“Hierophant Abraxxazz” – More Nightmare Fuel by Artel W

Sister Pestilencia has some serious competition, for the coveted honor of being my favorite third-party model. For a Malignant Plaguecaster proxy, Hierophant Abraxxazz sports a tremendous amount of bulk and presence, in some contrast to the small-but-mighty Sister Pestilencia. While I went with the Plaguecaster build, I have to say that Artel W includes a ton of alternate bits with this kit, and makes it worth it if for nothing but the spares. Those bits are going to be really handy down the road putting together other monstrosities. But we’re not here to talk about other monstrosities, let’s talk about Hierophant Abraxxazz.

Pictured: The two Artel W proxies I’m running in my Death Guard, looking on point.

The overall bulk of the model is on par with Lords of Contagion or similar “Terminator” armor models, and you can see that in addition to his trusty staff he’s carrying a pistol in one hand, and what looks to be a tiny flamer or plague spewer of some sort over the shoulder, with a drill and lots of other sharp pointy bits scattered all over the model. The mix of armour, bone, misc. mechanical and cloth that makes up this model is fantastic, and this thing is absolutely covered in detail. This, paired with all the alternate configurations mean that whether you run Death Guard or classic Chaos, you’re gonna have a good time building this one.

Pictured: Another life ruined by the Great Varnish Disaster of Christmas 2021, RIP.

Unfortunately, Abraxxazz is yet another model scarred by the Great Varnish Disaster of Christmas 2021, but even with some of the issues that caused in some of the more detailed bits I’m overall very happy with how this turned out. Since I’m not a big fan of the regular Malignant Plaguecaster sculpt, this is something I can put down in my Crusade games to make my psyker support look and feel a whole lot more imposing, and I couldn’t be more excited.

Malignant Plaguecaster

And with this, ladies and gentlemen, I’ve painted all the Death Guard characters out of the 2017 starter sets! Not that I’m keeping track or anything. Out of the three, admittedly, the Malignant Plaguecaster was my least favorite sculpt but I think out of the three they’re probably the one that turned out the best, and that I got to have the most fun with. Models with lots of flame, smoke, or cloth bits are fun like that, and a nice break from doing the armor colors over and over.

Pictured: Just a couple Death Guard characters, being characters.

As much as I like how this model turned out, the Great Varnish Disaster of Christmas 2020 still muted out a little more detail than I’m happy with, especially in areas like the staff. That being said, I still think this is an improvement from earlier work in Nurgle’s service, and makes me look forward to how much better my next batch of anything Death Guard-related is going to turn out. And in terms of Crusade games, this is finally going to provide my Death Guard some much-needed psychic support and shenanigans.

“Sister Pestilencia” – My New Favorite Proxy

If I had doubts or misgivings about the way that my Lord of Contagion turned out, oh boy, is this model ever the opposite – but that might be just because of what a fantastic sculpt Artel W put together for this third-party model. KinpatsuSamurai picked me up one for Christmas and I was thrilled; from the moment I saw the concept art on the company’s Facebook I knew this was going to be one that I’d have to add to my Death Guard. (And it’s totally not like I’m also putting together a Sisters of Battle army with an emphasis on third-party miniatures. Definitely not that, too.)

Pictured: Lord Felthius and his soon-to-be replacement in one if not both of my Crusade games. No hard feelings here, it’s all in the service of Nurgle.

Sister Pestilencia did not disappoint in the least. The main sculpt is great and the model comes with some fantastic alternate head sculpts and an alternate weapon (which I worked into the Plague Marines I’ll be posting here down the road). The detail is great, the sculpt is clean, and the only drawback if there’s one to be found at all is that the model’s a little bit short for a Lord of Contagion, and the Nurgling is a little out of scale with other Nurgling models, but that’s not a dealbreaker for me. Both Sister Pestilencia and her Nurgling can be small but mighty.

Pictured: The world’s tiniest Nurgling. Truly, Artel W knows what we’re about here in the Plague God’s service.

