Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Genestealer Cults - planning, building and painting two armies at once!

Greetings all, welcome to this kind of announcement post for my most ambitious project yet. No, I don't mean these guys are getting a better paint job than my other armies, I mean that this project plan will combine my plans for an Imperial Guard army, The Bromheads, with my wish for a genestealer cult force, which is currently unnamed. These armies will form the basis of some of our plans for the brotherhood blog/forum and battle reports for that project, giving us two more armies to utilise in displaying narrative gaming at its best.

This post therefore is all about setting out how I'm going to make the most of the bargains you can get to make two armies that will look unified on the tabletop when used together, but are sufficiently different from one another so that they don't simply look like I've painted two armies the same. Taking into account of course that I don't actually own the Astra Militarum codex at the moment either!

Not one to let that sort of thing hinder my planning for a new army however, I did what all good Guardsmen should do when the way in unclear - I ploughed on ahead regardless!

Some of you may remember way back when, when I was first looking at developing my paint scheme for the Bromheads, I bought a box of push fit guardsmen, and gave them a quick run over with some paints based on the British Army uniforms of the late 1800's, and this is what resulted.

I'm still wedded to this as my Imperial Guard colour scheme, so if I'm going to combine this with genestealer cult and have them on the table at the same time, then I'm going to have to do something quite clever with them.

Annoyingly of course, you can't get cheap push fit cult models, so I'm going to have to do some theorising as to how the colours will go together, but that's ok since I'm pretty good at picturing this sort of thing in my head.

Clearly as with any Guard force, that will have to be a horde army, and I may even have to resort to batch painting techniques to get it done, but equally the Genestealer Cult are horde-like, so my brushes will be earning their keep next year!

The Guardsmen are issued with a uniform, bright, clean, and more to the point, uniform. By contrast, the genestealer cult have no uniform, the models have been designed so as to display a certain amount of uniformity, but even so they have no justification for being clean and crisp.

So we'll start with red, it's the key colour for the guardsmen and therefore the scheme as a whole, so I need to figure out some way of using red as the base tone for the cult without making it look too similar.

I think at this point in time I'll be using Khorne Red as the base tone for the cult, with Mephiston red as the base for the guardsmen. Mephiston Red will then get my standard combination of shade and highlights (Agrax Earthshade, then layer with mephiston, evil sunz scarlet and wild rider red) whilst I'll base the cult with Khorne red, then try and highlight up from there to bring the two closer together. I'll experiment a bit this week using Khorne Red and Mephiston to see if they combine well.

Then the contrasting colour is also important. The Guardsmen will be having white trappings and black fatigues, so again I need something that reflects those combinations but in an entirely grubbier fashion whilst not looking out of place alongside them. At the moment I'm thinking that the white for the guardsmens details could be replicated in a dirtier 'bone' style colour for the cult, which would also then tie in nicely with the exoskeleton on the purestrains, and I could still throw a little pure white in as highlights.

Skin on the purestrains could still probably be done in the classic purple hues of the genestealers without detracting too much from the overall look.

And there you have it, I quick and simple look at how I'm currently planning on painting up the two differing aspects of the army I'm going to be working on without mirroring the scheme completely, allowing me to not only build two armies alongside each other, but also use them together in a unified colour theme on the tabletop whilst still being able to use them separately against each other and still have the scheme distinctly separate.