+ inload: Squad Lazarus completed +

 + Updates from the front:
The Alien Wars continue +

+ Following the last inload, in which the Blood Angels emerged from induced hibernation, I've managed to polish off the second tactical squad – which gave me some much-needed practise in colour-matching. I'm pleased with the result; I think the four new marines match the existing figures well, despite using a different set of paints. +


+ Sergeant Lazarus (Melchizadek 8:15) +

+ Touches of contrasting blue are used here as accents to draw the eye. With a big banner, the focal point (the head) needed a bit of extra help to stand out. The inspiration has a helmet, so unlike his comrade, Sergeant Furiel [+noosphericinloadlink embedded+], I didn't want to use a bare head to draw the eye. Instead, I built a lot of lines converging on the head – the gun and blade do, as does the large blooddrop jewel on the banner. I really hammered the point home with the veteran sergeant freehand on the breastplate, too. This was taken from the Age of Darkness books; which themselves have a nod to Rogue Trader. I was tempted to go further, but restrained myself – I want to leave some design space for the officers without going really over the top. +

+ I think I've hit the balance of ornamentation and keeping things close to the inspiration right; but judge for yourself. The original models are pictured above. Hopefully the poses are evocative enough of the original, even if they're not identical. +

+ It's been so long since I've worked on this army that I'd forgotten whether it was the personal name (i.e. Lazarus) or the ritual apotropaic name (Melchizadek) that should identify the squad. Judging from how I did Furiel, I think it should have been the other way round. Still; this is the sort of mistake that – firstly – can be justified fairly easily in-universe (some sort of tradition of the squad, or a personal affectation); and secondly, would likely have never been noticed by anyone but me! +

+ Getting the text onto the hand-painted scroll sent me cross-eyed. I was cursing myself for blithely giving him the apotropaic name 'Melchizadek' to fit on there. Still; it did mean the blackletter script on his banner had the easier name to fit! +

+ As per the paint scheme of the time, the sergeant has a yellow Chapter symbol on a black field. You'll note that the rim is two-tone; red and gold. I thought making it all metal would have been a bit much, and similarly all-red would have looked odd. +

+ I like the bolter strap here – it gives a sense of dynamism to an otherwise very still figure, suggesting that the boltgun is in motion; perhaps being swung to fire. +


+ Brother Ilean (Rasa 1:01) +

+ Mark VI plate doesn't turn up in the Tactical squads of the original army, so I was in two minds whether to include it. In the end, I squared the circle by keeping the details minor – if you compare these figures with the ones in the Devastator squad, you'll note that the Tactical ones simply have Mark VI helmets, and are otherwise identical to the rest of the squad; whereas the Devastators are converted more faithfully, with chest cables, single-piece greaves etc. +

+ The variation helps to blend the army together, rather than having the armour marks artificially separated. In my vision of Space Marines, their armour is fairly hotch-potch – some wearing full newly-produced suits of a particular armour mark; others inheriting bits and pieces from previous brethren; or augmenting their armour themselves with recourse to the Chapter forge. As a result, the idea of a whole squad – let alone a whole army – being identically equipped just chimes wrongly to me. It would feel rather too uniform and modern, and not properly evoke the pseudo-mediaeval Dark Age feel. +

+ Of course, some uniformity is desirable, or they'll end up looking like a rag-tag warband – cool for some Chapters or periods in the 40k universe's history (the Horus Heresy period can suit the identikit Stormtrooper look, for example), but not for Nova Terra Interregnum-period Blood Angels, I think. The Chapter badge and overall clean look of the paintjob is thus important to establishing the group's retrohammer-themed identity. +


+ Brother Verroccio (Ambriel 4:11) +

+ The big ol' missile launchers used throughout the army help to evoke the Rogue Trader-period inspiration. 'Proteus-pattern' is GW's in-house term for modern designs based on the older stuff, and I really like this conceit. It's a very clever way to explain the difference between older and modern designs without invalidating anything in-universe. +

+ You'll notice more tiny writing on the pauldron nameplate; again, cursing myself for including so many curly 'c's and 'o's in his name! I've added a little skull on the pistol pouch to break it up a bit – note it echoes the squad kneepad honorific. The missile launcher cowling has the same yellow stripe as in the first squad – though I've added two here. It's a minor detail that makes no odds to the background, but will be useful in-game. Simple visual indicators like this – along with squad banner and honorifics – is a nice way to help both you and the other players keep track of which squad is what. +

+ The power pack is a holdover from 2nd edition. Note also the little trigger mechanism/remote he's carrying in his left hand. That's a nod to the similar details of the single-piece missile launchers from the later 2nd ed. boxed set. I made it from an auspex, with various bits trimmed off and replaced. +


+ Brother Brunellecci (Hamurabbas 1:03) +

+ The other beakie helm in the squad. There's a balance to strike – it's nice to have some variation, but too much spoils the uniformity. With both sergeant and squad leader in Mark VII, I felt I could get away with a few more than in the first Tactical squad. There's a Mark IV helm, too (see Brother Zoma below), though since this is much less distinctively different to Mark VII, it stands out less. +

+ As with Verroccio above, Brunellecci has a small personalisation on his pistol holster, though here it's a blood drop. I think little details like this, the script on the boltgun, the black-wax purity seal and so forth really help to give some realism and make the model feel like an individual. +

+ I like this Intercessor pose. I think the arms (and possibly the whole thing) are from the easy-build marines – either the three-man kit that popped up everywhere or the Dark Imperium starter – which just goes to show how easily these can be repeatedly integrated into an army without it looking like an army of clones. +


+ Tactical II: Squad Lazarus +

+ And so we come to the complete Squad Lazarus, Third Company – or to use the apotropaic nomenclature: Mano Sacra, under Lord Dahavauron, Prince of the Erelim, 3rd Strateia of the Host of Angels +

+ Back row, left to right: Brother Verroccio (Ambriel 4:11); Brother Schirru (Ixael 6:05)Sergeant Lazarus (Melchizadek 8:15); Brother Pappacordo (Zether 1:09); Brother Brunellecci (Hamurabbas 1:03) +

+ Front row, left to right: Brother Ornaghi (Utchael 3:04); Brother Ilean (Rasa 1:01)Brother Simnal (Saditel 2:02); Brother Cleon (Sanael 1:02); Brother Zoma (Caraniel 9:01) + 


Very pleased with these, and with a second squad completed, I've now got an officer to pick out and paint. For those who wanted to see the Scouts completed, they'll be the next squad – I started on them at the same time as the four above, so shouldn't be too long, either. +


Greg B said...

Fantastic work - those Beakie helmets are just THE best! Well done.

apologist said...

Thanks Greg; much appreciated. Who doesn't love a beakie, eh?