Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Mordian Iron Guard - Different Skin Tones

One of the many reasons I enjoy working on an Imperial Guard army is the chance to paint a variety of skin tones on my Mordians.  Although GW does mostly subscribes to the George Lucas "One World, One Climate" silliness, this still is no excuse not to introduce different colors of flesh into their Codex studio armies.

Mordian is a "night world," so fluff-wise would all the troopers be pale and severely white?  Like Dark City?  Then take those same troops into the desert.  Now is everyone beet red?  Who knows?  Either way I wasn't going to pass on the first opportunity to paint up some darker flesh tones and mix things up.  I'll leave the creepy skin tones to the Inquisitors and Cultists.

The pictures aren't the best, but on my first try I started with GW's Scorched Brown and blended in layers of Dark Flesh, Terracotta, and Tanned Flesh.  (Not even sure if all those paints are still available.)  I was satisfied the way they came out, but I was scared to go too light on the highlights.  I think next time I'll try starting with Dark Flesh and work up to Dwarf Flesh or even start with Terracotta to add even more variety to the skin tones.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Mordian Iron Guard - Character Development

Always on the look out to add a little character to my army's theme, I spotted these German Shepherd models from Dragon Models for my Modian Imperial Guard.  They are part of their 1:35 Can.Do Pocket Army collection.  They seemed a little small for 1:35, but look perfect with 28mm minis.

I plan to use them as Bodyguards in the Company Command Squad, especially if I have an extra 30 points.  This Commissar model is one of my favorites, but I don't plan to use a Commissar in my list most of the time.  So I've decided convert him up a bit and use him as one of my Commander models so he gets fielded more often.

The only questions I have for you, dear reader, is what to name the dogs, and should I give the Commander a mustache?  :-)

With the current GW model, I wasn't too keen on fielding a Primaris Psyker in my army.  However, I managed to obtain a second OOP Necromunda Telepath mini (The first one is a Necromancer/Vampire for my Warhammer Vampire Counts Army).

Another great looking model full of character that will look great on the battlefield and fit in nicely with the Mordians.  Now all I have to do is find something to replace the gigantic 1930s public address system on top of his staff.

Finally here's an older model I've had kicking around in the bits box for awhile:  the 1998 Gamesday Female Commissar miniature.  I'm not quite sure what I'm going to use her for yet.  Maybe a CCS staff member?  Maybe as an objective marker representing the Regimental Colonel's mistress or daughter?  Not sure.  Although I am sure she is going to lose those 80s style shoulder pads.  :-)

Still looking for the Postman to deliver my stuff from Forge World that I was hoping to work on and post some pictures of this weekend.  I just hope that they didn't route the package through Canada.  :-)

Gallipoli Battlefield Terrain Board

I found this video of an amazing terrain board diorama of the Gallipoli battlefield over at Dampf's Modeling Page who in turn came across this video from RHQ - TV somewhere else.  This was a table at Salute 2011 created by Dave Bodley from Grand Manner and sponsored by Wargames Illustrated.  Not trying to steal anyone's thunder here, but I thought I'd post it more for the local guys that normally wouldn't come across it otherwise.

Inspirational stuff like this always gets my wargaming hobby juices going. This would be an epic historical scenario to play out, but since I'm currently working on my 40k Imperial Guard, there's obviously a ton of ideas you can pull from this for many other games/projects as well.  Great stuff! :-)

Anyways, enjoy!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Flames of War - German Sampler

I did these guys a little while ago to see if I wanted to paint up 15mm figs again.  They turned out to be pretty fun and quick to paint up.  They are part of my 1943ish Eastern Front German Panzergrenadier platoon along with some Panzer IVs in the background.

Hopefully someday I'll go back a finish off the rest of the force, but they're not a big priority right now.  Not many people I know play Flames of War.  I guess that mean I have to go out and meet some.  :-)

Front Line Assembly - Nailing down the process

So having figured out a color scheme that worked for my Mordian figs, it was now time to nail down a painting process for knocking out all my IG vehicles in a complimentary scheme.  I wanted to figure out something between fresh from the factory and battle damaged and dirty.  I needed my tanks to look taken care of and a little ornate, but still weathered and dusty from the field.

