This is the last Shokkjump Dragsta for my Warhammer 40,000 Ork force. It’s been sitting painted for a while but I had no base available as I got the kit second hand and the base size is apparently not available for any normal ordering. Luckily a friend with a 3D printer was able to help out to get one with the appropriate size and shape. By sheer luck, the Ork buggies appear to be overpowered in their current rules and I got a few free wins against Gareth before we realised that I hadn’t suddenly stopped being rubbish at 40K. There has been a recent change in their rules limiting any force to just three of each type; luckily I don’t exceed that so if I need my ego to be stroked I can get out my army with almost no changes and play it again.
I made a few very minor changes to the construction of this Dragsta; the main noticeable one is switching the positions of the Rokkits and the main gun but I did also remove a couple of extraneous bits and pieces from the chassis to give a slightly more stripped-down look. The Dragsta retains the blue main colour that I used for the Speed Freeks but I’ve used yellow this time as a secondary colour which I think works pretty well. As with all the other buggies I painted this one in sub-assemblies; it’s effective in terms of the final result but I have to admit that it means that the painting process feels like a long succession of ‘not finishing anything meaningful’ until you get to the final step and glue it all together. Nonetheless, I’m really pleased with the final result here.
Now I just need to think of a good way to get photos of the whole force of Speed Freeks as their huge bases mean that there is no way I’ll get the entire force in my lightbox.
Next on the painting table: Amazing Spider-Man.
This is a Foetid Blight Drone, part of my Death Guard army for Warhammer 40K. Perhaps appropriately for an army of diseased stubborn trench-fighters, the Death Guard are not blessed with an abundance of mobile elements and the Blight Drone fills that role quite nicely. In the lore it’s sort of a cross between an attack helicopter and a demon which is why it looks like a vehicle from the front and slug from the back. This particular miniature is armed with double Plaguespitters which are short-ranged autohitting horde-clearing guns. In play I’ve preferred to use the Fleshmower (yes, it does exactly what it sounds like) to make my Plague Drone a serious melee threat; the idea is to jam it down the other side’s throat as soon as possible in order to neuter their (probable) advantage in mobility while I slog the rest of my army across the board.
Painting the Foetid Blight Drone was a lot of fun; it’s quite like painting two separate miniatures. On the front there is the armour plating which I really enjoyed used red and bronze to bring out. Meanwhile the back is the demon / slug / blob thing which takes a very different texture to the mechanical parts. The Daemon-Engines for the various Chaos factions in 40K are always a lot of fun and I’ve enjoyed the way that the horror of this magical hybrid is brought to life as a miniature.
Next on the painting table: Cyclops.
This is a squad of Reivers, a Primaris unit for the Adeptus Astartes (Space Marines) within Warhammer 40,000. Rules-wise, Reivers a bit of an oddity. They can deep-strike and have various rules around affecting morale of enemies nearby; however they’re not particularly good at fighting and morale has been hilariously ineffective in every game I’ve played of 40K. I suspect that there is some value in a big game to taking the smallest and cheapest squad of these ladies, parachuting them in late game and scoring a few VP doing actions in a quiet corner. Reivers can also be added to Spectrus Kill Teams in Death Watch, but doing so makes the rest of the team lose most of their cool special rules so I’m not really sure why I would want to do so.
The Reivers were painted in the same white, green and black scheme as their sister Space Marines. I actually assembled this unit first when I was testing out the alternative heads, though I somehow failed to make any further progress with the painting for almost a year! The heads are a fractionally bigger scale than the ones I’ve ended up using for the rest of the Space Marines, which I think makes it look more like they are big warriors in normal sized armour instead of being normal sized warriors in big armour. I find with these squads of Space Marines that I get about halfway through the painting and find it a bit of a grind, then somehow turn a corner (usually when I apply the main Nuln Oil wash!) after which it becomes a joy once more.
Next on the painting table: Beast.
Here is a Malignant Plaguecaster, another Death Guard mini from Warhammer 40,000. Unlike the Lord of Contagion who, I suppose, is this guy’s boss, the Plaguecaster is a psyker (i.e. a space wizard) who specialises in making his own side harder to kill while doling out occasional wounds to his enemies.
Also unlike the Lord of Contagion, I actively disliked painting the Plaguecaster. The mini is really busy but somehow not in a way that comes together nicely; rather it just feel like a lot of needless bling cluttering up the sculpt. In addition, the pose just looks really unnatural, although I will admit that I don’t really know what a 10,000-year-old space wizard would look like when he’s walking around. Finally, and this one is definitely on me, I tried to use the same paint scheme as the Lord of Contagion and while this mostly worked, it had one unfortunate side effect. Trying to keep the ‘magical green fire’ look on the Plaguecaster makes it look like he’s a balloon artist trying to inflate a giant piece of broccoli. Still, I’m glad that he’s done and I did learn a few things about colour choices which will hopefully help me in the future.
Next on the painting table: Wong.
This is a Lord of Contagion, part of the Death Guard for Warhammer 40,000. He’s a leader with a melee focus, and therefore I suppose will spend his time just slightly behind something big and scary ready to counter-charge.
