They are the faceless foot soldiers of the Empire and as someone whose childhood was shaped by Star Wars and the image of white-armoured Stormtroopers patrolling Mos Eisley I love the design of these guys. Fantasy Flight has nailed the look of them in Star Wars Legion and even given a nice tongue in cheek nod to their legendary accuracy (or lack thereof) in the ‘Precise’ keyword. In the first couple of streams prior to the launch weekend as I raced through painting the core boxed set I didn’t pause to take any photographs of the finished result. Or at least mostly finished result as I still need to add a couple of finishing touches to the bases and the weathering. White can be a bit of a challenge to paint so I kept it super-simple and used weathering as a trick to achieve a decent tabletop standard. I also added unit markings as a way to add more interest and these are strictly not canon and purely for visual appeal as well as to make them my own. More plans on that later.
I loosely followed the tried and tested approach you can find on Sorastro’s painting guides, I’m a firm believer in not re-inventing the wheel when Sorastro has already done a fantastic job of coming up with a simple yet highly effective paint scheme. Where I deviated was more in the final detailing and the bases which I added a light drybrush of Deck Tan to in lieu of a heavy covering of leaf litter.
After a black primer I applied a zenithal pre-shade of cold grey and finally white with the airbrush. I then picked out all of the uniform under the armour, eye lenses, vents and helmet band in German grey + black. The armour was also given a profiling in dark grey. For the armour itself I worked the highlights up from the zenithal pre-shade using a mix of GW Ulthuan grey and white up to pure white. I much prefer the finish this gets to just giving the overall armour a wash with black shade and hoping for the best, it gives you much more control over placement of the highlights and shadows. But whatever process works for you is ultimately the right process, go with what comfortable or happy doing.
I am not following any formula or guide for the unit markings; they are entirely random and chosen purely to create interest. I avoided giving all of them markings or using a single uniform design so that they still looked like rank and file Stormtroops and not too much like special forces. Those I will leave to a later date and see if FFG do specialist units like the Death Troopers or Elites. I chose Dark Sea blue for these units as it gave me a nice deep blue/black finish which sets them apart from the 501st which are more of an intense blue. I also chose that colour with the next squad in mind to give me some contrast. Once the markings were applied I ‘chipped’ them back using a piece of sponge and the mid tone armour colour before refining a few scuffs and scratches by hand with the brush. Small final touches like this take mere moments to do but can really set your miniatures apart from just the basics.
The Speeder Bike Scouts were painted using exactly the same method and I carried the markings theme into them as well to create a uniform for the core starter force. Vader naturally was an entirely different palette and pretty much just followed the Sorastro approach.
In addition to the core box contexts I also have the initial expansion boxes for wave 1 so I’ll be working my way through these building up my Imperial forces from the initial two Corps units, Vader and the Speeder bikes. I’ll be starting with next Stormtrooper squad which are identical to these and using a different set of markings and colours to distinguish them on the table, as well as make them my own. I enjoyed painting these so much I’m already looking forward to doing another squad, my goal being to get all the Imperial expansions done before the next wave lands.
Until then, have a great week and hope to catch you on stream.