A miniatures games blog about Warhammer 40k, 15mm American Civil War (ACW), D&D, Classic Battletech, painting, terrain and anything else that rolls or shoots...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Little Piece of History

The first thing I did upon deciding to throw my hat back into the Warhammer 40k ring was run over to my Friendly Local Gaming Store and spend my paycheck on copies of the new (to me) rules and the appropriate codex for my chosen army.  I've never tasted competitive play before and this was one of the main reasons I wanted to come back into the fold in the first place.  Glancing through the Imperial Guard codex, I realized that my army, while perfectly legal by the ancient Second Edition standards, would need a lot of work to be brought up-to-date for Fifth so I decided to fall back on my tried and true Ultramarines.

No sooner had my fingers touched the Codex: Space Marines when I was heckled by a young punk playing in the Magic tournament being held at the store (ironic, huh?)  He seemed to think I should have chosen the Tau because "they rule."  When I responded, "Who the fuck are the Tau?" he looked at me blankly for a second and turned away, shaking his head and muttering something he's probably glad I didn't hear.  Whatever...I was rolling dice when his mom was still wiping his ass.  Besides, he smelled funny.  I guess some things never change.

Codex and rulebook in hand, the second order of business was to beef up my army.  Veteran Marines have gotten a big boost in the new rules (something I will cover a little bit later) and I thought a squad of Sternguard would be just the ticket...I even had the perfect models for the job.

Wayyyy back in the late 90's, Games Workshop used to have a nifty "outlet" section on their website where they would unload older, discontinued models at a fraction of the original price.  One such deal was a 10-man squad of original Space Marines from the glory days of Rogue Trader circa 1987.  Being a student of the game, I hopped on this deal but never got around to painting them up.

What better models to represent hardened veterans than some of the first Space Marines ever produced?

What I thought would be a walk in the park in terms of painting actually took me much longer.  My nemesis in this venture turned out to be the white.  Dear God...the white.  One thing I've learned about being a grown-up is that time is of the essence, and it's a rare day when you can spend 3-4 hours painting little soldiers.  Thus, I had to spread this work out over four days of roughly 90 minute sessions.  I actually think this helped me out in terms of keeping my sanity from the monotonous task of painting and re-painting the white....oh the white.

For my first large-scale effort, I think everything turned out pretty well.  The castings themselves didn't do me any favors and there were a few molding issues I had to work around but that's all part of the fun, right?  So they say.

Ready for war!

Despite the painting issues, it did feel pretty cool knowing that I was painting a little piece of Warhammer 40k history.  It's interesting to see the way sculpting and casting techniques have developed over the last 20 years. 

Sergeant w/ Chainsword & Hand-Flamer
I have to say though, my favorite part about these marines, and something I really think GW should bring back are the BEAK HELMETS!

Not quite sure what the guy on the right is holding, but we'll call it a storm bolter!

The Emperor's Finest

The Emperor's Finest (boyband)

My favorite model of the bunch though, by far has to be the one who breaks all fluff convention.  No helmet, no gloves and a plasma gun.  Really?


For heavy weapons...there's this guy, with his skinny lil' legs.  I'm not quite sure what he's packing, as it kind of looks like a lascannon, but on the back of the model, there are rockets hanging off his pack.  I guess it could be either?

Space Marine with....thing...

I've always had a self-imposed rule of not allowing myself to field a unit unless it's fully painted.  This has been the cause of much consternation before, but it's always kept me motivated to keep on moving.  With this squad completed, I've got a couple more units lined up and then this army should be ready for war!

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