Friday, November 18, 2022

Greenskins: Warhammer 40,000 Deff Dread & Trukk

Continuing with the ork figure showcases today, this time a deff dread and a trukk.  The dread is a relatively recent kit that came out around the same time as the killa kans, while the trukk is a bit older although not much so.  They hold up well today, and the cross-kit parts compatibility between the kans and dreads really adds to their modularity.  Both models have been modified a bit as usual - or should I say kustomized?

Here's a group shot with a killa kan for size comparison purpose.  Same 60mm base as the dread but around half the height.

The dread has been tricked out with three melee arms and a kustom mega-blasta, so more of  amelee machine but capable of taking a few high quality (by orks standards) pot-shots as well.  This is pretty much counter to all the competitive advice on how to equip dreads in 9th edition, but they generally don't get used anyway owing to lousy internal balance in the current codex. 

The drill arm is straight out of the killa kans kit, and like all their arms is fully compatible with the dread's lower arm sockets.  The reverse is equally true, although sticking dread ranged weapons on a kan makes them look a bit lopsided to me (not necessarily a bad thing in ork eyes, mind you) and the smaller walkers can't use kustom mega-blastas.

Built as stock dreads have curved spaced armor on their shoulders and upper arms, which I've left off here.  I like the "Popeye" look it gives the arms, especially with the uneven sizes of those green sensor "eyes" it has.  Not sold on the long term durability of the armor plates anyway, their connection points are rather small for the size and weight of the model.

The twin engine assemblies on the back can also be swapped with the kan engines, and their exhausts can be switched around between assemblies.  The body of each engine comes in two pieces, and any left side can be paired with any right side.  The number of possible combinations is pretty huge with access to both kits. 

Trukks are pretty ubiquitous transport vehicles for many ork armies, but the kit isn't anywhere near as easy to vary the builds on as the walkers are.  You can easily do things like switch the driver and gunner from left to right, and I've left the big forward scrap metal armor plate off of this one, but most other things will require some real surgery to change the look much. 

The gunner comes in a sort of "gun tub" as a standard assembly, but it's a cramped fit so I opted to kitbash a small firing step to elevate him just enough to put his pintle mount on the railing instead.  The unused parts are in the bits box awaiting future projects.  The wrecking ball assembly is part of the "tub" but I prefer not to pay to upgrade to mount them, keeping my trukks as minimalist as possible.

As usual, I've gone for a rusty, dirty paint job on this thing.  The orange-white checkerboard is a unifying scheme for the current waaagh, although I've varied it on infantry mobs to help differentiate them from one another.

The trukk bed does offer a lot of potential for easy conversion, the easiest of which would be to add some cargo or leave off the spaced armor plates.  There's actually checkerboarding on the hull beneath them, which you can hardly see now that they're on.  Couldn't overcome the urge to paint them completely even though I knew they'd be mostly concealed.

The spaced armor are reversed from the building instruction, making them extend a tiny bit beyond the end of the bed and giving a little more room up by the loading/boarding ramps.

Trukks can carry up to twelve of most ork infantry, which is pretty hilarious when you look at how few models you can physically fit in the actual model.  The boyz really like crowding in when it gives them a chance to go for a ride.

Older versions of 40K had rules that let ork transports carry as many models as you liked, just piling them onto the thing in big untidy stacks.  The catch was that anything that fell off while you were moving the vehicle...well, fell off, taking damage and staying where it landed.  I can remember ork players in 2nd ed making these crazy pyramids of jumbled infantry models that inevitably resulted in "involutary dismounts" for some of them.  Keep in mind that most models were metal back then.  Chipped and battered paint jobs were commonplace for greenskins players back then.    

I cribbed some spare heads from other kits for the crew here but they're otherwise stock.  Their unique heads will be adding a bit variety to some future boys mob, of course.  They're best painted separately and then put into place, but the driver (who's part of his driver seat and controls) is pretty tricky to get into place.  It can be done, but you need to be patient.

