Wednesday 20 October 2021

Rogue Trader / Slaves to Darkness era Land Speeder Traitor Legionaires.

More assembling and basing of the Traitor Legions, although I have finally started painting something again!

I have always been intrigued by the idea of mounted a Chaos Marine squad on vehicles, and not just upon the more ordinary jet bikes and chaos steeds. In the Slaves to Darkness book there is a section which details how one can mount entire squads on bike and sidecars, and on Land Speeders. I thought Land Speeders would be very Rogue trader, so I set about picking up the odd Land Speeder here and there over the years. Of course, doing this presents several problems.

Firstly are the number of Land Speeders involved. Each Land Speeder requires a Tech Marine who is required to be a co-driver. This means in practice that in order to field a squad on Land Speeders you require one per Marine in the squad. For the Sons of Horus that would be ten, World Eaters eight, and Emperors Children six. This is no casual undertaking. Of course, if one wanted to field a single or a couple of Land Speeders, personalities can be mounted with a Tech Marine co-driver. However, there is something quite old school epic about fielding a full Land Speeder squad. With this in mind I chose one the Slaaneshi Legions* to be the host of a Land Speeder squad, thus 'only' requiring six Land Speeders.

Secondly is the points cost. Land Speeders are 200 points each. Six Land Speeders are therefore 1,200 points. Six Tech Marines (with Bolt Guns). One Tactical squad of Slaaneshi Marines (with the Sergeant upgraded with a  Power Glove) 168 points. The total for the whole squad therefore being 1,488 points. This is quite pricey, even for a Rogue Trader era squad, although as they are part of a larger 10,000 point Legion I think that some expensive squads such as this can be purchased as part of the larger whole, with cheaper units balancing out the Legion.

Finally, there is actually finding the Land Speeders. Not being 1988, it is more difficult to purchase some of the Rogue Trader era items now. On e-Bay Land Speeders are usually quite expensive, and so patience (and a little bit of tactically deployed disposable income) has been required, although I already owned three from 'back in the day'.

As an aside, Nico has constructed a lovely World Eater Land Speeder, as well several other World Eater items, and can be found on his blog below:

*A note on my Traitor Legion organisation:
I am assembling the Traitor Legions in the style and manner of the Rogue Trader era. With this concept in mind I am making the assumption that the Iron Warriors and Alpha Legion are Slaaneshi Legions, and so I will base their army lists on the Emperor's Children list. Conversely, I shall base the Word Bearers and Night Lords on the Khornate World Eater list. The justification for doing this is the Traitor Legion illustration and artwork on pages 167 and 168 of the Slaves to Darkness book, which I have included in the blog below. I am also using the colour schemes mentioned here too for them. I think this adds a little bit of variety and fun.

Enjoy :)

Land Speeder Squad, destined to be part of my Rogue Trader era Alpha Legion army.
I have based them on round 60mm Citadel plastic bases to give the more stability and I think they just look better bases. Throughout the squad I have kept a mix of the old Mark VI crew, and mixed in a few of the mounted Renegade miniatures to give that Traitor Legion feel.
Sergeants Land Speeder.
For the driver I have used a loyalist Mark VI bike crewman with the goggles. I had to bend the legs together and remove the bolt pistol on his right leg to make him fit onto the seat.
Sergeants Land Speeder, right hand view.
I have replaced both of the crew. For the sergeant I have used one of the mounted Renegades legs and body, but have replaced the bolt gun with a plastic RTB01 Power Gloves. I had to bend the legs a little to make him fit onto the seat. 
Land Speeder with a Bloodletter Renegade head. Although this will be a Slaaneshi Legion squad, I find that some of the renegade miniatures are interchangeable between Chaos Powers. This one looks very H.R.Giger inspired anyway, so I'm not too concerned.
Another Renegade body riding shotgun bolt gun.
A head swap for this original Mark VI crewman. I was going to use a horse skull, but I have already converted a couple of miniatures with those already, so thought I would try a human skull instead.
The final pair of Land Speeders, still with their original Mark VI crew.
The Slaves to Darkness army list entry for mounting personalties and squads on vehicles.
The artwork of a hover board riding Renegade on page 258 of Slaves to Darkness...
...which inspired me with the idea of creating it. The artwork already matched a Renegade miniature, albeit facing left instead of right. So I picked up a Citadel Judge Dredd range hover board and here is the miniature. Not really much of a conversion, but a nice idea. He will end up with the Alpha Legion as well. 
Page 167 of Slaves to Darkness. This illustration, and the entry below it, detail the Slaaneshi Legions, with the names of the Legions, banners, armour colours, and a little background. It suggests that the Alpha Legion wear green armour (maybe with some red trim), whilst the Iron Warriors wear a mid blue, and the Emperor's Children a mix of colours (also detailed in the rest of the book). I will be paint the Legion like this as they meant to be in the 1988 to 1991 approach, rather than how the Traitor Legions colour schemes evolved in the background over the years since. I will do a blog update about my approach to all the Legions at a later date.

