Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Retronids, getting the most out of your OOP Tyranid models

 Greetings fellow wargamers:

I've been playing Tyranids a LONG time, and by a long time I mean since the mid 90's, back when the 2nd edition codex first reared it's head!  I can still remember that purple binding!  I've been in love with the Great Devourer since it first began its consumption of the universe.  But like all great relationships, time brings change.  New editions means new rules and new models.  So what's a hobbyist to do with all those old pewter hive tyrants, zoanthropes, and hormagaunts?  Why, keeping playing with them, of course!
 Things don't get old, they just get 'retro'.  Got an old Zoanthrope?  Convert it up into a Doom!  Got an old metal Gargoyle?  Rework it into a Parasite?  Got an old 3rd Edition Tyrant?  Now we're talking!  You've got some options . . . .
 This baby is a classic.  It's got many of the features seen in later models, such as the back spines, and hardened ribcage, the plating on it's forelegs, etc.  But it also has it's own style.  Back when this figure came out, the head plate was defiantely and Aliens' rip off and the tyranid 'style' was still being developed.  Nowadays the entire army has a definitive feel to it, but these models still have a place in your collection!

The narrow stances of this figure manes it can fit onto a 40mm base comfortably.  The arm sockets are larger enough to accommodate the bites from the current tyranid monstrous creature line.  So that gives you a choice in my book, . . . you can either choose to count this bad boy as a retro hive tyrant (or swarmlord) or count it as a prime.  Since a 40mm base IS the base the model came with, then it's perfectly legal strickly speaking to do so.
 For this particular figure you can see I swapped the head out for a more modern tyrant head.  I did, however, modify it a great deal.  Firstly I clipped off the horn.  I felt the horn was indicative of hierarchy, so I felt that as a prime he wouldn't have this.  Secondly, I added a new cranium piece.  It's a combination of a tyranid warrior head, with a carnifex tail piece, joined with some sculpting work.  Overall, I wanted him to look like a big ass warrior.  I think overall it gives the impression I was going for.  And you won't have nay trouble trying to get him to stand out on the tabletop, that's for sure.
 The old pewter figures require a bit more car and work, of course.  This figure's arms and head had to be pinned and epoxied in place to make sure it would withstand a few games.  Such is the life when bonding metal to plastic.  But it'll ensure this figure is good to go for another 10 years!
We are White Metal Games, a full service miniature painting and assembly service based out of Raleigh, NC.  We are always looking for new clients that share our love of wargaming and wants some models custom built and painted to their taste!  Check out our gallery here to see more of our work!

What do you think?  Too big for a prime?  Why I showed you mine, why don't you show me yours!  PUT YOUR MINIS WHERE YOUR MOUTH IS!

Game on!

Caleb, WMG

Monday, April 29, 2013

The tale of Spunky, the littlest Plague Drone!

Greetings fellow wargamers!  When GW first released their Blight Drones at the release of the Chaos Daemons codex, I knew there was conversion gold potential in the product!  My mind was swimming with visions of Fly Princes of Nurgle, Beasts of Nurgle, Spawn, and Drones!  I was struck by how similar the basic shapes of the Plague Drone of Nurgle by GW and the Blight Drone of Nurgle by Forgeworld were, in fact.  But how would they scale up?  That was the question I set out to answer . .. .

 As you can see, size wise, the models are pretty night and day.  I had a sneaking suspicion going in that they wouldn't be in the same league, but alas, I had to see it for myself.  I've heard more than a few people mention the idea of buying a box of Plague Drones and turning them into a squad of whirliwigs of pestilence . .  sit your fears aside, that threat is no longer credible.  Behold, the spoils of a few hours hard work.  I think in friendly games this model would be more than acceptable, but in tournament play . . . well, I wouldn't risk it.  I'd just go the whole nine yards and buy the official model from Forgeworld.

Now, that being said, a model like this DOES have it's uses.  It could make a great poor man's proxy until someone had enough money sit aside to buy a larger drone.  You could build it on your own for less than $30 bucks! (or you can just buy it here and save yourself the labor and time!)

It could make an interesting 'stealth drone' maybe with a little less armor, a slightly weaker gun, few hull points, and maybe the stealth or shrouded special rule, or maybe even the scout rule!  Something to sit it apart from it's bigger brother.
 Finally, I could see this making a fun themed objective marker in a Nurgle army.  Maybe it's a prototype drone that the forces of Chaos MUST have returned to them!  .
 There are lots of little things I could do to this model to make it a bit more nurglified.  For example, the housings on the vectored engines could be smeared with epoxy and stippled to better match the big daddy drone.  I could have added more hoses to the under body, etc.  But once I'd answered the question of scale to scale to comparison, I felt I had done by duty to the wargaming community, and I find other projects calling my name.

White Metal Games is a full service miniature painting and assembly service.  Check us out here!  
 Be sure to check out our gallery of images, where you'll find thousands of interesting models like the above.
 Convinced you could do better?  Well, better get your dronies!  Pick up a box from Rob here!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Cairn Wraith of Khorne using Forgeworld Blood Slaughter Bits

Greetings fellow wargamers!

A few months ago the conversion bug bit me and bit me hard.  I had purchased the FW Blood Slaughterer of Khorne on ebay, which comes with several extra bits.  I thought about using them on a Daemon Prince or Helbrute, but I wanted to do something a bit more grande and original.  Recently I had been experimenting with the WFB Cairn Wraith figure, and I really like the hunched over look of the wraith.  I also loved the motley robes.  Also being a fan of the Greater Brass Scorpion of Khorne, where the souls of the damned are literally intertwined within the cables of the machine . . . an idea struck me.  Perhaps I could come up with something new.

Hence this beastie was born.  I'm not sure what I might could this thing as.  Perhaps a Daemon Prince, or a Greater Daemon.  Maybe a hellbrute with two close combat weapons.  But regardless of which, There's something vile about the figure I really like.  It's bio-mechanical look, with leering faces poking out from behind the ruined robes that barely cover it's writhing form . .  it's just the right kind of creepy to me.

For the torso I started with something simple .  . like a small ball.  Then I used a heat gun to warm up some spare lasher tendrils I had lying around.  I wrapped these around the ball, to get a basic 'torso' shape.  I then sprinkled in some spare crypt horror bits I had in my box to create the overly large leering faces.

Using a combo of grey stuff and plastic cloaks/capes, I created the funerary shrouds that cover the beastie.  This was also a great way to conceal the joins for the arms and lower tail section.
When painted up, I imagine giving this thing a sort of etheral quality, like a ghost or spectre, fading from green at the bottom to red at the top.  Stay tuned for painted pictures!  I think with some interesting base features, this could really be a nice center piece for a Chaos army or a Daemons army.
My name is Caleb and I am the owner and operator of White Metal Games.  WMG is a miniature painting studio operating out of Raleigh, NC.  We also offer consignment, conversion, and terrain making as services.  Check out our site here!