There's almost enough room in the bed of the trukk to fit a can or dread even with its base on, and you could certainly fit the model without a base if you wanted to do something crazy like an ork kan-hauler.  Even 2nd edition wouldn't have allowed quite that much silliness (although the old gumball dreads were even smaller), but it does remind me of an idea that GW's demo guys were floating around when the first edition of Epic Space Marine first came out.  They got very enthusiastic about the idea of variant Rhino designs coming out in both 6mm and for 40K, including the modern day Whirlwind, Predator and Vindicator.  One concept that didn't appear was a "flatbed" Rhino that traded its troop compartment for a fighting platform designed specifically to carry a marine dreadnought, letting it fire its weaponry while hitching a ride on the vehicle.  

Always thought it was shame that one didn't make it into the game, but here's an opportunity to do it ork-style.  If I ever wind up with a spare kan maybe I'll give it a shot.  

Friday, November 11, 2022

Greenskins: Warhammer 40,000 Ork Killa Kans Gallery

Showcasing a unit of ork killa kans today, all armed with big shootas to keep their point cost down in the cheap and cheerful range.  They feature a modest amount of kitbashing and quite few minor part swaps with other ork kits, particularly the deff dred thanks to its many cross-compatible components.  Or should that be kross-kompatible komponents?  Orkspeak is hard on the old spellchecker for sure.

Kans come on 60mm bases just like the larger deff dred does.  They may be the least expensive model in the game with such a large base, although some of the new Imperial Guard weapon teams may steal that title when their 9th edition codex finally arrives.  Being a 3-6 model unit on such large bases makes for some unusual problems when it comes to navigating terrain, complicated by having the vehicle keyword.   

Da Boss Kan

This one's been converted to have a pair of spare shoota barrels (which count as its big shoota) attached to its hull, a heavily-modified wrecking ball from an ork trukk kit attached to a power ram arm as its main melee weapon, and a second melee weapon arm (which does nothing in game terms but looks cool).

Kan units don't really have leaders as such, but that's no reason not to include a model that stands out from the mob a bit.

I'm sure some nitwit will irritate me by telling me it's not WYSIWYG sooner or later, but the folks I usually play 40K with aren't that kind of people - which is why I play with them.

Mister Pinchy

I think the big claw arm is a part swap from the ork deff dred kit, but I'm not 100% positive of that.

The empty casings spewing out of the big shoota come from the ork boyz kit, and can also be found in the burna/loota kit.

The "skirt" is just a piece from the kans kit stuck on upside down.  I like to think it's good for keeping over-affectionate (or hungry) squigs from jumping up on the kan.

Drilla Killa

Almost a stock assembly here, nothing fancy.

I did fiddle with the angle the exhausts a bit though.

The original one has the long exhaust at a more vertical angle, which makes painting the engine detailing a bit of a pain because it runs so close.

Da Kan Wit' No Name

Because I couldn't think of something clever to call it, of course.

The big shoota on this one is heavily kitbashed, using the upper arm from the grotzooka piece, a gun from the deff dred kit, some scraps and bits to make it all hang together, and the same spent brass that Mister Pinchy used. 

Pretty happy with the way it came out.

Pizza Cutter

This one also uses a big shoota from the deff dred, which is an excellent source of spare weapons to round out the rather limited choices the kan kit comes with.

The deff dred also comes with two melee weapon arms designed to fit in its lower arm sockets, both of which are fully compatible with the kan kit and at least one of which is unique to the dredd, getting you variety if you use it on the kans instead.  You can swap can arms of any kind onto the dred's lower sockets, but they won't fit the upper ones, the shoulder ball is a different size despite the wrist socket fitting any of the many melee options between the two kits.

The big shoota here is another kitbash using the grotzooka upper arm, a buzzsaw from the ork nob kit, and some glyph plates to round it out.  The grotzooka weapon pieces are residing it the bits box awaiting use in a future project.