Out of the color changes I made from my first Death Guard batch, changing from brownish cloth colors to a bright, bold red was absolutely the right choice, and it fits this model in particular brilliantly. While I’m still iffy on my other Lord of Contagion, this model will absolutely be on the tabletop as a new HQ proxy and fluff character, either in my running Crusade games with friends at my FLGS or in floorhammer games with my roommate – varnishing issues notwithstanding.

Merry Christmas from the Death Guard!

What could be more 2020 than finding Plague Marines of all things under the Christmas tree? When I started this batch I was going for an old Horus Heresy look but the longer I kept at it the more I felt like they were taking on a festive life of their own. I’m happy with how this batch turned out, though (in typical fashion) I tripped over the finish line and applied the varnish way too thick on the last couple steps and had to go back and fix a few resulting defects.

Pictured: You get an HQ, and you get an HQ, and look under your chair – it’s another HQ!

I wanted to post this to give a taste of what’s coming in 2021 for individual galleries – Death Guard, Death Guard, and lots of Death Guard, with battle reports and comparisons as well between what I’ve painted before and what I accomplished with this batch. All things considered I’m very happy with how they turned out and I’m very much looking forward to seeing how they do on the tabletop – and I’m very happy with my new Artel W proxy units, including a Sister Pestilencia model from kinpatsusamurai!

Pictured: Sister Pestilencia, who is…definitely the only Battle Sister I’ll own in the new year. Yup. Nothing to see here…

2020 has been…it’s been a year, alright. And while I think I weathered it okay, it leaves me in a pretty iffy space heading into the next year. My funding runs out at the end of this month, my Master’s is still incomplete, and I don’t have a stable job at the moment, but…all the same thankful for the friends, family, and all the other good things in my life. Here’s hoping that 2021 is a more gracious year than the one now past!

Eldrad Ulthran

Although many Aeldari seers sensed the nascent presence of Ynnead in the infinity circuits, it was Eldrad who put into motion a daring ploy to awaken the slumbering God of the Dead.

With playing Ulthwe since I got back into 40k and painting, having a psyker HQ in my line-up has been the bread-and-butter of my lists, and this is especially the case with Eldrad Ulthran later in 8th edition and early so far in 9th. With the new Crusade campaign I’m in I wanted to have a nice, shiny new Farseer for the tabletop and so I took a crack at painting the former High Farseer again.

Pictured, a Farseer painted a year ago, left, and the recently-finished Eldrad for comparison.

I’m thrilled with how the model came together – I used a combination of some of my own methods for the gems and cloth and some of the recommended colors and placement from one of the old Warhammer TV tutorials (praise be unto Duncan and his two thin coats). This is another model where I feel like the improvement I’ve made in the last couple years really shows, and makes me glad that I took another shot at this.

Crusade Upgrades!

Pictured: My “Crusade” Howling Banshees with updated runes, bases and power swords.

Recently with my ninth edition handbook I picked up one of the Crusade journal; a narrative-style campaign in 40K has been on my to-do list for a long time, and since I’m lucky enough to have a few friends locally interested in the same thing I’m giving it a whirl. I hope to post and chat about different games that I’ve played and show a few battle reports on the site, but before getting too carried away I also decided that some of my existing models needed a little more love before hitting the tabletop.

Pictured, my old Farseer model vs. Eldrad Ulthran, playing the part of my Crusade Farseer.

Not that I always play favorites, but if I did they’d be Jain Zar, my Banshees, my Wave Serpent, and my psykers, so those are some of the models I either redid from scratch or refitted. Guy from Midwinter Minis has an awesome tutorial (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4gNfrCS263s) for using nail flakes and I tried to apply this to all of my power swords, which gave them a really nice new glimmering effect under natural light.

Pictured, my Wave Serpent post-upgrades with a higher base. Vanes make a big difference!

