“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.

Lord of Contagion

Starting my Death Guard galleries in 2021 off with a classic! Does the Lord of Contagion count as a classic? I mean, it’s been four years since 8th Edition, and the Know No Fear box set, so…maybe? Regardless, this is the first part of my Know No Fear batch of Plague Marines and I went into this with a goal in mind: to try and unseat Lord Felthius. For whatever strange reason, Lord Felthius and the Tainted Cohort have become the most clicked gallery on my website. As cool as that is, I wanted to see if I could finally throw together a Lord of Contagion that would unseat him from that spot on the website, or maybe in my Crusade Army.

Pictured: Cruelty to Nurglings, shameful since Nurglings are my favorite part of any Death Guard army.

The model itself came together brilliantly, and everything went great on the process work up until the eleventh hour when I sloshed way too much varnish on. As always, a big shout-out to Spekd for the “sponge” method that’s become the bread and butter of my Death Guard army. I will say in terms of the comparisons between models that I like the overall color balance, palette, and scheme better from this batch of Plague Marines than the last, but have I succeeded in a model that will unseat Lord Felthius? The varnish issue puts a damper on that from a Crusade and visual perspective, I think, and as for the website we’ll just have to wait and see.

Pictured: The Lords of Contagion, side by side.

This week my galleries will be all Lord of Contagion stuff, and probably with my Malignant Plague Caster stuff the week after, then my Plague Marines the week after, and I have some other fun stuff planned down the pipeline. Might be slow for a while after these galleries all the same, where my funding as a grad student has run out and I am working on finding new work. But hopefully, somewhere in there, I’ll still be able to make time for painting and posting! (Especially since I want to get in on that new year’s contest Ann’s Immaterium suggested to kick off 2021.)

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!

Armies on Parade 2020!

I’m a casual hobbyist at best (and definitely no better as a photographer), but when I saw that Games Workshop was running Armies on Parade online this year, I decided I was gonna throw my name into the hat, and share pictures of the two armies that I’ve managed to finish this year. It’s been a long strange trip but I’m happy with how both of them have turned out so far – and I have plans to add a few new reinforcements to my Eldar, and a big expansion on my Death Guard army, too, in 2021. The Long War never ends.

Pictured: A whole bunch of elves pouring out of the Webway Gate.

Out of the two I definitely think my Death Guard army is more photogenic, ironically. I’m happier with how it turned out and how coherent it all looks together, even though I do love my multicolored Aspect Warriors for Eldar. On the Death Guard side, I think I’m most proud of my vehicles – the Blight-Haulers and the Rhino really stand out, and I’m still a sucker for my Lord of Contagion, too. Papa Nurgle’s blessings on Lord Felthius and his creepy-ass smile.

Pictured: Where the trouble began. That smile. That damned smile…

On the Eldar side, I think my space elves suffer from a slight lack of coherency in their colors. I’m very happy with my Fire-Falcon-Rainbow-Prism, my Storm Guardians, my Howling Banshees, and my HQs, but I think in the new year the Dire Avengers, Wave Serpent, and my back left Wraithlord are going to be in need of a little love and a facelift. In a way, though, this is a good problem to have – it makes me feel like I’ve improved and that it shows in my recent painting.

Plague Surgeon and Noxious Blightbringer

After writing last week’s battle report, I realized I’d missed a few essential characters in my Death Guard army when I did up my galleries – sort of! They showed up in the background of some of the other pictures but I wanted to give them a dedicated spot of their own to shine. They’re two of my favorite miniature designs in the Death Guard line – though all of the recent Death Guard Elite characters are pretty great in that regard.

Pictured: Nurglings, still being my favorite part of painting Death Guard.

And now with my whole batch posted, I find myself thinking about what I’m going to do with the next batch, once my Masters’ is done and once I have more free time on my hands. As it stands I have the Death Guard half of a Know No Fear starter still needing painting (along with a few fun other models), and as good as my first “batch” has turned out I want my next Plague Marines to stand out even more.

Pictured: My typical Death Guard character lineup.

