My submission for the Middlehammer Legacy Project Warband of the Weird and Wonderful is Mad Marik Trollbiter from the 1986 Citadel Chaos Dwarf Renegades release, with awesome box art from John Blanche himself. It's that sickly yellow that is so evocative of Blanche for me!
The sculpts are by the Perry brothers, and the painting for the advert was by Colin Dixon (thanks to the amazing Orclord and Stuff of Legends for the pics and info!)
You can see Mad Marik in the bottom left of the advert. I'm not sure if it is the paint job, or the lighting, or the production of the advert, but there is a bit of a purple tinge to him and it gave me some confidence that he'd look OK in the Purple and Off-white colour scheme for the Warband.
So here he is in the bare metal with the shield I eventually selected. I didn't have the exact shield shown in the flyer, but I still wanted to use an original 80s era shield, and to make use of the shield boss rather than cutting it off to fit a later shield. This left me only a couple of options as some of the larger RoC shields would have looked ridiculous on such a small mini, and the couple of simple small round shields I had are being saved for Halflings. I eventually settled on this as being not too large for the mini, but also adding enough interest with the shape. With that I got to painting!
Even accepting that the two main colours for the model were already chosen, I wanted to use a restricted colour pallet, so beyond the Purple triad of Liche Purple (which I appropriately had to resurrect from a half dead plastic bullet pot), Worm Purple (still going strong in an original early 90s round pot from more than 15 years previous!) and Vallejo Model Colour Blue Violet, and the Off-white (Dheneb Stone foundation, Bleached Bone highlight, shaded with Army Painter Soft Tone - except the skin of the face which was shaded with Purple Tone), the only other colours are leather brown for the straps and weapon shaft (Bestial Brown with Snakebite Leather highlights and shaded with Strong Tone), Gold for the metal work (Tin Bitz base worked up with Shining Gold and then highlighted with Golden Griffon dry pigment (like jelly now sadly, but still usable if you work with it for a bit, and a less sharp highlight than silver in my view).
I used Army Painter Purple Tone for both the purple areas and the gold, letting this both blend the model together but also pick up some of the iridescence of the metal work. It sort of works. I'd been avoiding doing the hair, not wanting to deviate from my restricted colour pallet, but knowing that it wouldn't look right in brown, off-white, or yet more purple. For a while I thought I'd leave it black and decided to go back to working on the shield and let the completed mini tell me what colour the hair should be.
Problem is, the pose of the mini means the back of the shield is very visible, and I was suddenly conscious that it was very, very flat....
Keeping with the restricted colour pallet and not wanting to add more Gold or Purple to the model the only logical choice was for it to be brown, but a flat brown surface didn't seem right so I attempted to add some detailing to make it look like planks of wood, which you can see below before and after an ink wash.
Crude, I think it would be fair to say, and now I'm a bit worried it actually distracts from the rest of the model a bit and it would have been better to keep with the flat surface. In the end I don't hate it enough to re-do it, and once it was on the mini it convinced me that what Marik needed was a nice blue rinse for that hair of his. So it was an Elf Grey base with a simple Army Painter Blue Tone set. I don't think the old ladies in the hair dressers appreciated his ribald language however!
And with that he was done!
No Dwarf asked 'Mad' Marik why he joined their band of outcasts and misfits, Trollslayers being a bit like the Brettonian Foreign Legion about stuff like that. Similarly his bright blue hair caused no qualms, and even his chained nipple piercings only raised a few eyebrows, although it might have been that they were the ones with piercings in. No, it was only once the band tracked down their first troll pack since Marik joined them that he started to seem, errr, a touch outre?
The rest of the band decided it was easier to accept his excuse that it wasn't what it looked like and that he was in fact giving the troll a savage bite to the groin before delivering the 'death blow', and to be fair he had then decapitated the thing to prove his point. The excuse started to wear thin after the first half dozen times...
...but it was the incident with that Horny Minotaur in the ruined temple that finally saw Mad Marik 'Trollbiter' expelled from even that most savage of Dwarven fraternities.
Marik headed north in search of more Trolls to err.... bite! Soon he fell to the whispers of Slaanesh on the winds of the Chaos Wastes, abandoning the last vestiges of his former self and getting all new spiky armour and weapons, more in keeping with his new identity. Now he serves in any warband that can muster enough monstrous muscle to catch his eye ;)
Mad Marik Trollbiter is a Chaos Dwarf (4th Edition, as it is a Middlehammer project) with an extra attack due to his tendency to bite, and a bonus to his initiative due to his experience in finishing clandestine encounters quickly
He is wearing Heavy Armour and carries a shield (4+ save), wields a Spiked Mace (hand weapon) and bears the Mark of Slaanesh (Immune to Psychology/Cannot break)
I really enjoyed painting this guy, and ended up painting a whole bunch of stuff using variations of this same Purple and Off-white pallet including some Malifaux Neverborn, and finishing the Zombie Dragon I'd primed and based for Deadcember 2017 and then stalled, so yet again a painting challenge has spurred me on to paint stuff that would have been waiting a long time otherwise!
Things are hotting up with the project now with four weeks to go, but there is still time to get involved if you want to take part (check the project rules here). I posted some group shots on the Middlehammer facebook page the other day, and more entries have arrived since or are arriving soon so I'll do another update ASAP, but for now here is the gang so far chilling out on a break from their Bank Holiday maraudings :)
|L-R: Al's Chaos Sorcerer, Mike's Oriental Inspired Chaos Warrior, Christians mighty Chaos Lord conversion, Stewart's alien looking mutant Glaur, and Mad Marik 'Trollbiter'|
Thanks for stopping by - stay tuned for more project updates as the month progresses!