Sunday, July 10, 2011

So what's next?

There are a few things on the horizon for me, hobby-wise. I've been working on my Dark Elves for a couple of years now, and with the Quake City Rumble I finally feel like I can say I'm 'done' with my first army. Not 'done' as in 'done playing with them' or 'done painting them' or 'tired' of them, but I do feel a sense of accomplishment at having taken a fully painted and well performing army to a tournament. So at this point the only further things I'm planning to do with my Dark Elves are things I consider 'tweaks'. I've got some more Cold One Knights, and I want to bulk that unit up to 10 or 12. I've got some more Executioners and I want to bump that unit up to a good size and probably include a filler to help. I plan on continuing to use this army for fun and tournament play, and I'll probably make a fancier display board for them for next tournament season. I've got a couple more characters that I can paint and the new Black Dragon which I asked for as a birthday present. Those last two lead into the second thing on the horizon.

Storm of Magic was release this weekend. We had a release event all set up for today except for one small problem. GW didn't ship the books on time. I'm not sure if it was a global issue, or was specific to certain stores or regions, but we aren't getting it until Monday. So I guess I'll have to get a hold of it at some point this week and we'll reschedule our 'let's try out this new thing' event. Along with SoM are some new monster models, a few of which I've asked for as presents. I'm looking forward to painting those up and, from the sounds of it, a couple more spell casters. I've still got that GameZone Sorceress on Dark Pegasus that I've been looking for a reason to paint.

The third thing on the horizon is the one I've been thinking the most about this weekend. We've been talking at the store about doing another escalation league, and even better is that someone else is interested in running it. It seems like it would be cheating to walk in with fully painted Dark Elves, so I'm going to take this opportunity to spend some time with the Empire army I bought.

I had a fat gift card burning a hole in my pocket, so I purchased some additional stuff to give me some more list building options. Greatswords, State Troops, and...... Steam Tank! I couldn't resist, it just looked like it would be too much fun to paint. And with that my mind started working through how to go about painting them. After some reading and thinking, I've settled on not only a color scheme but a nice fluffy theme with some conversion opportunities that I'm already looking forward to.

For my Dark Elves I have a very loose 'Corsair' theme. Which basically means I put the big Corsair banners on as many units as possible. (Which reminds me.. I still have a couple of those to finish...) The colors, red and gold, were not typical Dark Elf colors. Most folks paint them something dark, like black, grey, purple, dark blue, etc. My Dark Elves are definitely more of a 'summer' looking army than the typical 'winter' look.

For the Empire I wanted something visually very different. Lots of the pictures of Empire armies are red and white, which was too close to my Dark Elves for me. So after some looking I settled on the blue and white of Middenheim. Middenheim has some nice fluff, being a fortress city on the top of a rocky mountain in the north of the Empire and home to the temple of Ulric, god of war, winter, and wolves. So I've decided to do a Middenheim 'Cult of Ulric' army. Lots of blue, gray, and white for colors, giving me a 'summer' army and a 'winter' army. (I guess then I'll have to figure out how to do Lizardmen and Vampire Counts as spring and fall.) Lots of conversion opportunities to add wolf bits here and there. I've already got some of the Knights of the White Wolf. No priests of Sigmar in this army, instead I'll be converting up some Warrior Priests of Ulric. Maybe even have a War Altar pulled by Dire Wolves instead of War Horses with a different statue on the back. I'm also trying to figure out how to make the mouths of the cannons look like wolves heads with open mouths. It should be fun.

So now I've got some bits hunting to do. The Space Wolves had a couple of bits that look useful. There are also just some plain wolves I could get to add to a unit here and there. The Warriors of Chaos cloaks are ok, but a little ragged looking. I'm also not sure about putting snow on their bases. Stone and gray gravel, definitely, but my concern with snow is that Empire models don't really look dressed for very cold weather and it might look odd to have them standing in snow.

Conversion thoughts and suggestions welcome.


  1. Hey Mike!

    I saw your post since Richard linked to your blog.

    These might work well for cloaks for your Middenheim army:

    Also, some Barbarian heads might look good:

    I think the Chaos Warrior backs would be too large as the Empire State Troops are much weedier than the Chaos Warriors. The fur cloaks are also just the top and the cloak and would take a lot of work to and green stuff to make look right as they line up with the front end of the model which also has some fur bits that connect to it.

    I think doing the army in a way that makes them out to be clean cut State Troops but that these troublesome Middenheimers are too addicted to beards and furs would be fun and interesting.

    I think you might also want to look at other bits and companies for some of your conversions. I think if you got a more barbaric looking chariot type item to use as the basis of your War Alter it could be very cool.

    I recently used a Mage Knight piece that I repainted for my Chaos Warshrine:

    Goodluck, man! I look forward to seeing what you do!


  2. Awesome, thanks for the links Casey. I'm definitely going to give those cloaks and heads a try. You've pretty much hit the aesthetic I'm going for on the head.

    I also found some Dire Wolves by Otherworld that I think are big enough to pull a war altar. But I also might just get some of their normal wolves and throw a few in here and there as unit filter or base decoration.

  3. That's a great idea, Mike. I love the idea of giant wolves pulling a war altar.

    I did something similar with unit fillers. For my Warriors units I have a few Warriors leading Chaos Spawn into battle with them on chains and everything. My Marauders have Chaos Warhounds in a similar pose.

    I just like the idea of a guy leading a big monster to war on a chain like he's walking it.

    I hope you post pictures of what you work on! I'm sure it'll look fantastic!