Saturday, 31 January 2015

Heroes of the Praetorian IV Mechanised Infantry - Gallery photos part 1

Keeping up this new found regularity of posts here are some of the promised updated gallery photos of the army!

Starting with some of the heroes of the glorious Praetorian IV Mechanised Infantry.

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First up we have some very old and some very new favourites within the army. Starting from the left we have the Praetorian Hunting Ridgeback of Colonel Winterborne. It's the cyberdog that accompanies the enforcer and was a forge world event only model from a few years back.

In the middle we have the senior liaison officer with the Mechanicus, Vitus Theron. This is the old metal Cadian Colonel who featured on a golden demon entry over 10 years ago. Over the years he has proxied for many a different officer or advisor.

Finally on the right we have one of the Colonel's bodyguards, Chuxo, from one of the native nomadic tribes of Praetoria Secondus.

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Here we have Colonel Winterborne and the Regimental Command. On the left we have the medic, standard bearer with the regimental banner depicting the slaying of the Ork Warboss Raguk during the second war for Armageddon. To the right we have comms adjunct and a veteran guardsman. Finally in the middle we have Colonel Animus Winterborne.

The squad were converted from the DKOK command squad using Victoria Lamb and Curious Construct heads and with plenty of green stuff on collars, aquila on helmets and the epaulettes. Additionally the banner is an old blood angel assault marine banner with the original Praetorian top and a copper rod for the pole.

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Another very old miniature, veteran sergeant Castor Varren who is a plastic Cadian and greenstuff conversion I made over 10 years ago. He had proxied for the old sergeant Bastonne, master of ordinance and even a commissar!

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Another of my historical relics! If I remember correctly the preacher was painted up (once again over 10 years ago) to form part of an inquisitorial war band. The inquisitor and most of the group were sold on eBay, however the preacher became attached to Praetorian IV.

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While not individual characters the Praetorian Chosen men are certainly heroes of the regiment. Wearing the green piping and white tipped feather awarded to marksmen and the Chosen men are some of the best shots within the Praetorian regiments.

They are converted from a mix of Victoria Lamb miniatures and the plastic Cadians. There is green stuff work on the hats and cuffs. There are still two of these guys to finish painting to bring the squad up to 5. They've stood in as ratlings before in the absence of viable human snipers. Although I've yet to play a game of 7th or with the new codex, I imagine they will be ratings once more.

This concludes part 1 of the Heroes of the regiment, I hope I've managed to finally produce some better quality photos that show my painting in a better light!

Any comments always welcome, stay tuned for the next post with the tech priest, captain caine and much more...

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

The battle for Research Station Epzoid Kappa. prologue

Extract from 'Our Darkest Hour: The Ork Invasion of Kallax', by sub-Commandar Reynor Armsworth, Kallax III PDF.
"While it was inevitable that the massive Ork horde would eventually reach the walls of Mercatura Hive, it was far from certain how quickly they would reach it and how much of their formidable forces would be intact when they got there.  At this point it was the job of the Imperial Commanders to harry the Ork forces as much as possible with their most mobile divisions in order to distract, slow and disrupt whatever passes for order in an Ork Waaagh!
During this period I had the honour of being one of the many communications officers for Tactical Command based in the Trade Precinct of Mercatura Hive.  I witnessed many extraordinary engagements during this part of my career, some roaring successes, others dismal failures.
As with most wars, the eventual outcome pivoted on just a few key engagements. For a time I was posted as a communications liaison officer for the Praetorian IV Mechanised Infantry who fought in one of these most important of battles.  Their Commander at the time, Colonel Animus Winterborne, had already made himself famous from his daring (and perhaps foolhardy) activities in the Timus Mountains at the start of the campaign, and now was to take part in an even more important event.
Research Station Epzoid Kappa was a rare joint venture between Imperial and Mechanicum personnel.  While the story of how such an unusual working arrangement came about is an interesting tale in itself, it is of little relevance to the battle that put a final end to its use.
The research station became of tactical importance primarily due to its incredible high strength aerial scanning array.  While its intended use was to study the extraordinary electrical storms and meteorological affects that developed across the plains in the summer months, it had soon been discovered by the Imperial Commanders that it could be used as a radar system with unparallelled accuracy.  Its intricate and revolutionary design meant it could pinpoint aircraft within a couple of meters, in real time, through any clouds or weather effects and with enough information on their direction, size and exhaust wake to work out exactly what was in the air and when.
For a few days this gave the Imperial forces such a tactical advantage that they were able to completely dominate the air space above the plains even though their aircraft were outnumbered more than fifty to one.  In this brief period countless airstrikes were unleashed on poorly defended Ork ground forces, slowing them down and buying precious time for the defenders of Mercutura Hive.
Dumb as a single Ork appears to be, it seems certain that one of them figured out where this technical marvel was located and planned a counter move.  A massive Ork aerial force descended upon the facility, large and fast enough that no matter what information was gathered on it, it could barely be slowed before it had carpet bombed the entire facility.
The Orks were not wasteful in their destruction however, as they used almost exclusively incendiary ammunitions to wipe out any resistance offered.  While this preserved the precious equipment that the Orks no doubt planned to utilise for themselves, it also saved the lives of some of the facility's inhabitants who were lucky enough to be in more secure bunkers.  These few survivors were able to report back to Tactical Command and give just enough warning so that Colonel Winterborne's mechanised infantry could arrive in time to meet the Orks on an even footing."

