Let me begin.
I'm currently facing an issue with the amount of stuff my family owns, versus the limited space in which we have to keep it all. There's a slowly rising tide of belongings that never quite fits anywhere and ends up leaving our home looking cluttered and untidy. I expect this might sound familiar to a fair few others out there.
I wonder if this problem still persists in the 41st millennium: Space Marines with more marks of armour than fit in their cupboard, Aeldari Rangers with helmets that are too tall for the shelf, Catachan Jungle Fighters with nowhere to keep their spare headbands.
If only there was somewhere to tuck all this surplus gear away.
Fortunately, if there's one thing that almost always improves a good sci-fi setting, it's crates. Crates in all shapes and sizes. Crates in a variety of exciting paint schemes, left lying around in any empty space that's in need of some extra detail.
You see them in all sorts of science fiction media: movies, shows, comics and especially video games. Sometimes they are there for good reason, and sometimes they are merely set dressing. And Warhammer 40,000 is no different. Adding crates, containers, boxes and cylinders to the game's terrain can look so good I often have to consciously stop myself from randomly gluing them down all over the place. Little clusters of storage material, firmly fixed to some narrow gantry, completely blocking any access for actual miniatures, rendering the piece fairly useless in game terms, but really making it look the part.
Really making it look the part, provided, of course, you can suspend disbelief for a moment and not question why something was neatly packed away, only to be left lying around in a completely inappropriate location.
Anyway, here are a couple of pieces I've just finished painting, ranging from big (completing the set I started back here) to small (using parts from a variety of sources, including Mantic Games, Citadel, and even some glued together bits from a broken one of these.)They'll be joining the other pieces of scatter terrain, already in my collection, some of which can be seen below.
So now that I've stopped and thought about this, next time I see something similar, pushed into a spare corner of whatever science fiction story I'm looking at, I'll be asking myself what I think is actually in these crates, and, if it was worth packing up, why isn't someone stealing it?