Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Battle-scarred power armour experimentation

There are many tabletop game players who utilise pristine painted and un-damaged armour. This is particularly true of space marine players in warhammer 40,000.  But as one gets a little older and wiser, perhaps even more skilled with painting and modelling, the urge to demonstrate weathering on armour as well as battle damage increases.  Many of my Nurgle Death Guard army demonstrates this to greater or lesser extents; as an example, my plague marine tactical squads (squad one; squad two; squad three) show a large number of conversions that accentuate the damage accumulated during battle. Indeed, individual miniatures (particularly the Forge World Death Guard set) demonstrate ways in which to add battle damage to armour quite readily.

Today, I wanted to demonstrate a few simple things that even a starting modeller might like to think about doing to start modelling battle-scarred power armour and encourage them to do a little experimentation of their own.

The easiest thing to do is to drill holes in plastic armour to represent physical damage from bolt gun rounds. In the image below, we can see several holes drilled in a line along both pieces depicted. To add an extra level of detail, I've added radial lines away from the centre of the holes to suggest blast damage that has come out of the hole (i.e. the bolt round exploded near the surface of the armour or slightly deeper and has ripped out chunks of the surrounding ceramite.

The next step to consider is complete hacks of armour to suggest cleaves and strikes with chainswords or power weapons. Have a look at the shoulder pad to the right. There is a large slice taken out of it on the far right hand side. The surrounding area has also been "distressed" to give a feeling of having seen an epic battle worthy of Isstvaan V.

The final bit I've done is to attach wires to the arm on the left hand side. These are (presumably) where the technological pieces would mesh up with the body of the power armour. My intent with this arm is to actually use it for scenery on the base of another miniature -- suggesting a rampaging nature to the other miniature perhaps, or simply detritus from the battlefield in general.  I'd certainly encourage others to start experimenting with these kinds of things: they're modestly straight forward (assuming you have a modelling knife and are old enough to handle one) and can be achieved with a minimum of fuss.

Taking this kind of experimentation to an extreme, one of my earlier conversions (see image at bottom) features a Death Guard marine with a backpack that has been extensively decayed away. This is a rather strong conversion, but can still be pulled off with a bit of practise: a nurgling hangs on to the pipework and guzzles down whatever strange fluid is flowing from it, whilst the rest of the back pack lies at its feet -- I very much like this miniature and play it regularly in my Death Guard army to this day. It pulls regular comments from my opponents!


Baconfat said...

You've truly captured the "Nurgle" feel with that model.

jabberjabber said...

cheers Baconfat!

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