As much as I like the color scheme that I went with generally and the rust effects, I think my next batch is going to emphasize a more Horus Heresy color scheme, where armor is visible, and I also think I’m going to try and switch up the brown color I used for cloth. It blends too much with the other colors, and when I’ve seen people go for violet or red-colored cloaks it looks like it pops much better. Maybe something like a wine-red? We’ll see.

Crusade Continues – Mistakes Were Made!

I’ve been playing Eldar for a long time – maybe a little too long! Taking my Death Guard out for a spin over the last couple Crusade games with KinpatsuSamurai has been a blast, but it’s definitely come with a sharp, blight-ridden learning curve. The first game against the Sisters of Battle was a train wreck – pun intended – with my Thomas the Chaos Rhino and Plague Marines all being bogged down in Repentia Sisters while the Sisters’ Immolator picked off cherished Nurgly characters.

Pictured: “Thomas had never heard of such bullsh*t before.”

I think in some ways I learned more in the second game, on a much more open board, against the Death Watch. Compared to Eldar, I definitely need to be more conscious of movement limitations, and I need a solid “delivery method” for my heavy hitters. KinpatsuSamurai won this one by a pretty wide margin, but the final melee between the Death Watch and my Biologus Putrifier and Foul Blightspawn was – pun once again intended – a blast.

Pictured: Two Elite Death Guard characters, soon reduced thereafter to mist and bone chips.

As always, Noble Miniatures in Paradise, just outside of St. John’s, was a fantastic location for the games and the setup for both games was great. I’d like to extend a thanks and a shout-out to KinpatsuSamurai for the awesome match, and for doing a battle report of his own on the second game, which is hosted on the Rolling Intentions website. They’re a group of awesome people writing on the tabletop scene in my neck of the woods, and definitely worth checking out!

Lord Felthius and the Tainted Cohort

Pictured, Lord Felthius – a Lord of Contagion model with a lot of personality.

With Games Workshop recently removing most of the line of Easy to Build kits introduced in 8th edition, I’m glad that I got a hold of these models when I did! I hadn’t done much in terminator-sized models up to this point and initially I found the sheer number of details on these a little daunting, but each of the models in this set ended up looking really distinct with their own individual presence and personality.

Pictured, my favorite part of painting Death Guard – the Nurglings!

With recent Power Level updates I’m not altogether sure the Tainted Cohort can be fielded on its own anymore, which means it might be worth picking up the regular Blightlord Terminators at some point, but even once I do I think I’m going to find excuses to use these models as part of that squad because they just look so imposing. And, as always, I love Nurglings.

Biologus Putrifier and Foul Blightspawn

Pictured: A Biologus Putrifier and Foul Blightspawn leading Plague Marines forward.

These are two of my favorite Death Guard models, and since their effects synergize so well together – and since they work together so frequently in the lore – I thought I’d let them share a gallery together. The Biologus Putrifier and Foul Blightspawn were a blast to work on, and I got to do even more with some of the goopy, slime effects I’d been using across my bases.

As blight grenades explode and anguished victims scream, Biologus Putrifier’s study the effects of their concoctions, noting the results. They improve their grenades through these lives tests on the battlefield.

I really like the unconventional mask shapes that they use, and there were lots of neat little details that I could embellish on both of these models. The Biologus’ needle and “wings” are great details, and the Nurgling on the Foul Blightspawn is a delight. I think half of the reason that I went with a Nurgle chaos-based army is that I’m growing to love the endearing little gremlins.

Plague Marines (Easy-to-Build)

Pictured: The Plague Champion, my personal favorite of the ETB models.

After the handful of Chaos Space Marine bits a friend gave me, I picked up the Death Guard painting kit and split a First Strike starter with the same friend, which gave me enough to put together a five-person squad. The Easy-to-Build kits were a fantastic place to start – they went together without any issues and looked wonderfully horrific.

Pictured: New ETB Plague Marines together with my kitbashed Plague Marines.

These were a lot of fun to put together, and for being “starter” or ETB marines they’re kitted out pretty decently too! The Blight Launchers are useful and the combination of Power Fist and Plasma Gun on the Champion are nothing to scoff at either. Really looking forward to running these and the rest of my Nurgle army once 9th Edition drops.