peaks.

His body was unable to be reclaimed in the narrow pass, and his geneseed had unfortunately decayed beyond viability by the time the Ultramarines could force the route.+
+++

Monday, September 23, 2013

+ inload: Brother Bastapol Einhorn +

+inload: Brother Bastapol Einhorn, Chapter 190, Ultramarine Legion+


+Brother Einhorn is a typical member of the post-Centesimine Chapters; a catch-all term that refers to all of the Chapters of the Legion beyond Chapter 100. Sometimes interpreted as a perjorative by outsiders who guess that those serving in Chapters 1–99 are somehow privileged above those later brethren, the term is meant as approbation. It is meant as a celebration of the Legion's success in gathering and maintaining such high numbers.


Telacos of the 15th Chapter, demonstrating
greater use of  personalisation, including heraldry.
+ While no Ultramarine courts anonymity – the Five Hundred worlds from which the Legion draws its intake take their cue from Macragge's tradition of 'Pride with dignity' – the post-Centisimine Legionaries tend to have less variety in their appearance than the older Chapters, who served through the early years of the Great Crusade. Contrast Einhorn with Telacos (see right), for an illustration of the greater customisation of the older Chapters.

+ That said, some decoration and variety is almost inevitable in a warrior brotherhood – whether through honorifics and awards achieved, battle damage to equipment and armour, or the myriad personal fetishes and charms that even the warriors of the Imperium hold close.+ 


Legionary Einhorn
+ Einhorn is a fairly typical example, then, of an Ultramarine of the later Great Crusade and Horus Heresy period. Like most amongst his Chapter, he wears mark II Crusade armour. The Legion was relatively isolated from Terra and Mars by both sheer distance and because the manufacturing might and organisation of Ultramar ensured that the Legion could mostly meet its own needs through allied Forge worlds and vassal manufactoria scattered across the region.

+ The torso piece, a common variant has the central sternum reinforcement decorated with inlaid ivory in a key pattern, which represents the interlocking and fluid nature of Legion warfare. It is a common decoration, widespread through the realm of Ultramar at large.


Assault tank crew, Praetor-pattern helm
+ Like many in the Legion, the 190th were kitted extensively with Praetor-pattern armour, a locally-manufactured pattern peculiar to the Ultramarines that owed much to the standard Mars pattern internally. Naturally slightly less efficient in overall protection owing to the difference in materials from the Martian ur-example, Praetor armour was sometimes reinforced with additional plates at the hips, across the chest and on the outside of major long bone areas; bringing the level of protection back to comparable limits. Most famously, the helm often had a flat plate added over the front, giving the armour – and Legion – a distinctive appearance.

+ Einhorn's helm is not only lacking this additional frontispiece, but also the top section! This neatly demonstrates one of the great advantages of power armour; namely the modularity and redundancy. Presumably damaged beyond utility, the Legionary has removed the top section while retaining the frontal grill. This lower section of helm contains the vox-system, aural dampeners and much of the atmospheric systems, while also protecting the rebreather – and face – beneath. 

+ While loss of a section of armour during combat is not unusual, removal of the helmet (while frowned upon) was sometimes done deliberately; allowing the terrifying Astartes a more relatable human face in order to win support on human worlds. The removal of the helmet does allow us a visual record of the strip haircut, a practical style that offered some cushioning to the head inside the notoriously uncomfortable Crusade armour helm if a skull cap was not worn. This image also shows Einhorn's main rifle, a Tigrus-pattern boltgun. This was not uncommon in the Legion, though most of the 190th Chapter bore the Umbra pattern that was common across the Legions during the Great Crusade. Note the three kill stripes near the muzzle.


+ This show shows how the reinforced rim of the pauldron in the upper portion provides protection to the critical area of the upper torso and head. The distinctive size and shape of the Astartes shoulder pad, along with the unmistakeable icons of the respective Legion left no enemy in doubt as to who they were fighting. 

+ Einhorn bears a small skull-and-crossbones honorific on his forearm, marking him as a tactical assault specialist. Perhaps this explains his unusual Tigrus-pattern boltgun – it may be recently issued to allow him to join a standard Tactical squad, rather than his preferred Tactical Assault (bolt pistol and combat weapon) formation.

+ Unfortunately, the answer to the question is muddied by the absence of tactical markings on Einhorn's left pauldron. This area would normally include Chapter markings, squad designation and sundry other information. Instead, Einhorn has merely a hastily-stencilled tactical arrow perhaps added in the field.