Next update will be more Traitor Legion stuff, and maybe even with some painted!

Tuesday 5 October 2021

Rogue Trader style Chaos Dreadnought fan sculpt.

Just a quick update to show something I purchased off of e-Bay. I will be posting a proper update later in the month.

As many of you are aware, I am currently sorting through my Rogue Trader era Chaos Space Marine Legions with an aim to have a 10,000 point army for each of the nine Traitor Legions, taken from the Slaves to Darkness and Lost and the Damned books, as well as relevant White Dwarf articles of the time. I will be only using miniatures from the time, although I am using some of the more modern bases as I was never happy with some of the bases at the time, and some of the basing was also a little erratic then.

Whilst browsing Twitter I read a tweet concerning fan sculpts, and saw a fan sculpted Chaos Dreadnought, sculpted in the same style as the original Citadel one from 1989, originally sculpted by Alan Perry. The fan sculpt was sculpted by Drew Day Williams, who has sculpted some items for a small company named Troll Soup . He also has sculpted a some resin tributes to the original (non-Chaos) Space Marine Dreadnought, the Imperial Robots range, and a metal sculpt based on the Siege Robot artwork from the Rogue Trader rulebook, all of which seem to sadly be no longer available. I purchased the Chaos Dreadnought from a seller on e-Bay whom I have dealt with on many an occasion. Here is the link:

The miniature is made of a good quality resin (no Finecast nonsense!). Size wise it is a lot larger than the original (see the photographs below), as were the other of Drew Day Williams resin sculpts. It does make for a very imposing miniature. The detailing and closeness to the original is superb. It is a very similar looking sculpt to the original, but with crisper and clearer casting. 

Quite what I am going to do with this lovely behemoth I'm not sure. As I am planning to have the Legions composed solely of 1987 to 1991 miniatures (except for the bases) then it doesn't fit, but it is nice have, and will be fun to paint. I am considering selecting one of the nine Legions to include this and the fan sculpted Siege Robots, and well as anything else I might acquire. Alternately, I might use them as the basis for a tenth 10,000 point army, perhaps representing a composite Legionary force, or one based on the late rogue Trader era  'World Eater Ravagers' list.
Enjoy :)

Chaos Dreadnought fan sculpt.
It is mounted on a Citadel 60mm round plastic base.
Size Comparison with the original Chaos Dreadnought and a (converted) Chaos Legionary.
The original Chaos Dreadnought is mounted on a citadel 50mm round plastic base.
Left side with the claw.
Rear view with the very organic looking exhaust/power pack.
Right side with the heavy plasma gun.
Pre-assembly size comparison with the original Chaos Dreadnought sculpt.

Next update will be more basing and showcasing of the Chaos Legions. I am still not getting around to any painting at the moment (I'm still renovating the house and working), but I am basing up a lot of Chaos Legionaries. Last week I based scores of Chaos Daemons, and the week before over 100 Rogue Trader era Chaos Terminators. This week I am working through their less armoured Power Armoured brethren, as well as Jet Bikes/Cycles, and Chaos Steeds.