Deathwatch: Overkill

DEATHWATCH OVERKILL

An aphorism of screenwriting is that a protagonist needs a great antagonist. Part of my goal in creating a Space Marine Chapter is to also create the fluff. Sauroter is a Greek work meaning lizard crusher. It refers to the short heavy spike on the bottom end of a Hoplite’s spear. The lizards in this case being Genestealers.

Games Workshop recently released the Deathwatch: Overkill box set. Playing games is not really my thing and I have limited space, so I won’t be buying the set. I did however buy the Genestealer Cult spues from an ebay seller. The quality is fantastic and I’m really looking forward to painting them.

There is a strong nostalgic element too. The art style of the Cult seems very influenced by classic GW art. I remember the specific image well. Back in the day, I owned some genestealer models, perhaps from the Space Hulk box set. I don’t really remember. They will also make a nice change from paining Space Marines.

I have gone for a clean look with the Sauroters. With the Genestealer Cult I’d like to try something a bit more weathered. I think this goes well with the Underhive/ mining planet fluff of the fluff. I’d like to do something a bit different with the color scheme. Something kind of insecty.

I am imagining some kind of iridescent shell mixed with really feverous skin. Miniwargaming.com  produced a How To using an iridescent medium. Vault members (paid membership) can see it here. I’m also considering a cicada color scheme. Mainly because I can’t stand cicadas, so they seem like a good choice for the bad guys.

The Genestealer Cult clocks in at 600 points. That suits me fine. A full battle demi company is more like 1000. But, once they’re painted, if I do want to play a game of 40k, I can. I’ll be able to play Kill Team etc. as well. In the future I’d also like to collect some Imperial Guard (DKoK) and a Chaos warband. The Cult gives me a good baseline size.

Like many bloggers I tend to write content far ahead of time. Since writing this the Codex: Genestealers has come out along with a bunch of great new models. So, it looks like buying the Cult was a lucky coincidence. I’ll be able to add to it and create a force comparable with a battle demi-company.

Advertisements

Sauroter Chaplain

1-chaplain-front

2-chaplain-plasma

3-chaplain-crozius-arcanum

4-chaplain-back

5-chaplain-back-magnet

6-chaplain-front-jump-pack

7-chaplain-plasma-jump-pack

8-chaplain-crozius-arcanum-jump-pack

9-chaplain-back-jump-pack

 crozius-arcanum

Modelling

  • The body of the model is from the Deathwatch: Overkill boxset.
  • The helmet is from the Betrayal at Calth boxset.
  • The jump pack is from the Vanguards Veteran set.
  • The left shoulder pauldron was a custom order from a Shapeways seller.
  • The backpacks are magnetized using 1 x 3mm rare earth magnets.
  • The right arm is from the Betrayal at Calth boxset.
  • The plasma pistol is from the Tactical Squad boxset.

I found converting the backpacks relatively easy. I used two magnets for the backpack and three for the jump pack. I find the easiest method is to drill a hole and glue the first magnet. Usually this is the magnet in the body of the miniature. Next, I put the second magnet on the first and drill the hole in the secondary piece. Then, I apply glue to the second magnet using a cocktail stick. Finally I offer up the secondary piece to the second magnet. When the glue is dry I can pull the pieces and the magnets apart. This way the magnets will sit flush and I am less likely to get the polarity wrong.

Painting

The basic scheme is black. I went about it by applying very watered down coats of black over grey primer. Detail which then showed through was either left as it was or picked out in GW Eshin Grey. The armour was then tidied up with Vallejo Game Colour Black.

  • Armour ~ Vallejo Black (), highlighted with Eshin Grey
  • Left pauldron ~ Vallejo xxxx ()
  • Plasma Pistol~ Vallejo Black Metal (71.073), washed with GW Nuln Oil, highlighted with  Vallejo Gunmetal Grey (71.065)
  • Crozius Arcanum ~ Vallejo Brass (), highlighted with Vallejo Gold () and Vallejo Silver()
  • Leather~ undercoated with Vallejo Cammo Black Brown (), washed with GW Agrax Earthshade and Highlighted with Vallejo Flat Earth () mixed with white.
  • Book~  Vallejo Hull red (). Washed with GW Carrobourg Crimson and highlighted with Vallejo xxxx ()
  • Eyes ~  Vallejo xxxx  () sheded with GW Agrax Earthshade.

 

Overall I’m pleased with the result. I particularly like the way the handle of the Crozius Arcanum came out. It looks like soft leather. I regret not spending a bit more time and care on highlighting the wings of the Crozius Arcanum though. I feel I could have done a better job. I’m also not satisfied with the eyes. I have since developed a method I’m happy with, when I was painting this model I couldn’t do anything I was satisfied with so I just did almost solid red.

I have decided to make it a rule not to go back and add anything once a model is varnished. I’d prefer to just try to improve on the next model. In this way I hope to see a solid progression in the quality I can achieve. It’s also motivating to try and get it right the first time. I rushed through the Crozius Arcanum because I was tired and wanted to get it finished. I would have been better off simply stopping and picking it up another day. It’s a hobby after all and should be relaxing not stressful.

