It’s been a bit of an exciting week hobby wise all round. What with The Hobbit release from GW, the anticipation of Dreadball now shipping from Mantic and we have all the makings of a busy December on the new and shiny toy front.
However, it is still Epic that occupies my painting station currently and I am pleased to say I have stormed past the next target of 1700 points with the addition of a further two Ultramarine 2nd Company detachments.
First up are a detachment of Terminators, which add some hard-hitting objective takers. Put into cover, Space Marine Terminators are notoriously resilient and tenacious when it comes to securing key objectives, so they were a “must have” as part of my early selection. To give them a bit more presence I also mounted them on larger 20mm x 40mm Warmaster format bases, something I did with the Salamander Terminators that I thought looked really effective. The extra space allowed me to space them out a little more randomly and even add a couple of extra scenery components, all which help give the army a less regimented look.
To help this even further I mixed up the numbers a little by having two bases with four figures and the others with five. Again, this could signify casualties in the squads and positions which hadn’t yet been filled from the veteran ranks. All details which add a little more character and stop every stand looking from looking the same. Still have to do something with the Captains gorget, face and hair (it’s just plain flesh coloured right now which is a little creepy!), but other than that, they are game ready.
I mentioned a week or two back that I really wanted to make more use out of the white vehicle markings to draw the various model heritages together. The Predator detachment is where I really think this has worked nicely, matching up sponsons, or turret colours to mask the differences in the style of miniature. Some ‘turret-swapping’ mashups on the more recent editions also help to shake things up nicely.
Easily my favourite formation to date , it contains the broadest mix of models all the way from 1st Edition through to current day. The Mk I ‘Deimos’ I am probably most pleased with as I was worried how well it would integrate with the Epic 40,000 era variants, there being such a big gulf in detail between the two. Although it is fair so say it lacks the level of detail the Epic 40,000 range had, it nevertheless doesn’t feel entirely out of place.
Where I think this has worked has been through using the palette and markings to emphasise rather than try to hide the differences, especially with the dome-shaped turrets. I really believe this one detachment has done the most to really bring to life the mixed heritage appearance of the armour in the same way it has for my 40K scale version. This has helped me feel a lot more confident that the finished appearance will tie together cohesively even with such a broad mix of miniatures.
Like the Vindicators, I used a few simple weathering tricks to break up the markings and icons. Once the entire force is done I may also re-visit the vehicles to add some specific weathering to the tracks before calling it a day. Leaving it until the end means I can mix up a single batch of ‘mud’ ensuring all of them match. That plus I am still undecided if it is necessary, or would even add anything.
Both of these detachments take me over the 1700 points total when you include the Deimos Pattern Hunter from earlier. For the bonus miniatures this time I dusted off three of the objective markers I did several years back and gave them a fresh coat of ‘grime’ and weathering to make them more relevant to the Ultramarines. These are the Vox Relay, Prometheum Dump and Generator. I am also looking for ideas for a fourth objective so am going to throw that open to you lot. Let me know either in the comments here, or via the thread on the TacCmd forum your suggestions or ideas for an Ultramarine themed objective marker. It needs to be self contained, so no bigger than something I can fit on a 40 mm x 40 mm sized base (or 60mm ‘Titan’ sized round at most). If any of the ideas grab me I will look at incorporating it into a future update.
Well, that was an update and a half. I have to confess I am getting through painting the Ultramarines far quicker than I originally anticipated and I am not sure why. Partly I think making more use of the airbrush and weathering has sped a lot of the process up, but even taking that into account I wasn’t anticipating I would be this far into the army by the start of December. Not that I am complaining. The ‘bonus’ reward minis are helping strangely enough. I know they are a cheap phycological trick I have set for myself, but it does make a difference in helping to keep the motivation up when painting a large force of broadly the same miniatures. The next formations I have in plan are going to be a bit of a grind, but to help, I have chosen a bonus miniature(s) I have been looking for an excuse to include for over twenty years.
So with the lure set, I have pushed the next stretch target out to a hefty 2500 points. Now we are starting to get serious.
If I am going to ‘speed’ through that anytime soon I will really need to ‘get on my bike’. There may have been a clue or two in there as to the next detachments I have in mind.
Until then, have a great week.