Hvarl Red-Blade – Critique & Reflection

For the wolves 2019 has started on a very positive note with Forge World previewing the much anticipated Hvarl Red-Blade model at the New Years Open Day.

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Hvarl Red-Blade is a mighty character and leader of the Rout, with a rules set that puts him up there among some of the leading characters in the Horus Heresy game. While for the most part the model meets the expectations that the rules have cultivated, there are a few areas where the model falls short of what could have made it exceptional (albeit leaps and bounds better than the Varagyr models, especially the fur!).

To critique the model, there are a couple of detail items that don’t quite make the mark;

  • The grenade harness is missing.
  • The heavy bolter is a power armour varient, not altered to be carried by a warrior in terminator armour, the result being it looks like he’s picked it up mid-battle rather than going into battle armed with it. To solve this the trigger and grip would look better if they were further forward on the gun casing, and the arm would look better with a guarding like that on the Tartaros Heavy Flamers and Tartaros Reaper Autocannon.
  • The shoulder fur doesn’t sit naturally upon the model, only seeming to be present on the pauldron itself. The model would greatly improved if the fur was a larger pelt, draped across the top of the armour and overlapping the cloak.
  • The hand on the axe is low for the stance and pose, it would be more natural to have the hand higher of the shaft better balancing the weight of the weapon (the axe blade being particularly large)

Whilst these are minor items, they would greatly increase the attention to detail on the model and put it on par with some of the more remarkable models the Horus Heresy Character Series.

The above observations not withstanding, the model really is fantastic. The additions of the wolf skull strapped to the leg armour, the inset rune stones and the pyramid stud plates seal the model as clearly of the Vlka Fenryka’s aesthetic. The lowered gorget and decorated surround mimic that of the Cataphractii Varagyr, a nice detail that frames the head well. The head is nicely detailed, with an aggressive expression and war-torn visage. The skull trophies are a particularly welcome detail, adding to Hvarl’s narrative as the headsman of Koltok.

The axe is remarkable and with some minor alterations to the hand position along the shaft, it will be a superb representation of the reforged Necron weapon from Hvarl’s background.

Until Next Winter…

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‘Best Loyalist Army’ – Legion of Peterborough

In June of last year the Legion of Peterborough held a fantastic Heresy event, ‘Blood & Steel: The Battle of Laernan Prime’ which consisted of a number of small centurion based games.

It was humbling and pleasing to get the peer vote from my fellow hobbyists for the ‘Best Loyalist Army’

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(re-sculpting all that Varagyr fur was clearly worth the effort)

Until Next Winter…

Thegn/Claw Leader [Centurion] WIP01

Keen to develop a centurion around the core of a Varagyr model, work has commenced on a claw leader, a leader for the Varagyr Squads under Sesc Company’s Jarl. The model is designed to pay homage to a model that inspired my love of the Vlka Fenryka, a kitbash of the original metal Wolf Guard Terminator Sergeant with lightning claws and some additional accessories.

This model will echo that.

The base Varagyr model has had the fur removed with a dremel rotary tool, cleaned in preparation for new fur to be sculpted. The power pack has also be reduced in projection, cut back to allow the plastic pelt to sit at a more natural angle, all of this will be hidden on the final model.

Plastic lightning claws have been added and the Varagyr shoulder pauldrons cleaned up to fit over the plastic arms. Over this the arms of the pelt have been filed back an bent to fit naturally over the armoured plates.

The leather pteruges have been covered with sculpted with fur, matching the Varagyr model conversions. Likewise loin cloth fur and pelt has been completed in a matching manner.

Based to match the army the model is essentially complete.

Until Next Winter…

Hoenir’s Pack, Slayers. Line Breakers.

Hoenir’s Pack. Slayers. Line Breakers. Sesc Company.

Brothers of war, warriors of the winter king’s army. Assault infantry are the strength of the Rout, its fortitude and prowess in battle and Sesc Company is no exception, it’s fighting style typified by heavy infantry and armoured assault. Hoenir’s pack are at the very heart of this, line breakers and warrior’s of the line.

Until Next Winter…

Forge World Varagyr WIP 01

Following on from the review of the kit, work commenced in earnest.

A dremel was used to remove the fur from the waist and below the pauldrons, in preparation for re-sculpting the fur. This was done on all of the Varagyr.

Once removed fur was sculpted on using a 50:50 mix of Green Stuff and Miliput,this dries harder than just greenstuff, but keeps the tactile qualities while working it (thanks to @AnvilsofKonor for the advice, do check out his amazing work on Instagram).

The fur was sculpted by applying a layer of the mixed putty to the area i wanted fur, using a hooked and pointed tool this was gently scored in a downward direction, but not in a regular pattern, the downward scores were made at varying angles. This was then enhanced by using the flat of a scalpel blade to move the ‘fur’ into more natural directions and clumps.

The finer fur give more balance to the model’s aesthetic, giving contrast to some of the other bulky details and removing the cartoony feel.

Until Next Winter…

 

Grey Slayers Pack WIP 02

Force into progression despite the Grey Slayers Upgrade Kit not having been released yet, fifteen bases have been crafted for the first Pack and the base plastic MkIII legs and space wolves upgrade torso are beginning to be assembled.

 

The bases are made using pre-moulded plasticard flagstone sheets, but into appropriately sized squares, glued to the bases and the once dry it is trimmed to the base’s shape. Rocks and sand are then added to create interest.

[A small update, but an important one!]

Until Next Winter…

Grey Slayer Upgrade Pack!

With the preview of a Grey Slayer upgrade pack at the New Years open day, plans are afoot to bring more Grey Slayers to the Rout.

[images borrowed from the wider internet, credit to the photographer whom ever you are]

The kit looks like it’ll be comprised of 5 heads, 2 of which have knot-work masks (fantastic!) an ornate torso, a vexilla, 5 close combat axes and 5 combat shields. The latter items nicely matching the artwork from Inferno.

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If this great upgrade kit isn’t enough, there are allegedly 2 more to come for the Grey Slayers!

Until Next Winter..