+ conceptinload: Primaris, truescale and size +

+ Theoretical +

+ Vaguely apologetic babble +

+ Games Workshop are releasing a new range of Space Marines – the Primaris Marines – next month, and the first thing you notice about them is that they're bigger. Considerably bigger. Those poor benighted folk who have been doomed to read this blog can hardly have failed to notice that I build a lot of larger marines, and a couple of people have asked what my thoughts are. +

+ I've long been a bit wary of the terms 'truescale' or 'artscale' when describing my marines, as they've got some slightly snobbish connotation. I prefer to just say 'enlarged', as I've never wanted to imply that any model is wrong or better than another – as the old saw goes, 'one man's feast is another man's poison'. +

+ Nevertheless, truescale is probably the best-known term to describe the various methods of enlarging the standard marine kit to match the background and artwork more closely, so it's the one I'll use in this inload. +

+ Along with a few other hobbyists, I've been converting truescale marines for a few years, and have always been surprised by the feedback I get on them – they seem to catch some people's imagination and they really like 'em, others have a real aversion – even anger, on one memorable occasion – to the truescale technique.  +

I find it unlikely that GW have never seen an example, as it's clear the staff keep an eye on the noosphere and forums etc., and there are quite a few hobbyists who have been plugging away at the technique. Anyway, perhaps something about the concept caught on at GW, as the new Primaris marines are much more imposing than the older models. +

+ First impressions +

+ First and foremost, I think they look great. The proportions of a lot of the elements from the standard marines that truescaling attempts to alter have been changed: The legs and torso are longer and broader; and the abdomen and thighs in particular have changed. These adjustments – which are fairly subtle – make the models look more imposing and closer to human proportions. +

+ As you can see in the crude pict-manip below, the proportions and height are surprisingly close in proportion to the Terminator-based marines I make: 

+ Scaling is based on the width of the bases, which I'm assuming are 32mm +
+ I'd certainly like to get my servo-augmetics on some to make some in-hand assessment and comparison, but by the looks of things, these'll fit right in alongside my existing troops. If anything, it's slightly peculiar to see quite how closely they fit; which of course is very pleasing – I'll have an army all ready to go. +

+ What next? +

+ Perhaps the best thing about this for me is that my truescale marines will now simply be 'marines', and they'll be a bit more anonymous on the table. This may sound a bit funny – after all, it's always nice if people are kind enough to admire your army – but I sometimes worry that the truescaling can seem a bit gimmicky, and detract from the impact of the army. +

+ Will I swap over to just using the Primaris marines? Likely not. While they certainly look promising for parts, I enjoy converting stuff too much to build almost anything straight from the kit! My immediate plans are to convert them to fit in one or more of my Age of Darkness armies – the Iron Hands, Iron Warriors or Ultramarines – but I do have a small hankering after a Blood Angels force set on Armageddon; an homage to the 2nd edition boxed set. This would, oddly enough, involve converting them back to Mark VI or VII! +

+ I am planning to pick up a copy of the new boxed set, so I'll do a review when I get the chance. +

+ The models certainly seem to be causing a lot of discussion; I'd love to hear what you think. +


  1. My theory on the Primaris marines was much like yours, that it's certain that Games Workshop keep an eye on what the trends are among their fans.

    I believe the Primaris Marines are their way of having their cake and eating it, as it were.

    The fans that have been crying out for Games Workshop to give them "truescale" or "proper" proportioned marine miniatures for years can finally have them.

    And the way they have worked them into the narrative means they don't invalidate everyone else' years' old collections of standard scale marines.

    I for one think they look fantastic and I'm glad that everyone gets the option to use either, or, or both.

  2. I think this is like the change in the models between 2nd and 3rd edition, when the Space Marine became plastic multikit, they grow, and the models from Rogue Trader became from "slightly shorter to obviuous shorter" (look the Space Wolves heroes from those days. Now GW have done another change, maybe because the models are not only tokkens anymore, a lot of people want to see a correct size relationship in their superhuman giants with others models, or maybe because now GW have the technology to make them look like in the background and the art.
    Today I could see some new models in a GW store so I made a pic with my own made Real Scale and well:



  3. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and the scale pic, Apologist. I agree that it's quite pleasing how close a match they appear to be, but I can't wait to get hold of some to compare. :)

    Someone said to me the other day "I can't believe how massive Primaris Marines are!" But after all these years of Team Fisto, to be honest I'd forgotten how SMALL normal Marines are. ;)

    Anyway, I highly endorse your 'Blood Angels on Armageddon' plan! :)

  4. Same plan here,
    i took a photo of my "truescale" Ultramarine next to a Primaris an look forward to converting them into more Marines (but for me in the trusty MK7).


  5. I managed to get a photo of a primaris next to a marine based on the FW cataphractii praetor. I was told I could take a photo but not distribute it, but I can say that the head height was the same, but the 'truescale' marine was considerably bulkier. Will probably at very least pick up the starter set.

  6. Sorry to bother on this place but i got a question.
    Where are those spiky shoulderpads come from if i may aks?


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