Sunday, 22 December 2013

Rogue Trader Squat Army Overview

As promised here is the overview of my Rogue Trader era Squat Army. Sorry for the bit 'hit and miss' look of the photogrpahs, but the erratic rainy weather in Sussex is messing up the lighting :(

I have organised the army according to their dedicated army list of the time, published in White Dwarf #111. For those of you unfamilar with the army list (which, due to my printer not working I am unable to scan and upload yet) the army was organised into a series of Brotherhoods, with a set number available extras such as bike squads, heavy support item such as Thudd Guns, and all manner of odds and ends. In addition, it was possible to field a seperate formation of just bikers, the Engineers Guild Expeditionary force.

Each Brotherhood had a to have a one Command Group of five models consisting of a Warlord and 4 Hearthguard, and a minimum of 3, maximum of 4, Combat Squads of eight Squats. Surprisingly this means you can have the start of basic Squat force using only 29 miniatures, which is comparable to a contempary Imperial Gaurd platoon.

My Squat army consists of five basic Brotherhoods, each consisting of one Warlord and his four Hearthguard, and 4 Squat Combat Squats, each consisting 8 Squats (as per the list). This makes a total of 145 Squats. In addition I have two Squads of bikers, with eight in each squad, 5 Heavy Weapon Trikes, 2 Guildmasters, five Brotherhood Weapon Teams with two crew for each weapon system, a Squat Techpriest, and a Living Ancestor.

I have been collecting Squats since early in the Rogue Trader Days, first picking a few of them up in about 1989. However I never properly put the army together until about 1990, and even after they were dropped from 40k I continued to pick up odds and ends over the years. With the recent interest on various blogs and the Oldhammer Forum in Squats I decided to dig them out and reorganise them.

There are several lovely Squat armies on the internet, many organised for use as Imperial Guard armies, Tau Auxilaries, and even put together using the Ork Codex. Jervis Johnson suggested they could be used as proxy Imperial Guard here:

 I recall reading an article in the late 1990's in one of the Citadel Journals suggesting the use of the Ork list for Squats as they shared the same toughness and the 'shootas' can pass as Squat bolters.
 The idea of refugee Squats hiding out with the Tau is a great one. I am tempted one day to do a Tau auxilary Squat force using a mix of Tau items and probably Hasslefree Grymm.

However I have decided to organise them to the old 1989 army list as there has been a lot of resergent interest in Rogue Trader recently, and it seemed the best list to use. I also wanted to keep the army 100% Rogue Trader. There are several Squat armies out there using current edition arms, weapons, equipment, etc, as well as using modern 'Squats' from Hasslefree, Mantic, Black Tree, etc. Don't get me wrong, I think many of the armies look really good, and the combination of Cadian/Forgeworld items create an awesome look. I just wanted to keep it all Rogue Trader from personal preference, and because as I was collecting them at the time, that is how I wanted my army should look. Apart from a couple of modern sized bases, that is what I have achieved.
The army is a fair mix of models from those early ones designed my the Perry Twins, the Bob Olley one from the Iron Claw range, the later sperate armed Perry Twin ones, and the plastic box set models.

Colour scheme wise, I decided to go for the old Squat uniform used in the Book of the Astronmican of mid green (the old Woodland green) for the boots, helmets, trousers/jackets. For the Flak jackets the brown colour (bestial brown). For the rest of the equipment reds, or khaki colours. 
The bikers will be mainly in black leathers, with various additions from the pallete above.

I will be re/painting the army over the next couple of months. I have a busy few months ahead, and this will also give me a nice break from painting 3rd Fantasy armies, and can be done in bite sized parts.

So, here is the army: 