The first step was to come up with a process that would keep my vehicles looking similar even though I might paint them at different times, was relatively quick, and still had a quality finish.  I discovered a system using Minwax by SandWyrm on The Back 40K.  Not only was it a desert scheme as well, but The Army Painter came out with a Desert Yellow primer spray that matched my infantry uniforms very well.  So I can prime all my vehicles Desert Yellow, apply the Minwax, and after it dries in 12+ hours, drybrush in the dust and the highlights to the rest of the vehicle.

I drybrushed the middle color (Vallejo German Cam. Medium Brown) I use for my infantry bases around the tracks and the rest I did with GW's Desert Yellow mixing in Bleached Bone towards the top.  I touched up some of the rust/weather around the rivets, etc. and sponged on some Citadel Foundation Charadon Granite were to simulate where the paint had worn down to the original primer, taking it a little farther in a few places with a touch of Boltgun Metal.

Still have to work on getting the decals/transfer done better.  I think I applied them a little too late in the drybrushing process and didn't get them to blend in as I had hoped.  The other thing is I'll definitely leave off the tracks next time, prime them separately, then glue them on and paint them last.

I also finally got a hold of some Highland Tuft from The Army Painter, so I included my first 5 Mordians with their completed bases in the pics too.

The Chimera was a lot of fun to paint up and pretty easy too.  I was scared to do too much weathering, but now I've got a pretty good feel how the next ones will go.

I'm coming close to finishing up the rest of the squad, and tried my hand at doing some darker flesh tones for the first time with a few of the guys.  I might go back and add a pennant/banner off the aerial before it's done.  Let me know what you think so far.

The best laid plans...

 "No battle plan survives contact with the enemy." - Generalfeldmarschall Helmuth von Moltke

Even though I started playing 40k in 1991, I've been out of the loop for awhile.  After doing some reading, some time on forums like Librarium Online, quality blogs like The Back 40K, considering my own Mordian miniature collection, and including a few modeling/aesthetic choices I think I've come up with a pretty well rounded, take on all comers, mobile Imperial Guard army list.

The army will top out at around 2000 points and the core will be the ever flexible Veteran Infantry Squads that I think is a pretty good fit for the Mordian fluff as well.  The list below comes out to 1997 points, and I'm sure will get a few tweaks along the way, but it's pretty easy to resize to 1850 or 1500.  The list serves me as more of a modeling/painting project list for my Mordian Imperial Guard force for now.

212  Company Command Squad w/ Bolt Pistol, Regimental Standard, 3 x Meltas, Officer of the Fleet, 2 x Bodyguards, Chimera  (The bodyguards will be the commander's 2 German Shepherds)
70  Primaris Psyker

140  Veteran Squad w/ 3 x Grenade Launchers, Chimera
155 Veteran Squad w/ 3 x Meltas, Chimera
155 Veteran Squad w/ 3 x Meltas, Chimera
145 Veteran Squad w/ 3 x Flamers, Grenadiers, Demolitions
145 Veteran Squad w/ 3 x Flamers, Grenadiers, Demolitions

Fast Attack
120  3 x Scout Sentinels w/ Autocannons (I like the models OK :) )
130 Hellhound
260 2 x Vendetta Gunships

Heavy Support
165  Leman Russ Demolisher w/hull Flamer
150  Leman Russ Battle Tank w/hull Flamer
150  Leman Russ Battle Tank w/hull Flamer

I hate the sit on your butt IG gun line of the past.  Part of the reason I didn't play 40k too much after 3rd Edition came out.  This list will provide me with a solid, mobile, and aggressive force that should be able to take on most armies and have fun too.

