Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Lets start with a photo...

So, as you can see, almost no work at all has begun on the truescale project as I would like to see it. With another term of college nearly finished and my free-time addiction to Far Cry 4 coming to it's sensible end point, I see a lot of work hobby work in my immediate future. After finally caving and making a small parts order (jump-packs and dreadnought torso), I am prepared to dive into the first contingent of Imperial Fists.

Contrary to my previous post, I will not be starting a Blood Angels force, despite the new wave of lovely parts available. I still think a truescale Blood Angels army could be gorgeous, but Imperial Fists hold a place closer to my heart and I have a number of ideas on how to set them apart. I realize the image is sort of sloppy, with the text hurriedly slapped on and the background of dirty dishes, but please bear with me.

I quite like the idea of twenty model tactical squads, and will be starting there. The squad, temporarily titled Bulwark Tactical, marked with a Roman numeral "I" and led by a full command group (sergeant, vexilla, and vox), will theoretically tie up enemy infantry while the second part of this project crashes in from the flanks. This second squad (not yet named Assault) will potentially be doubled in size, but for the moment consists of five models with chainswords and bolt pistols. After this, work can begin on the Breacher or Seeker squad. I am as of yet undecided on which I will build, but suspect that by the time twenty-five models are built and painted, I will have the intent to build both units. The Dreadnought is something that I've fiddled with periodically, and will continue to do so; I can't say for certain when it will be finished, but the plan is to give the model a twin linked Heavy Bolter and a Power Scourge, as per the old metal chaos dreadnought. By this time, the army will need a leader, so I will be making a champion or low-ranking captain and a standard bearer. As I end with that, I should mention that the only squad which has been lain out with the appropriate legs are the Assault Marines. Any other unit will have legs selected as the project continues, so have no fear, that final command group will not be in the same squatting pose, side by side.

The boxes on which I have set these parts will house Tactical Squads. There are a number of other wood cases that will carry the other models, but for now, I have set aside this box for the first Tactical Squad, and its twin for the theoretical second Tactical Squad.

Thanks for looking, hopefully a closer look at the first few models will be up before I visit family for the holidays.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

The Red Company :: Inspiration for a New Project :: A Very Long Post

I have found a definite shift in my hobby tastes over the past few years. While I still find games like Privateer Press' Warmachine and Hordes interesting, and enjoy from afar the sleek science fiction style of Corvus Belli's Infinity, 40k has slowly but surely beat out Warhammer Fantasy as my favorite miniatures universe. When introduced to the hobby, I found the art of John Blanche terrible, scribbled and uncertain, but now hind myself drooling over whatever work I can find, enthralled by the crispness of line and obvious confidence he seems to pour into his work. I still, and I suspect always will, love the work of Kopinski, Dainton, and Boyd, and find it of the utmost importance (in the 40k hobby) that the spirit of their work be rendered in miniature form.

It seems like an exaggeration, but in all honesty, hundreds of projects have been started and stalled out over the past few years, constantly being tweaked or dropped, picked back up or merged into new ideas. Ten years ago, I would have been comfortable, if unenthusiastic, about starting a Blood Angels army, with the most recent codex, I would have been pleased with the miniatures but scoffed at the new characters and mood of the models, and somehow, right now, I sketch out countless ideas for my newest project, A Heresy-Era Blood Angels army.

Since it first came into my awareness, I have loved the Horus Heresy. First, the look of the Maximus armor caught my attention, with Forge World's Red Scorpions and the release of the Black Templars Upgrade kit. Later, I would discover the art books, not yet packaged in the Collected Visions, which has since been re-released to contain the work of Neil Roberts. Finally, the work of such truescale pioneers as Synapse, Apologist, and Doghouse would cement an aesthetic in my mind from which I could not break away. Migsula and the Shaddes of Greye would eventually convince me to try my hand at the truescale process, and this will be the latest in a series of starts into the Heresy, inspired by some of the greatest hobbyists on the web.

To collect inspiration and to perhaps introduce other hobbyists to their work, 
I refer to the following:

Apologist has a number of threads on various forums, but a solid point of departure is his more recent blog, Death of a Rubricist, where you can find his latest work and drool over his second major foray into the Ultramarines Legion.

Legion of Plastic is a blog run by Migsula, creator of some amazing truescale Alpha Legionnaires and one of the pioneers of =I=Munda/Inq28.

I discovered Spiky Rat Pack more recently, but with a wide variety of work by two unique hobbyists, this blog is a real pleasure to peruse. With work underway on a second Red Corsair, I find myself checking this blog more than ever.

I have to throw in some project logs as well, and with a consistently clean style and an eye for composition, STC_LogisEngine has produced some brilliant pre- and pos-heresy Alpha Legion here.