 Squat army from above on the painting table.
 First Brotherhood.
I have tried to equip each squad in each Brootherhood as similar to the others in it's Brotherhood. The squads in this Brotherhood each have two Heavy Bolters, a Heavy Plasma Gun, and a Squad Leader with Bolt Pistol.
Squat armies were allowed a much greater range of Heavy Weapon options than other armies, and any or all Lasguns could be upgraded for Heavy Bolters. So you could in theory have one Squad Leader, six Heavy Bolters, and one different Heavy weapon.
The Warlord and Hearthguard have more individualised weapons.
 Warlord and Hearthguard. 
I am using this squad Army General and his command Squad. Thats why I decided to only have one 'Eagle Standard' in the army.
 Close up of the Standard bearer with the old Rogue Trader details on it, 'Kil' and the wound stripe from page 162 of the Rulebook. They are sculpted on details, not conversions added. 
 Close up of the bases using citadels new Games Workshop Agrellan Earth paint, and Green Grass and Dead Grass flocks.
 A few of the conversions. 
Apart from one Brotherhood, I have opted to upgrade all the of the Squats Las-guns to Boltguns, as it is only 3.5 points per Squad. I had a lot of old Bolters from the RTB101 Space Marine box set, and so have used them. 
Centre is a plastic Heavy Bolter, converted to not being carried on the shoulder as a lot Rogue Trader weapons were.
On the right is a plastic Heavy Plasma gun from the 1990 Ork box set. In the Squats historical background it mentions that the Squats freely Traded and eventually made war with both the Orks and the Eldar, as well as each other. In addition, in Imperial Service they traded and are equipped with Imperial items. So I have deliberatly added occasional Ork, Imperial, and Eldar items to show this.
 The second Brotherhood. 
Their squads are armed with two Heavy Bolters, but each Squad has a different Heavy Weapon, and the Squad Leaders have Bolt Pistols
 On the left is a plastic Squat with a metal Heavy Plasma gun.
On the right is a plastic Missile Launcher courtsey of the RTB101 Space Marines again (although the Marines would not be too happy about it!) .
 Warlord (centre) and Hearthguard. 
Warlords and Hearthguard were one of the few models in the army to be able to field what we would now consider as special weapons, such as Melta Guns, Plasma Guns, Flamers, Needlers, etc. These were not avalible to standard Conbat Squats, and only avalible to Warlords and Hearthguards if they paid a set number of points and rolled them up on equipment charts. This is why my 'special' weapons ended up being used as Hearthguard.
 Third Brotherhood. 
The Combat Squads equipped with two Heavy Bolters, and a Grenade Launcher (which was counted as a Heavy Weapon at this time), and the Squad Leaders have Bolt Pistols.
 Iron Claw Squat with an unsual looking weapon that could stand-in for many of them, a Warlord centre with Shuriken Catapult, and a Squat Medic being used as another Hearthguard.
 Grenade Luanchers, the one on the left converted from the Chaos Heavy weapon, the one on the right is the one from the first 40k releases and the Mercenaries range.
 Fourth Brotherhood. 
These are less well equipped, each squad only having a Conversion Beamer, and the Squad Leaders having Bolt Pistols.
 The Warlord on the left, and two Hearthguard.
These are the some of the actually designated  Warlord and Hearthguard miniatures that were released with the army list and the plastic box set. I have used Eldar arms from the Eldar Guardian box set from around 1991 for the Warlord as they look more high tech and traded, and are about the same size. Both he, and thecentral Hearthguard have Eldar Melta guns from the same Eldar boxset, whilst the thurd is packing a Bolt Pistol from the Orks.

