|Exerpt from Commissar Olyirgh's motivational speech to the troops during the Siege of the second moon of Sidlr: |
The insurrection of Kolphor Prime was swift and brutal. Being a well organized army of cultists gleaned from the Imperium's own troops, the insurgents seized control of the main armouries housing the majority of the planet's defences. With their own weapons turned against them, those guardsmen still loyal fought bravely to protect the planetary governor. Unfortunately, all were massacred in a single bloody night of battle. What became of the the noble and just governor, Anathus Pius the Wise, is nigh unspeakable and yet is the focus of this tale.
Kolphor Prime was prided not only for being a thriving, contributing member of the Imperial family; it was said in many ways to have been personally blessed by the Emperor. One of these blessings was in the form of the Baneblade, Deliverance.
Mighty was this machine for it had been tried and proven true over the millenia. The weaponry of the hulking machine would blast the enemies of the Emperor into submission, and then its heavy tracks would crush their bones as a final reminder of the ultimate authority of the Imperium. It was therefore particularly shameful that the insurgents had laid claim to the vehicle with no more effort than a brief skirmish in the armoury.
In a final act of heresy, the insurgents dragged decomposing corpses from the battlefield and stuffed the hull to bursting.
Guardsmen mortally wounded but still breathing were strapped to the hull as well.
Lastly Anathus was lashed and nailed to a makeshift banner pole atop the vehicle's turret. His body was then stripped and archaic runes were tattooed upon his dying flesh. To complete the ceremony more runes were carved into the metal of the ancient tank and a tube was rammed down Anathus' throat right into his stomach.
As the last rune was completed, Deliverance's plaques of armour started to shake and seethe. Visible rapid corrosion began to appear all over the vehicle. Then, a boiling demonic ichor came surging up the pipe from the bowels of the fetid stew brewing in the hull. Anathus was consumed from the inside, his organs rapidly devoured by the demonicly animated acid. He could not even scream as the foul liquids gushed down his throat and ravaged his flesh. His death was mercifully quick, but it is said that the demon unleashed upon Kolphor that day still holds onto his soul. It is in the hopes of one day giving him peace in the afterlife that we hope to destroy this abomination.
Know that your fight is desperate today as what we face is horrific. Many among you shall die, but you represent the spark and light of humanity. Use your faith and your lives to undo the heresy of that day, and you shall die in glory.
I originally bought this model because it was cheap, not because I had any great love for the Plague Reaper concept. Consequently I threw it together quickly and then left it on my shelf for months never giving it any love.
There were several factors that were demotivating me in getting a move on with its construction:
1) The model is useless in Apocalypse games. It is always destroyed within the first turn and never recovers its points value.
2) The Plague Reaper is obscene and butt ugly. It looks like an enormous infected male member on a tank chassis (see here).
3) I could not find an inspiring model to work from. I can usually bounce off of other modellers' creativity, but in this case I was getting nothing from all the tutorials I checked out.
For these reasons I had this big ugly lump of half-heartedly constructed grey plastic sitting on my shelf for over a year and a half.
My attitude began to change when I got the idea of designing a scenario wherein the super heavy would be king. Suddenly the tank had more allure. Having restored its gaming purpose, I began to think of how to improve it aestheticly so I could actually motivate myself to work on it.
The 2011 edition of Chaos Ludik helped motivate me as well, as it created a deadline. I work well under pressure.
My key barrier now to building it was the phallus gun. The solution was simple, however. I kept the initial shape of the Baneblade cannon and just inserted lots of guitar strings into it representing tubes. It worked in my opinion. In fact, it looked like most of the other tanks I had already done, so it blended well in my existing Deathguard army.
To make a long story short, I used my usual method of PC7ing
armour made from the aluminum in toothpaste tubes. I learned that technique from one of the Ork tutorials in Netepics ezine, Incoming. I then greenstuffed like a maniac for 3 hours a night for almost three weeks. In between all that I added some details like the working hatches in the back, the winch in the front, and numerous tubes running here and there all over the outside armour.
Initially I was going to just leave the hole as is under the turret, but after a feverish dream and three nights insomnia, I got the idea for the overflowing corpse stew in the hull. This means the tank will still look cool after a weapon destroyed result!
Even some of the original detailing looked all right after the paintjob. The skull on the front was one of my first attempts at Greenstuff sculpting. It turned out OK when all was said and done. I also still like the marine with the sledgehammer in his skull.
So that was it. I now have my first fully painted Apocalypse unit. It feels kind of cathartic too since I never thought it would get done.
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