These are Black Ogrun Iron Mongers for my Warmachine Cryx force. They’re basically very tough mechanics within the Scourge of the Broken Coast theme force but as a small unit they would certainly have a place scoring circular zones in the late game too. I have to admit that I’ve never played them or even really thought much about doing so; I got this unit as part of a second hand lot and painted them up as I have plenty of time on my hands in the evenings during this pandemic.
I really enjoyed painting the Iron Mongers; they’re a very characterful unit and I quite like the modest poses to go with their relatively unassuming role in the game. The boys have fish hanging from their belts and that’s the kind of little detail that can bring a miniature to life for me. The leader is my favourite though; I love the nonchalant way that she’s chewing on that cigar. She in particular would make a good Shadowrun character. The gas-masked Iron Monger is using a spare head from Hutchuk; the original head rolled out of sight during assembly and I swapped Hutchuk’s in before I eventually found the proper one. Somehow I find it fitting in Warmachine that a welder would go bare-chested but don a full gas-mask.
Next on the painting table: Baron Zemo.
These are Blighted Trollkin Marauders, the last such unit (at least for now) to go in my Scourge of the Broken Coast armies for Cryx in Warmachine. They’re effectively a ranged version of the Bloodgorgers; on the one hand the Marauders can’t eat their way through units at a time but on the other hand they don’t have to get into knifing range to get work done. Before COVID-19 stopped me getting out for gaming I was planning a list with both of the Blighted Trollkin units (and Jussika Bloodtongue and General Slaughterborn, of course) but that will just have to wait a bit longer.
The miniatures for the Marauders are very detailed and I really like the sculpts. My main criticism is the number of repeated sculpts; there are only 4 bodies between the whole unit so there is a lot of repetition here even allowing for a limited amount of arm-swapping. I’ve tried to mitigate this a bit by mixing up the combinations of armour and skin colouring while painting so there are no exact duplicates. I got a bit bogged down in the middle of painting the unit; I think part of the issue was trying to get through ten fairly buy miniatures at once, and part of it was knowing that however far I got with the Marauders themselves, I still had the flames to get on with at the end. However once I made a little progress each time with the unit, I found that I got a little more momentum back with each painting session no matter how brief. The flames don’t work brilliantly at this kind of close-up but at tabletop range they do just fine for me.
This one is the leader and has a suitably impressive (and unique) pose. Interestingly he adds further data to the ‘what are those weird growths on the Trollkin’ question by apparently having horns made of them, one of which is apparently tough enough to require an additional cap of metal.
One of the heads for the Marauder grunts, plus the leader’s, has an eye-patch. So the unit has only 16 eyes between them. This strikes me as slightly more than bad luck, particularly as they’re fully equipped with all other appendages and organs. Perhaps this is a reference to the running joke about the prevalence of goggles in the Warmachine setting?
Although I really like the activity in these sculpts, I suspect that they’ll be a bit awkward to work with on the tabletop as those braziers are going to get in the way if they’re ever in close to anything.
The various head options are all rather more caricatured even compared to ‘normal’ Trollkin. I’m not sure if these over-developed chins and brows are a new design direction or if it is intended to reference their Blighted status.
Next on the painting table: Ghordson Driller.
This is Jussika Bloodtongue, another Blighted Trollkin for my Cryx army in Warmachine. She is a command attachment for a Blight Trollkin unit, which currently means either Bloodgorgers or Marauders (about whom more later); this makes her quite unusual as most command attachments are linked to one specific unit type. I actually like that she has a clear use with either unit, giving them the Vengeance ability which allows them a free move and attack if one of them died the previous turn; indeed I don’t know which would be the better option. My main trouble is playing Bloodtongue far enough forward that she’s relevant but not so far forward that she just gets shot immediately without achieving anything.
I picked yellow for Bloodtongue’s clothing as it makes her stand out nicely and doesn’t overlap with any of the other Blighted Trollkin I’ve painted so it’s clear that she isn’t just a regular unit member. She painted up very nicely; everything just felt clean and easy and I don’t think I’ve had such a quick job getting a miniature from undercoated to finished in a long time.
Next on the painting table: Targ.