You’ll notice that it is not based yet. I am not planning to base anything until the whole army is finished. I want to try an achieve a  consistent look and I really haven’t decided how they’ll be based yet.

Also, I haven’t painted the detail he is standing on. Partly this is because I haven’t decided on a basing scheme but mainly because I will probably cut this piece away. I want to have a base where he is running up stairs. This should give a more dynamic look. Especially with the jump pack attached. It will also break the monotony of all the HQ choices having one leg up on something.

Basing

NECROMUNDA
Image from: olivercates on Pinterest

How to base miniatures is something that I have spent a lot of time thinking about. I still haven’t come up with a satisfactory answer. I have seen some really great themed bases. But when those themed bases, say a snow theme, is placed on a table top with a different theme, or an army with differently themed bases, the result is incongruous.

Sometimes IMHO, for example Death Korps of Kreig, people go a little overboard. A base drowning in mud distracts from the miniature. Sometimes, for example Salamanders, the bases don’t make much sense. Why would anyone stand on magma? Even in terminator armour. I want something that compliments, or at least doesn’t clash with, my color scheme. I also want something that makes sense fluff wise and will work with different tabletops.

I considered using clear bases with the rim painted black. The effect is striking but subtle. The problem is that clear bases are not much fun and so many miniatures come moulded with elements attached to their feet, you still have the same problem. Also, unless I pin the models to the bases, which might be very noticeable, they will snap off every time they are dropped. Also, I guess that the clear plastic will eventually pick up dirt and scratches, ruining the effect.

I considered buying some aftermarket bases. The problem is that I don’t really like what I have seen. Some of it is OK but for the price, I want to be a bit more excited about them. Also, scenic bases come in sets and most sets only have a few good bases and are pretty derivative in general.

So, given that this is a hobby, I think I’d like to make my own bases. That leaves me with the same problem of theme.  In the future, I’d like to make some terrain and that will almost certainly be classic ruined city terrain. So, I think that, given the grimdark nature of the 40K universe, urban bases are probably the way to go.

Also, after this small Sauroters force is completed, I would like to collect some other factions. Specifically, the Genestealer Brood from the Deathwatch Overkill boxset and some Death Korps of Kreig. To round it out to four, I’d also like to create a Chaos warband. So, I’d like to have complementary bases for each faction.

The Genestealer Brood features a model with a very elaborate base; a Patriarch crouching on a pipe. So, a kind of Underhive, Necromundaesque theme seems appropriate. I want to paint the DKoK in a light blue WWI French theme. I’m imagining them as a kind of sinister UN style paramilitary force doing urban clearance. So, a war-torn city theme seems to fit. As, for the Chaos warband, I’m really not sure yet.

For my Sauroters I would like a dark color scheme for their bases. So, I think I’m going to go with stone. The kind of flagstones a fortress monastery might have. I am thinking black rather than grey and well worn. I have found a tutorial I like from Dr Faust’s Painting Clinic which can be seem here.

Chaplains

GW-CASSIUS
Image from: wh40k.lexicanum.com

In an earlier post I mentioned that I had ordered some heads from DragonForge.com. The heads have arrived and they are great. I don’t have any experience of working with pewter and they seem really heavy duty in comparison to resin and particularly plastic. I had been intending to use one of the heads to convert a the Chaplain mini from the Deathwatch Overkill box set. But then inspiration struck.

I thought why not simple paint a skull onto a helmet? Not an original idea I’m sure. In fact I found several tutorials. In particular, I liked this video from MiniWarGaming.com. I really like their content and in fact, I am a subscriber to their Vault (a paid membership). So, I went ahead and painted a skull helm, using a helmet from the Betrayal at Calth box set. I am pretty pleased with the results and I’ll post pictures when the rest of the miniature is painted.

Painting black is supposed to be tricky. Highlighting with grey seems to be fine, although I imagine it would be overpowering if overused. I will be painting the trim and various armour embellishments in a metallic or bone scheme. So, I don’t think the black will be a very dominant color in the overall color scheme.

I am not a fan of OSL effects, unless they are really subtle. I like the look of burnt metal effects and other weathering, but not the really bright plasma effects that seem so popular. As my Chaplain is in a running pose, I will not be painting the jump pack as if it is on. Rather as if he is about to take off.

I considered the idea of magnetizing the helmet and head so I could use them as a kind of wound marker. I still like the idea but I think it might be a bit much. I want the option to give the Chaplain a jump pack, in case I want to add an assault squad to my collection. I am worried that too many magnets, too close together, will affect each other. So, I have magnetized the back pack called it a day.

I ordered a jump pack from a bits seller on ebay. I was pretty satisfied with the seller although it’s a good idea to pay for the better packaging if the model is delicate. It’s not advertised as better packaging, rather as the expidated option. My model arrived slightly broken but the sculpt has so many delicate details, it’s difficult to imagine how it could be avoided.

I’m not sure exactly how it will fit on the model I have. It’s very hard to judge from the pictures. The model’s pose is pretty dynamic but neither arms are upraised so I think everything will fit.