Monday, December 2, 2013

4 years of grimdark - HQ showcase!

It's been quite a while since I started 40k, and I just felt like looking back to my earlier forays into the grimdark. I always knew that I wouldn't have the discipline to paint every miniature in my armies to the very best of my abilities, but that said, I would most certainly lavish a bit more love on the HQ units. This post is a collection of the minis which have led my armies to glory or defeat since I got into the hobby.

The first HQ unit I painted was this Blood Angel Captain. I bought and assembled him based more on how cool he looks as a model rather than how much pain he can dish out on the battlefield. I really hadn't played that many games at the time, mind you. The thing was, by the time I'd gotten the rest of the army to a reasonable standard, I realized how bloody useless he was compared to the Reclusiarch and Librarian, so this is one mini which has never been fielded in combat...

I got the Lemartes model and decided against ever using him as Lemartes, simply because Death Company with jump packs is ludicrously expensive. With all the Blood Angel iconography on him, though, he made an ideal Reclusiarch, and as such has led my Death Company into absurdly violent and destructive charges.

While a Reclusiarch or Chaplain truly shines when he leads the Death Company, Librarians have far greater utility, especially now in 6th edition, with access to the Divination psychic powers. Even back in 5th, the Unleash Rage power worked just as well as Prescience (at least in close combat) and my Librarians often found themselves leading Assault Terminators into battle. Now he finds himself going to war alongside my Sternguard, lending his plasma pistol to their devastating salvos.

Here's another Librarian I painted up, for the sake of WYSIWYG when I don't have the points to have him toting a plasma pistol. That staff took bloody ages...

I made a half-hearted foray into Grey Knights, once upon a time. The things that stopped me from getting into them more seriously were the Dreadknight (one of the most stupid-looking models I've ever seen, in my opinion) and the simple fact that after painting up a few Grey Knight Terminators, I couldn't really be bothered to make it happen. This guy's my take on the Brotherhood Champion. I figured one long Nemesis Force Sword didn't quite feel like it could pull off such cool abilities as Blade Shield and Sword Storm, so I snipped up some falchions and came up with this guy. I'm pretty pleased with the result, and every so often I still toy with the idea of a Grey Knight allied contingent.

A throwback from 5th edition, my Librarian with a jump pack led my Descent of Angels army. In 5th, there was much to be said for null deployment, coupled with the Blood Angels jump infantry's unparalleled reliability in Deep Striking. These days, not so much, and 6th is really not kind at all to squads of jump infantry having to get across the board the old-fashioned way, even with their jump packs. Maybe I'll cobble something together again sometime and give it a whirl...

Ah, the Crimson King... Master of the most consistent of my armies. Since I got my hands on a pair of Necron fliers, the Crimson King has rarely known defeat. Mind you, it took a few defeats in the early days of the Necron codex before I learnt how to properly wield the 20 Warriors who walk with him, the Crimson Guard. I love his pose. Body upright, strong and proud, in contrast to his hunched Warriors. One arm bearing his custom-built Warscythe, commanding his legions onward, the other clutching his precious Resurrection Orb close to him, and his head very slightly tilted back in utter contempt for his foes.

My nameless and cursed Chaos Lord onna Bike. To be sure, he has performed spectacular feats of martial prowess, killing monstrous creatures, battlesuits, Terminators, Obliterators and Leman Russes with the reckless abandon that Khornate champions are wont to display. The thing is, he has never, EVER ascended to Daemonhood. Turned into a Spawn twice and got gunned down shortly after, though. His quest continues...

Belial, Master of the Deathwing, leader of what is by far the most stressful of all my armies. Deathwing is what I field when I want to travel light and have a radically different experience of 40k. I don't know about the rest of you, but in 6th edition, this army strikes me as playing in Hard mode. The simple reason is 6th edition is the edition of the gun. As they say, everything counts in large amounts, and in this edition, I feel we're seeing more models on the board, more guns and certainly more anti-infantry firepower. Not good news for Terminators and man, it stings when every little casualty counts.

"Glory for the first man to die!" In an age of gene-enhanced super-soldiers, fearsome aliens and traitors in league with unspeakable horrors, there's a special kind of charm to the humble human in all his frailty. I decided I needed a right hardass to lead the army of Men to glory, and nothing was quite as fitting in my eyes as a Lord Commissar. I'd been reading a bit too much of Gaunt's Ghosts, I think. Given my general loathing of metal and resin, I used the little officer dude that came with the Baneblade kit, seeing as he had a nice big commissar-esque hat. No, I don't have a Baneblade (yet), I just picked this guy up separately off eBay.

So, that's it from me for now. Next up, a closer look at my lovely Imperial Guard army, the Red Thunder!

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