Monday, October 5, 2009

Space Hulk Minatures



After 20 years, Games Workshop finally released an updated version of the minature boardgame, Space Hulk. I loved the game as a kid and it was what got me hooked on the Warhammer 40,000 Universe.

The Warhammer franchise is basically a minature table-top gaming series which allows collectors to build their own army of minature figurines and then to battle it out on various terrains modelled on table-top (kinda like a diorama) The Warhammer 40,000 story line is one of the few flagship titles from Games Workshop- they've got minature games for Lord of the Rings, Warhammer fantasy (set in medieval times), Epic battles, etc.
See here for their official website

So when I first heard that Space Hulk would be re-released, I was estatic- a blast from the past. However, the website said that all stocks world-wide had already been pre-ordered! Luckily, I managed to secure a set from the great guys at Paradigm Games in Orchard.
Here's a link to Games Workshop's intro on Space Hulk and you can see why we Gen-X fanboys are so hooked on it. Click here for Space Hulk: First Contact

Well, one of the best but most tedious part of minature gaming is having to paint your own army-- sure you can play with it unpainted, but where's the fun in that?

So here I started with the models still unassembled:

These are the Space Marines 'Blood Angels' models. You can see that on the left, I've just coated all the pieces with Bone White primer and on the right I've started to lay a foundation of Blood Red to the pieces.


Here,I'm starting to paint the more difficult pieces in smally details as well as to use paints that are mixed in batches. For the weapons, I mixed silver, with foundation of Chaos Black as well as Badab Black wash to give it a dull metallic glint so that the weapons look more aged.

Since I was a relative newbie to minature painting, I decided to start with the alien Tyranids first (after all if I mess up, I can always claim that this is how the aliens look :P)
So with a coat of black primer laid down, I proceeded to give a base coat of Leviathan purple



I then proceeded to fill in the highlights and detailing. Here is the work in progress for the 'Boss' Tyranid, the Brood Lord:


I washed the model with various shades of blue and purple to create a ripplied effect. I did the same with the skulls- originally they were all bleached white but that did not give them any depth, so i washed them with sepia to make them look aged. I liked that effect more.
This is my finished Brood Lord


The new edition box set has much improved models compared to the original I play as a kid- you've now got tyranid aliens in various poses: emerging from the floor, scuttling down the walls, etc.



With some experience with the Tyranids, I proceeded to paint the Space Marine 'Blood Angels'


The detailing here was more complicated since each marine was outfitted with different gear and many had specific heraldry and insignia to be painted.
The various shoulder pads, banners, skulls, amulets to be painted required me to work out a scheme. Basically, what I did was paint all the armour Red, then all the weapons, then all the skulls on each model-- in that way, I worked through methodically from color to color and touching up each model as I assembled it towards the end.

I had problems with the Bone White primer as it gave a powdery finish, but it worked well for the skulls as the powdery texture made them look more organic as opposed to the smoother surfaces of the marines armour. More of a chance happening than by intention.


However, my two personal favourite models in terms of their moulding and painting, were the 2 I had saved for last. By this time, I seemed to get the hang of things and my hand was more sure in coloring.
So here's the Dead Marine on Throne and the Blood Angels Librarian:



It was an enjoybale experience painting these during the last 2 weeks as it help me to unwind and destress after the series of mock exams and prelims for the students.
Now, back to the grind to prepare the graduating class for their final O-Levels and finish up for planning for Veloci-T Camp in Nov.

Will update samples of Space Hulk game play for interested readers. Hope this entry sheds some light on what I do and enjoy in my free time as well as to give some of you boys an insight into a fascinating hobby to take up during the holidays :)

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