Another great thread follows the work of one Cerebralerebus and his Adeptus Mechanicus. This hobbyist continues to impress with a creative and unique use of parts and a striking but familiar color scheme.

Though he seems to have stopped posting some time ago, Space Wolves players may find the following blog especially interesting. Drowned in Plastic is a good resource for those interested in making their own pre-heresy armor and a pleasantly mellow showcase of high-quality models.

These last three threads are all from the Warseer Forums. Leoparden's Imperial Addiction displays a couple of solid armies and the start of a couple others. With space marines from before and after the Heresy, Leoparden's work gets better and better as the thread goes on.

Trying out multiple styles, Ritterkreuz1 explores the Sons of Horus before moving on to the Word Bearers at Calth.

Finally, drawing parts from multiple Forge World lines, The Fall of Seraph showcases JackDaw's latest project, a memorial for fallen Astartes of the Blood Angels Legion.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

++ Light From Far Away Suns ++

Where the lion makes his court, our eyes look high, and though service to the throne-afar demands more than any man may give, we sing praise to the immortal, for no tribute is too great for the Emperor's chosen.


Monday, August 18, 2014

=I=Munda :: The Knight Errant

The Crusader, The Fanatic, The Brand-Bearer.

Another model, and thus another character, has begun to come together. While the Arbites Officer can sort of come and go, passing as a basic law-enforcement agent for different circumstances, the knight errant will be more in line with a named character, a fanatic of Ecclesiarchical righteousness or a hound at the heels of the corrupt. I liked the idea of a spear, but am leaning towards a brand with some sort of furnace-sheath.

For those who have seen the blog over the past week, you'll notice that I removed the last two posts. There is both good and bad to the last two waves of Space Wolves models, and while they may not be my cup of tea, I want this blog to be about the construction and inspiration behind the hobby, not opinion of business practices or miniatures aesthetics.

If folks have any thoughts, let me know.

Thanks for looking,

B. Wright

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

=I= Munda :: Arbites Officer

I've decided to stick with the 40k universe for the moment, but still have ideas for alternate sci-fi universes kicking around in my head. For now, I've begun work on a trio of Adeptus Arbites officers, though my focus has been on this particular fellow. Once I knew what parts I'd be using and had begun building, I made an image to help finalize the design and to get me thinking about my corner of the Imperium and how the many orders and offices of mankind interact.

As I continue work on the officer, I am also making a run down hover-car, to be used as scatter terrain and to finally get started on creating a stage for the models I work on. If anyone cares to, let me know what you think. I should have more to show in the next few days.

Thanks for looking.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Born of the Bleeding Hall II :: Diving Back In

I've sort of stepped away from miniatures over the past month or two, starting this blog but taking time away from my larger project, The Unkindness at Istvaan. Having not actually finished the first Bastion, I'd say the hobby has sort of ground to a halt for me, where I spend an hour or so at my hobby desk almost every day, but never do much but turn parts around and think about what to do with them. 

That being said, some great hobbyists have been posting new work and it has gotten me excited to dive back into my truescale marines. In particular, if anyone seeing this isn't familiar with the work of Apologist, his blog, and variety of project logs, are definitely worth checking out. (again and again and again) With the recent undertaking of re-basing his older Ultramarines army, he has put up plenty of new photos, and has gotten me thinking about new approaches to old projects. To that end, I've started separating out parts to restructure my Legion in progress. I should post some 30k stuff soon, but until then...

Thanks for looking,

B. Wright

Monday, June 30, 2014

New Places to Tread :: Potential Terrain Layout

Concerned less with balance or general symmetry, something I've explored in a hundred variations, making Gears of War style overhead maps where everything piece of cover is mirrored on the other side, I am embarking on a world building adventure. It's sort of a joke, but I mean this in both the literal construction of the space and in creating a permeated narrative, the objects in this environment should should be utterly tied to the fiction in which they exist.

The environment I am looking to create is the shell of a massive well system, one of the stations which feed water to mankind's city-holds. The layout below represents the top layer of the station, the abandoned yards and theoretical landing site. To make this simple, I'll go through the layout left to right.

Even further to the left will be a service elevator and switch-back stairway, connecting the surface with two sections of subterranean complex. This mess of pipes and cascading plant-life connects to the far left pumping station. Outside the pumping station is a concrete lot, empty, but easily filled with loose terrain like crates and abandoned hover-cars. Speaking of hover-cars, directly over the lip of the pump lot is a short dusty bowl, housing a run down hover-car whose roof has been torn and pressed aside by a gnarled, though now lifeless tree. Overlooking the bowl, a billboard, surrounded by walkways, gives shade to the lower part of the field, helping separate the lower, sand area, and the slightly higher ground of the lawn, a largely open dry grass field with a smattering of thorny bushes along the far edges. Descending the hill to the right, a tunnel-like rain cover provides a funnel for firefights, allowing movement through, to the abandoned car, and over, providing a hard-point for any push or defense. The farthest point on the surface is another bowl, this time descending into a riverbank, broken up by one or two chemical or water tanks, giving cover but providing plenty of room for aerial insertion/extraction. 

