Friday, 6 September 2013

Modelling: Chaos Lord on Daemonic Steed

A couple of years ago I painted up a Warriors of Chaos army that I'd collected many years previously. I added a few models to it (some plastic Marauders and Chaos Spawn) but for the most part it was built from old models from circa 1990.

I fielded the army successfully against my friend Mike's Lizardmen, but one thing that struck us both was how underpowered the Daemon Prince character was. Flying was a great advantage, but his ability to deal out and deal with punishment wasn't great. So I decided I needed a new General.

This ultimately led me to my most ambitious conversion project to date: a Chaos Lord on Daemonic Steed.

I started by taking a pair of old 25mm x 50mm cavalry bases and glueing them side-by-side to a piece of plasticard to make a 50mm x 50mm base. The slots in the bases were still going to be used to secure the model, but that entailed taking the plastic "Rough Rider" style horse I was going to use and widening it out (not a bad thing as it would have been a bit weedy otherwise). I also decided I wanted to give some "animus" to the model by having the horse rearing. I severed the plastic ties between the horse's front hooves and the strips that would fit into the base, then carefully cut around the join between the horse's hindquarters and "stomach". I filled the model with modelling clay and also inserted a piece of thick wire to hold it in position whilst the clay set.

Once set, I filled in a few gaps with a bit more modelling clay, and then decided that what would make this horse particularly Daemonic would be to be two headed! I found a couple of armoured horse heads in my bits box and drilled, pinned & glued them together.

These were then mounted onto the torso with another pin & glue job.
Front view

Rear View
 Next came the tail. This was quite a fiddly job to get right and involved many attempts. Basically, it's made from some Chaos Marauder flails, glued together with a wire "pin" holding them into the rump of the horse:

The join between the tail and the horse was a bit fragile and the beast needed some armour anyway, so out came the modelling clay again. Now I'm no sculptor (I'm sure you can tell) but what I wanted to do was add even more bulk to the model, reinforce the tail and try to make it look a bit "Chaosey". A lot of the models in my army have skulls on their shields or shoulder-guards, so I decided to try to continue the theme by sculpting something skull-like into the armour:

I then added some "mail" at the front of the horse to add bulk, cover seams and represent barding:

It's a Chaos model, so needed more "Chaos Death Spikey bits". I also became a bit concerned at this point about the robustness of the model's back legs, so I drilled a hole up through the base and into the horse's chest, and fed a piece of wire up. To make this into a bit of a feature, I added a dead Dwarf model that was of little other use but had been (painted) in my collection for a very long time:
More flail-ends were used at the rear of the armour

A couple more flails were added to the mail at the front, as well as adding another large skull (taken from a Standard) and some leather strapping

And some spikes were added to another leather strap at the rear
Last but not least, the General himself. This guy was made from bits from my bits-box. His legs were removed from the torso, split up the middle of his groin, pinned back together at a distance that would allow them to straddle the widened horse and then the gap filled with modelling clay. His left arm was replaced with a big claw-thingy from I-don't-know-where and I added a fur cape with modelling clay. That was about it. Job done.

Painted up and with the base textured, he took to the field with a unit of Chaos Knights against Mike's Daemons of Chaos army (and served me better than the Daemon Prince, IIRC):