Sunday, October 28, 2018

Great Basilisk

And I'm finally back to the basilisk. Like I said in the WIP post already, here I am going with monsters that are in no way usable in my army, but they fit the theme. Perhaps I will find some use for them later! Here I am starting with a basilisk - a GW cockatrice converted a bit to resemble a rooster a bit more.

When it came to painting, I also decided to reference roosters - the idea was to make it really just a giant snake-chicken with crazy eyes. That's how I chose the colors for the feathers, beak, face and the mane. The snake parts were then painted to resemble a viper commonly found in Poland, with a characteristic zigzaging pattern. When it came to wings and skin I had to think of something - so I referenced the colors I already used and made an organic pattern to make it a tad more interesting.

It was nice to paint a well-sized monster like this, not too small and not too big - but damn I don't like painting wings!

If asked about a basilisk, most Varsavians will tell you that it’s a snake-rooster about the size of a housecat, whose famous petrifying gaze will cause only slight numbness at worst. It’s a rather common pest. Only an unfortunate minority will tell you about a giant monster capable of easily tearing an armored man to pieces and easily petrifying anyone for long enough to be hauled back to the nest to be devoured. That is the Great Basilisk, a scourge that has been terrorizing Varsavia for many, many years. Wise men tried to deduce how it came to life - some say a beast like that is born once every 100 years from an egg laid by a rooster, while others say it’s just a chaotic mutation of a normal basilisk. No matter what’s its origin, this basilisk just appears from time to time to wreak havoc around the countryside, attracting foolish heroes to die while trying to kill it. Even those trying to turn its own gaze against it with mirrors discovered that the beast is simply immune to its own powers and can still use its beak and claws to tear and rend. Until someone manages to kill it once and for all, both villagers and armies marching through Varsavia have to factor in the possibility of a great basilisk attack.

Painted, converted Cockatrice miniature for Warhammer, made to resemble a Basilisk more. It has big, petryfying eyes and a rooster's crest. It is standing on its tail, with clawed feet extended forward.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Zombie Wedding Present

This week a small intermission - a wargaming wedding gift!

I visited Cologne this year - and before going there I asked a friendly Carpe Noctem user living nearby if he wanted to meet. He told me that we couldn't hang out normally in the city, because he would be busy having his own wedding at the moment, but he would be happy if I would come to the party. So, by pure chance, I got invited to my first German wedding - one that was horror themed too! It was only logical for me to make some undead-related, wargaming present for him and his wife. I choose zombies because I became kinda known for them on the forum, that would make it more personal and because they were simple enough to do them on that rather tight schedule.

Thankfully I managed to finish it on time and we arrived on the party - where not only the married couple and other youngsters were dressed as zombies/vampires/cultists/witches, but also most of the uncles and aunts! A cake had a graveyard decoration on top with a bloody red inside, the snacks were little cookie 'fingers', drinks were red, the decorations were cobwebs and skeletons. In front of it all, a tent was organized - with a grisly escape game! Now that's some dedication, no wonder that the guy collects also undead miniatures! The present was a perfect fit into all that, they looked almost exactly like that.

Two zombie miniatures holding hands, standing on a large wooden base with two open graves, creating a small diorama. On the side of the base there's the names and the date of the people for whom the gift is.

Sunday, October 14, 2018


Continuing with the ancients, here we go with the second liche. This one is a model from Frostgrave - I found it when I was looking through their range, looking for something fitting to incorporate in the Zombie Legion. With his pointy hat/helmet and ragged robes, he was perfect as another liche - I didn't have to think long about buying him! The painting scheme is the typical one for wights/liches - and while Mertvet was interesting because of how much fabrics he had on him, this one has just the right amount of clothes, bones and metal parts and I think he turned out pretty well.

The second one of Daremnych's lieutenants was Belomor - an eager Varsavian priest that tried to convert some chaos tribes to his indigenous beliefs. He was found and saved by the Great Priest just when he was about to be sacrificed by the barbarians. After that, he quickly took faith in the Death God, the one that spared him after his old gods ignored his pleas. Soon enough he proved to be one of the most fervent members of the cult - spreading the faith however he could, by force if necessary. He was also known for always maintaining a kind, fatherly attitude, even while burning the villagers one by one to make an example for the rest. Killed during one of such spectacles and only now raised, he wants to show the unbelievers that he went too soft on them the last time.

A single Liche miniature from Frostgrave on a square base, adapted to be used as a necromancer in WFB or AoS. He has metal details painted to look like verdigris and various robes in red and black.

And now I can show Daremnych with both of his lieutenants/disciples together. Now my wights have some magical support!

A collection of Liches standing together - one from Otherworld Miniatures, one from Frostgrave and the middle one a Necromancer Lord from Avatars of War.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Wraiths of Siekerno - WIP

Long have I wanted to have a unit of Cairn Wraiths - the least used and the least popular 'Rare Unit' from the 8th edition Vampire Counts armybook. They were just way too expensive for what they did - but I still wanted to get them, for the sake of completionism at least. Using the same character Cairn Wraith 10 times wasn't an option, I didn't want to hunt for all the oldhammer instances of them and I couldn't find a good base for converting/building them too, so the idea was waiting in the backlog for years. Then GW released Grimghast Reapers and I knew those are the ones I was looking for! Still, some conversions were in order - thankfully I already had an idea in mind.

I didn't want to have a full 10-ghost unit of grim reapers, because I find that a bit silly, so I decided to replace the blades with axes. Cowls and blinded faces were also a little weird, so I replaced them with normal skulls and Slavic pointy helmets, adding some cloth around it too. That made them more similar to real warriors rather than angry farmers - while still keeping the fantastical theme pretty strong, so all was good.

Then I had to mount them on bases. That was a problem because they were designed to stand on loose 32mm rounds, rather than on tightly packed 20mm squares that WFB cairn wraiths used. To make it work I converted them completely first and only then began mounting them on bases, moving, switching and adjusting them together. I found a good configuration but that not only required cutting some ghostly strands and bending others but also left many of them standing very off-center on the bases. To remedy that, I had to immediately magnetize them and build a tray for them - without it, only 2 of them are able to stand upright! I like them like that, though - they stand so close to each other, they blend into one ghastly mass, like a Wild Hunt of some sort. Only after seeing them like this I decided to add those branches on the ground - both to reinforce my forest theme and to hide their connection points a bit.

Now I really look forward to painting them!

EDIT: The painted unit can be found HERE.

Conversion of an unit of 10 Grimghast Reapers miniatures from Age of Sigmar (AoS), made to fit tightly together as Cairn Wraiths for Warhammer Fantasy Battle (WFB) - with additional elements made of greenstuff and plasticard.