Tuesday, November 25

Despair on Ordroth

The heavy clanging continued, slow and methodical.  The deliberate sound of their approaching doom. 

Each of the handful of surviving guardsman had rallied around their Lieutenant, a junior officer who had managed to survive the initial assault, thereby assuming command of the entire substation they were charged with safekeeping.  They were huddled in the command bunker, surrounded by flickering consoles and failing communications equipment, safe behind a heavy blast door.  Hundreds of bodies of the Ordroth 144th Regiment of Foot lay strewn across the narrow corridors outside, piled on top of even more bodies - many of which were traitor guardsmen themselves, their own regimental markings long since removed.

Renegade forces batter the staunch defenders with captured artillery.
 It was said that many regiments had joined the cause of the enemy, Urläg Blackfang, in the hopes of attaining a position of favor with their new overlords.  For days the shells of formerly loyal artillery batteries rained down upon the heavily fortified complex, crushing the resolve of the defenders within.  Suicide squads would charge into the claustrophobic and cramped passages of the bunker network, brandishing twisted metal blades and using depleted lasguns as crude clubs.  The wild look in their eyes could just as easily be that of blind devotion to their new gods, or a flicker of recognition of the monsters that they had become;  it mattered little to the loyal defenders who cut them down with disciplined fire. 

The metal-on-metal thudding was at its loudest now, heavy footfalls drawing nearer.  Terror permeated the command chamber, the nervous guardsmen looking up to their fledgling officer, who now appeared cool and collected.  There was no sign of emotion on his face - he had realized his dire situation, and was rising to the occasion.  This is truly a man they could die beside, they thought.  He was cleaning his ornamental bolt pistol, exchanging the magazine in a slow and purposeful manner.  A grim resolve swept over the handful of guardsmen, as they too rose, taking up a position in front of their officer.  If they would die, it would be on their feet! 

The regimental colors were unfurled, the line of soldiers were prepared behind crates of ammunition in a makeshift defensive wall.  The clanging stopped, the enemy was outside the blast door.


The Guardsmen looked behind their feeble line to see their headless officer slumped against a crate, the bolt pistol still smoking.  The regimental banner was splattered with gore as guardsmen snapped their attention back to the door as a terrible metal-on-metal tearing sound screamed through the room.  Sparks and smoke gave way to reveal a chainfist tearing its way through the bulkhead with remarkable ease, as powered fists tore back the shards of the once-mighty door.

The enemy arrives.

Over eight feet tall, filling the entire passageway, stood a traitor marine armored in ancient terminator armor the color of blood.  The combination of awe and terror the remaining guardsmen felt was short-lived as it was replaced by the horrific sensation of burning as jets of highly volatile prometheum was ignited from the terminator's heavy flamer.  The screaming, flailing guardsmen quickly perished, as the handful of terminator-clad figures began their assault deeper inside the complex, the potentially heroic last stand of the Astra Militarum nothing more than a minor annoyance to these superhuman warriors.

A lone survivor huddled in the far corner of the command bunker was in tears, rocking back and forth.  The clanging footfalls grew more distant, until all that could be heard was the dull thud of overhead artillery falling on the fortifications.

Friday, November 21

Urläg Blackfang, Warlord of the Blackfang Warhost

I finally finished painting Urläg Blackfang, Chosen of Khorne, Herald of Terror, and commander of the Blackfang Warhost.  It took some time to settle on a model that was impressive enough to stand in for this hero I have dreamed up.  His vast army of followers comprises the traitor marines that followed him during the Heresy, as well as thousands of renegade guardsmen, who have been madly devoted to the promises of dark power.  Entire tank companies, whole infantry battalions, and enough warships to be considered a small navy have been drawn to the crusade from previously loyal Astra Militarum forces.  This renegade force is formidable enough, but with the added might of traitor Astartes, they are a grave threat to any who stand in their path.  Their Black Crusade is bent to the whims of the gods they serve, and will stop at nothing until complete glory is attained.  These are some bad dudes.

Urläg is a former Space Wolf Legion sergeant who succumbed to the hubris of his own superhuman quality. He, with his elite cadre of terminator-armor clad warriors, fully embraced the allure of Khorne's need for bloodshed.  After Prospero, Urläg's trusted ally, Hrodîr, a venerable Rune Priest who was himself was feeling the taint of chaos, had convinced Urläg to embrace his own destiny as something greater than what the pitiful Space Wolves had envisioned.

Some of the skulls and minor details have to be completed, but this is essentially done!
With the completion of this model, I have Urläg and his bodyguard of Huscarls finished, painted, and ready to carve their way into enemy defenses.  Next up, I'll need to paint another squad of marines (maybe my berserkers), which are far less entertaining than terminators. 

Thursday, November 20

Artillery Battery Reporting!

My chaos space marines are nearly all built, with their vehicles, daemons, and other goodies - this leaves me with a large bulk of modeling left to be done for my renegade guardsmen.

This far I've only built 35 infantry models (one full platoon of three squads with command section), three mortar teams, and two lascannon teams.  It's time to bring in the big guns!

A pair of Wyvern / Hydra self-propelled artillery will compliment my army's theme as city-fighting heavy combat engineers, employing their man-portable mortars as well as the impressive Wyverns to rain shells on entrenched enemies.

So looking at the kit, I was impressed.  The new kits that have been produced are top notch, in my opinion.  Great sprue layouts, intelligent mould lines (conveniently on hidden faces of components), and many movable parts!

Step 1 was to figure out if there was an opportunity for an LED - the only viable source on the model is the large spotlight on the front of the shield.  Instead of a headlight, I opted for a single red "targeting computer" which will tie the red color of my Marine army into these renegades (the renegade scheme will likely be a dusty brown), and add some nice atmospheric lighting during games.

The method for lighting a vehicle can be found in a recent blog post, the same principle applies here, though it was admittedly a little trickier having to route wires through the pivot point of the main weapon on this one. 

The OCD in me loves that lal my 5mm LEDs fit perfectly into most GW model kits.

Above, you can see the very slow-but-steady approach to lighting a model with LEDs.  Checking and re-checking to make sure everything jives is paramount, and as I was doing it on a lunch break with a handful of students watching (and asking questions!) it paid to go slowly.

It's aliiiiiiive!

Battery fits!  I ran out of coin batteries, so shoved a full 9v into the crew compartment.  A nearly perfect for, just opened a gap to give it some breathing room for easier access to replace a dead battery.

Computer tracking online!

All done!  Just needs a little bit of chaos love - some chains, carvings, skulls or spikes?  Then it's off to build the second one, then paint the beasts, finally resulting in anti-loyalist firepower for Kyle to deal with!

Now where did I out that can of brown spray paint..?