Saturday, 24 January 2015

The evolution of the Praetorian IV

I started writing this blog back in November 2011 as a way to kick start my hobbying after the best part of a decade away.

The army was fairly small in a state of some disrepair those years ago and in dire need of some attention. In terms of how many points I could field painted, it was little more than 1000pts (if that!), I remember that when I played back then I would tool up as much as possible just to fill the points!

Now I strip everything down to the bare lasguns and can field over 4000pts! Times have indeed changed and hopefully they will change some more so that I will be posting photos of 8000pts in another year or two!

How the army has changed over the years. In no small part due to the inspiration and support of all my followers on here. Lets take a look at some old blog photos and take a stroll down Praetorian memory lane...

Up first we have three photos from the very first post back in November 2011. Here we have the predecessor to colonel Winterborne. Before I converted the DKOK command squad I used the original command section models and had Cadian colonel filling. The colonel was originally painted for a golden daemon entry circa 2003/4 when we was mascarading as a titan princeps accompanied by an epic titan legion battle group.

This photo shows all the tanks in their original form. They were painted also in circa 2003 and featured transfers and an utter lack of my now common battle damage and freehand. The main camo colour of the tanks proved to be impossible to replicate due to the change in the paint ranges (snakebite leather sadly bit the zandri dust...) and you will later see the progression in colour in the newer tanks.

Also the eagle eyes will notice the 'exterminator' which has heavy bolters in the turret too! If the veteran (I guess I'm a veteran these days despite being only late 20s) among you cast your mind back, over a decade ago GW released rules that meant you could build your own tanks and pay for various weapons, armour values etc. This variant was to be the Leman Russ Bulldog! I eventually tracked down some autocannons back in 2012 and brought it up to STC spec.

The only infantry at this time was one 10 man squad, the command section and the lancers. A pitiful excuse of an army in all honesty! It was high time I got painting!

Now we fast forward to June 2012. After a frantic 6 months of painting the army went to war in the Badab sector and made the journey up to Warhammer World. They featured the innovation of the explosion markers (I believe I was one of the first to do this) which caught a lot of people's eye and we now have the converted rough riders, storm troopers, commissar lord, a load more tanks and infantry and of course the good colonel himself!

This was the first of several accolades for the army as I picked up best painted!

In terms of addition to the army this must be the golden age of productivity! I need to recapture that drive and get back to it. Perhaps its time for a campaign weekend or big battle to get me motivated...

We now have August 2012 and Praetorian High Command saw fit to attach a mighty Macharius Vanquisher to the army. This photo was taken on the Khemri display board at Warhammer World and is probably the only time the desert camo army has actually been in the desert!

A return to Warhammer World December 2012 where the army picked up another Best Painted! Here we see some fortifications, a couple more forgeworld tanks and some more heavy weapons. Every time I went up there forgeworld stole my money. I say stealing because I really had no say in the matter.

