Friday, 26 June 2015

Who does all the work around here?

While I'm waiting for the bits to turn up for my Arbites project I thought I'd post some other miniatures. These are characters I started ages ago, but have only just managed to get some paint on last week.

About six years ago, after reading some Black Library stuff set in the 40K universe, or perhaps the 30K one, I was struck by the idea that the bulk of life in the Imperium isn't represented by any official models. Obviously, with 40K being a game about armies clashing, all the models for it will be military or at least fulfilling some kind of combat role. I mean your regular Joe Citizen wouldn't last a second against most of the horrors that slug it out on the average tabletop battlefield:

• Administratum clerk versus Tyranid Lictor

• Small child versus Ork Stormboy
• House servitor versus Dark Eldar Talos
• Construction crew versus The Gal Vorbak

Most of those would be pretty quick fights, and probably not very nice viewing, so it's no wonder that models don't exist for mere civilians. But given the outlandish nature of everything 40K, I started to wonder what these street level denizens might look like. And, me being me, I immediately started looking for shortcuts. What other manufacturers might make models that look like that, and what parts have I already got lying around that might help me?

The initial project became the challenge of making ten or so servitors that might fulfil roles in a city. Some could therefore be armed - private security, close-protection models for example - but many had to have no combat capabilities. 

While I was building these I also realised that some Imperial citizens may be hard to distinguish from your average servitor. An old man with rusty grafts or prosthetics from his days in the Guard, who lives in the squalor of some awful hive city, rarely getting any sunlight, or a lowly Mechanicum adept, with their initial implants beginning to adapt and augment their body; these kind of characters probably look exactly like servitors. So the boundaries blurred, and by the time I'd finished the first few models I wasn't sure what the hell I'd actually built.

Imperial servitors or Imperial citizens? Let's just call them denizens

There's a second batch, but they're only undercoated and probably won't photograph well, so I won't stick 'em up here until I've got some colour on them. The ones shown here ended up using parts from a variety of places. There are plenty of other model manufacturers out there, many of whom are small independent companies, and although the parts might not always be of the same quality as GW, they are often easier to get hold of, or closer to what I'm looking for. And besides, it's good to support the little guy - if freaks like me aren't buying from them, then who is?

So in the photo above, on top of the GW pieces and general junk from my bits box there are parts or models from Ramshackle Games, Warmachine, Micro Art Studio's Iron Brotherhood, Rackham's Confrontation and Pig Iron Productions.

But by the time I'd finished building these, a much larger project had started to form itself in my mind. A huge project, years of work, with an almost unlimited number of modelling opportunities. So much so that I could never get bored. But also, highly likely that I'd never get anywhere near achieving it. I'll have to write more about that later.

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