I don’t have any specific plans to actually play a Death Guard army any time soon but I wanted to test myself by painting one of the big minis in this range and decided that a few test / practice miniatures would be useful. The crimson and bronze colours I’ve picked are thematically linked with another group in the lore (specifically, followers of Khorne and the World Eater chapter of Chaos Space Marines) but I felt that they would fit in well with this miniature. And even if he’s a follower of Nurgle, that huge chain-axe the Lord is wielding will still spill plenty of blood. The mini is really busy and I found that he didn’t really come together until the end as there are just so many little bits of detail from the Nurglings underfoot (tactical Nurglings!) to the smoking tripartite trophy rack atop his armour. To contrast with the crimson armour I went with what I hoped would be a noxious and mystical looking green flame effect on the stuff coming off the censers and trophies; I’m a bit torn on whether this actually looks good in itself but it does at least stand out nicely.
Next on the painting table: Corvus Glaive.
Here are a trio of Outriders, a unit for my slowly-ongoing Adeptus Astartes (or Space Marines, if you’re old-fashioned like me) force for Warhammer 40K. As you might expect from a team of motorbiking, sword-wielding post-humans, this lot are a highly mobile unit mainly focused on close-quarters fighting. Sadly, because of a combination of me being awful at the game and my constant poor choice of potential victims for the Outriders, the usual game proceeds with them zooming around a bit and shooting quite ineffectually, then charging into melee and being blended out of existence without achieving a great deal of anything. The standard unit size is three, but in Death Watch they can be added to Fortis Kill Teams and ride around in a group of up to five if they feel like it.
The Outriders were a unit that felt like a bit of a slog right until the last few touches of paint were applied when suddenly everything came together beautifully, and in the end I’m very pleased with the outcome. The riders were painted in the same white, black and green scheme as the rest of my Astartes. I eventually decided to make the bikes green; this would tie them into the Chapter colour scheme, keep them distinct from the predominantly white armour of the Space Marines and also not blur into the black of the tires.
Next on the painting table: Proxima Midnight.
This is a second combat squad of Assault Intercessors to be part of my Space Marines (Adeptus Astartes) army in Warhammer 40K. There’s not much more to say about them than I mentioned for the previous squad; they’re the basic troops of the faction and they specialise in close quarters combat. I opted to give the sergeant a Power Fist mainly because it’s such an iconically 40K weapon; really embodying the ethos of ‘I fly across the galaxy in mile-long spaceships, purely so that I can punch you on the nose’.
The painting was the same as the rest of the Space Marines. I think that the white on the Intercessors’ armour really shows up the difference between really skilled painters and me. My minis look fine on the tabletop, but in these brightly lit zoomed-in photos all sorts of errors are evident. When I look at the many highly-skilled bloggers I like to follow, there is no such evidence of paint-streaking, wash-pooling etc even when they post really great photos. I love this hobby; there are so many ways to continue to improve even after an unholy number of years of enjoying it.
Next on the painting table: Killmonger.
This a second Kustom Boosta-Blasta for my Warhammer 40,000 Ork force. There isn’t strictly a Kult of Speed sub-army, even though I think that there should be, but if there was then that is definitely what I’d be building.
Just like with my second Boomdakka Snazzwagon, I painted this Boosta-Blasta in the same style as the first one but with more emphasis on the red. Otherwise, I’ve tried to make them look a bit different with some slight changes to the optional modelling pieces like opening the roof a bit and switching the top gunner to face another direction. It’s not a perfect solution but it’ll do for now.
Next on the painting table: Assault Intercessors.
These fine ladies are Assault Intercessors for my Space Marines / Adeptus Astartes force in Warhammer 40K. They’re the spiritual successors of old-fashioned Assault Marines, though for whatever reason they don’t come with the jump packs that were the main draw for their inclusion in armies in the first place. Nonetheless, Space Marines are as tough as nails and do just fine at close quarters and melee so this loadout of pistol and sword is quite fitting. In the event that I play Death Watch, the only downside of Assault Intercessors is that they don’t fit into any Kill Teams. Luckily, recent experience is telling me that I’m utterly terrible at 40K so I’ve stopped worrying about the relative power of any of my army options and just gone with rolling the dice with friends.
I adore the dynamism of the sculpts for the Assault Intercessors; though it is true that a close friend of mine quite uncharitably (but accurately) refers to them as ‘skippies’ since they look like they’re frolicking into battle. The heads here are mostly from Shapeways and I’m really impressed with the quality of the printing; I’d recommend them for anyone wanting to mix up their GW armies with alternative heads. The paint scheme is, of course, the same as my previous Space Marines. On the one hand, I do love the look of a fully painted coherent army. But on the other, more pertinent hand, I find it a bit of a drag to paint essentially the same scheme on 50ish models. Character driven skirmish games are my preference these days for that reason among others.
Next on the painting table: Boomdakka Snazzwagon.
Here is Shokkjump Dragsta number two for my Ork army in Warhammer 40,000. I have acquired a third one of these kits so I’ll have a complete Force Organisation chart slot of them once I paint the last one.
I’ve kept the same general blue colouring for this Dragsta as I have for my other Ork buggies but in an attempt to make it stand out a bit from the first one I’ve put a few of the panels in red rather than white. I’ve also make some slight changes to the build; mainly cutting off one rocket and replacing it with the firing one that was spare from the Scrapjet kit and leaving the engine intake off the front so that the poor blood bag Gretchin from the Snazzwagon kit could fit on the bonnet. I’ve really enjoyed painting these buggies; they’re very quick and satisfying to put a brush to despite how large they are.
Next on the painting table: Assault Intercessors.