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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Lines Overrun!

Where the hell have I been?  The last update on here was well over six months ago!  My apologies, dear reader, I don't have much of an excuse other than the tired cliche' of "real life" getting in the way of my hobby pursuits.  With the usual hubbub surrounding the end of the year holidays I was also in the middle of a master's thesis defense that ate up all of October and November (but, the defense was successful so the time was not entirely wasted) and the beginning of the year was gobbled up by new responsibilities at work, birthdays, of course some minor holidays, and a wedding (not mine). So, while I would have rather been writing up articles for this blog and actually producing some original content like Praetorian fiction long promised in my first posting, I am afraid I was a tad overrun with those other tasks.  

From the looks of things my absence has only helped the traffic of this blog and I am very happy to see some new subscribers.  Perhaps I should stay away longer?  (Joking.)

So, what have the Praetorian 77th been up to all these many months?  Not much actually.  The fine men and women of my beloved Guard have taken a back seat to a budding Dark Eldar army.  But, while in the back seat the 77th was still in the car, moving ever forward to that hazy unknown of being a "completed" army.  The Dark Eldar are also being painted by Drew at Garden Ninja Studios so while I was focusing primarily on the gothy-space pirates I was also sending small batches of new Praetorian recruits to be added to my Guard army's ranks.  One of my favorites from the last few months is featured in the photos below.  She is a female commissar figure produced by Warforge that I am planning on using as a "counts-as" Lord Commissar.  The figure is resin and wonderfully cast that comes with a very lovely (but optional) scenic base.  Seriously, this figure was one of the least troublesome resin figures I have worked with. I typically avoid resin because the dust associated with the clean up is worrisome, but this figure had a tiny bit of excess plastic and the barest of mold lines running along one leg. I think the total clean up time was 5 minutes and that including fiddling with my protective mask.

I sent this figure to Drew and he achieved some more marvelous work (I just love the Praetorian lion emblem on the ammo crate).  The detail on her face is what prompted me to track down this figure in the first place. The icy-calm countenance just embodies the killer resolve of the Imperial Commissariat.

This figure has great natural proportions for the head, hands, and feet, which clash slightly with GW's "heroic" proportions, but considering it is going to be used as a showcase HQ figure I am not worried about her standing out from the normal rank and file.

I haven't had a chance to use her in a game yet, so I am not sure if she will remain a Lord Commissar or just become a regular run-of-the-mill Commissar, but regardless I plan on using her on the game table every chance I get.  

Oddly enough, despite not adding much to the regular elements of my Praetorian army I found the need to acquire three more super-heavy tanks. All of them are Forge World kits and all deserve their own posts so I'll leave this as a teaser for the next few posts I plan to add. However, as a hint regarding one of the designs I'll say this: it is a must have for a Praetorian army.

A while back I mentioned a side-line project I was building and painting myself.  That project was a Blood Axe Ork force.  The Orks are coming along nicely with nearly full squad of Boyz and 3 out of 5 Stormboyz painted.  As a bit of fun I thought I would try a mini-diorama shot of the noble Lord Commissar fending off a Blood Axe assault.  I have quite a few of the Praetorian casualty figures painted up that I plan on using in a few terrain projects I am painting. They really help add character to even basic terrain displays.  I really love the casualty figures for all of GW's armies, and only wish more were available.  There was an Ork casualty sold sometime around 2009 or 2010 on GW's site during the holidays and I am kicking myself for not grabbing a few. If anyone reading has some that they would like to sell or trade please send me an e-mail or contact me through DakkaDakka's forums (user name: DarkTraveler777) or e-mail at:

Anyway, this diorama would be better if I had some Ork dead to throw around, but until I track some of those figures down dead 'umies will have to suffice.

Thanks for reading!

Ork and Forge World terrain painted by me.  Commissar and Praetorian trooper painted by Drew Olds.

You can see why I mainly commission paint work...


  1. Welcome Back! Nice stuff, I'm tempted to hunt down one of the female officers myself. If I could just get my thesis finished I'd be a happy man too!

  2. Wow I love the commissar model! I had been looking around at various options for a female commissar but this is definitely the best I have seen. I'm not sure it matters too much that she's less heroic scale as it emphasises the femininity more, a lot of female gw models just look like men with female heads and boobs to me!

  3. BTW personally think you've done cracking job on the Ork!

  4. Thanks for the warm welcome!

    Col. Ackland, good luck with your own thesis. There were many nights where I really questioned my sanity for choosing a thesis project. ;) If you take the plunge on buying a Vicktoria model I am sure you will be pleased with the final product.

    Buffer, I agree with you! Most of GW's female models are very masculine, especially some of the early IG female figures (which is okay for futuristic soldiers, I suppose). I think the latest Dark Eldar models have gone a long way to improve the image that GW can only sculpt male models, but the Viktoria "commissar" really hit a nice balance of "reading" as a female without going too extreme in either gender direction.

    Also, thanks for the compliment on the Ork. I am happy with the results in person but rather disappointed with how the Orks photograph. The camera certainly has a way of capturing every flaw that our eyes mercifully overlook. Once I get the army done I should have a decent handle on painting green skin and camo, though. :)