This is Iron Lich Asphyxious, a Warcaster for my Warmachine Cryx army; also known as Asphyxious1 to differentiate him from later incarnations. He’s a classic moustache-twirling villain, or at least he would be if he had a moustache. I haven’t had much of a chance to play with the Iron Lich but so far have enjoyed using him with units of Satyxis. This is for the very simple reason that Satyxis can land hits fairly reliably but that these hits are like wet spaghetti. Asphyxious has a host of spells that reduce the armour of his targets so they’re a match made in heaven hell. Time will tell if this turns out to be an effective combination.
Asphyxious is a very simple, understated sculpt and it made him very simple and enjoyable to paint. I only used three colours for almost the whole miniature and I like the elegance of the result. The miniature is generic enough that it could actually be used in a variety of other games; certainly there are plenty of times when a metal Lich would be a fitting end boss for a RPG campaign.
Next on the painting table: Chaos Knight Despoiler
These are Bloodgorgers, a unit of Blighted Trollkin which form part of my gradually-expanding Cryx army for Warmachine. Needless to say, they’re a high-output melee unit with little to recommend them in terms of defence. The main draw of Bloodgorgers is that they get Berserk when General Slaughterborn is on the table which allows them to threaten entire units of light infantry each, at least assuming that their would-be victims aren’t spread out too much. In practice, I never seem to actually get this to work but the additional pressure on the other player not to give me that opportunity is probably worth it in terms of giving them an opportunity to make mistakes.
Painting the Bloodgorgers was a lot of fun. They’re pretty aged sculpts and, while that does show a little in the rather linear poses, it also made them very easy to paint. As with General Slaughterborn I tried to make the skin tones tie in with other Trollkin I’ve painted in the past. Since there are only five different sculpts I was careful to mix up the combinations of skin and armour colouring so that each Bloodgorger is a unique individual. Upon painting them, I noticed that the robes have a sort of face sculpted into it. Being baddies, it’s possible that the stories have them doing something like wearing the skin of their victims or something equally grim; anyway I preferred a nice clean green so maybe if that is the case then they clearly only visit Warhammer Orks for their leather needs.
This one is the leader; he’s a bit larger than the others and has a unique sculpt. I also quite like how his armour is made to go round all the spiky bits on his back.
With two weapons, Bloodgorgers are slightly less prone to missing all their attacks and therefore failing to set up Berserk chains through the other army than other units I’ve tried in the past. It still happens all the time though.
Needless to say, with a name like ‘Bloodgorgers’ these are definitely the baddies of the story. It always makes me think of this perfect sketch.
I’m fairly sure that bronze weapons are strictly worse than iron ones. On the other hand, mixing up the colours looks nicer on the tabletop. Plus, magic exists in the setting so I can always pretend that the bronze weapons are actually made of unobtainium or whatever. To be honest, I don’t generally stress about the silly stuff in these games; the stories always break down if you look into them too deeply.
Next on the painting table: Iron Lich Asphyxious
This is Severa Blacktide, the second named Satyxis solo for my Warmachine Cryx army. Severa is much more tightly focused in her role than Axiara Wraithblade in that she’s all about shooting. Not only is she a pretty handy shot with those pistols, but she also grants Run and Gun to Satyxis Gunslingers (and has it herself) allowing them to live much longer by shooting things and then moving to safety. In theory Severa has a cool ability where if she hits the same target with both guns she gets to push nearby models into it and then have a magical explosion occur, but in practice I found that the needed combination of targets and priorities just never seemed to come up.
Just like Axiara, I really loved painting Severa Blacktide. The paint just seemed to go on very nicely and there was no part where I was trying get my brush in at some tricky angle. Whoever sculpted these really gets my appreciation.
Next on the painting table: War Hog
Here is Axiara Wraithblade, a named Satyxis character go in my Cryx army. I’ve found her to be a very versatile addition when I play the Scourge of the Broken Coast theme force, though admittedly that is the only one I’ve played at all (it might be the only one she can actually be in too). Not only is Axiara at least competent both in melee and at range, she can use her Battle Plans to help out a unit a turn. The main one I’ve tried has been giving Special Orders to a unit of Satyxis Raiders so that they can take out a front line then jam deeper with the reposition. I’m also quite a fan of using either Sneak on Blighted Trollkin Marauders to improve their native Concealment to Stealth. It is probably also worth mentioning that Axiara grants Tactician in her command range which stops me from constantly getting in my own way.