All in all I think I’m ready for this campaign now and ready for my Eldar to make a splash on the tabletop. Eldrad’s going to be getting a gallery of his own in the next while, too, and I have some other galleries (and battle reports) planned over the next while too. Still going to be slow going till the thesis is done but I’m pretty excited with where painting and playing are going from here!

Before, After, and Next Steps

Pictured, Guardian from 2018 vs. Storm Guardian from 2020.

Felt like I needed a win today, so I’m posting something fun. When I started painting Warhammer again back in 2018 I started with a handful of Guardians, Howling Banshees, and psykers, and after a couple of years I thought it would be neat to compare some of the first models I did with the models I’ve been painting more recently.

Pictured, Howling Banshee from 2018 vs. Howling Banshee from 2020.

I’m happy to say that I think I’ve made strides as far as my painting goes – the more recent colors pop better and I think I’m getting better at picking contrasting colors that look good together. More than that, though, using occasional resin bases, kitbashing, and my basing have all moved a little out of my original comfort zone and I’m excited to see what kind of improvements I’ll have made in another two years’ time.

Lastly, I want to add that because I’m working on a thesis right now and moving into “crunch” time I’m likely not going to be uploading much over the next month or so. Hoping to focus on that for a while and hopefully come back to painting refreshed – I have a few Eldar and Death Guard projects primed and ready to paint and a new “mystery” army I’m excited to build too.

Thanks for the support and views, and see you on the other side!

Jain Zar

To watch Jain Zar in combat is to watch an exquisite dance that leaves even Harlequins agog; amidst leg sweeps, dodging twists and graceful pirouettes the glowing polearm scythes and darts until only the Phoenix Lord is left standing.

I picked up Jain Zar recently from my FLGS, Noble Miniatures (who are awesome, by the way, check them out!), intending for it to be the new star model of my Howling Banshees and this kit did not disappoint. The model has fantastic size and presence to it, and despite minor frustrations initially trying to put it together painting it was a smooth, fun experience.

Even compared to my Oldhammer Wraithlord, Jain Zar has quite a bit of height!

I’m excited to see her on the tabletop once 9th Edition rolls out. I’m thrilled with how the paint job turned out, and even if it’s a small detail I feel like Nihilakh Oxide really pulled through for me again on the mask, giving her an even more “ghostly” feel. I might have to spend more money if new Eldar sculpts in the future keep turning out so good!

Spiritseer Caen’thala

Pictured is Spiritseer Caen’thala, flanked by my Autarch, Matthias, and my Bonesinger, Ry’hil.

A Spiritseer as a Warlord? Heresy! In all seriousness, I didn’t want to make Eldrad Ulthran my Warlord because he can’t take relics or other nifty warlord abilities in 8th, so I decided that I was going to give the job to a Spiritseer! Caen’thala is the new 8th Edition sculpt kitbashed together with some Age of Sigmar bits to give her a little more character and personality.

Pictured are all my recent Ulthwe characters together in one place. In matching outfits!

Caen’thala is equipped with Kurnous’ Bow instead of a Shuriken pistol, and also has the Seer of the Shifting Vector ability to make her a little more Perils-proof. Her preferred psychic powers are Protect/Jinx or Enhance/Drain, and to paraphrase/quote The Emperor TTS series, she longs for genestealer ass.

Autarch Matthias

Autarch Matthias, left, pictured with my Spiritseer, Caen’thala, and my Bonesinger, Ry’hil.

Matthias is a kitbashed HQ unit who I put together with bits from a whole slew of different models, most of them Dire Avengers. Mounted him up on a custom 32mm resin base and I’m really happy with the end result. No wings on this Autarch, he’s equipped for sword-and-board with a Star Glaive.

Autarch Matthias, leading his host of Dire Avengers into battle.

The friend of mine who gifted me my Dire Avengers is a huge fan of the Fire Emblem: Awakening game, so you might notice a similarity to a certain one-sleeved sword boy – as if the symbol on my Dire Avenger banners wasn’t a dead giveaway! His Force Shield’s gems also definitely aren’t colored to look like the five different gems in the Fire Emblem.