Hello chaps, quite an exciting update today – I’ve had a major push on my Frostgrave/Rogue Trader crossover project, and have a bunch of WIPs to show you as a result… I don’t normally like posting B&W WIP shots, but I think that I could use a sanity check on these guys – I’ve gone a bit mini-blind.
So, the idea is (very roughly) to reappraise the background fluff for Myrleia, barbarian warrior of the Azmaa. At the time, I loosely described the Azmaa as a tribe that forms part of a techno-barbarian civilisation – nominally under Imperial control, but infrequently visited and rather isolated from the wider galaxy. I imagine that such tribes would largely keep to themselves, but might gather once a year to share tales about noble star warriors and ravaging monsters from beyond the night sky. Many generations might pass between actually seeing such wonders and horrors, allowing such things to pass into legend. Technology would likely be treated with indifference – some things with long lasting power packs might be useful, (such as lights and crude bionics), but items that consumed ammunition and the like would be shunned in favour of more reliable low-tech solutions. Scavenged tech might also feature in either a functional or ornamental capacity. I also wondered what might happen if the mutant psyker gene were to manifest among the Azmaa – would such individuals be reviled and feared, or would they fulfil the role of Shaman… If the latter, then such individuals might become powerful in ways unimaginable to the dogmatic Imperium, mastering and manipulating elemental forces in unprecedented ways. Might some even become powerful enough to walk the planes between worlds? Travelling outside time and space, might they even be able to reach alternate realities? Well… I propose that they might indeed, and this idea is the basis for my Frostgrave Warband – a group of time/space/dimension hopping travellers from the Azmaa… y’know… because magic…
From a modelling perspective, I wanted to revisit the playfulness of mixing old fantasy minis with modern 40k bits, as I did for this lovely lady – Myrleia of the Azmaa:
Logic (?!?) dictated that I went back to the Chaos Thug line, so I snapped up a handful of old Marauder chaos archers & command figures as my starting point. They have a really cool Native American vibe that puts me in mind of the Muties from the rather excellent Amtrak Wars novels by Patrick Tilley. I haven’t read them for decades, but I do remember enjoying them very much as a teenager, and I’m planning to re-read the series for further inspiration. Anyway, I digress… The lead was chopped, filed and trimmed to remove the bits I didn’t want. Much swearing and blood-letting was offered up to the uncaring hobby gods, before modern plastic was cajoled into place – the aim was for just enough fantasy to show through, while being unmistakably 40k… a very fine line to tread. Did I succeed? You be the judge…
This is my ‘Wizard’ and his ‘Apprentice’ – really happy with how these guys turned out, the static pose of the older, (presumably wiser), man with the leg brace contrasts nicely with the younger man being more dynamic and aggressive looking. Their staffs really place them in the 41st Millennium – who knows, maybe the servitor skulls atop them still contain a shred of life. Note the use of clocks to suggest Chronomancery:
Next up we have some ‘thugs’… a mix of sci-fi hand weapons on show (literally in one case!). Not too much to say for these guys really, but they certainly look thuggish to me:
Here we have a pair of ‘Archers’ – I had to do a lot of searching to find suitably hi-tech bows for these guys, but I eventually sourced them in a cheap zombie survivors kit. I’m really pleased with the final result here – the ‘Archer’ class was the one I was most worried about pulling off:
Finally, we have a ‘Soldier’ (double handed weapon), and a ‘Treasure Hunter’ (bow & staff). I’m particularly pleased with the Treasure Hunter – the staff looks like it doubles as some kind of scanning device, which fits the class quite nicely I think:
So, that’s it to date – I have some Greenstuffing to do to tidy up some of the rougher bits, but the main build is largely finished. I think that I’ve managed to walk that fine line between fantasy and 40k here, but I would certainly welcome any comments and advice at this point… you know how it is when you are too close to a project, and you lose perspective :-/
Oh, and as a bonus, and just to prove that I haven’t been entirely idle with the brush – I managed to finish off this enigmatic Lizard Stalker type… still no idea who or what he is, just the latest, (and most successful), of my efforts to translate Lizard Men into the 41st Millennium… Enjoy:
Those techno barbarians really give me a full boner, I’d love to paint some like those (might have a couple of them actually)
Brilliant idea really, I’m in love.
Thanks for the positive response JB… I’m delighted that you, er, like them that much! :-)
Seriously, you know what it’s like when you’re too close to a project, and you ain’t sure if it’s good or crap?? Yeah… that’s where I found myself, so it’s great to get feedback at this point… thanks a million mate :-)
Totally see what you mean, finding the right balance betwseen doing enough but not too much is sometime hard when your head is in the steering wheel. These are a definite win as far as i’m concerned.