+All of these slight variances from the norm point to Einhorn's being attached to a unit that is not his usual squad. It is likely he is a fully battle-fit member of a unit mauled in combat – and he has thus been attached to fill a hole left by a casualty in another squad. This may be temporary or permanent, depending upon the level of damage the two units sustained, and whether the other members recover sufficiently. Astartes were, and are, extremely survivable; with a fatality rate of casualties being circa 6 per cent in 'normal' conflict (compare this to standard Imperial Guard figures of 16 per cent of casualties being fatalities). This is adjusted for the additional protection of the Astartes and capabilities of the enemies against which they were deployed, making their resilience all the more remarkable. A marine who is incapacitated on the battlefield – damaged to the point he cannot continue as an effective force – is still likely to heal and return to the field within weeks, if not days.+

+ The mark IV power pack here indicates this pict capture was taken towards the end of the Horus Heresy, after the War on Calth. It is almost certainly a replacement of the original suit. Note also the chequered pattern on Einhorn's mag-holstered boltpistol, a common decoration of the period.

+ More chillingly pointing to this date is the Mark III helm of an Iron Warrior from the IV Legion, upon which Einhorn is treading. The Ultramarines, by dint of their numbers, were instrumental in clearing the Imperium of pockets of resistance loyal to Horus. It is likely that these images date from the clearances of the Olympian Hegemony, Perturabo's micro-empire around his homeworld, a black mirror to Ultramar. These worlds were honeycombed with ingenious fastnesses and terrifying holds, and were only won through blood, toil and sacrifice.








Detail of the Iron Warrior helm.







Legionary Bastapol Einhorn, 150th.
+++
Also, I am back from Rome. Had a great time, and filled with architectural and painterly enthusiasm!

Monday, September 16, 2013

+ inload: Shipping out +

+inload: Shipping out+

+A very small update today, as I'm off to Rome for a week's break. Looking forward very much to spending some quality time with Ms. M and drinking in some Classical culture.

+Here's a little sneak preview from my gaming group's next project, to begin next year...+

+Waaagh is coming. 2014.+


Friday, September 13, 2013

+ inload: Lamb's World 117th +

+inload: Lamb's World 117th+



Lamb’s World 117th Regiment of Foot Disposition

Cognomen: 

The Black Hands

Motto: 

Maluam Est Qui Cogitat Malum

Commanding Officer: 

Caef-Martial Johann Tacitus Springsen [KIA – Shale Polar front]; Caef-Maior Yrion Ap Irison [KIA – Shale Polar front]; Caef-Martial (bt.) Terentius Dresden

Second-in Command: 

Caef-Maior (bt.) Fastidius Umberary

Formative fighting strength: 

Twelve companies (144,000 men)

Nominative fighting strength Shale Campaign: 

Twelve companies (142,800 men) plus abhuman auxiliaries.

Current fighting strength: 

Unknown

+++
A rainworld, whose main export is liquid water, the inhabitants of [Lamb's World] have altered over recent centuries from nomadic tribes to forming permanent dwellings. Three large cities are the Lamb's Worlder's happiest boast – the capital Myrffn, cosmopolitan Pant-y-Gyrdl and Little Haven. The planet harbours a strong feral ork presence in and around the equatorial mountains and deserts; and the Imperium conducts regular firesweeps to control the swelling and dangerous population. Recent Imperial development means that the booming planetary infrastructure is making this considerably more achievable, and some projections see the ork tribes wiped from the planet within fifty years.
An extract from Perigrinations through the Lamba System, the Marquesa Zuzen Barabar's celebrated travel documentary; Ca.M38

+++


Lamb's World troops and armour receive orders outside a shanty town.


Lamb's World regiments are traditionally drawn from PDF regiments that have served in the ongoing Equatorial Culls; a campaign that has continued intermittently against the stubborn Feral Orks of the region since records began. Never numerous and hemmed in by the rocky terrain, the ork tribes pose little true threat beyond the equatorial belt. The Culls, while dangerous, ensure the orks never reach critical mass. That said, they have proven intractable; popping up years or even decades after at least four Imperial Commanders have declared final victory and the extinction of the tribes.
The Marquesa's closing comments on the backwater agriworld were not entirely accurate, and while an extermination campaign saw some success in the closing years of M38, the orks have proved intractable and have seen resurgences over the intervening years as experienced PDF Regiments are sent to do their duty elsewhere in the sector; most notably in M40.333, when Little Haven was sacked.

+++

Rifleman of Company Command
Nevertheless, the agri-world's tithe is paid in water and blood – Lamb's World continues to provide stolid, if unremarkable, regiments to the Guard. The planet itself has developed since the Marquesa's journal, and while the principal cities still stand, many more have sprung up. The various ethnic groups of the inhabitants still bear hallmarks of their cultural histories, but their traditional nomadic ways have largely been subsumed into settled, urban living. Trade developments mean that the equipment and materiel used by the regiments seconded to the Guard are visually very different to regiments from the Marquesa's era.

Rip-sergeant; Special Weapons Squad
Of course, these differences are more than cosmetic; but such is the monolithic nature of the Imperium's technological distribution, that the operation of the different patterns of flak armour and lasrifles issued to the current Lamb's World regiments are quickly assimilated by the obedient troops.

+++