One variation to this list would be to leave the Sentinels at home (I love those models) and bring another Vet Squad instead.  In friendly games I'm going to try to learn to play with the Sentinels first even though they aren't the best choice.  The other variation would be to include an Infantry Platoon (blob) that includes 3 squads with Grenade Launchers and Autocannons, a Commissar, and 4 x Meltas and Chimera with the Platoon Command Squad; and take out some of the Vet Squads.

That's the plan anyways.  It will interesting to see how things evolve.

The Perfect Mortar

Now I don't plan to use mortars for my Imperial Guard too often, but one of my main local opponents has Orks so they might come in handy from time to time.  With their gigantic shells, I'm not a big fan of the Mordian mortar models, so I've kept the idea of an alternate model on the back burner.

Now with the Mordian minis really being 1970s Prussians in my eyes, I've been looking for something more akin to a Krupp Gun/Howitzer from the period or at least something that gives the same feel.  My buddy came across a Polish company called Kromlech, and this what I found:

With a little help, I think 3 of these models will be perfect for my army and raining some pain on a few Orks.  Might even consider their Feldkanone for missile launcher replacements.  The model hasn't been released yet, but I have plenty to work on in the meantime.

More great stuff on their site.  Especially if you want to a Blood Axe Ork army.  :-)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!!

A little shout out to all you Dads out there.  Especially thinking of all the fathers, sons, and daughters that are separated today because of military service.  Thank you and God bless!

A little quality time like this, and maybe no one had to loose a hand...

The Mordian Iron Guard - First recruits

Decided to get back into 40k after a long hiatus.  I guess I sort of lost interest around 3rd Edition, and coupled with the fact that most of my gaming friends tend to play Warhammer Fantasy, I had a bunch of old school Mordians and Steel Legion figs kicking around with me since the '90s.
I'm pretty excited to get going with 5th Ed., but before any of that was going to happen I had to come up with a color scheme that would save my OOP minis from getting sacrificed on eBay.  The Steel Legion didn't make the cut, and now they're gone, but I'm pretty pleased how my initial 5 Mordians turned out.

Although I've always dug the miniatures for the Mordians, most color schemes I've seen made them look kind of goofy.  Bright colors are OK, but you have to make them work for you too.  I decided to go for a more natural desert scheme and kept red as an accent color.

There's an old Citadel Journal interview with the Perry Brothers were they explain the Mordians are inspired by 1870s Prussians.   Certainly a favorite historical period of mine, so I plan to follow suit with some of my ideas and conversions.  Also sprinkled in will be a little Afrika Korps, Atreides soldiers on Dune, and typical Imperium stuff.  At the same time I want to avoid being another "Germans in Space!" 40k army.  (I think I'm too late though.)  :-)

Next up, other than completing that first squad, will be my first IG vehicle.  I'll paint up a Chimera and hopefully nail down a process to paint the rest of my IG vehicles.  Tanks, etc. are something I have not done in a long time, so I'm pretty excited and nervous about knocking one out with all the weathering effects and everything.

A beginning...

Well, I've wanted to do the "blog" thing for awhile now.  Not necessarily just to wax on about rules, tactics, and other thoughts on wargaming, but more so to share my painting and hobby projects with those who care to look.  This, I hope, will in turn inspire and motivate me (and maybe others) as I work on my miniature and terrain projects.

My wargaming hobby spans everything from military history to science fiction and fantasy.  Games, miniatures, terrain, books, movies, and music.  Anything that somehow relates to my wargaming experience has a chance of popping up on here.

This Summer the locals are hot and heavy into Warhammer 40k, so my Imperial Guard army will be first up on the blog.  Although I do hope to sprinkle in some other projects, both past and present, and hopefully find my way back to my historical gaming roots someday as well.  Expect some Warhammer Fantasy, Warmaster, War of the Ring, Flames of War, and maybe even some Napoleonic and Seven Years War projects to show up on here.

So welcome to "Der Feldmarschall", enjoy your stay, and be sure to come back to visit again.