Great conversions mate :)
Thanks Warbs… tell you something mate, chopping up lead to that extent really takes it out of the fingers… I lost count of all the nicks, slices and puncture wounds… and I was being careful!
I’m really liking this concept man. Looks like a shit load of work, cutting up lead. I admire your dedication. Those bows are really, really cool. I like the leg brace, nice touch, and those clock things dangling from the staffs are spot on man. Where did you get the clock things? My favourites are the thugs. The thugs look like all the bouncers I’ve ever had a spot of bother with in my youth haha. Great work mate. I can’t wait to see them painted. Is it just me, or has it been too damn long for a post from you sir?
lol – 7 days is too long? ;-) Glad you like mate, and in a way it’s down to you – weren’t you the one who said you wanted to hear & see more about the Azmaa?? You planted the seed good sir, so thank you :-)
The leg brace was born of necessity – just scraps of plastic to hide a horrible piece of cutting, and the clocks are all AdMech dials & doodabs. I know what you mean about the bows… I’m ridiculously pleased with them. It’s funny how it all comes together sometimes, isn’t it? Oh, and yeah… those thugs look like they would be quite at home working the doors of some shitty bar…
Did I miss a post? I’ll have a better look, but yes 7 days is too long haha. I’m glad I helped spur you on.
I think you’ve improved on them quite a bit, but if I could offer one bit of criticism, I’d lose the futuristic bows & gun them up instead. After all, the bow guys in this range are IMHO the weakest of the bunch because of their mono posed stance. The new bows just remind me of their failing in their fantasy guise.
Aside from my critique, your conversion work is outstanding! You’ve created some unique, individual minis that I’ve never seen converted up before. You should feel rightfully proud. INQ28 eat your heart out :)
Thanks for the kind words mate – I adore the Inq28 scene for its creativity and conversion-genius, so to have an essentially OldHammer project compared to I28 is very pleasing :-)
I do hear you about the bows – archer sculpts are pretty dull compared to the more sexy sword-swingers! However, I am going to keep them in this case – guns would be pushing it a little too far for Frostgrave I think :-)
Bravo!! Oh man, you did quite a work here! The tech-barbarian take is not that easy, you take the risk of overdoing it, but you certainly got them to the point. I also have the zombie survivors kit, I’m planning to use it in combination with the AdMech box. But you are leading the way!
Thanks Suber, glad you like ’em mate :-) There’s some nice bits in those kits for sure – I’m thinking the RPGs might come in handy…
Finally got the chance to sit down and have a proper look at these and I have to say – nice work once again mate! The conversions merge seamlessly between 40k and fantasy (especially like the rebreather on the apprentice – dare I say masterfully done?). Nice use of recurring items (for example the clocks) to tie the whole band together. Oh and credit to you for hacking through all that metal as well, that’s always a real slog.
The only (minor) quibble I have is the middle thug. He’s holding the knife as though he’s presenting it (static pose) but he appears to be wielding the severed head (dynamic pose). Maybe turn the knife through 90 degrees so it’s horizontal – that way it should look like he’s fighting hard, blocking with his knife whilst clobbering his adversary with the skull?
Liking the Lizard-stalker too, you’ve done the conversion justice with the paint job :-)
Aw, thanks mate, always good to get your expert feedback on things :-) I know what you mean about ‘Thug 2’… he’s my least favourite of the group :-/ I was aiming for a ‘look what I just did to your mate with this ‘ere knife!’ kinda pose, but yeah… it’s a bit flat. I’ll take a look later & see if I can fix him up a bit. Oh, thanks for commenting on the Lizard Stalker btw – not been much love for this guy, but I really like him! I keep telling myself that he has been overshadowed by the spectacular Azmaa warband ;-)
Dude! Love where this project is going! Glad to see you solved the bow issue, those compound bows fit perfectly. You’re putting my more generic thugs to shame ;)
:-) Cheers mate, I may be bringing shame on your thug game, but I bet you still have all your blood on the inside, don’t you!
Great work on these conversions of the old Thugs – and a very clever straddling of the line between fantasy and 40k. I think they’ll work quite nicely in either genre.
Thanks mate – that’s what I’m hoping :-)
oooh very cool! I love their fluff! And the conversions are rad as hell!
My fav of the bunch is the wizards apprentice. The techtribal vibe is so inspiring. two years ago or so I wanted to make a small group of techno barbarians that would be the proto-priests of Mars. Now I feel like taking that idea up again.
crazy eighties rock hair, gasmasks and cogwheel axes maaan!
Do it – that idea is a whole box full of awesome mate :-)
gotta finish some projects first. But I got some overkill genestealers coming in the mail soon. They could form a nice retro space suit wearing foundation for the early priesthood
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