Another photo of the army taken the same weekend, making the most of the lovely gaming boards for some more spectacular photos. That cardboard box under the table contains the next addition to the army. Any ideas what it could be?

On the red ash of the Armageddon wastes we see the army July 2013. We now have the Thunderbolt fighter, the thudd guns, techpriest a few more guardsmen and the chosen men. The army cleaned up in terms of killing orks and was narrowly beaten into second in terms of painting by a beautiful Sisters army.

And now back to present day with the photos taken earlier just a few days ago.

The notable additions now are the two Taurox. Sadly due to real life hobby time has been much reduced in the last year and so the expansion of the army has stalled a few times. A couple of big moves have been causing all sort of problems however with the new year and less moves, we are hopefully heralding in a new age of hobby prosperity for the brave soldiers of Praetoria!

Thanks for following everyone! I'll do my best to keep the posting up!

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Praetorian IV Mechanised Infantry whole army photos

Greetings everyone

This post has been a long time in coming. My last photo of the whole army is woefully out of date so I think it is high time I took a new one. I've also finally taken lots of new individual photos of various units which will be featuring in future posts.

Whenever I check other people's blogs one of my favourite things is always the photos of their whole army. For me, seeing a beautifully painted army is really what this hobby is all about!

So without further ado here is the glorious Praetorian IV Mechanised infantry.

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Here we have all the fully painted elements of the army. It's been a while since I've played a game. In fact a long while, they've never taken to the field as astra militarium! If I had to make a guess on the points value of the army I'd think it would be about 4000pts.

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A few closer photos that were taken while setting the army up. I'm still getting the hang of this photo taking business. It's a skill that I need to master!

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Here we have the entire IV Mechanised, including the unpainted reinforcements. This will give you an idea of quite how much of a mammoth painting challenge lies ahead! We have the bane blade, wyvern, a couple of infantry platoons, highland guard, bullgryns...

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If I get any more guard I'm going to need to get a bigger table...

In the next post I will take you through some (i hope they are) high definition close ups of some units which will hopefully be able to properly convey the details on the models and my painting. Its one of my frequent comments from followers I meet in the flesh 'they look much better in the flesh'!

Thanks for having a look!

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

What's on the painting table?

Hey everyone!

So roughly a week after my last update we have another! I'm trying to stick to my resolutions and post lots of lovely updates for your enjoyment.

A brief post for the moment just giving you a snapshot of what lies on my painting table and a glimpse of what models you can expect to appear in posts soon.

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Here we are mid way through painting the main colour on the tanks. Just a couple more drybrushes to go and then it'll be on to all the detail.

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Here is the Baneblade at the Baylor brown stage of painting. Don't worry it usually looks it a bit yellowy at this stage.

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Here we see the mortar teams (years overdue) the remaining 5 lifeguards and the two almost finished riflemen.

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Here we have the bullgryns lurking behind the Highland Scions. I'm very much looking forward to painting these guys.

In my next post I will have some more painted models for you!

Thanks for reading

Monday, 5 January 2015

Bullgryn Update

Happy new year to everyone!

Here's the first of many many more posts this year. I've made a number of resolutions to myself this year and one of them is to get back to hobbying and blogging!

The bullgryns will be the first project of the new year and at the same time I'm going to review my blog and have a think about updating all the various parts of it.

To kick us off her is the latest WIP photo of the bullgryn. He is the test bullgryn so is currently being worked on solo, however when I then go on to paint the other 4 and Nork I will post tutorials for the other aspects of the model. In the last post I covered the armour and the trousers.

In the above picture you will see that the skin is now painted with the eyes simply shaded for the time being. The grey will eventually be white like the rest of the belts etc on the army and the rest of the model has been undercoated black. 

I've learnt a lot from this model already and know some mistakes I need to avoid when painting the rest of the squad. The armour makes painting some parts of the model an absolute nightmare as there is detail buried in the cracks. To avoid this on the future models I am going to consider having a second black undercoat in between the gas mask and the armour/neck so that at least no white shows through. 

Hopefully the next post will show this guy fully painted and then the posts that follow showing the steps on the rest of the squad. 

Thanks for reading!