Chances are, I won't be exploring the lower spaces until the surface is close to completion, but will begin playing with ideas to incorporate later. If anybody has any thoughts on layout or aesthetics, let me know.

Thanks for looking.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The Gatekeeper's Sigil :: Bastion Progression

Champion even among the warrior orders, sworn to the reactionary houses
and bearing the great metal crest of their brotherhood,
the Bastion stands as if a great dike before the storming galactic sea.

The first discipline, the reactionary, reflects that familiar, armor-clad and heavily armed muscle of so many science-fiction and fantasy series. The Bastion is the bear, whose trappings often adorn those whose deeds become legend in the reactionary houses, patient and ponderous until need dictates, when adrenaline and sheer momentum carry it ever onwards.

I have no real experience playing wargames or roleplaying, so I'm trying to keep the theoretical game system very simple, the sort of thing my older brother and I could mess with on a slow afternoon without really worrying too much about rules. When we were kids, we used bottlecaps and a three sectioned box as a universal measure, but I think there will be an actual inch measure and some sort of dice, rather than a coin flip. That's all pretty far off, but the bonuses assigned to the Bastion will presumably be an extra wound or two and maybe an extra shot, or something to similarly define the model as the primary "shooter."

The progress shown here is just to show how character's appearance will branch. Acolytes of all disciplines will look very similar, and the two foci will be represented in different models, each with a second level of progress, this means that each discipline will see five, or six (with a second acolyte) models.

Let me know what you think.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Born of the Bleeding Hall :: The Twin Suns Brotherhood

In times of unrest, the firstborn sons and daughters of the noble merchantry
bind themselves to palatine oaths, forfeiting inheritance to advise and protect the
city-holds of man. This warrior caste carries with them the twin suns of Thirdlanding,
a symbol of their dedication to the perseverance of all humanity.

So the order of these initial updates may not be quite what I had claimed. I mentioned the Enpellatine Compact, but that idea has been dissolved and the name tucked back into other projects. In the meantime, I have some work in progress photos to share, There is little by way of actual pose, just some serious paring down and the beginnings of some detail work.

I do not know how many roles/jobs/classes there will be to choose from, though I do not actually have a mind to play with these models and am really just doing this as an exploration of the hobby and for the fun of it. This individual will fill the sort of stereotypical 'heavy' role, with a belt fed support rifle and heavy plate-style armor. While his upper body has not really come together, except for some progress on the arms to be, I think the Twin Suns Brotherhood will mark their champions with brightly colored chest and shoulder decorations, almost in the style of the Fedaykin of David Lynch's 1984 Dune movie. Speaking of Dune, the Twin Suns Brotherhood could almost be compared to the Sardaukar, fighting with unquestioning brutality and living as warrior kings for their efforts.

Until next time,
B. Wright

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Red Suns Rising - The Start of Something New

Miniatures games, specifically Warhammer and Warhammer 40k have been a part of my life since childhood, when my older brother and I would ogle over the old space wolves and skaven codexes. At the time, the books had no proper binding, just a row of staples down the spine, only a handful of color images, and just enough fluff to send us into a flurry of plans and ideas. In time, my brother would bring home the Dark Angels Codex, mirrored later when I would buy the next version years after.

Despite the thrill of pouring over old white dwarf magazines and the various army and rule books, neither one of us ever made a proper army, and despite accumulating all manner of sprue and spare parts, I can probably count the number of models finished on one hand. But times are changing, and after years and years of planning, purchasing, dismantling, and sculpting, I will finally set myself to making a serious collection of models which I can be proud of.

This blog will start with two projects. The first, set in the Games Workshop fiction of the Horus Heresy, will be a record of the Unkindness at Istvaan, my XIX Legion (Raven Guard) force built in truescale. The second will be a smaller scale but equally time intensive project, inspired by video games like Destiny and Mass Effect, built in the style of the swelling inq28 community, following small warbands and gangs across the stars.

Both projects owe a great deal of inspiration to the fantastic community of miniatures hobbyists online, and where appropriate I will certainly direct readers to the work of more practiced hands.

Truescale photos will follow soon and the Enpellatine Compact will take shape directly after. Until then, thanks for looking.