The miniature was a joy to paint, being very clean-lined and without awkward nooks and crannies to try to get my brush into. Axiara (and Severa Blacktide who is up next) are relatively recent sculpts compared to the Raider Captain and it shows. I could paint models like this one all day.
Next on the painting table: Severa Blacktide
This Satyxis Raider Captain is a part of my gradually increasing Cryx army to play Warmachine. She’s a fast solo that I’ve generally used in a second wave of fighting, at least in the unlikely event that she survives a turn of capturing a flag. Both of her attacks cause knock-down on hit which is obviously very handy, though I don’t find that the Scourge of the Broken Coast theme force (of which she is part) really needs a lot of help in hitting. She’s also a handy carrier for aura armour de-buff spells, notably Asphyxious1’s Scything Touch, as she can receive the spell then use her extreme mobility to apply it in the most helpful spot.
I ended up painting the Satyxis Raider Captain in a sort of small unit with the two named Satyxis characters (more on them later) and tried to keep the colour combinations different. The sculpt is showing its age a bit, and of course we can see the classic chainmail bikini and combat heels look so beloved of fantasy miniatures. Even with that criticism I found the Raider Captain to be quite a fun miniature to paint, and I might at some point get around to painting the second one that I got in a random eBay lot a while ago.
Next on the painting table: Axiara Wraithblade
Here is General Gerlak Slaughterborn for my Warmachine Cryx army. He’s a melee focussed fighter with an amusing ability to move and keep making attacks as long as he can keep making kills. In principle this should allow him to smash his way though entire units; however my limited experience of using him is that the sort of infantry he wants to be chopping up are the sort that no-one is playing anyway. Luckily, the General makes all other Blighted Trollkin on the table just a bit better simply by standing there, and the prospect of having him eat a whole unit of incautiously-spaced infantry can either waste the other player’s clock a little or otherwise encourage them to make positional mistakes.
Painting Gerlak was an absolute pleasure. He’s an old miniature, as can be told by his rather two-dimensional pose, but his sculpting is still clean and there are lots of really nice textures on him. Even though he’s part of a different army and is Blighted (i.e. has suffered from the sort of radiation found in comic books which bestow super-powers), I tried to keep his skin and hair/weird rocky bits similar to the normal Trollbloods I’ve painted. Getting some pink colour in was a bit of a challenge as it didn’t really fit nicely anywhere, but eventually I got it to work out.
Next on the painting table: Satyxis Raider Captain.
This mighty Helljack is Kharybdis, part of my Cryx force for Warmachine. It’s a premium heave Warjack mainly focussed on melee with its tentacles, though it can attack at range with an amusing ink spray. The tentacles helpfully avoid a few defensive abilities, notably shields, to get Kharybdis a bit more traction against certain opponents; however I’m nowhere near good enough at the game to consciously point her at her favoured prey so usually this is just a fortuitous bonus for me.
Kharybdis’ miniature is very nice; both characterful and distinct from other Cryx Warjacks. However, for some reason I found her to be really grindy to paint and was very glad when I was able to finish her to a standard that I consider acceptable. I tried the slightly different approach of painting all of the surface apart from the large flat carapace sections first, and possibly this effectively saved up all the boring parts of the paint job until the end. Anyway, now that she’s finished I’m quite happy. The ‘oh my God, tentacles’ sculpt of Kharybdis didn’t do my photography any favours and I really struggled to get a single good photo from the front as the focus just never looked correct.
I dedicate this post to Ann‘s March Might & Magic Painting Challenge. What could be more mighty than a giant death-robot flailing it’s terrifying metal tentacles around? If you’re not familiar with Ann’s excellent blog then I recommend you take a look.
Here is Kharybdis with her bonded Warcaster, Aiakos. It is not a requirement in game to have them together but Kharybdis does get a slight benefit from being in Aiakos’s battlegroup.
Next on the painting table: General Gerlak Slaughterborn.