9th edition players will be quick to point out the numerous failings of killa kans, but they certainly are visually impressive models, and their low point cost (unless you start mounting the very expensive rokkit launchas on them) lets you field a unit or two without feeling like you've invested too much in them.  They come in groups of 3-6 and are boxed in threes, but I'm sticking with five-model units. That's partly to avoid giving Blast weapons a bonus, but the image below highlights a problem that I don't see mentioned by anyone - most likely because theoryhammer doesn't look at the physical miniatures much. 

If you go to six models your unit coherency requirement changes from being near one other model to two.  Those big 60mm bases make maneuvering in tight quarters hard enough, and when you need to keep three figs in a clump it's even harder. Getting bottlenecked is a real possibility with a full unit of these thing, and can easily cost you the opportunity to charge the target you want.  Pundits are quick to point out how much morale losses in a kan unit hurt, but that's nothing compared to how bad you'll feel if you slip up and leave your unit in a position where you can't remove a casualty without breaking coherency, or worse, just plain lose a model due to careless movement.  Better to stick to five if you're taking them at all.

Sunday, November 6, 2022

Frostgrave: A Few More Wizards

 Finished up the last of my female wizards from Frostgrave, although I still have a  vast supply of leftover bits that will no doubt make an appearance on other models in the future.

Four are the usual dynamic duos of wizard and apprentice.

Broke with the pattern on the last two.

The woman on the far left might be a wizard, but I was thinking more of an alchemist by way of being a chemical warfare expert loaded down with flasks and bottles and glass globes full of mysterious substances.

Built and painted these with an eye toward simplicity, which came out just the way I envisioned it.

Bit of a Gandalf the Gray vibe going on with them, and they're generic enough to serve as members of almost any school of wizardry.

These two use a much more colorful palette, and I'm quite happy with the way the white hair stands out here.

They're also quite a bit more heavily laden than the Gray Ladies, but still pretty all-purpose in term of school.

These last two are the oddballs of the group, and the alchemist is my favorite of the lot.  I imagine she's got a mix of poisonous and knockout gasses, semi-magical acidic solvents, and probably some kind pyrotechnic chemical making things go boom.

The other gal is a conversion that uses a spare head and arms (one of them bionic) from the Wargames Atlantic Cannon Fodder frame.  The left arm is a mechanical replacement for a lost limb (thanks to the new rules in Fireheart) while the right has had a hand holding a copper staff (because channeling electricity seems like an artificer kind of thing) from the Frostgrave kit swapped on.  The bracer on the arm makes that sort of thing much easier since you have a good place to cut without leaving having to repair any damage to the clothing.  The parts are a pretty good fit despite being from different companies.   

Been rather ill lately and I find the Frostgrave (and Stargrave) models make a nice, relaxing project to work on while I'm trying to stay upright.  Sadly I'm pretty much out at this point (aside from parts, so many parts) and the local store is doing a terrible job stocking the ranges, so I'm going to have to find something else to work on the next time I need some "just messing around" figs.  

Pity, I was hoping to get some of the demons and gnolls and the female Stargrave kits and...well, the list goes on where those two games are concerned.  Some of the best plastic minis ever made and a pleasure to work on.

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Dropfleet Commander Kitbash: Fuel Tanker

Quick post to show off a kitbashed fuel tanker using some spare parts from the Dropfleet Commander range.  About 2.25"/6cm long and uses parts from two Shaltari cruiser sprues.  Very simple build and not the best paint job I've ever done, but I rather like the look.

Mounted on a 1" hex base, which are getting pretty rare at this point.  Apparently the last mold for making them finally died sometime during the COVID shutdown and have yet to be replaced, which makes me wonder if they'll ever be coming back.  They've been around for close to fifty years and not having them available any more feels kind of weird, although they were never my favorite style of flight base and there are certainly plenty of other options still on the market.