Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Variations on a theme : Pilots for warhammer 40000

Today's is a symbolic post since it's my 200th ! I'm making progress for my model to celebrate the 200th follower of this blog (model has just been primed) so celebrations are all going well !

I'd like to come back on a bunch of models I painted in a rush for my Rogue Trader game at Octogône
I wanted to have a bunch of pilots as they make nice supporting models and good potential NPCs in games. I used them as objectives in our game and it was nice to see players interact with them !
The intersting part about this group is the model selection I think. I'm not very selective about models I paint in general, my fancy often goes to older models because I enjoy painting them more than I enjoy painting modern ones but I find nice ones everywhere, whatever the maker and whatever the age. SO I thought it would be fun to paint 3 versions of a same concept but with very different models to see  :

- If painting alone can tie different styles
- which kind of models I like most

First model is of course the pilot from the RT adventurer range :

Picture from Solegend
The pilot is shown in action with his helmet off and his hand on the headphones. His slightly crouched poistion suggest he is in the middle of action which is quite usual to see amongst models of that era. The sculpt is nice though it's not very refined and more on the caricatural side than anything.

The second one is a resin model from Blightwheel and he's a mecha pilot :

The style is clearly different with far more realistic body proportions (making the head and hands look very small). The resin also means the details are way finer than on any metal model and some of them are actually VERY fine (almost too much for me). I hadn't looked at the "official" paintjob prior to painting mine so the inverted colour scheme is a fluke.

Last model is a simple Kitbash in the vein of what you'd see in INQ28 communities where usual 40k concepts are pushed on the grimdark side by mixing imperial pieces with Imperial guard

Painting wise I obviously opted for a unified colourshceme as part of the idea behind that was to try and tie them together despite their obvious differences. I was compelled to using my usual Marine blue and off-white with red as a spot colour because I wanted a traditional marine vibe for them.
Some added checkers on the shoulderpads and the same leathers helped tie those models together I think.
The paintjob is clearly a rushed one as I did those in the 2 days prior to the event. Still, I think they play their part more than well and I think they do not look too weird next to each other (especially at tabletop distance). Without a surprise, the bulkier of all 3 is the plastic kitbash with modern pieces and the feat he's the only one with his helmet on doesn't help a lot...

As far as painting is concerned I didn't learn anything I didn't know, I'm still having hard time enjoying painting plastics (though I really do love kitbashing and resin models really are over detailed for my taste and skill. The metal model is perhaps not the best sculpt/cast around but it's like an old pair of slippers, you just feel comfy with those kind of models and there's something in the pose and character that immedaitely state what he is.

For once I have pictures of my models in action so even if I've already posted them, you can have another round !

The pilots being rescued by an imperial fanatic escorted by a robot

The pilots have decided they've had enough and that safety's their main goal now.
What's gonna come next ? I don't know... I'm working on my 2015 Orctober entry which is a little more challenging than the previous years, I'll have more models for the Champions of Law and I'm also working a some commisions I foolishly accepted !
I gues sno man should ever complain about having a full plate in front of him. Take care.


  1. You're really cranking out the figures at the moment JB! The pilots look great as a group in spite of the scaling differences - the paint scheme does a good job in tying them together nicely. I confess, like you, the metal RT figure presses the right buttons for me. However, the plastic kitbash is very successful.

    I wish all 3 good luck in their eternal cycle of crashing and getting rescued ;)

    1. Cheers ! I have to say the resin one is very good but as often with resin models, it suffers from an awkward pose which you'd expect on a classical oil painting more than on an actual battlefield (but that's just my opinion).
      I hope their role will not only be to crash and be saved though it seems inevitable with crashed aircarft scenery and pilots that the story will repeat itself as you guessed !

  2. Great comment Axiom:

    "I wish all 3 good luck in their eternal cycle of crashing and getting rescued ;)"


    I'd never thought about the larger hands and other exaggerated features on lead minis JB. I suppose that's a good enough reason why I too prefer them over resin. I've only painted a couple of them up & I didn't enjoy it much either.

    I reckon the colour scheme looks good. It's every painters bugbear, trying to find a unifying -and at the same time- individual colour scheme for batch painting. They look suitably "officer like" :)

    Your a bloody machine with your painting output too! You must be taking some secret French elixir of paintiness or something similar :D

    Good show JB.

    1. Well, real life happened and change my personal situation. Only good point is that I have more free time now hence the raised output. ^^
      I'll paint a fucntional shuttle so they can alternate between "escape" missions and "being saved after crash" ones!

  3. Maybe the Blight Wheel one could use a bigger head & hands set, you know :D, but they look great, you made a really nice unification work with them :)

    1. I just used it as is, It's fine with the line it is from and I painted this one since it was a gift from a very nice person. I think he just looks fine.

      Cheers !

  4. Youre really cranking out the figs lately AM, good on you. I think they look great especially considering the variety in sculpts, no mean feat and your speed paint is better than most painter's output at any speed. Your point about the joys of kitbashing plastics is very true; tons of fun until it is time to lay paint!

    1. I'm not, I will have finished 0 models this week !!!

      Joke aside, I can see ho different mediums each have their own appeal and use them depending on my intent (and what I have available of course).

      Thanks !

  5. Can painting alone can tie different styles? Yes. You certainly did. :)
    To be honest I wasn't even aware of the scaling differences until I read your blog and the comments. Then I did.

    1. Cheers ! It tends to show those scaling issue are not a big problem if you don't want it to be. It's even less of a problem once they're on the tabletop really. All in all we had a pretty wide range of models and makers and it just blended alright for our purpose.


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