+ inload: Iron Warriors trio +

+ inload: Scions of the 242nd +

'Footsore no more.' Ostrod murmured, half to himself. It was a peculiar half-honour. He wouldn't be making landfall with the rest of the 242nd Grand Company. Instead, he was being made a Palatarch of his own Chain. Sergeant, he thought for a moment, before considering that there was no reason – none at all – to use the old Terran term now.

+ Ostrod +

Promotion and transfer. He, along with two others, were on a shuttle to liaise with a new Grand Company. The other two sat opposite him in the mostly-empty bay. Masked behind his helm, he sat rigid as his eyes scanned them.

One was unfamiliar. Ubricz he knew in passing. In their plate, he could be the twin of Ostrod. Identical armour; only details differentiated them. Ubricz had a rigid approach to armouring; as coldly efficient and unsentimental as the Iron Circle that he so admired. Besides the temporary transfer marking that had been stamped above each of the new officers' primary hearts, Ubricz's armour was unmarked by any personal honorifics or personalisation. Ostrod felt a peculiar sense of shame at the spiked pauldron and pseudleather apron he bore; the skull-shaped finials at the end of each strap seemed somehow opulent; needlessly boastful.

Ubricz sat as rigidly as his observer, hands resting on his knees. Besides the occasional rocking of the shuttle, he might easily have been an empty suit of armour.

Admirable, for an Iron Warrior.

+ Ubricz +
Spitefully, Ostrod looked for faults. It came easily to him. He noted the non-standard backpack – doubtless some recent replacement. Even Ubricz, it seemed, was not infallible. 

Frustratingly, that seemed to be it. Even the combat blade at his belt was perfectly placed for cross-draw. 

Dismayed, he looked for criticisms in Ubricz's armament. Newly-issued bolt pistol – that matched his own – and a chainaxe. Peculiar. An unusual, though not frowned-upon, choice. The axe swapped speed and finesse for power and reach. Ostrod smiled thinly. 

Variance. Weakness.

Satisfied, in some strange, unplaceable way, Ostrod turned his attention to the third warrior. Ident-runes flagged him as 'Ixod Konstantz'. The Space Marine bristled and turned to Ostrod with a clanking of heavy plate and grind of pistons. Ostrod barely stopped himself – shamefully – from flinching. Active reports. Konstantz had clearly tweaked his armour to alert him when being scanned.

+ Konstantz +

Ostrod looked away, feigning disdain, and the other Legionary turned back to the combat-ready slump he had been in before. He had, in any case, seen all he needed. Konstantz's armour was older than Ubricz's, or his own. Mark III plate, battered and war-worn. Ostrod wondered if it was a 'pure' set, issued as Mark III; or a mongrel suit, adapted and refined from a suit of Crusade armour like that worn by the other two on the shuttle.

There was something of the fanatic in Konstantz, Ostrod considered. Bristling, reactive, angry. He even wore trophies: an old ork tooth – judging from the discoloration, from some ancient battle – and a human skull. Ostrod couldn't help turning back for a second.

No, not a human skull.

That had belonged to an Astartes.


+ Commission complete +

+ After a wait for the final bits, these three vicious warriors are all finished and ready for deployment by their new commander. I thought I'd get a few shots of the finished models, and post up a couple of thoughts and notes. +

+ Everything looks swish in a bell jar! Trazyn the Infinite would be proud +

+ This was a really enjoyable project – small, self-contained, and a welcome return to a favourite army of mine. I always judge the success of a commission by whether I want to keep it afterwards. I'm pleased (if slightly regretful!) to say that these three pass the test. +

+ Part of the reason that I keep coming back to Space Marines – despite thinking of myself as a Guard player at heart – is that they have such a broad and deep background. Each Legion, Chapter or Warband seems to riff on the basic concept of 'Space Marine' slightly differently, so there's a joy both of familiarity with the shapes and building blocks, and of opportunity in going slightly further or in a different direction with each model. +

+ One of the things that I wanted to do here was make use of bits that had appeared since I last worked on my Officio Monstrosa project – in the example above, a Space Marine Heroes series 2 Terminator. These figures are push fit and include integrated bases, which I think is one of the best things GW does in helping to create evocative poses. There are obvious drawbacks (for multiples, matching existing basing schemes), but where they work, there's no substitute for how integrated bases help with the posing of figures. +

+ A disdainful upright posture for this marine. I wanted to convey a confident, dutiful impression for this marine, so kept him largely clean. The resting chainaxe implies he's not at all on edge about executing his duty – the angle of his pistol suggesting finishing someone off, rather than honourable combat.+ 

+ As a rule, Iron Warriors are bitter and resentful types, restrained and efficient, and I wanted to get that across. As we know, 40k doesn't have any goodies – and it's sometimes good to reinforce that with a slightly swaggering, bullying posture for villains like the Fourth Legion. You don't have to be screaming to be evil. +

+ A plainer, battered and more traditional look for this last Iron Warrior, up-armoured in (appropriately enough) a battered Mark III Armourum Ferrum breastplate. With most Space Marines colour schemes, I think it's easy to fall into a trap of doing too much of their accent colours – Ultramarines with more gold decoration than blue, for example – and this is particularly the case with black or metal schemes, where any addition will draw the eye. The hazard striping so common to the Iron Warriors scheme has been restricted to the chainsword, where it adds Iron Warriors flavour without being too eye-catching. The combination of yellow and black is retained in a simpler, cleaner form on the pauldrones. +

+ Modern-looking Tactical markings and trophy-hunting makes for a stark juxtaposition. You can suggest a lot about an army with little details like this. +

+ To finish, here's a little group shot. Onwards to victory! Iron Within! Iron Without! +

1 comment:

  1. Those look awesome, nice one! Of course it can’t be a very old ork tooth, fluff states they disintegrate to avoid hyper inflation within the Orkish community.


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