 Two of the Squats with metal Conversion Beamers. 
Both are converted, on the left from the plastic box set, on the right from a broken metal minitaure named 'Colt Stoner' and a plastic arm.
 Fifth Brotherhood. 
Unlike the others, they have not been upgraded to carry Bolt Guns, but still have Lasguns/Autoguns. This is because I had to put these Squats somewhere, and so formed them up in thier own Lasgun armed Brotherhood. One in each squad has a Lascannon, so they are really desigined for shooting at vehicles where Heavy/Bolters upgrades would be wasted.
 Two hearthguard (the centre one having a damaged Laspistol replaced with an Ork Bolt Pistol), and the Warlord on the right with PowerGlove and Bolter.
 Las-Cannon, from the 1989 Imperial Guard plastic box set, and two Iron Claw Squats. It is the same style of Lasgun as used by the metal Imperial Army/Guard, as are the metal Boltguns (see the Warlord above).
 Three more Bob Olley Squats, again with the same Lasgun and an Autogun (centre).
 Three of the Perry's Squats. 
I feel the use of metal Squats across the army gives the army more character than just having plastic. 
This Lasgun is seen in other ranges, and the Bullock Jetbike below too!
I have mounted the bike riding Guildmaster on a Mk14 Bullock Jetcycle for two reasons. Firstly I got fed up losing e-bay auctions to try to buy him one, and secondly it looks unusal and cool (better when painted of course!). As far as the army list goes, it does'nt seem that you can mount any Squats on jetbikes, so I will just count it as a normal bike/trike. He has one Eldar arm and an Ork Plasma Pistol. 
The dismounted Guildmaster has two Eldar arms and Ork Bolt Pistol.
 Squat Tech Priest on the left. I like this miniature and he will be fun to paint.
On the right is a Living Ancestor. Well, sort of. He is actually a Citadel Dwarf Villager model, but I am using him as a Living Ancestor. I will get around to picking up a proper one at some point. :)
Imperial Human Advisors.
Tech Priest and two all Metal Commisars. I have added these miniatures for flavour. I also like the idea of a couple of sanctimonious Commisars being posted to the abhuman Squats and not being allowed to shoot any of them!
16 of them.
They are organised into 2 Guild Bike Squads of 8 bikers/trikers.
 First Squad.
 Second Squad.
 Squad leaders. 
I have converted these up from two spare Exo Armour trikes, a biker Warlord miniatures, and a random biker, plus green stuff. I was two of the standard bikes short, so decided that these would look fine with a bit of converting. Of course, they will look better painted up. 
The one on the right has an Imperial issue Bolt Pistol, which I also use on a couple of the Combat Squad Squad Leaders.
 Close up of three random metal bikers. I prefer the all one piece metal bikers rather than the seperate arm ones. I have used them for the Heavy Weapon Trikes.
 5 Heavy Weapon Trikes on some 50mm MDF round bases I found in one of my bits boxes.
 Closer up. 
They are all armed with Mutli Meltas.
 If I was organise the bikers into a Engineers Guild Expeditionary Force, this is what it would look like.
1 Guildmaster, 2 bike Squads, and 2 Heavy Weapon trikes. 
The only reason I don't, and I decided to keep them in the Brotherhood organisation is that way I get to use an extra Guildmaster (one per bike Squad in a Brotherhood). This means I can field Robots and use the extra Guildmaster as a controller.
 Worryingly, they do look a little dinky compared to 6th edition Ork Bikers!
Side view.
I suppose it's not the size that matters, but how fast you can drive away from Tyranids.
 Thudd Gun.
No Squat army really should be without one. They are fine in the game, but it's very much an iconic weapon for the Squats, as are Mole Mortars. 
 Painted up crew members.
 2 Mole Mortars and crew.
 2 Las Cannon Tarantulas, with the 4 Squats I use for the crew, including Iron Claw Servitor and the casualty figure.
I need to rebase and maybe re-paint the Tarantulas as they are reassigned from my Rogue Trader Imperial Guard army.
A Colossus on the left, a Cataphract on the right. 
They are usually used in Mantiples of 1-4 of the same type. I tended to use the Cataphract more, and was to only person I knew who used Robots at the time.
My Cataphract was orginally painted pink. It was meant to be red but I messed up the paint job when I was 14 years old on the night before gaming with it. Afterwards it was just one of those things, and I kept it pink,  but I decided to paint strip it a little while ago to fit in with my Rogue Trader Marines. As it's now with the Squats it might end up sensibly painted but maybe with pink flashes or something.
More presicely they are Bots from the Citadel Paranoia Range, but I use them as Bombots as they seem to fit.
Exo Armoured Squats. 
I am not a fan of Exo Armoured Squats, +75 points for the armour is a bit too much, and with only Bolt Gun and Power Axe as standard. So I have not included them in the army list and replaced them with other models resprsenting the Warlord and Hearthguard, and they are equipped with more interesting weapon.
I will keep them as a back up option for specific missions.

...and that's the Squat Army.
 I might take a couple of the unpainted Rhinos from the Chaos Marines to add to the army as troop transports. So apart from getting a Living Ancestor, and maybe another crewmen to replace the Squat Servitor miniature (which I will then use as another Tech Priest), that the army is completed.
 Apart from the painting that is! :)


  1. Very impressive, poor Exo's not being used though :( are to sell them to me? Or at least the Chaos Squat ones?

    1. Thank you,
      but I will keep hold of them, keep them for specialist missons.
      I do have about a 10 Chaos Squats somewhere as well, so I could start a second Squat army, but Chaos aligned, with them and the Exo's .

  2. That is one heck of an impressive Squat force you've collected there! I could only dream of collecting a fraction of what you've been able to assemble. :( Are you secretly a millionnare or something!?
    In any case, I look forward to seeing the whole thing painted up and ready for action. Will you be using it in some retro 40k games at some point?

    1. Thank you,
      but I am afraid I am not a millionaire, secret or otherwise :(
      I have just been collecting Squats on and off for 24 years, and this is the result.
      I'll be painting them up over the next few months, but I had'nt planned on doing any retro gaming at the moment. Mind you, I never get around to doing current edition gaming at the moment either!

      BTW, I like your 40K Lizardmen :)